Help with .avi conversion

Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

I just bought my wife a Panasonic PV-GS150 Mini DV camera, which comes
with the MotionDV STUDIO editing program. The downloaded .avi files look
OK on the monitor, and they also look OK played from the camera to the
TV via AV hookup. I had hoped to be able to convert to compressed files
to get a decent amount of content onto a CD or DVD. I used the program
to convert to MPEG1s, and I'm really surprised how lousy they look.
They're terrible. I wouldn't put these on a disk and show them to
anybody. Lots of noise and artifacts and very fuzzy. File sizes are
reduced by about 22 to 1. Is what I'm seeing typical, or am I possibly
doing something wrong? Am I going to have to reassemble the clips back
to a Mini DV tape and be satisfied with playing them from the camera to TV?

I'm new to Video editing, so any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Many thanks.

Paul
15 answers Last reply
More about help conversion
  1. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    MPEG1 is not what you should be encoding to. I _think_ it is a 320x240 dirty
    codec... someone else can elaborate. use MPEG2


    "pjruiz(nospaam)" <"pjruiz(nospaam)"@charter.net> wrote in message
    news:imS6e.2862$OU6.1953@fe02.lga...
    >I just bought my wife a Panasonic PV-GS150 Mini DV camera, which comes with
    >the MotionDV STUDIO editing program. The downloaded .avi files look OK on
    >the monitor, and they also look OK played from the camera to the TV via AV
    >hookup. I had hoped to be able to convert to compressed files to get a
    >decent amount of content onto a CD or DVD. I used the program to convert to
    >MPEG1s, and I'm really surprised how lousy they look. They're terrible. I
    >wouldn't put these on a disk and show them to anybody. Lots of noise and
    >artifacts and very fuzzy. File sizes are reduced by about 22 to 1. Is what
    >I'm seeing typical, or am I possibly doing something wrong? Am I going to
    >have to reassemble the clips back to a Mini DV tape and be satisfied with
    >playing them from the camera to TV?
    >
    > I'm new to Video editing, so any advice would be greatly appreciated. Many
    > thanks.
    >
    > Paul
  2. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    nap <gospam@yourself.com> wrote in
    news:UzU6e.2162$dT4.812@newssvr13.news.prodigy.com thusly:

    > "pjruiz(nospaam)" <"pjruiz(nospaam)"@charter.net> wrote in message
    > news:imS6e.2862$OU6.1953@fe02.lga...
    >>I just bought my wife a Panasonic PV-GS150 Mini DV camera, which comes
    >>with the MotionDV STUDIO editing program. The downloaded .avi files
    >>look OK on the monitor, and they also look OK played from the camera
    >>to the TV via AV hookup. I had hoped to be able to convert to
    >>compressed files to get a decent amount of content onto a CD or DVD. I
    >>used the program to convert to MPEG1s, and I'm really surprised how
    >>lousy they look. They're terrible. I wouldn't put these on a disk and
    >>show them to anybody. Lots of noise and artifacts and very fuzzy. File
    >>sizes are reduced by about 22 to 1. Is what I'm seeing typical, or am
    >>I possibly doing something wrong? Am I going to have to reassemble the
    >>clips back to a Mini DV tape and be satisfied with playing them from
    >>the camera to TV?
    >>
    >> I'm new to Video editing, so any advice would be greatly appreciated.
    >> Many thanks.
    >
    > MPEG1 is not what you should be encoding to. I _think_ it is a 320x240
    > dirty codec... someone else can elaborate. use MPEG2

    You're thinking VGA. VCD is MPEG-1 (352x240 NTSC or 352x288 PAL) at
    1.15Mbps (CBR) video and 224KHz audio. VCD can look okay provided that
    its encoded properly from a good source and not much is expected
    afterwards.

