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Old December 12th, 2008, 09:19 AM   #1
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Hi Y'all

I am on a MacPro G5, I have FCP 5.1.4 ( w/Studio) I shoot on a Canon XL2(bought in the US). I live in Japan(this may make a difference if you recommend certain equipment not avail in Japan) The plus is that Japan is NTSC.

I am making a docu and have found some Japanese-made VHS tapes with archival footage from the early 90's that I need. I can't go to the company which produced them for master copies because the co. doesn't exist anymore. So...I have to transfer/digitize them myself and get the footage into FCP for editing.
There doesn't appear to be any copy guard as I have transfered it once with a low grade VCR--to my Canon xl2, which worked but seems to have had a tracking issue (or something) when I did it. There is some irregular banding on the bottom of some shots.

You can see it when the guy with the white headband is yelling towards the start of this trailer:
figure8productions - Sayonara Speed Tribes - DVD

I tried to go through a dubbing service but the company was nervous about copyright even though I have permission.

1. What is the best way to do this myself? Rent a pro VTR/VCR and connect it to my Canon again? Rent a minDV/VHS combo deck and dub them that way?

2. The tapes seem to have been shot 4:3, my footage is 16:9, should I be wary of this while dubbing or deal with it in post? I dubbed it originally and captured it as 16:9 but it is slightly stretched.

3. Is that silver band at the bottom really a tracking issue?

I'm sorry for the long post but it saves people going back and forth.

Thanks in advance!
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Old December 12th, 2008, 10:26 AM   #2
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The band at the bottom is part of the 'clock track' that is inherrent in VHS tapes (And not seen on your average TV sreen). You can enlarge your image by a few pixels to block it out. The bit of shearing near the top, is from Time Base slippage... bound to happen with old VHS stuff.

You can dub with a Time Base Corrector and possibly clean this up. The Canopus ADVC300 I think, has time base correction built in. Might try that. After the Canopus, you'll spend much more money for the proper gear. My suggestion is to find a good dubbing facility, show them your letter of permission for usage, an get them to dub it with Time Base Correction.

By the way, I'm not certain from your trailer, what the 'tradition' that you are describing is about. Is it boxing? Is it some sort of motorcycle racing/performance?


In terms of putting the 4:3 footage into the documentary - I'd Pillar Box it. This is standard procedure for documentary use of mixed media. You see this all the time. The other option is to enlarge it to fit the screen (Cropping top and bottom) but the image will degrade if you do this. May or may not be suitable - depends on the context of the images.

Last edited by Richard Alvarez; December 12th, 2008 at 01:04 PM.
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Old December 12th, 2008, 12:43 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamie Sanderson View Post

I shoot on a Canon XL2(bought in the US). I live in Japan(this may make a difference if you recommend certain equipment not avail in Japan) The plus is that Japan is NTSC.

It might be important to remember that although Japan uses NTSC, the IRE black level set up is not the same as NTSC used in the US, but for some reason is the same as the PAL IRE levels we use here in Europe. Numbers here: 7.5 IRE Setup ,if you're interested.

Might be important if you're mixing sources?
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Old December 12th, 2008, 06:19 PM   #4
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Thanks Richard
I will try another dubbing place before I rent a Canopus. I have found Canopus ADVC1000 and ADVC700 on the net for rent in Japan. Are those ok? Here is a page with comparisons. This my first time dealing with analogue video in editing so I don't have much of a clue.
The docu is about bike gangs. The trailer is too loose to get the story but the footage is here is just need to spend time piecing it together. Thanks

Thanks Roger that is a good heads up!
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Old December 12th, 2008, 09:25 PM   #5
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I have a Sony SVP-5600 S-VHS professional deck with a built in time base corrector. I have never found any VHS type deck that will match the playback quality of this deck. Well, except for it's companion player/recorder deck, the SVO-5800. If you could find either deck to rent, I would recommend it. Other similar professional decks from JVC and Panasonic are also really, really good. I have them also. But, the Sony is the best, in my experience.
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Old December 13th, 2008, 08:51 PM   #6
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I found both decks. Thanks. How much better is the SVO-5800? It is about $50 more per day to rent. I will probably just rent it for one day and I still need a Canopus ADVC converter right?
cheers
J
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Old December 13th, 2008, 10:49 PM   #7
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The Sony SVP-5600 has S-video out and the XL-2 has S-video out and in, so you could just dub from the SVP-5600 to your XL-2. No Canopus needed.

Duane
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Old December 13th, 2008, 10:54 PM   #8
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I thought of that, but is the quality the same, going through the XL2?
Thanks
J
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Old December 14th, 2008, 03:08 AM   #9
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Do you mean as opposed to going through a Canopus converter? I suppose there could be a difference in the xl2 or Canopus analog to digital converters but I highly doubt you'd see it. Besides, the XL2 could just as likely be the better of the two :) I would dub it to tape on the xl2 and then import it via firewire. You then have it in digital form on tape to archive.

Duane

Last edited by Duane Burleson; December 14th, 2008 at 03:10 AM. Reason: added info
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Old December 14th, 2008, 05:27 AM   #10
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I think I dont have much of choice b/c I cant find anywhere that rents out that canopus in Tokyo, nor can I justify the added expense if the quality will be likely be the same. I will try
either of the Sonys. Any idea if the more expensive is worth it?
Thanks
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Old December 14th, 2008, 07:58 AM   #11
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The SVP-5600 and the SVO-5800 have the same playback capability. The SVO is a player only. The SVO will play and record.
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Old December 14th, 2008, 08:11 AM   #12
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thanks, then the cheaper one will do.
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