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PostPosted: 23 Sep 2008, 21:17 
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That seems like an FPS error of some sort... are you recording to the same drive?


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PostPosted: 23 Sep 2008, 21:55 
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eZ`,

Sorry to hear you're having trouble. I'm sure the sample video you posted stutters because your hard drive simply could not keep up with capture demands: full-res, 60fps, Uncompressed video requires an absolutely mammoth datarate. This explains why the game played fine in realtime, but the resulting video came out bad.

-edit- Did some math. If my figures are correct, uncompressed video at 1680x1050 comes to about 5MB per frame. 5MBx60fps=300MB/sec of sustained disk writing. :shock:

With VirtualDub you really don't need to exceed 30fps. Anything greater will begin to seriously bog the system and will probably be frames that you discard in post-processing anyway, so you're just losing performance and disk space.

You mentioned trying different codecs. What settings have you tried with the PicVideo MJPEG codec that I reference in the guide?

The hotkey program should have no affect on the actual recording process. However, it appears you use Vista--which I've never tested--and it's possible that Alt-tabbing from desktop to game screws with the graphics subsystem in a way that borks recording. Try HotkeyP when you can, just to eliminate the variable.

Also, I noticed this:


If this means that the test itself is writing data to disk while recording, then that can also mess up your video. Try capturing regular gameplay or even just your desktop. Since you have 2 hard drives, capture to the one that does not contain your games.

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PostPosted: 23 Sep 2008, 23:15 
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However, it appears you use Vista

Well firstly, I don't use Vista its just a skin :P

Sorry to hear you're having trouble. I'm sure the sample video you posted stutters because your hard drive simply could not keep up with capture demands: full-res, 60fps, Uncompressed video requires an absolutely mammoth datarate. This explains why the game played fine in realtime, but the resulting video came out bad.

The drive I'm recording to is a 500GB WD AAKS, its pretty damn fast, and I'm sure that's not the problem, as firstly, I record with fraps with no problem and that spits out the gigabytes. Secondly, I have tried doing it at very low quality DivX on the fly and it's still jerky (using 4core encoding, so the cpu aint slowing it down). And thirdly, I've tried all 3 of my HDDs and the frame rate is the same across them all.

With VirtualDub you really don't need to exceed 30fps. Anything greater will begin to seriously bog the system and will probably be frames that you discard in post-processing anyway, so you're just losing performance and disk space.

I upped the FPS from 30 to 60 just to see if it made any difference as i know some games look really poor at only 30fps, but it looked exactly the same.

You mentioned trying different codecs. What settings have you tried with the PicVideo MJPEG codec that I reference in the guide?

Well, not PicVideo, no. The link you have was going at 5kb/s and I couldn't be bothered to wait, so I .... "found" one called "Morgan Multimedia M-JPEG" which I'm sure is practically identical, just made by someone else. Here's a screenshot...


It shares a lot of the same settings as your one.
Note in VirtualDub on the right it's showing my last test record. 7fps average. This happens in the desktop with no game running, or with a game running, windowed or fullscreen. It never breaks 7fps. The harddrive is hardly being stressed, and neither is my CPU or anything else. So I really don't know. The only thing I can think of is that it doesn't like having 2 screens active. I have to manually put in 1680x1050 rather than "Screen" as it tries to record both screens (2560x1050)........ I've just tried disabling my second monitor and setting it to 'screen' and the frame rate is still the same.

The hotkey program should have no affect on the actual recording process.

I didn't use the hotkey program simply because I couldn't be arsed. No point installing everything to make the task easier, only to find that the task itself doesn't work properly (which is what happened! :P)

And I've tried many more games, not just CSS. But the fact that the frame rate is so low even on the desktop shows its not something that's just being borked by games.

Now I know you're gonna say 'download the codec you linked', but it runs at 5-7fps on ANY game ANY desktop usage with ANY codec at ANY specified frame rate, so I seriously doubt having the PicVideo codec is going to be fine, as you have tried recording to XviD or the Xfire codec and been fine with it, yet mine still fails.
I be stumped! :!:

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PostPosted: 24 Sep 2008, 00:01 
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Well firstly, I don't use Vista its just a skin :P

Good, because my next suggestion was going to be roll back your OS. ;) :lol:

The drive I'm recording to is a 500GB WD AAKS, its pretty damn fast, and I'm sure that's not the problem, as firstly, I record with fraps with no problem and that spits out the gigabytes.

I believe you, but double-check my previous post for my edit regarding the datarate for uncompressed video. I have yet to see a HD come close to that speed:
http://techreport.com/articles.x/12673/12

I upped the FPS from 30 to 60 just to see if it made any difference as i know some games look really poor at only 30fps, but it looked exactly the same.

With Fraps a higher fps, like 60, can actually make videos look smoother, because fraps locks the game to the fps. Vdub does no locking, it just lets your game run as fast as possible and records 30fps--as shown by the 200+fps you got in your video (nice rig!)

Well, not PicVideo, no. The link you have was going at 5kb/s and I couldn't be bothered to wait, so I .... "found" one called "Morgan Multimedia M-JPEG" which I'm sure is practically identical, just made by someone else.

