Thursday, August 5, 2010

AutoSegmenting Guide

More people on Viikii are trying out autosegmenting for their channel so I thought I make a guide about it based on my experience. Just a note, I’m going to assume that you have already read Pomi’s tutorial so please do then come back and read this guide:
I think the most important thing in learning how to handle a new software is knowing how it works and what each setting does. That way you can then manipulate the settings to your own benefits.  So I’m going to introduce the important settings to you in this step by step guide. These steps do not have to be in order unless noted and if you already know some the settings mentioned then feel free to skip that step.
Step 1: Crop Settings
The crop settings help create a box for the detection of the subtitles. The program will only detect the subtitles that appear in that box. The crop settings are responsible for the height of the box. The TOP settings tell far down the picture the top of the box is going to be. The BOTTOM settings tell how far up the bottom of the box is going to be.
In the example above, the top of the box is 88% down the picture and the bottom is 10% up the picture. The less the top percentage, the higher up the top will be. Same with the bottom percentage. The less it is, the lower the bottom will be. You can see the preview of the box below the crop settings. If the subtitles are half on the picture and half on a black background such as the one above, then you need to have the top to be in the middle of the subtitle so that the box will only have the subtitles on the black background and not on the picture. If your subtitles are completely on a black background, then just have the top and bottom touch the top and bottom of the subtitles. If your subtitles are completely on the picture, then it could be a bit more complicated. My policy with this is that less is definitely more. You want the top and bottom to be as close as possible (decreasing the height of the box), focusing on the center of the subtitles. That will help decrease the number of false subtitles.
If there are ads that appear under the subtitles, then you have to make sure that it does not enter the detection box.

If you scroll down on the software, you will see something like below:

You can also change the crop settings down there by changing the numbers in the red box. If you follow the purple arrow, you’ll see the actual outline of the detection box and the subtitles. The green arrow points to another outline of the detection box, the "Colored Blocks". Each of those green rectangles represents a “word” of the subtitle. The redish rectangle is the first word in the line of subtitle. You know that is detecting the subtitle right when you see that it’s a red rectangle follow by a series of green rectangles like above. Any imperfections to that will equal to errors in the script. The reason you would want to manipulate the settings is to get that very result.
If your crop settings are too low (which means that your detection box is too big), then you will see imperfections like below.

Remember, always strive for this: 

For the purpose of this guide, I’m going to call the red and green boxes “Colored Blocks” and the above “Ideal Colored Blocks”
Step 2: Block Settings
There are four block settings that you need to know: Value, Count, Size, and CenterW.  Remember a “block” is a “word” of the subtitle. 

You can change the settings in the two purple circles above. “Block Value” is what the difference between pixels of the subtitles and the pixels of the background needs to be to detects the subtitle. The best way to find the best “Block Value” for your subtitles is to watch what happens to the “Colored Blocks” when you changed it.  Stick with the value that will give you the “Ideal Colored Blocks.”
“Block Count” is how many blocks (words) there needs to be in a subtitle line for the software to detect it. I find that “1” is the best number to use based on my experience.
“CenterW” is how much weight the software should put on a center subtitle. It will help in detecting one word subtitles.
“Block Size” is the size of the detection box. Crop settings let you manipulate the top and bottom of the box while “Block Size” lets you manipulate the left and right. Unlike the crop settings, there are really no rules for the “Block Size” as long as it contains the subtitles. However, if you have ads appearing on the sides:

Then you have to make sure it doesn’t get in the detection box.
This is a DON’T

This is a DO

The reason that you don’t want the ad to be included in the detection box is because the software will detect it as a false subtitle even when there are none, like below:

Step3: Drop Values
Drop Values are the settings that I’m most unfamiliar with. From my basic knowledge, drop values detect the subtitle from within the detection box, based on the subtitles color. If the subtitle color is white then all of the drop values (RGB) should be the same.

You can change the settings in the two purple circles. You can see the changes in the detection box when the drop values when the RGB are not equal. You should change the settings based on your own subtitles. Watch the “Colored Blocks” to determine the best values. Same with the Y-Diff settings. Watch the “Colored Blocks” as you change the setting for the “Ideal Colored Blocks.”
As for the rest of the settings such as “Tracking Changes,” I’m not very familiar with therefore I basically left it alone.
This guide is completely based on my own experience. Like I said before, you need to experiment a lot to get the right setting for your video. My recommendation is to save each setting as Test-1, Test-2, etc. Then named the subtitle script it provides with the same title. That way you’ll know which setting is best when you upload the script and use that setting in the future. The process of testing the settings will take a lot of time but it will be worth it when you get the right one.
If you have any more questions, feel free to pm me on Viikii. I’ll try my best to help :)
BTW, this counts as my first solo post on this blog ;)


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