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Old January 8th, 2005, 09:55 AM   #1
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Print Quality Stills from DV footage

I'm not sure where I should post this, but I thought I'd throw a question out there to see if anyone has tried this...

I was looking to extract some print quality stills from some DV footage I have taken over the years. Now, obviously a digital still camera would have been better, but I don't always remember to bring one along, blah, blah, blah...

Anyway, my question is actually about an Adobe program called Streamline... It takes raster images and makes vector based images (it says it's primarily for line art, but with all the settings I think it might be possible to get some photo quality vectors, I dunno though...) Anyways, I was just wondering if anyone had tried this or other methods to extract stills to uprezz stills from DV footage. I'm thinking I probably only need to go to 5x7's, though the option to go bigger would be nice. Obviously I'd need to deinterlace it too--is photoshop good enough for that, or are there better methods?

Kevin Dooley
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Old January 9th, 2005, 06:10 AM   #2
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I'd think it would be more ideal to go with a program that upresses
SD video to HD video (I believe there's a good one called twixtor
or something) than working in vector based format. I don't see
how that would help you in this case.

Rob Lohman,
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Old January 9th, 2005, 06:30 AM   #3
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pE@se the problem is garbage_in = garbage_out :-) At 7" wide you are only getting 100 dpi from a DV frame. There's a program called Genuine Fractals which runs on both the Mac and PC. They have a free demo that is fully functional for the first 10 uses:

I had some stuff I wanted to uprez myself a couple years ago so I checked it out on a friend's recommendation. However I discovered that the program's real strength was doing really big enlargements (like 10x or 20x the original size). If you just want to double or triple the original image size then Photoshop's bicubic resampling produced results that were just about the same.

And obviously the software can't invent detail that isn't present in the original. What it does do is reduce the stair-stepping in diagonal lines and that sort of thing. But like I said, this only starts to become noticeable when you do really big blow-ups. However you might play with the free download.

Deinterlacing will only make a difference when there's movement in the DV frame, either from objects that are moving or if the camera itself has moved. It should be obvious if it's needed because you'll see the "comb" effect on the edges of things where the two video fields don't match. IIRC, Photoshop's deinterlacing just discards one field and double the other which isn't great since it halves the vertical resolution. When I want to do this I use an adaptive deinterlacing plug-in in my NLE before exporting the frame; they only process the parts of your image that are moving so that you retain the maximum resolution. On the Mac Joe's Filters is an easy way to do this. There's also DVFilm Maker which is a standalone program running on the Mac or PC. I think Vegas may have a similar function built-in on the PC.

The only other thing I can think of which may help is playing with the unsharp filter in Photoshop. And of course you will probably want to adjust the gamma of the image for printing since they tend to be a little dark otherwise.
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