The Morgan codec is probably good enough. I haven't used it myself. Was the Afterdawn link the slow one? Maybe I'll host the Showshifter demo elsewhere to help with that.

The only thing I can think of is that it doesn't like having 2 screens active. I have to manually put in 1680x1050 rather than "Screen" as it tries to record both screens (2560x1050)........ I've just tried disabling my second monitor and setting it to 'screen' and the frame rate is still the same.

The dual screens could be an issue, but it looks like you've tested that already.

Now I know you're gonna say 'download the codec you linked', but it runs at 5-7fps on ANY game ANY desktop usage with ANY codec at ANY specified frame rate, so I seriously doubt having the PicVideo codec is going to be fine, as you have tried recording to XviD or the Xfire codec and been fine with it, yet mine still fails.
I be stumped! :!:

Too bad, download the codec I specified!!!! :evil: ;)

Just kidding. You've already got enough evidence to show that the problem is probably not codec-specific. Your rig should be more than capable of awesome, high-res capturing, so that makes me think you've got a gremlin in there.

Have you tried loading a video in Vdub and re-rendering it to a different codec (convert, not capture)? Try Morgan MJPEG. It should convert very fast.

-edit- Have you tried setting Vdub to use just one or 2 cores?

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PostPosted: 24 Sep 2008, 01:52 
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Yeah it's fine for converting stuff, I do it quite frequently, into XviD and DivX. Fraps videos and the like.

When i put it to a single core then it locked up and had to be closed.

To be honest, I'd say it's something in the "wonderful" ATI drivers/CCC that's messing it up. It's prob trying to be clever and failing miserably.

Thanks for the help, and I'mna keep looking into it I think because if it works it's a great alternative to use, as some games simply hate FRAPS and destroys your FPS no matter how demanding the game is. (Source games and Pro Evo's I'm looking at you)

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PostPosted: 24 Sep 2008, 02:33 
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When i put it to a single core then it locked up and had to be closed.

That's odd. :?

To be honest, I'd say it's something in the "wonderful" ATI drivers/CCC that's messing it up. It's prob trying to be clever and failing miserably.

Ahh. I completely missed the fact that you have an ATI card. I've only used NVIDIA, so I have no experience or advice to offer on that.
..........
Just found this on the VirtualDub site:
Also, ATI appears to be shipping their current devices with a WDM (Windows Driver Model) driver only; this can be used indirectly by VirtualDub through a Microsoft wrapper, but it is crippled in functionality and it also appears that the wrapper is buggy.

The wrapper will show up as "Microsoft WDM Image Capture (Win32)." If it works for you, great.
:(
Don't know how current this information is, but it could be relevant.

I hope you can get it working.

Anyone else capture successfully with an ATI card?

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PostPosted: 13 Nov 2008, 06:00 
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Just ran a test using FEAR's timedemo, recorded @ 1440x900-30fps. Results are very good:

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PostPosted: 13 Nov 2008, 06:20 
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I use a different method. Mine is far more complicated and I don't really feel like explaining it all, but the quality is unbeatable.

I use a combination of x264 (You cannot beat the quality of H.264), AviSynth, VirtualDub, and others.

The first thing I do is capture games straight to TGA files at 300 FPS. From here, I calculate motion blur based on the motion vectors of the previous, current, and next video frame. Once that is done, I pull every 10th frame. This drops it down to 30 FPS. Then from here, it's just a matter of adding film grain or any other effect you like, and then rendering it to H.264 with x264.

For audio, I record straight to PCM, and then I use neroaacenc to encode to AAC. For video games, I typically use 128kbps for audio. 128kbps AAC is equivalent to 160kbps MP3 or higher, so you can get better quality at a smaller size.

I know these aren't exact steps but they are good for guidance.

Here are some examples:
http://imk.cx/videos/files/CSS_Ace.mp4 (20 MB)
http://imk.cx/videos/files/WiC_A2A_3.mp4 (11 MB)
http://imk.cx/videos/files/WiC_FuelAirBomb.mp4 (9 MB)
http://imk.cx/videos/files/CSS_3xM4HS_2.mp4 (12 MB)
http://imk.cx/videos/files/CSS_1v4.mp4 (27 MB)

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PostPosted: 13 Nov 2008, 07:04 
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@Dopefish

That is quite a process you have there. Those WiC vids are nice. :)

One thing I don't understand...capturing TGA files at 300fps. At 1440x900 that would come to 1110MB per second. How in the world do you capture that in realtime? Crazy Uber-RAID?


Question:
You wouldn't happen to know how to disable hardware overlays, would you?

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PostPosted: 13 Nov 2008, 07:21 
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Well, I typically make all of my videos for 1280x720 for the greatest compatibility. I either do 720p or 1080p. It uses less space for 1280x720.

As for recording the game, I use in-gamer rendering where possible. World in Conflict, Call of Duty 4, all Source-based games, and others have built-in renderers. You play back a demo and it will dump the frames in non-realtime. :)

And I don't know about hardware overlays.

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