What is the quality like of the outputted file?

I have a Sony XR-520VE Camcorder which records 1920 x 1080i50 footage at 16Mb/s with Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround @ 448kb/s I believe.

If I use Turbo.264 HD to convert the AVCHD files to H.264, will the resulting quality of the file in terms of sharpness and colour/brightness, be equal to that of the original AVCHD if the file is encoded at the same settings (16Mb/s, 1080 deinterlaced to 25p, 5.1 Surround @ 448Kb/s)

iMovie creates stunning files, equivalent to the originals, but takes ages.
If Turbo.264 HD can produce the same files, in much less time, I would be over the moon.

Elgato Turbo.264 HD Video Encoder

Elgato Turbo.264 HD Video Encoder

Product No Longer Available

4 Answers from the Community

  • Answer

    I have compared the output with the Matrox accelerator (which uses Quicktime) and it is somewhat softer in resolution. Since my workflow is from miniDVD to MP4, the Matrox is not an option since it will not demux Audio from the DVD. (THe video looks sharper, but there's no audio.

  • The Turbo.264 HD can output 1080P at up to 20mbps. It produces high quality conversions from HD material, but it will certainly not match the original. That's simply not possible.

    To make sure it's right for you, you might consider buying one from a reseller which accepts returns, so you can try it on your own material and decide for yourself.

  • My understanding is that this encoder is limited to a 10MB/s output. If you are dealing with 1080 AVCHD footage that is captured at 16MB/s, I cannot see how this device will produce output of the same fidelity. Seems like this is aimed at consumers who are not so critical about their video quality or those who want to handle transcoding of video to mobile devices or for home network streaming.

  • Now that I have the product, I can say that it is fantastic.
    Turbo, I am pretty sure, also uses strong influence from QT, but I think it has darker, more deep colours and produces fantastic output when the bitrate is above a certain level.

    I have figured that, upon outputting the file, converting it with Handbrake afterwards to cut the size down drastically works wonders and maintains quality.

    I generally export with Turbo at 16MB/s, then I may well convert with Handbrake at 6Mb/s