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georgex2 Dec 30, 2004 11:26 AM

I want to prepare some photos for a film festival but the only material I have are stills from mini-dv tape. Is it possible to get good printouts from these stills that are as good as what I see on a monitor? Is it complicated and/or expensive? I have Graphic Converter and an HP 930c printer, but these can't do the job on good glossy paper. Thanks

[email protected] Jan 12, 2005 10:09 PM

Some video editing software has the ability to "capture a frame" and make a digital still out of it. If you have some video editing software, check out the manual and see what it says about frame capture.

I have found, generally speaking, that the frame capture from minidv footage is very low quality, the equivalent of the worst you could possibly take using a digital camera.

However, other people may have had different experiences than mine.

AMG Jan 21, 2005 8:29 AM

Well I will assume that you can capture the frames on the computer, but you will not be able to print very big and maintain a good quality. But if you go ahead and do it, you will see that you need to balance the levels and gamma a little, but most importantly, make sure you scale your image inthe vertical by 10%. Most people forget to do this and prints or even stills captured from video are distorted because video works in a .9 pixel aspect ratio. I`m sure you don`t want to know to much about this, it canbe long to explain,but if you ever plan on even posting a captured frame on the web or email, or print it, always scale your file up. If you don`t, you will notice the image is a little squished, in other words too fat, like watching tv on a widescreen tv.

georgex2 Jan 21, 2005 11:52 AM

Thanks for the info re scaling. As I understand it, When I make a still, I should multiply the vertical by 110% and the horizontal by 100%. I don't know if I can do this in premiere or not. If not, I could probably do it in Graphical converter.

I have a technical question that you may be able to answer. Suppose you take a frame that's 720x480, and you are able to get the values for every pixel in the frame, red, green, blue and whatever else. Could you then use curve fitting to find out what the values between the actual pixels would be if the frame had been captured with more resolution? If this could be done in a reasonable amount of time and expense, it would allow a certain amount of picture improvement. I don't think straight interpolation would work. It sounds complicated but with computers, some things are easy. :?:

AMG Jan 21, 2005 2:24 PM

actually, if we want to be technical, make the vertical 111.11% not 110% -but you probably won`t see the difference. But the reason is the inverse of 9 is 0.111111111. As far as your other question, you are asking me if you can scale up, which never works well, even in 3 party apps. May I ask what size you need to print at ?

S1Artiste Jan 22, 2005 6:05 PM

I suspect you'll be disappointed in your results. A DV frame grab is well under the max resolution you could achieve with even a 1 megapixel digital camera- and it's interlaced as well. That's just the way it is. Best suggestion is to use a high quality interpolation software such as Qimage on a frame with no motion and try a few things to see whether or not it's acceptable to you.

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