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Old November 4th, 2011, 08:29 PM   #1
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1080i to dvd looks like VHS

I have been playing around with rendering in Vegas 9 and I have come to the result so far that I cannot get a decent mpg2 render. The original 1080i footage after being rendered to mpg2 with the MainConcept template and imported into DVD architect looks like video shot with a cell phone. Plus lots of jagged lines, blurry, etc.

To author 1080i to dvd what are others doing? Perhaps I should look at another program for rendering to mpg2?
I have looked through countless threads and still I am stumped. I am hoping that maybe I just missed checking off a box in some deep menu.

This is getting so frustrating that I am almost ready to go back to shooting SD as my audience will be watching the finished product on SD dvd anyways. My wife thinks I am just hiding in the basement playing.
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Old November 4th, 2011, 09:37 PM   #2
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

Vegas has one of the absolute best MPEG codecs going so changing to something else to render in isn't the answer. I have to ask are the project properties set to match the footage properties.
IOW are the project properties set to 1080i or are they set to something else? Also what template are you using to render? If it's the default template that could very be the problem. What bitrate are you using? VBR or CBR? One pass or 2? Have you had this same problem in prior renders or did it appear on on this particular project?
A bit more information from you would help us all figure out what the problem might be.
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Old November 4th, 2011, 10:58 PM   #3
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

Until Vegas 10, Vegas didn't scale 1080 directly to 480 very well. An intermediate step going through 720 solved the problem. You may try rendering to 720/60p and then to 480 using the DVD Architect template.

Remember to set the render quality to BEST because you're rescaling.
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Old November 5th, 2011, 01:25 AM   #4
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

I convert all my HD footage with Cineform HDLink and the resulting DVDs are stunning.
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Old November 5th, 2011, 04:07 AM   #5
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

Hi

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Kruis View Post
I have been playing around with rendering in Vegas 9 and I have come to the result so far that I cannot get a decent mpg2 render. The original 1080i footage after being rendered to mpg2 with the MainConcept template and imported into DVD architect looks like video shot with a cell phone. Plus lots of jagged lines, blurry, etc.

To author 1080i to dvd what are others doing? Perhaps I should look at another program for rendering to mpg2?
I have looked through countless threads and still I am stumped. I am hoping that maybe I just missed checking off a box in some deep menu.

This is getting so frustrating that I am almost ready to go back to shooting SD as my audience will be watching the finished product on SD dvd anyways. My wife thinks I am just hiding in the basement playing.
It isn't easy going from 1080i to SD resolutions and some editors often use very crude resizing methods. Also make sure you view it back on a TV screen rather than a computer before making a judgement as viewing interlaced SD close up on a computer screen is not how interlaced SD is designed to be shown.

Most of the issues come about due to interlacing as 1080i has to be de-interlaced, then resized, then interlaced again, but the result is only a crude approximate representation of how that interlaced footage would have been acquired natively by an SD camera. Also with HD to SD you end up with too much detail in the SD picture which then is difficult to encode to MPEG2 and sharp edges make interlacing artefacts all the more visible.

Tips as already mentioned, try an intermediate 720p step, this extra step acts like a low pass filter, removing some detail and making the final SD footage interlace together better. Make sure when you encode to DVD you set the MPEG2 quality slider to maximum and up the average bit-rate to at least 8000. You could also try adding a very small amount of a Gaussian blur to the HD footage.

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Old November 5th, 2011, 08:19 AM   #6
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

This post describes your problem and possible solution. Start with Ron Evans post Fastest and Best way to downscale HD to SD - Page 4 - Grass Valley Desktop Solutions Forums
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Old November 5th, 2011, 10:39 AM   #7
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

Thanks for all the great information guys, I am going to try out your tips this weekend.

This is what I was doing before.

Footage shot at 1080i 16mps Sony Avchd

Project properties in Vegas
HD1080 -60i (1920*1080 29.970fps)
Field Order- Upper field first
Full Resolution rendering quality--BEST
Deinterlace Method--Blend fields or sometimes Interpolate (tried em' both)
Adjust source media to better match render-- Checked

Render as properties
Main Concept Mpg2
Template--DVD Architect NTSC video stream
Aspect ratio-- 16:9
Variable bit rate checked and Two pass checked.

