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tom95521

Video stabilization software good or bad?

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Hi Eric,

I will probably wait awhile before buying another tripod or head. I want to try the sorbothane material first. It's used on telescopes, washing machines, shoe inserts, etc. It might keep my feet warm when walking in the winter since it converts vibration into heat. :)

Thanks,

Tom

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Argonaut

Lets have a look at a before and after of what you shot then, so you can prove your point and teach us sceptics along the way. I hope stabilization works, I really do, but I have a healthy dose of scepticism. Of course in any debate you can isolate the odd area where hand held was the only possibility, but generally that's not the case. Certainly not in the video I have seen used in PTE slide shows.

I can do this, but .... (1) the files are huge: 25MB for 12 seconds of m2ts video in camera and 108MB for the same 12 seconds in HD MPG; (2) I could make smaller files but (3) part of the tradeoff is that stabilized video lowers resolution because it's cropping the video and if I rendered all video down to, say, youtube size, this difference would be removed and deceive the viewer.

So, you tell me what format would be acceptable and I'll try to upload a short video, before and after.

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I would like to participate in this discussion ....

Sorry for my bad english ...

Barry, here's a test for stabilizing a video made in ULM, with ProDrenalin software ...

And a video clip (freehand), stabilized and slow motion ... :D

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Aginum

Please don't mis-understand me. I am not saying that image stabilisation is no good or doesn't work. I use it myself and we can always find times when using a stable base isn't possible. A boat, a plane etc and in those circumstances we do the best we can and if I.S. comes to the rescue then I am all for it. The example of the landscape is impressive and if it can be used to shape up some of the video used by members, then I will eat humble pie.

Argonaut

I think it has to be seen as it would be in a slide show as you the author would present it. I agree a small example would not show the effects well enough. If you are prepared to create a link for all members I would like to see it, but if it's only me who is interested, perhaps I can PM you with a file drop link. I am far more impressed with something I see another photographer produce and what I see in demo's. Just got to that age, where I will believe it when I see it and use it myself. Been disappointed once too often I guess :)

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Barry - I think Aginum's sample says enough. My example is a bit less jumpy in the original, but if you're going to show 2 minutes of video it had better be smooth as silk or your audience is going to get mal de Blair Witch. I would stabilize even if it meant a severe down-rezzing, to the point that if the down-rezzing was too much, I would scrap the whole scene.

In truth, moving pictures don't need the crystal clarity of still images. Nice if you can get it, and I use a tripod whenever I can, but when you're taking pictures of moving subjects at 1/25 second and panning on top of that, you're never going to get the quality of a still image.

BTW, my shots were taken with a Sony a55 and a 100-400 zoom lens. I probably shot at about 125 mm. The Sony has in-camera stabilization and it wasn't enough.

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I would like to participate in this discussion ....

Sorry for my bad english ...

Barry, here's a test for stabilizing a video made in ULM, with ProDrenalin software ...

Greetings,

I am very interested in I.S. Shooting with my GoPro3 is frustrating because there is constant vibrations, whether using the suction cup on a car window or clamped to a bike, or just hand held.

I took a look at the ProDrenalin site (http://www.prodrenalin.com/). Looks good. So I am wondering what the difference (pros/cons) might be between the ProDrenalin ($49) and Mercalli V3 ($149). Both, and others, are sold at the same 'ProDrenalin' site. At first, I thought they would be competitors. So I am confused. Both seem to have similar Input and Output formats. And they are having a 25% off sale....

If anyone has experience with these two, I'd appreciate any input. The ProDrenalin seems to do 'everything' but being less expensive than Mercalli, I just wonder about the results.

Thanks... Gary

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Hi Gary,

There is also http://www.mercallieasy.com/ for $20 with a free trial.

My Corel X7 VideoStudio Ultimate was bundled with Mercalli 2 plugin. Not sure if it is full featured as v2 or v3 stand alone.

http://www.amazon.com/Corel-VSPRX7ULENMB-VideoStudio-Ultimate-X7/dp/B00IIL0S8W/

Tom

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Gary,

Mercalli is a plug-in for Premiere Pro (and other software) .... not Prodrenalin ...
But Prodrenalin allows, in addition, to correct the defects of curvature of the Go Pro

post-6892-0-98592800-1406135999_thumb.jp

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Gary,

Mercalli is a plug-in for Premiere Pro (and other software) .... not Prodrenalin ...

