Sometimes the capture quality depends on the software you're using as much as the device. With the device I bought, the software that came with it only allowed you to capture in MPEG-2 at a maximum of around 8mbps I think (and audio at I think 256kbps), and the quality wasn't great, but using other software I could capture uncompressed, or compress into another format- I always captured it in DV format (25mbps video and uncompressed audio) and it gave much better results than the software that came with it. Pretty much indistinguisable from the original tape and few to no noticable artifacts.
The obvious problem there is VHS tapes can be quite noisy, and interframe encoding, especially at lower bitrates, can't handle that sort of thing very well- especially when it's being encoded in real time like it would be with software like that. At least a format like DV is a higher bitrate, and it's I-frame only, so doesn't have the issues you get with inter-frame encoding (like MPEG2 is).
Even if you capture at DV, then compress it down to an MPEG-2 file, like I did for copying to DVDs (I used 2-pass VBR as well), you tend to get much better results than capturing directly to MPEG-2 in real time, because it can analyse and encode the image better.
Last edited by james-2001 on 15 August 2018 11:28pm - 4 times in total
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