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Convert Quality


Avo
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Have performed a quick search but did not see any threads on this.

 

Can anyone recommend a setting that provides a high quality output of standard DVD conversions? Any preset I use results in a definite blocky appearance. I have compared this to Handbrake and find that whilst the actual movie quality (artifacts, etc) is higher in Toast, the movie ends up excessively pixelated. I can confirm that it is the movie encoding process itself as the pixelated/blocky appearance is there when playing on an AppleTV and Sony PS3. It is as if the conversion process is simply pixel doubling rather than smooth blending. Handbrake encoded movies are invariably clean and smooth compared to the Toast encoded ones.

 

I know I can use Handbrake but would prefer Toast if this issue can be resolved.

 

Any advice is greatly appreciated.

 

Avo.

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I'm sorry but I don't know why it would be pixelated. You didn't mention what format you were converting the video to. The most common setting is to use one of the Apple TV presets.

 

You can add the video in a different way and that may give a different result. Put the VIDEO_TS folder on the desktop. Then launch Toast and choose the Video tab in the Toast Media Browser. Scroll down to DVD and you'll see the videos that are in the VIDEO_TS. Drag what you want to the main Toast window with Video files selected as the format.

 

Sorry that I don't have a solution. I don't recall seeing pixelated conversions of my videos.

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Many thanks tsantee. I have tried the Apple TV presets as well. Very curious. I'll do what you suggested when I get back from work today and see what I get. I have ensured that the video option is set to PAL, I might set it back to NTSC and see if that makes any difference.

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I don't know if this will fix your exact issue/problem, but I did discover a fix for a similar issue that I was experiencing.

 

The issue I had was while using the video conversion window. I was converting an M2TS (AVC, 1080p) file to a quicktime ProRes format, and the resulting file had jagged edges in areas of high contrast, as though there was some bad aliasing (due to scaling?) going on.

 

Since the source was clean at 1080, and the format I was converting to was virtually lossless and unscaled, I couldn't fathom what was causing this, other than Toast doing some bad scaling or filtering. The problem did seem to be minimized when I told it to scale down to 720p, which made me think that Toast thought my source file was 1080i and needed deinterlacing (in the worst possible way). Regardless, any target file format I attempted conversion at 1080 resolution (including Apple TV third generation) had the same stair-stepping quality issues.

 

I was about to give up on Toast, and then I decided to try creating a Custom Proile for video conversion. I chose QuickTime Movie for the format and clicked "Advanced" at the bottom of the custom window to access QuickTime's more specific settings (for codec selection). Back in the main custom profile window, I saw the Overscan option and decided to change it from "Automatic" to "Disabled." After a brief test, I discovered that this setting when set to Auto or Enabled, created the bad aliasing at 1080 resolution.

 

Long story short: Disable Overscan setting for a much cleaner 1080p transcode!

 

As an aside, the detail in the convert summary window (which is titled "Player Setup"????) didn't correctly show my chosen Video settings, however the resulting file did conform to my specifications. Yikes, Roxio.

 

I'm running OS X 10.6.8, with QuickTime 7 and QuickTime X. Not sure if that makes any difference for anything I experienced, or my workaround.

 

Hope this might solve your problem, although I don't know if you can toggle the overscan off in the process you're attempting. Good luck!

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Thanks "ThePhage", the overscan setting was the issue - although there is a global setting in Preferences/Video/ - "Overscan on Video Export" that when unchecked (default is checked) affects all the Convert options. I have never tried this setting as I did not consider a Convert as an Export.

 

Up until the new update (3175), having this setting unchecked with Video set to PAL and disabling App Nap for the Toast package was giving me excellent results for all Convert output types.

 

HOWEVER (and there is always a but), 3175 has ruined it. I have a whole load of VHS tapes that I converted to DVD on a Panasonic DVD recorder. These are in standard DVD PAL interlaced format (MPEG2) with 2 channel AC3 sound. With Toast 11.0.0 and 11.1 (1072), the Convert quality of these is as I have mentioned above, excellent.

 

But with 11.2 (3175) there appears to be a distinct combing effect on any panning of the camera. I have tried this with a progressive encoded movie and it seems OK. It just seems to be any source that is interlaced (both NTSC and PAL). If I play back an encode from 11.2 (3175) with VLC and manually turn on Yadifx2 deinterlacing, there appears to be a strange artifact every few frames - like a ghost image of the previous frame.

 

Again, this issue is only happening with 11.2 (3175). As Convert is something I use regularly, I have had to reinstall my original 11.0.0 disc and in-app update to 11.1 (1072) until it is resolved. Shame, as there really are some worthwhile bug fixes in 11.2.

