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"Super" Video COnverter

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#1 Alex McConahay

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 11:03 PM

I don't know much about planetary and lunar photography, but I have read the article by Jerry Lodriguss in the May, 2012 Sky and Tel. He recommended a program called Super (erightsoft.com) for converting my Canon MOV files so that I can use them in Registax.

Okay....I finally managed to download it, but the EULA has all sorts of warnings about how other software would be loading along with it. And really, try to avoid that stuff.....

So---does anybody have experience with this software? Is it safe for my computer? What changes does it make to my system?

Alex

#2 MvZ

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 06:07 AM

I don't have MOV files myself, so I can't test this, but perhaps you could give VirtualDub a go. It might be that it needs Quicktime installed to get it to work.

If you want the files to (also) be readable by AutoStakkert!2 - and you want that ;)- you should convert it to an uncompressed file (uncompressed RGB24 for color recordings should do the trick)

#3 Edward E

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 10:41 AM

I have been using my Canon P.S. SX210 camera for astrophotos. I found that the free open source program "VLC" does a very good job of converting .MOV to .MPGx files for "Registax" to manipulate. Also there is the freeware program " Free Video Converter" (FVC) that will convert to .AVI and many other formates. I have not used Free Video Converter but it looks like it will do a good job and you cannot beat the price. Nether have virus's or malware. Maybe others here have used FVC and can comment more on it.

#4 harbinjer

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 10:47 AM

Update: Don't use SUPER. It seems to be a malware problem. I know I should've followed my instincts and found a proper solution.

I just installed "SUPER" in a virtual machine, and I think it's ok, IF you do a few things. It opens TWO installers, the top one is for some crapware, check "custom" and unckeck it all, or just kill that with task manager. The bottom one is for the actual "SUPER" software, and that one appears ok. I didn't do a thorough analysis, but at first glance. Virtualdub by default can't open the h.264 .MOV files. You might be able to install a codec pack or something that can fix it?

Also, SUPER does work to make the canon .MOV files work in Registax, AutoStakkert!2, etc.

#5 Alex McConahay

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 01:56 PM

Yeah, I noticed the two installer methods pretty quick.....Thanks. Norton says it is safe--but I don't know if that means it does not install a bunch of junk in my registry that I would rather not have.....

Alex

#6 Castle

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 02:10 PM

I'm using VirtualDub to convert mov to avi. If you wish you can try it. You'll need a plugin called DShowInputDriver.
If you cannot find it you can download here: https://docs.google....VdQOEF3SlU/edit

Unfortunately it cannot open .mov files directly. You should try this:
"File" -> "Open Video File"
In the dialog box, select "files of type" as "DirectShow input driver".
Select mov file (If you cannot see .mov files, enter *.* or *.mov in the "File Name" field) and open it.
Then,
"File" -> "Save as Avi"

This should work.

#7 RedLionNJ

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 04:11 PM

I'm with Castle, above. I looked at SUPER and decided any software that was such a PITA to install had to be dubious.

I think you'll find Jerry recommends VirtualDub, too.

Grant

#8 harbinjer

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 12:14 AM

Yeah, I found it(Super) or something else installed something dubious on my system just a few minutes ago. Time to run some scans. I guess virtualdub it is.

#9 harbinjer

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 12:23 AM

Even with that DShowIputDriver, I can't get Virtualdub to open the Canon .mov file. It says "Unable to set filename on media detector: hr = 80040200". Any ideas?

#10 harbinjer

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 12:50 AM

I did get it to work with a new version of Virtualdub64, and the ffmepg set of decoders. You'll need to get the from the virtualdub link, (by raythe0n). I suspect the 32 bit will work fine if your vdub is 32 bit.

#11 Jason H.

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 09:03 PM

I've been looking for a solution to this problem for quite some time, your post seems to have solved my problem for the Canon .mov/mvi's (but it crashes on the GE camera .mov's). Very many new point-n-shoot cameras are coming out as .mov's/h.264 and I've tried a number of software conversion program solutions that didnt' work well (or at all) because the conversion from .mov to .avi was a lossy mess. I re-downloaded VDub 64 and the ffmpeg plug-in and it worked the first time. I just loaded a file from a poor seeing night and as full resolution 1920 x 1080 pixels and it loaded fine into VirtualDub 64 bit and converted a 197 meg .mov into a 13 gig .avi. This movie pixel size image was a major problem that I couldn't solve before with Canon's supplied converter, Quicktime Pro and some others that almost worked but after a few runs eventually stopped working, including one I paid money for that not only stopped working, but would never re-install even after cleaning out the registry etc.; that was weird.)