But Prodrenalin allows, in addition, to correct the defects of curvature of the Go Pro

attachicon.gif000656.jpg

Greetings,

I just gave both the ProDrenalin and Mercalli's demos a try. I like ProDrenalin more. PD seems to offer more adjustments than Mercalli at a lower price. PD goes for $49...on sale 'till 7/31 for $35 (http://www.prodrenalin.com/prodrenalin/), looks like a good deal.

Thanks all for the info.

Gary

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Aginum,

Stabilizing software can't be avoided when doing some types of photography such as the aerial video unless one can afford the gyroscopically stabilized gimbals which are very, very expensive. But using stabilization software does indeed take a toll on image quality as can be seen at even this small sized video (screen capture) where the vegetation on the stabilized side (right) has lost the crisp detail seen on the unstabilized side (left). That has been my experience when shooting wildlife. With some types of photography such as the slow motion demonstration, having very crisp video resolution is not necessary so the differences are not really all that important. On the other hand when shooting landscapes and wildlife with landscapes in the background the differences can be quite apparent, especially at HD resolution. I try really hard to avoid using stabilization software but sometimes it is just necessary and there is no way around it. Perhaps sharpening the video after stabilization and maybe applying some deconvolution can be useful.

Look at the sharpness and better color and micro-contrast of the distant vegetation on the unstabilized versus stabilized side...

Best regards,

Lin

quality.jpg

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Hi Aginum,

I may have accidentally deleted part of your post - could you repost your 11:35 pm information it is missing. If you don't have it I'll try to get Igor to recover it. Sorry if I have overwritten - that sometimes happens when I copy/paste for some reason...

Best regards,

Lin

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Hi Gary,

Actually, for your GoPro, ProDrenalin probably is the better choice, but it actually doesn't have nearly all the bells and whistles of Mercalli for doing stabilization, rolling shutter correction, etc. What PD does do that Mercalli doesn't as Aginum says is correct for the normal distortion of your super wide angle lens in the GoPro. The difference in image stabilization is that ProDrenalin has only basic stabilization while Mercalli does multi-axis stabilization.

Best regards,

Lin

Greetings,

I just gave both the ProDrenalin and Mercalli's demos a try. I like ProDrenalin more. PD seems to offer more adjustments than Mercalli at a lower price. PD goes for $49...on sale 'till 7/31 for $35 (http://www.prodrenalin.com/prodrenalin/), looks like a good deal.

Thanks all for the info.

Gary

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Hi Gary,

Actually, for your GoPro, ProDrenalin probably is the better choice, but it actually doesn't have nearly all the bells and whistles of Mercalli for doing stabilization, rolling shutter correction, etc. What PD does do that Mercalli doesn't as Aginum says is correct for the normal distortion of your super wide angle lens in the GoPro. The difference in image stabilization is that ProDrenalin has only basic stabilization while Mercalli does multi-axis stabilization.

Best regards,

Lin

Lin, Oh...I just realized that I was looking at the Mercalli Easy version. I'll go back and try out the non-Easy version. But I looked at the PD and it does have 'rolling shutter compensation'. It also has 'fish eye removal'. Wonder if is the same as the 'distortion' correction you are talking about. I have no idea what all this is, but I am just learning about these programs. :blink:

At this point I just want some 'stabilization' program that I can understand. I'll take a look at Mercalli again. Lots to learn.

Thanks...

Gary

post-1794-0-17651100-1406151025_thumb.jp

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Hi Gary,

Yes, the "fish eye" is really not true "fish eye" with the GoPro, it's just extreme wide angle distortion which, for example, makes tall buildings on the right and left extreme appear to "tilt" or "lean" in toward the center of the image. Distortion correction with a video corrects this appearance then allows you to "crop" the areas of edge along with some top and or bottom which are necessarily left after the fix so you can retain the aspect ratio if you like.

So the "fisheye" correction is indeed a distortion correction algorithm. The PD software actually adjusts on all the axis as Mercalli, but it's "automatic" and you have no control over it. With the more expensive software you can pick and choose the type and degree of correction which gives you more flexibility but at the greater expense. Here's an example from what is probably the best distortion correction software available for still images, DXO ViewPoint 2.

distortioncorrect.jpg

Best regards,

Lin

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Lin,

Re your comments in post #36...

When looking at the left half of the scene, the viewer is looking at a side-lit landscape from a viewing angle that is slightly "down sun". When looking at the right half of the scene, the viewer is looking from a viewing angle that is slightly "into the sun". This change of viewing angle will be contributing to the difference in colour, contrast and sharpness. Possibly more so than the use of image stabilization software?

