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Thread: Canopus - poor image quality

  1. #1

    Question Canopus - poor image quality

    After getting bad results trying to convert VHS analogue to DVD using Pinnacle's Dazzle product, I decided to spend the extra cash and purchased the "ADVC-55" from Canopus. This is a hardware converter that takes composite/phono inputs via a scart lead from the VCR, and outputs a digital stream via firewire.
    I am using Adobe's Premiere CS3 to capture an AVI file. The converted image quality is grainy when compared to the original VCR picture. This is carried over to the final DVD (which I've written with CyberLink's PowerDirector). I've also tried to capture with PowerDirector to an Mpeg file, with the same grainy quality.
    I had assumed that the Canopus product was going to provide a digital output with the same quality image as the analogue VHS recording. What am I doing wrong?
    Intel Core 2 Duo E4600, Vista Home Premium, 3GB, 250GB SATA HDD.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Bristol uk
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    Could you post some stilss ?

  3. #3

    Default update

    Hi Mark W

    Yes, I'll post some stills tonight or tomorrow.

    I did some further testing last night with a couple of other sources. I used a feed from my Sky box to generate an AVI. Also tried connecting my Playstation 2. Both gave crystal clear images, even when written to DVD!

    So, it seems the Canopus ADVC-55 is fine, except with VCR input. (I've tried another VCR with the same result.)

    I'll try and record something off Sky on the VCR and also record the same footage direct from Sky. Then I'll hopefully be able to post comparison images from the two sources.

  4. #4

    Default Stills

    Here are the stills that I grabbed from the SKY footage and the VCR footage. I've tried to grab stills from the same timeframe, for comparison between the two sources, so that you can see the differences. (Stills in .JPG format, but .BMPs are available if required.)

    This experiment actually seemed to produce better results that my initial trials. Ultimately, I'm trying to transfer a panto production that was probably recorded on semi-pro equipment.
    For these stills, I did move the VCR away from other equipment, in case there was interference, but maybe I'm just clutching at straws.

    I've just noticed in the Digital Director FAQ section on this site, that Power Director is cited as producing sub standard MPEG2 files. I used this product to burn my final DVD, although the source files were AVI's captured through Premiere CS3.
    I also see from the "ADVC-100" review on this site, that the reviewer uses IUvcr and the MainConcept DV codec to capture.

    Please let me know what you think, and whether I need to get hold of some other sofware for writing the DVD. There are so many questions, and each trial that I do seems to raise more.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Bristol uk
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    I assuming the seond pic the post capture.

    Looks ok to me. Changing the format of a clip will always prduce some artifacts, even in the digital doamin, as the data is being compressed. Even SD DV is compressed about 7 to 1 so some artifacts are inevetiable.

    Also, looking at stills will make you obsessed with every pixel - these things usually look better when moving.

    Is that any help ?

  6. #6


    I'll do a few more test with other authoring software, but I think I'll have to live with the fact that the output DVD quality doesn't quite match up to the original video.

    Thanks for your help.

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