 

Any ideas tsantee - would you know if the libs for encoding have changed (or maybe there is an issue with 11.2's source deinterlacing/decombing algorithm)?

 

A.

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Any ideas tsantee - would you know if the libs for encoding have changed (or maybe there is an issue with 11.2's source deinterlacing/decombing algorithm)?

 

A.

Interesting. Thanks for posting this information. I'm not clear about the effect you're seeing. Maybe you can post a screen shot. It may be the problem I've seen with Toast exports when choosing Interlaced instead of Progressive as the Scan Mode in the QuickTime custom video settings. For some reason it is far better to choose Progressive scan mode even when the source is interlaced. The effect may also be like that of reversed field dominance although I've only seen that when encoding MPEG 2 rather than converting from MPEG 2.

 

Incidentally, you mention using a standalone DVD recorder. Did you know that Toast can read unfinalized VR-mode DVDs recorded to RW media? This is done using the Toast Media Browser. That's how I copy video tapes because it saves discs and it avoids a horrible timecode-break problem when using finalized DVD-R media on my Pioneer recorder.

 

After I see your screen capture I can do some testing of 11.1 vs 11.2 with DVD conversions.

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No problem. I'll send a screen shot later in the week as I need to upgrade it back to 11.2. Actually, what I might do is just get a standard DVD (I know, naughty but I is purely for testing) and do a comparison from my test Mac at work. Incidentally, this issue is apparent on my test Mac as well 11.2 (3175).

 

For the conversions, I am using the built-in templates (generally either the H264 or Apple TV 720p/1080p defaults). There does not appear to be an option for interlacing with these.

 

At the moment I have reverted to 11.1 (1072) at home but work is still on 11.2 (3175) so conversions from home are OK.

 

Thanks.. A.

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Hi tsantee,

 

Attached are the comparison screenshots.

 

The first is 11.2 (3075) - note the prominent combing.

The second is 11.1 (1072).

 

Both using the built-in Apple TV third gen 1080p preset (as-is), PAL Video with Overscan disabled in main prefs. The DVD is a PAL interlaced format one similar to all my home made VHS to DVD converts.

 

Let me know if you want me to do any more tests.

 

Regards,

Avo.

post-115188-0-50691200-1390202112_thumb.jpg

post-115188-0-89774900-1390202161_thumb.jpg

Edited by Avo
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I'm shooting from the hip here because this isn't an area in which I'm expert. It looks to me that the 11.2 export has the interlacing fields reversed. PAL video has field dominance of lower field first. If the fields are reversed scenes with motion become blurred in an unsettling way. But I don't understand how this can be an issue with a h.264 export because I thought those are progressive, not interlaced. I suggest going to this site and installing the iMediaHUD video file inspector. Then inspect both the Toast 11.2 and 11.1 videos to see if it reports any difference.

 

Something has changed but I don't know what. I'll take a look at some NTSC DVD conversions to see if the same thing happens but it won't be today. You've already found the only workaround that makes sense other than to use something other than Toast for the conversion.

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Thanks tsantee, that makes sense.

 

I don't think this is an issue with the h.264 export as VLC does see the resultant files as progressive. The issue is at the point of MPEG2 decode. Something has changed from 11.1 to 11.2.

 

Do you think it worth my time putting a bug report in?

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Thanks tsantee, that makes sense.

 

I don't think this is an issue with the h.264 export as VLC does see the resultant files as progressive. The issue is at the point of MPEG2 decode. Something has changed from 11.1 to 11.2.

 

Do you think it worth my time putting a bug report in?

Yes, report it here. Thanks.

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Case Number 01995689

 

 

Hope that Corel addresses this issue...... BTW - I tried it with an NTSC source and the resultant export is worse. There does indeed seem to be some form of field inversion (when stepping through frame by frame in VLC with deinterlace manually forced to Yadif x2, you can clearly see that every third frame is out of sync - like a stutter.

 

Thanks for all your help tsantee.

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Well this is nice. I just noticed that this Case Number was closed on the 10th of July. Not once was there any correspondence to me by tech support and the issue still exists. In fact, I now have Toast 12 Titanium and it has exactly the same garbage quality output with these files.

 

Corel support - part of customer service implies that you service the customer. I am not one to just forget.

 

So it is obvious that Toast 12 is just a tarted up version of the old 11 code. No bug fixes at all.

 

Corel inc. - If you are not interested in the one or two people in the retail world that have Macs and want to use a decent product, then kill it. Or sell the code to some other company that is interested in providing quality!

 

BTW - As an IT Manager, if I treated my clients as such I would be out of a job quick time.....

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