VEAI on bleached out old video from Super 8

This I realise is a long shot. After my mum died I found a Super 8 cartridge in her movie camera. It had been there for many years and I thought it probably wouldn’t be worth developing but I sent it off anyway. This was when Kodachrome was on the way out for developing so I had to send it from Scotland to the US. I got a DVD of the processed film and it was as expected very poor quality, bleached out, generally grey, but there was an image.

I would like informed advice on what sort of approach to take in improving the image.


Len Nicholson

Take a shot at Artemis MQ/LQ. I’ve been upsizing the Cisco Kid – which came on DVD but is a VHS transfer to DVD, and the quality is brutal. I deinterlaced but otherwise left it alone.

The LQ setting brings out more details but gives a fairly plastic look. The MQ, less detail, more realistic.

None of the other models (and I tried them all) came close to those two.

This was with the 1.80b beta.

I’d recommend using either DaVinci resolve or Adobe AfterEffects. Resolve is free and has a HUGE community of support, plus many YouTube videos. (There are some features that are only available in the paid version but I doubt you’d need them for this)

Anyway, I’d recommend using Resolve and editing the color balance, brightness and contrast. There are many ways to go about it, just look a quick YouTube video. Once done, run it through Artemis L/M/HQ or whatever looks best to you. (And make sure your DVD scan is already de-interlaced. If it isn’t, use Handbrake to de-interlace first)

Recommended workflow:

  1. Rip dvd via MakeMKV
  2. If interlaced, use handbrake
  3. Adjust/improve color, contrast, and brightness with DaVinci resolve
  4. Upscale/de noise with VEAI

Thanks, VEAI I hope will be good on this eventually but at the moment I’ve got an almost greyscale AVI file. There is colour there but VERY little.

But your Artemis recommendation I’m trying on other files so thanks. :+1:

I do have Ashampoo Video Optimiser which has done a reasonable job on some old footage but just isn’t up to resurrecting my almost grayscale file, at least with my ability to use it.

That’s really what I’m after: what parameters to prioritise in adjusting. Do I start with saturation, or contrast etc. etc… ?

YouTube sounds like a good idea and I’ll have a look at DaVinci Resolve.


I would follow danmoran909 advice and set VEAI on CF10 to make a large file. Bring this into Vegas or another video editor and do some colour correcting there, sometimes adding sharpening can help.

I wouldn’t recommend Handbrake at all as a de-interlacing tool. It has limited options, and does not offer the best currently available called QTGMC. I would recommend the free GUI Staxrip or even Hybrid for this part of the workflow.

Any chance of getting the original film? A DVD really is bad in comaprison…

I do have the film somewhere. How does that help?

Depending on your potential budget, you could get the film professionally captured with a higher resolution and definition, or find a decent consumer grade 8mm capture device. The second option would be recommended if you have many films that need to be restored.

As it happens I do have a Super 8 capture device. It’s been in its box since I bought it since apparently it needs to be modified to prevent scratching the film. Perhaps I’ll finally get round to doing that. :innocent:

The original chemical film has a much higher resultion and colour information than a DVD could theroretically store. Also, DVDs are always compressed with MPEG2 - any lossy compression is is bad for any restauration tasks. While an optimal mastered DVD can look totally fine, the stuff captured by capture cards with HW-Encoders has lost so much detail which never can be recovered.
So it´s best to get close to the source as possible and capture without loss as much as possible - and from there an go for restauration, filtering, modifiying, etc…

It´s like in audio - AAC 16Bit 44,1kHz is totly fine as distribution format - but in the studio you need pcm/24bit/96khz or such…

Some years ago I had some cine films written to DVD for me and the quality was OK but not great.

More recently I paid to have a professional company do it and the output was written to HD video files.

I was blown away by the quality. It it took my breath away the first time I watched one of the videos which showed my parents in HD.

Although it was quite expensive as the films were one of a kind and irreplaceable it was definitely worth the expense.

Problem is I have loads more I need to do but haven’t got round to yet.

can share with us what brand or model do you have or which model would be better or is successor model to yours?

Do you have both versions as I’d like to see the jump in quality.

Yes. It’s a Reflecta Super 8 +. Reflecta is a German company and I bought it direct from them but it was manufactured in Taiwan I think.

After I bought it, and before I used it, I read reports from other users that it scratched the film because of the poor build quality. At that point I kept it in its packaging intending to modify it.

That was a while ago. I then heard about the Retro-8 which was more expensive but when I searched for that recently it seems no longer to be available. A much more expensive model is available but because of the price being marketed at businesses.

So I’d ideally like a Retro-8 I think but probably will be reduced to modifying the Reflecta. Reflecta don’t sell it anymore so I think all the complaints had some/ a lot of justification.

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I haven’t had the same film processed twice once to DVD and once professionally done but the following are two examples from the same location. I’ve copied the files to my Google Drive so I hope the links work.

Written to DVD
Written to DVD

Professionally Done to video file
Video file

There’s a lot of talk here regarding QTGMC but I’m yet to see a comparison.

A comparison of the two would be great.