Nyx Fast - so glad I tried it - excellent vs Nyx

I have been experimenting over the weekend with 1080p25 footage with typical mild compression artefacting (but not severe) and using Topaz interpolation (Aion) to convert it to 50p since it is high speed motorsport footage. The actual interpolation result is truly fantastic - Aion is stunning - the results are so good I honestly could never tell the footage wasn’t 50p to begin with. Compared to my previous tool (Twixtor) it is like I have entered into an entirely new universe.

But given the footage was of a fairly low bitrate to begin with and there were some clear cases of compression sickness in the source material, I then added Nyx into the mix. But I disregarded the Fast option since I thought Fast must equal inferior.

Well my results were completely the opposite to what I was expecting. It was Nyx that gave a poor result and Nyx Fast which gave a fantastic one. Basically, Nyx just tried to far too much excessive detail, excessive sharpness and overbearing eye-piercing clarity no matter how much I tried to tone it down that it looked far worse than the original footage. It was like those people who turn their TV sharpness up to 100 and you wonder how they can tolerate a picture that looks totally un-natural.

Thinking that any “enhancement” step was now going to be a lost cause for this sort of footage, out of mere curiosity I decided to substitute Nyx Fast in lieu of Nyx. And boy oh boy - what a stunning result!! With just one manual setting (antilaising / blur reduction at minus 66 after long experimentation) and everything else at default, the output render looked just like the original but with the compression artefacts severely reduced if barely visible at all, but no artificially overdone detail, sharpness or anything else distracting. It really did look just as if I was looking at the exact same footage, but an original 50p version of it at a superior bitrate. That is how good this processing chain was.

Well done Topaz - I am highly impressed and will now be using Nyx Fast as my default starting point when dealing with any 1080p footage that needs interpolation and has been compressed a little bit too excessively to begin with but would still look good just with some subtle cleaning up. I suspect Nyx is probably better suited to pretty good quality Full HD material with much less compression to begin with that is destined for the 4K treatment.

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On my content I could hardly notice any difference between Nyx v1, and Nyx fast at the same manual settings. In some cases I had some frames that had artifacts when using Nyx fast and were not there if I used Nyx v1 instead…

Nyx v2 (the default one used) is a different story, crazy sharpness.

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I’ve been using Artemis High or Medium Quality to denoise my Blu-rays. (They take up half the space when I do that, compared to if I just convert them straight to H.265.)
I loved the idea of Nyx, but the first two versions didn’t only do denoising. They do other things no matter what they are set to. But, Nyx Fast can. For most Blu-rays I set it to Relative to Auto with everything but Reduce Noise and Anti-alias/Deblur set to -100. Only Reduce Noise needs to be tweaked. Usually in the range of -20 to +20. (Anti-alias/Deblur set to 0)

I compared the results of AMQ, AHQ and Nyx Fast on an a 1960s Western Blu-ray yesterday. Both of the Artemis models sharpened the image a noticeable amount and made skin have a slight plastic look. Nyx Fast did not do either of those and was more true to the original—but with less noise.

Nyx Fast is one of the most useful models Topaz has made so far.

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