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Why are different results obtained when zoom applied via different methods?

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Michael Leibson
Why are different results obtained when zoom applied via different methods?
on Dec 2, 2017 at 2:27:34 pm

I’m completely new to video and video editing, and need help with what I’m assuming is a basic issue, please.

Instructions for the ‘pan and zoom’ of an effects app I’m trying out seem to have two modes of application: (1) the effect can be applied directly to a clip or image, or, (2) it can be applied to a track to which one should first “add a project-sized clip or solid to the timeline”, and then link the effect to the clip or image as an external file.

I’m using a still image rather than a clip, and have experimented with both methods – but I get different results in each case, and I am trying to understand what’s at play.

The project was set to use the source material’s aspect ratio.
The image is 4,000 x 3,000, and I chose a solid white, via the video editor’s ‘media generator’, for that “project-sized solid”.

In approach (2), I noticed that the ‘solid white’ had a frame size of 352 X 240, and that, indeed, the project’s aspect ratio was 352 X 240. The still image, used as that “external file” had its original 4,000 x 3,000 dimensions. For the very beginning of the clip (of a pan across this still image), I chose a zoom of 480%. The resulting image was very clear and focused – nice and sharp.

As an experiment, I then applied the effect, on a different track, using approach (1). There, too, I set the opening zoom to the same dimension. However, the resulting image there was unclear, and very poorly focused.

I’m trying to understand why, in this same project, the two approaches produced such different results. It would seem that, in approach (2), I am applying a zoom to a large image that is somehow being forced into a small (352 x 240) frame. (Does this perhaps result in a much more dense – and therefore finer – resolution?) In approach (1), I seem to be applying the same zoom to that large image in its original size – yet the aspect ratio for the project is still set to the smaller size.

I’ve spent hours trying to figure this out, so I’d really welcome any enlightening feedback!

Thanks, in advance, for any perspective (no pun intended) you care to share!


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John Rofrano
Re: Why are different results obtained when zoom applied via different methods?
on Dec 4, 2017 at 2:01:55 am

If I understand you correctly, you are asking the difference between Pan/Crop and Track Motion. They both appear to do similar things but in different ways.

Pan/Crop retains the resolution of the source material and always uses all of the resolution regardless of the resolution of the project.

Track Motion always uses the resolution of the project. Any zoom in will degrade the image regardless of how much resolution the original had because it gets converted to the resolution the project first and then gets zoomed.

The bottom line is never zoom IN with Track Motion if you want to retain quality. It is designed for zooming OUT to make a picture-in-picture effect. Always use Pan/Crop if you want to zoom in.

~jr

http://www.johnrofrano.com
http://www.vasstsoftware.com



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Michael Leibson
Re: Why are different results obtained when zoom applied via different methods?
on Dec 8, 2017 at 11:36:53 am

Thank-you, John!

A closely related question (please forgive my beginner's ignorance of these things!):

So, let's say that I want to zoom in, and that I'll use Pan & Crop. My source image's aspect resolution is 4,000 x 3,000, and my project's is 1980 x 1020, and - when I choose 16:9 as a "preset" for that image (in the Event Pan & Crop window) - the image is correspondingly cropped. If I understand you correctly, tho', the cropped image still retains its original resolution, even tho' its aspect ratio has been 'forced' by that crop.

However, if I zoom in a great deal, won't I automatically obtain a less 'crisp' image, because - by zooming in - there will necessarily be fewer pixels per unit of area than without the zoom? (This seems to be what occurs.) If this is indeed the case, is there anything I can do to mitigate this?

Many thanks for your help!


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John Rofrano
Re: Why are different results obtained when zoom applied via different methods?
on Dec 10, 2017 at 4:13:13 am

[Michael Leibson] "If I understand you correctly, tho', the cropped image still retains its original resolution, even tho' its aspect ratio has been 'forced' by that crop."
Yes, it is simply cropping the image without loosing any resolution.
[Michael Leibson] "However, if I zoom in a great deal, won't I automatically obtain a less 'crisp' image, because - by zooming in - there will necessarily be fewer pixels per unit of area than without the zoom? (This seems to be what occurs.) If this is indeed the case, is there anything I can do to mitigate this?"
Yes, at some point. If you zoom in past the resolution of the original media then the picture will start to degrade but zooming a 1920x1080 picture in 100% (by 2x) will only require 3840x2160 of resolution which is still below the 4000x3000 of your image so there will be no loss in quality unless you zoom in above that resolution.

~jr

http://www.johnrofrano.com
http://www.vasstsoftware.com



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Michael Leibson
Re: Why are different results obtained when zoom applied via different methods?
on Dec 11, 2017 at 2:59:12 am

[John Rofrano] "Yes, at some point. If you zoom in past the resolution of the original media then the picture will start to degrade but zooming a 1920x1080 picture in 100% (by 2x) will only require 3840x2160 of resolution which is still below the 4000x3000 of your image so there will be no loss in quality unless you zoom in above that resolution."

Thank-you, John! Now I get it!

I'm actually zooming in way more than that (trying to do some animation of still images). I guess there's no way around such a physical reality.

Thanks, again, for your help!


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