    As you say, MPEG-2 would be a better choice, since that's what a DVD
    uses. The files are going to be larger. As a general rule, the slower
    the encode, the better. If you want a final MPEG encoded in 20 minutes
    for 2 hours of video, don't expect much. :)

    One way to get very good MPEG-2 encoding to DVD specs is to load the AVI
    file into TMPGEnc and encode from there.

    --

    Tom
  3. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    Hello, Paul,
    I am afraid you will find here as many opinions as many responses probably.
    Here is of mine:

    Digital video I am shooting has the highest quality I can achieve as
    amateur.
    Why to degrade it by any kind of compression?
    I keep it (of course, edited and trimmed by NLE sw (Ulead MediaStudio
    7)) on the Digital8 tapes - they are sufficiently robust and reliable.
    As you suppose, I use camcorder as DV player (to a TV set), too.

    Personally, I have never created any DVD and hardly will do so - those
    compressed formats just did not catch me.
    Should I were forced to create one I would use MPEG2 (DVD) format
    instead of MPEG1, MPEG4, DivX, XviD, SVCD ones.
    Stay avi!
    Roman

    pjruiz(nospaam) wrote:
    > Is what I'm seeing typical, or am I possibly
    > doing something wrong? Am I going to have to reassemble the clips back
    > to a Mini DV tape and be satisfied with playing them from the camera to TV?
  4. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    On Tue, 12 Apr 2005 19:25:51 -0000, Tom <Tom@invalid.com> wrote:

    >MPEG-2 would be a better choice, since that's what a DVD
    >uses.

    DVD can also use Mpeg-1, but then it can be variable bitrate, and go
    as high as 1850 kbps. In which case, the image shall still lack
    definition, but encoding shall be a lot better.
  5. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    Roman,

    My problem with .avi is the humungous size of the files, about 1G per 5
    minutes playtime.

    Thanks to others for your replies.

    Paul
  6. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    "pjruiz(nospaam)" <"pjruiz(nospaam)"@charter.net> wrote in message
    news:LP77e.3595$OU6.568@fe02.lga...
    > Roman,
    >
    > My problem with .avi is the humungous size of the files, about 1G per 5
    > minutes playtime.
    >
    > Thanks to others for your replies.

    DV-codec-encoded AVI requires a little over 13 gigabytes per hour of video,
    so your 1 gig per 5 minutes is correct. If you're not planning to do any
    editing to your video, then capture to mpeg is a possibility. However,
    virtually any serious editing, beyond simple cuts, will require that you
    work in a non-lossy format, i.e. with dv-codec avis. Hard drives are pretty
    cheap -- a 120 gigabyte drive should give you more than enough storage space
    for putting together projects.


    >
    > Paul
  7. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    "pjruiz" wrote ...
    > My problem with .avi is the humungous size of the files,
    > about 1G per 5 minutes playtime.

    Yes, that is the size of DV-AVI files. But *why* is it a
    problem? If you are going to do any editing DV-AVI is
    probably the best solution, but you need the disk space
    only long enough to burn the DVD, then you can delete
    it. (Making several assumptions about what you are trying
    to do because you haven't told us.)
  8. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    All I want to do is make amateur video DVDs. I also want to keep a
    backup of the material used to make the DVD. I was afraid of the avi
    files eating up a lot of hard drive space if I were to keep them. Is
    there no point in keeping the avis? Do you just burn a second DVD for a
    backup, keep the mpeg2s, what?

    Paul
  9. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    pjruiz(nospaam) wrote:
    > All I want to do is make amateur video DVDs. I also want to keep a
    > backup of the material used to make the DVD. I was afraid of the avi
    > files eating up a lot of hard drive space if I were to keep them. Is
    > there no point in keeping the avis? Do you just burn a second DVD for a
    > backup, keep the mpeg2s, what?
    >
    > Paul

    Yep. Just burn a 2nd DVD. If preservation of the stuff is the aim, thats
    exactly what you do. The original tapes will hold their luster for
    years, so you would have that as another fallback.

