Author Topic: 60D: theoretically imaginable to shot true 1080p videos that compete with phone  (Read 1544 times)

tobiasBora

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Hello,

I've been recently extremely disappointed by the video quality of the 60D (the photos are very good, so it's not a problem of the lens or of the focus). The aliasing is crazy, I have very poor sharpness and details... It is far to compete with my basic phone (and my phone is not even crazy with photos). For instance, here is a part of a 1080p frame (left is a 60D, right is my phone):


I read "Canon is doing line skipping instead of binning, that's why you get aliasing"... Well maybe, but I also have zero sharpness and details on faces: I'd expect line skipping to render aliased small lines, but not to alter significantly quite continuous shapes like faces. And even if putting my subject slightly out of focus does help to reduce aliasing, details are not there.

Actually, if I want to have comparable images between my phone and my Canon 60D, I need to reduce the resolution from my phone down to 720p. So I've the feeling that Canon is basically upscaling a video of quality 720p (and it would explain why faces have no details). My feeling seems to be confirmed on this page: they say that the line skipping is done on the RAW bayer matrix, and therefore when you combine multiple pixels from the bayer matrix together, you actually obtain an image which is close to 720p. This image is apparently upscaled by Canon to 1080p. I never saw that argument on Magic Lantern's forum: can anyone confirm that this happens in practice?


So my questions are the following:
- currently, what is the best solution to continuously record a video whose quality/sharpness/details are as good as possible (close to the result of my phone), while keeping as much as possible the whole view angle of my lens? (the 1x1 crop modes zooms way too much, and still is not perfect) If you know some post-production trick to get the details back, please let me know.
- is it theoretically imaginable to shot true 1080p videos (or as close as possible to 1080p: I don't want upscaled 720p) on 60D continuously? I don't really mind if it's RAW, H.264, I just don't want upscaled 720p. By theoretically, I'm talking about hardware mostly, and I'm trying to understand if there are fundamental limitations or if it's just a lack of development time and/or hardware knowledge. Notably: is there any fundamental limitations that would make SD overclocking impossible for the 60D? Would it be imaginable maybe to feed the hardware H.264 encoder with a proper 1080p image? If using a custom linux kernel instead of the canon firmware could help, I'd be very interesting to know.

Thanks!

Walter Schulz

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First part.
I read "Canon is doing line skipping instead of binning, that's why you get aliasing"... Well maybe, but I also have zero sharpness and details on faces: I'd expect line skipping to render aliased small lines, but not to alter significantly quite continuous shapes like faces. And even if putting my subject slightly out of focus does help to reduce aliasing, details are not there.

While softening input it is a well established method to fight alias/moiré the concept to expect better details by softening input is new to me.

tobiasBora

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Oh, I'm not hoping to get more details with out of focus lens, my point is just to say that I can't find any good method to get detailed continuous videos from 60D.

Walter Schulz

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Okay, is that the only question? And we can forget all that stuff in first post (including subject)?

ArcziPL

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Well, yes, the 1080p videos from from Canon EOS just suck (at least all xxxD, xxD and M* I know). There are many causes which can contribute to the overall poorness:
- aliasing, due to line skipping (as you mentioned); a typical remedy for aliasing is a low-pass filter (Google: VAF 60D)
- sensor readout is lower than 1920x1080 and gets upscaled, e.g. for 70D the raw stream is 1832x1024. Maybe the resizing algorithm is of poor quality (compromise in favor of being computationally efficient). Resolution gets down to <720p if you use frame rates of 50..60 FPS.
- h264 compression bit rate may be too low, implemented compression algorithm may give poor quality (again a compromise in favor of being computationally efficient)

Much improved picture quality in the "3x zoom" mode (available on 600D, 60D, 70D, 7D and some others due to ML...) cleary speak against singificance of the last mentioned factor.

- currently, what is the best solution to continuously record a video whose quality/sharpness/details are as good as possible (close to the result of my phone), while keeping as much as possible the whole view angle of my lens? (the 1x1 crop modes zooms way too much, and still is not perfect)
VAF filter + RAW. Don't know if it is continuous on 60D.

If you know some post-production trick to get the details back, please let me know.
Not possible.
M50.110 [main cam] | G7X III [pocket cam] | 70D.112 [gathers dust] | M.202 [gathers dust] | waiting for M5II

tobiasBora

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@Walter Schuiz: Well I have multiple questions all related to quality of videos on 60D devices (DIGIC 4):
1. is is true that the video is upscaled by Canon and not a real 1920x1080? (this part of the question is answered affirmatively by ArcziPL) If yes, how can I know the actual resolution I obtain in my device before upscaling? And is this resolution the one in the RAW picture (i.e. in the bayer matrix, i.e. the "debayered" resolution is still lower) or on the debayered image? (reading your answer ArcziPL, I understand it's on the bayer matrix, and that therefore the actual resolution is even lower?)
2. right now what is the current best method to obtain details on Canon 60D videos (I'm open to any solutions: HDMI, SD card overclock...). The proposed solution of ArcziPL is VAF filter + RAW, but unfortunately I can't get a large enough resolution on my Canon 60D due to the 20MB/s SD write limit.
3. if I can't get true 1080p recording with the current softwares, is is theoretically imaginable to later develop such recordings, or is the hardware just not fast enough? Here, I'm happy to use any sort of solutions: HDMI, card overclocking, custom OS unrelated with DryOS...

@ArcziPL: thanks for your answer.
1. I'm curious, how do you know the resolution of sensor readout in your device? And this resolution is on the bayer matrix right, not on the debayered image (so the actual resolution is even lower I guess).
2. Also, I can't find the 3x zoom mode (h264) on my 60D. The only "crop mode" I can find is the one proposed by Canon, but the final video has width 640x480...
3. Sadly I can't continuously record RAW at decent resolution. (at 10bits depth: 1920 is not even selectable, 1600x900 works during 10s, and continuous recording can be done at 960x540 which is not even 720p...). Is there any chance that the SD card can be overclocked on DIGIC 4?

Luther

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TL;DR: use MLV (raw recording) if you need better quality. You can get continuous recording at about 1800px using a faster card with SD "overclock". Even if it's not 1080p, it will be much better than the h264 recording.
For making videos already recorded better, there's not much you can do, but I guess you could try Topaz VEAI.

tobiasBora

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Thanks for you answer Luther, and sorry for the delay: I'm not sure why but looks like I'm not notified when a new answer is posted.

So concerning continuous recording at 1800p, you mention SD overclock: I can't find any method to overclock SD on Digic 4 (including on 60D, A1ex suggest it may not possible). That means that in RAW recording I'm stuck with 960x540 resolution, which is awful. Any idea how I can overclock Digic 4 SD card?

names_are_hard

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There is no known way to SD overclock on Digic 4.