How does Atlantis compare with other methods of converting PAL to NTSC?

Standards conversion (a service) or aDVanced PAL-NTSC Converter (Windows only)

  1. A standards converter is a $100K+ machine which uses dedicated circuitry to analyze and blend video information to do the conversion from PAL to NTSC or vice-versa. (An example of this is the Snell & Wilcox Alchemist standards converter). The aDVanced PAL-NTSC converter software program uses the same principles. Motion is analyzed and each object on the screen is assigned a motion vector (like an arrow that points in the direction of motion) and this information is used to figure where the object should have been between two different fields in the video. This re-created "in-between" field is used to simulate what the NTSC camera would have seen at that point in time. The standards converter does a good job of this but it can be confused by erratic movement, rapid cutting, or objects passing behind or in front of other objects. The aDVanced converter software has this problem as well, but it has another problem which is that the motion vectors are computed for relatively large areas of the screen, and its "in-between" frames show crude, block-like artifacts resulting from moving parts of the image around like a jigsaw puzzle.
  2. Either the standards converter or the aDVanced converter software can also be used to simply blend two fields together to create the in-between field. The block-like artifacts are gone, but replaced with double-images as a result of the blending. The double-images are most noticable when an object passes across the screen rapidly, and also results in twice as much motion blurring as compared to the original video.
  3. In Atlantis, there are no block-like artifacts because motion vector processing is not used. There are also no double-image effects or excessive blurring, because fields or frames are never blended together. Instead, each frame of PAL is converted to a progressive-scan image (as if it were shot on 25 fps film) and then printed to either 2 or 3 NTSC fields as required to play back at the correct speed. The 2 field / 3 field method is the same method used to convert film to NTSC, so the results look very much like film converted to video.

Canopus Procoder (Windows only) - After Effects (Windows/Mac) - Final Cut Pro (Mac)

Vegas Video (Windows Only)

Premiere (Windows/Mac) and many other Non-Linear Editors

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