Did you try it with VHS?
Complaining about compression artifacts is a bit rich since it's intended for VHS and not for decompressed MPEG.
Gadgets now capable of playing video have left owners are hungry for content. Folk with large VHS tape collections want to digitise them, just like vinyl. Two problems, one solution, says Avid offshoot Pinnacle: its Video Transfer standalone H.264 encoder. Pinnacle Video Transfer Pinnacle's Video Transfer: one-touch, PC-less …
I did try it with VHS, but the results were no better than those achieved with other sources: interlacing artefacts on videotape material, heavy compression effects etc. Again, though, it's watchable when scaled down on a portable device.
However, it did reliably reproduce all the tape drop-outs. :-)
The "worst-case interlacing" in 720x576 is actually the best case, as it preserves both fields without trying to deinterlace the frame. This video can then be encoded to MPEG2 and burned on a DVD with minimal loss of quality. The anamorphic flag can also be set during the MPEG2 encoding or even after, with Restream, so that's not a big deal. As can be seen from the 640x480 sample, the internal deinterlacer is a total write-off though...
The quality of compression is difficult to gauge without seeing the original uncompressed source. The quality of TV broadcast can be awful these days.
Of course 640x480 will give you problems. It needs to be scaled and who in their right minds would want to scale video to such odd resolutions.
The review misses some _very_ important points. How does the device react to slightly off standard video? This is, in fact the most important point as every video stream is slightly off standard.
Many solutions have the problem of not getting video and audio in sync if the framerate is not precisely 25fps. Others have problems with dropouts.
Did you try to convert the captured video to MPEG2, burning it on a DVD and watching it on a TV? That's what I was planning on using it, archiving 15-year-old home videos to a digital format. I doubt that even the device's compression and the subsequent recompression to MPEG2 significantly degrades the quality when compard to the VHS original.
And I agree with Vladimir Plouzhnikov about the interlacing. Capture the video faithfully as interlaced and deinterlace it afterwards, if you want progressive video.
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