Anyway, I can't wait until some good seeing again to take another crack at the Canon ELPH 100HS that's been very little used for over a year (because I couldn't solve this conversion problem.) This will probably free me up to get some other cameras too (I had been on the fence to get a specific Nikon Coolpix that saved directly to .avi that was down to only $99 at Xmas time, and now it's even lower at only $69, but I was seeing some vertical linear artifacts that seemed to be recurring in images posted by others from that camera.) The future is looking brighter now! Thanks for posting that!!!

The attached is from a poor seeing session in Dec. 2011 but with the new conversion plug-in you suggested, cropped and re-sized down to 80% of original, before I could only do 50% scale conversions with considerably more difficulty and loss issues. I know it's not top notch stuff, but I also now know that on a good night this should probably work out nicely (relative to what I usually do :) . Thanks again.

Jason H.

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#12 harbinjer

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 09:54 PM

I wish my "poor" seeing was that good. Glad you got it working. I haven't posted much lately, but just seeing someone else be able to use my solution is very encouraging! Using that FFmpeg plugin is the vital part. Also, if you want to use Autostakkert!2 and it doesn't work, contact Emil(user MvZ, second from top) for a beta version that will.

#13 RedLionNJ

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 10:40 PM

The easy way to get VirtualDub to handle Canon MOV files is to install the Quicktime plugin. That's exactly what I did. Once you select the *.mov filetype in the File...Open menu, you then make sure Audio is set to No Audio and Video Compression is set to Uncompressed.

Then simply "Save as AVI" and the resulting file can be processed by AS!2.

Grant

#14 Jason H.

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 10:40 PM

Yes, the last time I had read (awhile ago) Emil was going to eventually work in the h.264's/.mov's in version 2, but sort of recall last year him saying something like that was somewhat in the future; I guess the future is now :) , I'll have to look into that too. I just tried another .mov (attached) from the Canon (white light from last Sept.) and it seems to have worked fine, as it seems I had to lean on it less to get more out of it (but I also had to crop it and scaled it down to 60%, as different kind of artifact that appears like pixelated down-compression that I'm speculating/W.A.G.'ing may have been caused by the different camera recording scale I used of 1280 x 720 pixels? I still need to study/experiment with the best video frame size/mode for this camera.

Thanks again, and I'll look into AS2.

Jason W. Higley


I wish my "poor" seeing was that good. Glad you got it working. I haven't posted much lately, but just seeing someone else be able to use my solution is very encouraging! Using that FFmpeg plugin is the vital part. Also, if you want to use Autostakkert!2 and it doesn't work, contact Emil(user MvZ, second from top) for a beta version that will.

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#15 Alex McConahay

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 10:43 PM

Thanks, all.

On another Forum, somebody pointed out to me that Canpon's own software (ZOOM EX BRowser) converts mov to AVI......so I am over that hump apparently. (I still don't have a picture to show for it, but at least I can convert Movie file from my camera to avi so I can read it in Registax.)

Alex

#16 Jason H.

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 10:49 PM

I've tested several versions of that ZOOMBrowser EX converter through version 6.7, but the compression was very bad (IMO) for our purposes relative to other solutions I found (before VDub with ffmpeg), and watch it because in my ZOOMBrowser versions the .avi output frame-size ratio does not offer the option of using largest possible video frame-size ratio the camera has (i.e. 1920 x 1080 video would be downscaled to 1280 x 720 or lower, which in my case caused videos to be a mess, and even the 1:1 conversions, when shooting at a smaller video size, were considerably smaller files/heavily compressed, the degradation of which was quite apparent, versus other software I had minor-but-better success with); good luck with it.

Jason H.

Thanks, all.

On another Forum, somebody pointed out to me that Canpon's own software (ZOOM EX BRowser) converts mov to AVI......so I am over that hump apparently. (I still don't have a picture to show for it, but at least I can convert Movie file from my camera to avi so I can read it in Registax.)

Alex



#17 Jason H.

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 11:44 PM

The easy way to get VirtualDub to handle Canon MOV files is to install the Quicktime plugin. That's exactly what I did. Once you select the *.mov filetype in the File...Open menu, you then make sure Audio is set to No Audio and Video Compression is set to Uncompressed.

Then simply "Save as AVI" and the resulting file can be processed by AS!2.

Grant


Just a (unrelated?) note regarding Quicktime Pro (not the plug-in) caused a noticable degradation of video quality when converting .mov's to .avi, even though the AVI export settings were:
"Compression type: None"
"Frames per second: Best"
"Quality Best"

This wasn't always the case SFAIK, at one time about a year and a half ago I could get pretty good images out of Quicktime Pro, but perhaps one of the updates changed things?