If anybody notices anything glaringly wrong please tell me. I am already going to make some adjustments with the helpful info I have received here.
I really liked my sd Canon GL2 but I just want to duplicate some of the awesome benefits of HD to DVD.

Thanks again,
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Old November 5th, 2011, 10:45 AM   #8
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Harper View Post
I convert all my HD footage with Cineform HDLink and the resulting DVDs are stunning.
Jeff,

Not sure I understand. Is there a Cineform HDLink codec that can be added to Vegas when you are ready to render? Or do you edit with avi's and not avchd?
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Old November 5th, 2011, 11:00 AM   #9
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

What is your output bitrate to mpeg2? Ideally, video and audio for DVD should not exceed a total of 8.5mbs. Some will advise a little lower than this to maintain DVD player compatibility. If under an hour in video length I would use constant bitrate at around 8mbs and AC3 audio at 320kbs.
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Old November 5th, 2011, 11:13 AM   #10
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

Erik, I use HDlink, it is a program that will resize and deinterlace footage prior to your editing. You then edit the converted footage and render as regular SD 16:9 video, and it looks so good my clients think it's Bluray, and I'm not exaggerating.

HDLink has been discontinued, and I can't tell you what the replacement program is, but there is something new, less expensive.

There is a learning curve with converting footage, no matter which program you choose. It is a committment in time and money, but the results are well worth it. There are various free conversion workflows (Lancoz, etc.) but I gave up and bought Cineform. In the end, for a high-quality result with the least number of steps involved, Cineiform is the way to go.

Some people know how to get great results using Vegas, I don't know how they do it, tried that.

I am a full time videographer, and I do not have time to play with a dozen different workflows. I needed the best, I can't play around with this stuff as a hobbyists might do, so I jumped into Cineform with both feet, and I would not switch if you paid me.
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Old November 5th, 2011, 02:12 PM   #11
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Jimerson View Post
Until Vegas 10, Vegas didn't scale 1080 directly to 480 very well. An intermediate step going through 720 solved the problem. You may try rendering to 720/60p and then to 480 using the DVD Architect template.

Remember to set the render quality to BEST because you're rescaling.
Thanks David,

But I cannot seem to find 720/60p render settings, could you recall where they would be located?
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Old November 5th, 2011, 02:27 PM   #12
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

HD link produces an intermediate file, ie uncompresses AVCHD etc. The resulting files are way bigger than the originals, due to the decompression. It is genearally used to make editing highly compressed files, a lot easier on slower comuters. The resulting footage, after encoding to Mpeg2, will be no different than encoding the original files. I just makes the editing process a heck of a lot easier / faster.
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Old November 5th, 2011, 05:30 PM   #13
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

Colin, HDLink resizes and deinterlaces footage much better than Vegas, it is the primary reason I use it, not for speed of editing, but that is a bonus. When I deinterlace and resize in Vegas it looks fairly crappy. Just tried it Friday again in Vegas 11, still no contest.
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Old November 5th, 2011, 06:39 PM   #14
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

Interesting Jeff, must give it a try. I have only ever used HD Link to produce easier to use files, on slower machines
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Old November 5th, 2011, 06:44 PM   #15
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Re: 1080i to dvd looks like VHS

Eric, the discussion moved right on to deinterlace and resize methods, and there's a lot of valuable info above.

However, the number one cause of vhs-like quality in the Vegas to DVDA workflow is DVDA seeing something it doesn't like about a file, and recompressing it. One must be very aware of the conditions in which this might happen. If you're aware of all these issues, you can ignore the rest of this post...

If your project builds in DVDA are taking more than a few minutes, and/or if DVDA messages indicate that any elements will be recompressed, this is where you need to start.

First approach is to try a test where you render out of Vegas at project size in a relatively non-lossy format, then let DVDA do the compression. This isn't the best for quality, but can definitively establish if recompression was the issue all along.

For the steps in creating an MPEG2 render out of Vegas that DVDA will like, I highly recommend Edward Troxel's excellent newsletters. Don't worry that the Vegas-DVDA workflow was written for earlier versions, it hasn't changed much.
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