    Its possible to get crazy and go overboard and buy lots of extra drives,
    but from the sounds of it, you want to keep it simple. Shoot the family
    picnic or kids baseball game and put it up onto a DVD.

    If you want super simple, the DVD recorders today will often let you
    firewire your camcorder into the DVD recorder and do it all on the fly.
    Course you don't get to edit it or make transitions and cool titles and
    stuff, but its sure is quick and easy. A DVD will hold one hour at
    excellent quality.
  10. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    On Wed, 13 Apr 2005 05:20:57 -0700, "PTRAVEL"
    <ptravel88-usenet@yahoo.com> wrote:

    >However,
    >virtually any serious editing, beyond simple cuts, will require that you
    >work in a non-lossy format, i.e. with dv-codec avis.

    Except that DV is lossy. Lossless codecs are Huffyuv and Alparysoft
    (MSU as well, and ultracompressing, but it's sooooooooooo slow).
  11. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    Bariloche wrote:
    > On Wed, 13 Apr 2005 05:20:57 -0700, "PTRAVEL"
    > <ptravel88-usenet@yahoo.com> wrote:
    >
    >
    >>However,
    >>virtually any serious editing, beyond simple cuts, will require that you
    >>work in a non-lossy format, i.e. with dv-codec avis.
    >
    >
    > Except that DV is lossy. Lossless codecs are Huffyuv and Alparysoft
    > (MSU as well, and ultracompressing, but it's sooooooooooo slow).
    Picky, picky, picky.

    It's what nearly everyone works with, just leave it at that.
  12. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    Yes, that is the point - huge file contains a lot of information any
    highly compressed formats do not.
    Think about it.
    Roman

    pjruiz(nospaam) wrote:

    > My problem with .avi is the humungous size of the files, about 1G per 5
    > minutes playtime.
    > Paul
  13. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    Bariloche <bariloche@bariloche.com> wrote in
    news:mjdo5194dufevt8fufjkb5pq6eo14mutvg@4ax.com thusly:

    > On Tue, 12 Apr 2005 19:25:51 -0000, Tom <Tom@invalid.com> wrote:
    >
    >>MPEG-2 would be a better choice, since that's what a DVD uses.
    >
    > DVD can also use Mpeg-1, but then it can be variable bitrate, and go
    > as high as 1850 kbps. In which case, the image shall still lack
    > definition, but encoding shall be a lot better.

    I can't find anything that confirms the above. While MPEG-1 can be used
    on a DVD, it has to be the same spec as a VCD and that includes CBR.

    Of course, those cheaper DVD players work so well (over a lot of more
    expensive one) that they can nearly play a soup can lid. So I suppose
    you can darn near put anything on a DVD and get it to play. :)

    --

    Tom
  14. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    Bariloche wrote:
    > On Wed, 13 Apr 2005 05:20:57 -0700, "PTRAVEL"
    > <ptravel88-usenet@yahoo.com> wrote:
    >
    > >However,
    > >virtually any serious editing, beyond simple cuts, will require that
    you
    > >work in a non-lossy format, i.e. with dv-codec avis.
    >
    > Except that DV is lossy. Lossless codecs are Huffyuv and Alparysoft
    > (MSU as well, and ultracompressing, but it's sooooooooooo slow).


    DV is lossy as compressed by the camera. It is not lossy when saved as
    a dv-codec avi, edited and re-saved as dv-codec avi.

    There is absolutely no point in using Huffyuv or another lossless codec
    if the video source is D25, i.e. sourced from miniDV or Digital8.
  15. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    On Wed, 13 Apr 2005 12:46:27 -0500, RS <mail@mail.com> wrote:

    >Bariloche wrote:
    >> Except that DV is lossy. Lossless codecs are Huffyuv and Alparysoft
    >> (MSU as well, and ultracompressing, but it's sooooooooooo slow).
    >Picky, picky, picky.
    >
    >It's what nearly everyone works with, just leave it at that.

    Just tried to avoid introducing false notions to newbies. But of
    course, one can leave it at that.
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