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Old 16 Jul 2003, 06:03 PM   #1
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Default Convert from MPEG2 to uncompressed AVI?

Might anyone be able to offer suggestions on the following?

I have a Creative VideoBlaster Digital VCR capture card. It captures to some proprietary format, then offers a tool to export to MPEG2 files.

The only program I've found that can even read these MPEG2 files is TMPGEnc, so I de-multiplex then multiplex with TMPGEnc, then they are playable in other programs (Windows Media Player for example).

Eventually, I want to make VCDs of these files, but I need to do some editing on them first (cutting out sections of video).

I've tried editing in TMPEnc, but it's limited in this regard, and I always end up with terrible audio/video synch problems too.

SO, I'd like to first convert to AVI, then do the editing. Probably with VirtualDub (my favorite AVI editor). I'd like to use uncompressed AVI to avoid extra quality loss, but I'm running into problems.

Tried using FlaskMPEG for MPEG2 to AVI conversion.

Tried using VirtualDub for MPEG2 to AVI conversion, but VirtualDub won't load my MPEG2 files. I keep getting a "MPEG Import Filter: pack synchronization error" message.

Not too familiar with DVD2AVI, but tried this too, and it doesn't seem to let me choose "uncompressed" for video output.

Can anyone tell me what other program to use for MPEG2 to uncompressed AVI?

thanks!

Last edited by otwist26; 17 Jul 2003 at 09:23 PM
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Old 16 Jul 2003, 09:32 PM   #2
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virtualDubMod?
http://virtualdubmod.sourceforge.net
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Old 17 Jul 2003, 11:06 AM   #3
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Thanks for the suggestion BoF. I was not aware of this VirtualDubMod.

Well, I was able to use it to create uncompressed AVI files. However, I am unable to subsequently open these files for editing in VirtualDub. When I do, a popup window with a progress bar appears that says:

"AVI Import Filter: Reconstructing missing index block".

It then parses the AVI file. If the file is less than 2GB, things seem to work ok and I can view and edit the stream. However, if the file is > 2GB, the parser stops after just 2GB, and I can only view/edit the first 1 min, 16 sec of the stream.

Can anyone tell me what might cause this "missing index block"? Perhaps I need to change a setting when converting to uncompressed AVI, but I don't know where to start.

I've tried different settings when opening the file (via the "popup extended open options" button) but to no avail. Can't get past the first 1:16 of the stream.

thanks!

Last edited by otwist26; 17 Jul 2003 at 11:14 AM
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Old 17 Jul 2003, 05:14 PM   #4
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Default Re: Convert from MPEG2 to uncompressed AVI?

Quote:
Originally posted by otwist26
Tried using FlaskMPEG for MPEG2 to AVI conversion, but it won't let me create AVI files larger than 4GB (so no AVI 2.0 in FlaskMPEG I'm assuming?)
oh sorry, I've missed this line

It sounds that you use an (windows) OS mounted on a FAT32 FS... and you can't make files larger than 4Go. If so, NTFS would solve your problem.
btw, why don't you directly use vdub to capture and ask him splitting files each Go?
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Old 18 Jul 2003, 07:42 AM   #5
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Unfortunately, I haven't found the drivers to be able to capture using VirtualDub. The Creative Labs web site actually states that the card will not work with any other capture software except that which came with the card. But perhaps there is still a way? This would certainly be the ideal solution.

You are right about my file system. I noticed this earlier and switched to NTFS.

I can now use FlaskMPEG to convert a MPEG2 file to an uncompressed RGB AVI file, but the results are still pretty warped.

The files don't play correctly in Win. Media Player (video and sound are all over the place - too fast, too slow, skip, stutter, way out of synch, and no audio in spots).

VirtualDub will open the files, but editing/previewing them is a nightmare. Video/audio stay a bit closer in synch, but they stutter badly (play for half a second, pause for half a second, etc.)

I'm no expert on digital video, but it just doesn't make sense to me that an editor can play an MPEG2 stream without problems, but cannot generate a clean uncompressed AVI stream as output.

any thoughts?

thanks!
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Old 18 Jul 2003, 09:05 AM   #6
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"I'd like to use uncompressed AVI to avoid extra quality loss, but I'm running into problems"

Use the HuffyUV lossless codec instead of capturing "pure" uncompressed video...
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Old 18 Jul 2003, 12:40 PM   #7
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Question about Huffyuv. How does it work. If it's lossless, shouldn't it be uncompressed? I heard it throws out some data that the eye can't see anyway
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Old 18 Jul 2003, 02:36 PM   #8
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"For information, distribution conditions, and full source code please visit the Huffyuv home page at"

http://www.math.berkeley.edu/~benrg/huffyuv.html
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Old 18 Jul 2003, 10:03 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by otwist26 The Creative Labs web site actually states that the card will not work with any other capture software except that which came with the card.
Creative:
Quote:
Originally posted by otwist26 The files don't play correctly in Win. Media Player (video and sound are all over the place - too fast, too slow, skip, stutter, way out of synch, and no audio in spots).
Your HD may be busied at rendering such uncompressed video files..check the activity led - it can explain you can't play correctly.
how long was the conversion process mpeg2->uncompressed avi regarding to the video length? the cpu shouldn't be busied so if (time_conversion / length_video) is > 1, your HD is the problem.
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Old 19 Jul 2003, 06:48 PM   #10
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setarip,
Tried the HuffyUV codec with slightly better results. I'm going to continue using it.

BoF,
No joke about Creative! LoL! This card is nice in that it's a hardware encoder, so it uses hardly any CPU, but in terms of flexibility, it's a total waste.

You may be right about my hard drive being the problem. Did some math...

With the HuffyUV codec (and uncompressed PCM audio), I get files of a size roughly 11,750 kByte/sec.

However, according to reviews and tests I've seen online, the MINIMUM read transfer rate for my HD is 18,680 kByte/sec. A few short benchmarks on my system confirm that rate.

Seems like my HD should be fast enough. But I know very little about how an AVI file is coded. Is it a straight sequential read? Or does the HD have to seek to different bits in the file while playing the stream?


*update* - Also tried using another HD, a Western Digital Caviar 2500JB, which has a minimum read transfer rate of about 24,000 kBytes/sec. Video/audio is still a little choppy, though.

Also, it might be worth noting that I've converted some of my MPEG2 streams to DivX4.2 with better luck (just some hefty audio/video synch issues to fix).

Last edited by otwist26; 19 Jul 2003 at 06:53 PM
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Old 20 Jul 2003, 02:51 PM   #11
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"setarip,
Tried the HuffyUV codec with slightly better results. I'm going to continue using it."

Glad to hear it ;>}


"Also, it might be worth noting that I've converted some of my MPEG2 streams to DivX4.2 with better luck (just some hefty audio/video synch issues to fix)."

I'd suggest you use either DivX v.3.11alpha or the latest DivX v.5.xx instead of anything in the v.4.xx series...
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Old 22 Jul 2003, 07:50 PM   #12
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Thanks all for your input. For the time being, I think I'm going to give up on uncompressed video and just use DivX.

But if I find a solution to the above mentioned problem, I'll be sure to post it!
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Old 23 Jul 2003, 07:11 AM   #13
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"Thanks all for your input."

My pleasure ;>}
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