Peter

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Hi Peter,

To a degree that's true, but if you watch the video carefully you will see identical areas which are before stabilization and after stabilization and the stabilized views lose their sharpness. You can try it for yourself with a free trial of Mercalli or other stabilization software. I use Mercalli and Warp stabilization with Adobe Aftereffects and it really doesn't matter which - if you have significant stabilization the pixel sharpness is adversely affected by the stabilization algorithms, there is no way around this. It's especially evident if you are watching on a high resolution and large display. I use a 30" 2560 x 1600 display for editing video and the before and after stabilization versions are significantly different with the stabilized versions losing the crispness. As I said, sometimes it's unimportant and sometimes not depending on subject and background. Run them simultaneously - put the before and after entire videos in PTE on the same slide and watch them simultaneously and you will immediately see the difference. Fortunately with PTE we can sharpen the stabilized version and bring it close to the original in many cases...

Below is a screen capture to demonstrate this at essentially the identical point in the two videos. See the red arrows...

Screenshot.png

Best regards,

Lin

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I am creating a PTE style that adds vibration (many keyframes with pan/rotate) to any image. After exporting the vibration slideshow as a mp4 video I test using Mercalli. It's interesting to see what it does to a perfect stationary image that is rapidly moved to simulate vibration. I will post the style and a video when it's finished.

It does not seem to experience motion blur/focus probably because slow shutter/sensor exposure is not a problem. On actual video I use the excellent PTE screen sharpen filter.

Tom

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I created a vibration style just for fun and applied it to a static image. X/Y/ rotate and zoom only. Keyframes >=25 mSec.

I know it's not a real world test of image stabilization.

Tom

Vibration.ptestyle

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...I am testing Mercalli software. VirtualDub with Deshaker does the same thing and is free....Thanks,

Tom

=========================

Tom,

I just purchased Mercalli V3 SAL (standlone). I got the download version for $109. The 'Buy' link send you to Amazon. What is interesting is that this download version is only 64 bit. Since my desktop is 32 bit, I called them up and they said that the compiling of the video would take a much longer time with a 32 bit versus a 64 bit OS so they don't even show the 32 bit version. However, I purchased the download 64 bit version and they sent a link to download the 32 bit version, too. So I can put the 32 bit version on my desktop and the 64 bit version on my laptop. He also said he will send me a CD with both versions on it. The same install code will work on both versions.

He said that I would not be able to do 2.7K or 4K video with 32 bit, and using the 32 bit version will really be slow when compiling the 'regular' videos. At the present time, I only shoot videos from my Nikon DLSR 7000 and a GoPro 3 (1920x1080). Can you tell me what your experience is with all of this? Will using the Mercalli 32 bit version be OK? Testing some clip with the trial version did not seem to take too long to process some video but they were just short clips. It seemed to work pretty well. Not sure how to understand all of this.

Thanks... Gary

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Hi Gary,

I recently purchased Corel x7 Ultimate videostudio for $53 from Amazon. It comes with Mercalli 2 SE which is a limited version. According to the Corel documentation it is a 64 bit fx (plugin). I would expect rendering to be faster using the 64 bit version (also why PTE is beta testing a 64 bit version later this year). What the limitations are of the 32 bit version the proDAD support people would know. Maybe the 64 bit version is twice as fast? Maybe it can handle files > 4 GB in size?

My experience with Mercalli on my PC have been very good, usually analyzing and rendering short videos in less than 1 minute.

I will be testing 4K video as soon as my FZ1000 arrives.

Thanks,

Tom

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Hi Gary,

I recently purchased Corel x7 Ultimate videostudio for $53 from Amazon. It comes with Mercalli 2 SE which is a limited version. According to the Corel documentation it is a 64 bit fx (plugin). I would expect rendering to be faster using the 64 bit version (also why PTE is beta testing a 64 bit version later this year). What the limitations are of the 32 bit version the proDAD support people would know. Maybe the 64 bit version is twice as fast? Maybe it can handle files > 4 GB in size?

My experience with Mercalli on my PC have been very good, usually analyzing and rendering short videos in less than 1 minute.

I will be testing 4K video as soon as my FZ1000 arrives.

Thanks,

Tom

Tom,

The Mercalli person said it only difference between the 64 and 32 bit OS versions is a matter of rendering time. Also, the 64 would be able to handle the high res video like 4K. My video clips are usually short and I'm not into anything real fancy yet, like 4K. So I hope my 32 bit desktop will do the trick. I am a bit puzzled so far with how to select the settings but I will search around for Youtube videos that will show how to use the program. I saw one but I have to go back and find it to watch it a few times to get it to sink in. Let us know how you get along with the 4K stuff. Should be lots of fun!

Gary

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