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Transferring VHS via Intensity in Resolve?

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Anthony Sneed
Transferring VHS via Intensity in Resolve?
on Dec 25, 2015 at 6:02:32 am

Hey guys!

Just acquired a thunderbolt Intensity as I'm trying to transfer a bunch of VHS tapes for a documentary I'm working on. I want the transfers to be the highest quality possible from which I'll make proxy files.

What's the optimal settings for VHS transfer given I have a top quality deck to start with?

Frame Rate 29?
Progressive or interlaced?
1080,720 or 640? (Final film will be 1080p)
QuickTime uncompressed 10bit yuv or pro Res 4444xq or something else?
Should I use DaVinci, Media Express or one of the Adobe Programs?


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Marc Wielage
Re: Transferring VHS via Intensity in Resolve?
on Dec 26, 2015 at 7:49:01 am

The key to me is to get the best possible VHS deck to ensure the playback looks as good as possible. One of the JVCs or Panasonics with a built in TBC -- the JVC BR-S822 is my pick -- is highly recommended. Check the material on a scope, and avoid using any noise reduction or enhancement in playback. Make sure the levels are good and that the tape is carefully tracked.

I would recommend ProRes 422 720x480. Anything more than that is total overkill (to me).

There are archival services out there that specialize in converting old tape formats to digital, and you may want to rely on them for best results. DC Video in Burbank would be high on that list: http://www.dcvideo.com/


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Joseph Owens
Re: Transferring VHS via Intensity in Resolve?
on Dec 29, 2015 at 5:25:27 pm

[Anthony Sneed] "Frame Rate 29?
Progressive or interlaced?
1080,720 or 640? (Final film will be 1080p)
QuickTime uncompressed 10bit yuv or pro Res 4444xq or something else?
Should I use DaVinci, Media Express or one of the Adobe Programs?"


Assuming the VHS tape is NTSC, your capture will want to be as native as possible unless you have some kind of super-duper Teranex uprez converter. So 29.97 interlaced, and if it is real NTSC, not DV, full raster is 720x486. You will likely be cropping the first and last couple of lines of the video anyway, because of flagging and head switching errors. Ten-bit is overkill in one sense as the color-under Y/C signal on the tape is quite a bit less than 4:2:2, more like 2:1:0, but saying that, it is analog original, so unless your TBC introduces a lot of quantizing error, you may as well pull it in as ProRes (uncompressed is no advantage in this case, just "bigger"). If there are any test signals on the tape, worthwhile to capture those, as well, in case there is any possibility of fixing any of the heterodyning errors that are made worse by age of the tape, impact noise, and interchange head geometry. Try and capture by "S-connector" (Y/C 629) and you will at least get around comb filter decoding errors, as well.

jPo

"I always pass on free advice -- its never of any use to me" Oscar Wilde.


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Anthony Sneed
Re: Transferring VHS via Intensity in Resolve?
on Dec 29, 2015 at 7:54:04 pm

thanks so much everyone this was great info!


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Joseph Owens
Re: Transferring VHS via Intensity in Resolve?
on Dec 29, 2015 at 8:38:41 pm

I noticed on the Resolve forum that one bit of advice was to capture in .dpx sequential. This would be in the league of "Uncompressed" but I understand the poster's intentions... IF you decide you want to access the Revival tools... otherwise its a dead weight / dead loss. Revival only works with dpx sequences.

jPo

"I always pass on free advice -- its never of any use to me" Oscar Wilde.


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