Today side-by-side comparisons I made of the Quicktime Pro and then VDub conversion (because Quicktime breaks the header file too) versus using this ffmpeg plug-in were quite interesting, the VDub-only solution was much brighter and clearer frame-for-frame, and the overall stacked output image quality left a much more to useful image IMO to work with in wavelets and post-processing, at least that was my experience (i.e. I'd probably keep an eye on a Quicktime plug-in for inferior performance relative to ffmpeg.)

Jason H.

#18 RedLionNJ

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Posted 21 January 2013 - 09:45 AM

I tried two ways - the "SUPER" method, which was the initial focus of this thread and the VDub plug-in method. I found the latter to be by far the better result of the two.

The plug-in I use is several years old and is available at:

http://www.tateu.net....php?f=qtvd_bin


Best Wishes,

Grant

#19 Jason H.

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Posted 21 January 2013 - 07:49 PM

I did get it to work with a new version of Virtualdub64, and the ffmepg set of decoders. You'll need to get the from the virtualdub link, (by raythe0n). I suspect the 32 bit will work fine if your vdub is 32 bit.


For convenience here's a link to where I found the above-referenced ffmpeg VirtualDub plug-in by poster Harbinjer:

http://code.google.c.../downloads/list

I just placed the un-zipped folder "plugins64" in the VirtualDub default folder "VirtualDub-1.9.11-AMD64" and it was up and running.

Good luck, Jason H.

#20 MvZ

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 11:16 AM

Hi all you .MOV users. I worked a little bit on adding .mov support in AutoStakkert!2, but I went for a completely different approach than what I initially thought I needed to do. Instead of native .mov support in AS!2, using codecs and what not, I instead grabbed a copy of FFmpeg and learned how to use that. FFmpeg has some nice command line options. It can't search for a particular frame number in a .MOV file, but it can sequentially decode all the frames it finds.

So that is what AS!2 now does when dealing with these files. It does this automatically, and apart from a window popping up showing FFmpeg doing all the hard work you won't notice a thing. I can hide that window, but for now I think it is a good idea to get at least some feedback (decoding can take a while!).

If you are processing a file named 'super_jupiter_awesome.mov' it will generate uncompresed .bmp frames in a directory called 'super_jupiter_awesome.mov.imgs'. After decoding is done, it will automatically open this folder of files to show the images. When you shut down AS!2, the folder remains there. And the next time you open the .mov file, it will automatically search for the folder to see if it already decoded the file before.

So that seems to work pretty nice.

Some things to keep in mind:
- It really is just my first attempt at this. If it doesn't work, let me know. But there is a big chance that it doesn't work!
- I'm not sure if FFmpeg has native support for .MOV files, or if you still need a coded on your pc. You'll have to test this out yourself.
- The folder it creates is full with uncompressed .bmp files. This folder is probably huge. But that is for a good reason: decoding the frames to a lossy compressed format AGAIN would destroy even more details than the original recording already had lost. Compare this to opening and saving a jpg several times, the image will degrade over time, just because it is being lossy compressed again and again. I could have stored the image to .png files instead (lossless compression), but that would slow down processing in AS!2 a lot.
- If you want to save diskspace, you'll have to manually delete the folder full of bmps.
- Only one .MOV file can be open at a time, so there is no possibility to do batch-processing. This might change in the future though.
- AS!2 does need FFmpeg.exe available. I attached a 32-bit exe version in one of the downloads on the page below, which works just fine for me on a 64-bit windows. You could replace this with another FFmpeg.exe build of your choice, but I don't think there is any reason to do this. The other download file is the exact same AS!2 version, it just lacks the FFmpeg.exe file.
- If you don't need to decode MOVs, please ONLY download the smaller file.

And now for the download link (WARNING! BETA/ALPHA VERSION OF AS!2! USE AT OWN RISK! ETC ETC):
http://www.astrokraa...are/latest.html

Let me know how it goes.

Cheers,
Emil

#21 MvZ

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 02:51 PM

I messed up in 2.2.0.6 and 7, 8 should be fine though:
http://www.astrokraa...are/latest.html

#22 rablaich

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 09:20 AM

I'm using VirtualDub to convert mov to avi. If you wish you can try it. You'll need a plugin called DShowInputDriver.
If you cannot find it you can download here: https://docs.google....VdQOEF3SlU/edit

Unfortunately it cannot open .mov files directly. You should try this:
"File" -> "Open Video File"
In the dialog box, select "files of type" as "DirectShow input driver".
Select mov file (If you cannot see .mov files, enter *.* or *.mov in the "File Name" field) and open it.
Then,
"File" -> "Save as Avi"

This should work.


For the purpose of converting .mov files, I've been using AppGeeker video converter (no any add-ons) for many years.

See: How to Convert AVI to MOV (or MOV to AVI) on Mac/ Windows

It's easy to control and well rounded for everything you want to decode with predefined templates/presets.






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