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Translating the Premium Disc Interview

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Translating the Premium Disc Interview

Postby Elite Evil » Sat Apr 06 2019 8:45pm

Evening everyone, just thought I would start a new thread specifically regarding the plans and mechanisms of translating the interview video found on the Shining Force 3 Premium Disc. This is probably covered elsewhere in the forum already, but I will start with my take on the subject in full and everyone can then come in with their corrections.

Procedure for translating the video


Step 1 – Sourcing the files.


The interview is spread across 3 different files. I assume this was technical limitations but it doesn’t really matter to us now. The three files are, in order, TAKAHASI.CPK TAKAHAS2.CPK and TAKAHAS3.CPK. The Cinepak container isn’t much use to modern video editing software. Easiest thing to do is convert it to another format.

Step 2 – Converting the container


ACPK2AVI.EXE reads and converts the .CPK files quite happily.


Step 3 – Extracting the audio, converting the video


VirtualDub will extract the WAVE file from the AVI file. We could process it if needed or just keep this WAVE file and copy it back into the translated video at the end. XMediaRecode will convert the video into a format we can use in modern video editors without a problem. Because the resolution is so small, I would just convert it to RAW uncompressed video.

We now have an AVI file containing RAW video and a separate WAVE file. We haven’t lost any (or at least not any perceivable) quality. The low quality file we started out with we cannot change – unless we were to rerecord the interview or find the original footage before it was compressed for the Saturn which probably doesn’t even exist anymore.

Step 4 – Subtitling or Dubbing the audio


AVI/RAW/WAV is the easiest file for video editors to work with, now we can do whatever we want with the video.

Subtitling

I know of no way to use soft subtitles on the Saturn, or in the Cinepak format. It most likely is possible, but it would probably require rewriting the decoder on the shining force 3 disc, if it is possible at all? This leaves us with hard coded subtitles within the video. We already have the translation, it is just a case of adding text over the video roughly in sync with the audio. Font and size are a balance between covering up the video and legibility. Remember we are going to have to recompress the video to a low enough bitrate for the Saturn to read and to decode so it will end up much more smudged than it looks on the computer. Personally I would suggest a Serif font with a slightly transparent black box behind it.

Dubbing


The WAVE file we need to mix into the final CPK file on the disc must be 8bit, 22khz mono uncompressed WAVE. The noise floor of an 8 bit wave file is very high. That means the file we put onto the disc we want to be very loud, compressed, limited and then dithered to 8 bit or it will be noisy and distorted. I don’t know of many 8 bit dithers, although AOM Sakura Dither definitely does.

As I mentioned earlier, I would keep the original interview audio unchanged but there is no reason we cannot dub it – or even offer both versions and end users can use which they want. We can render the video with the correct setting for audio or having rendered our subtitled video, copy the original WAVE file back in using virtual dub. It is important the audio is in the correct format before using AviToSaturn for it to work.

Step 5 – Converting the subtitled or dubbed AVI file back to CPK.


This is the step where we lose all the quality and I don’t know of any alternative.

AviToSaturn with the compression quality at minimum or 63 creates files of a bitrate the Saturn can read.* The audio is unchanged from the WAVE file we feed it. The video is a low bitrate, low resolution old codec and looks a bit crap.
If we had a more control and options over the CPK encoding we could get this a bit better – but even if we replaced the decoding codec on the Saturn, we are still very limited on the format by the CD read speed and the Saturn’s CPUs.

One possible benefit of dubbing would be that *if* we could keep the original video without any recompressing, we would have a good source of the audio and the best video recording of the interview we can get, so the final quality would be better.

Step 6 – Rebuilding a bootable ISO with the subtitled video


Thankfully this is actually really easy - although I didn’t think of it at first! Just copy the files we made in Step 5 to X:\* \Patcher\data\viewPatch\pd, put the Japanese disc in the drive and patch as normal. The patcher EXE copies our subtitled video along with all the other translated files.

If you wanted to be clever you might be able to change the patcher to write a dummy file and stick the video files right on the edge of the disc where the drive will read faster to allow a slightly higher bit rate?



*Mostly - See the Cowboy Bebop transcode for where AviToSaturn registered 500kbs write and the Saturn skip on playback.
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Re: Translating the Premium Disc Interview

Postby legalize freedom » Sat Apr 06 2019 10:16pm

Thanks for all your work on this!

Not my area of expertise, but ask if you need anything.
I would like to get a raw vid to get a subtitled vid up on the YouTube channel.

One thing that should simplify the end a tiny bit is we should be able to just put the edited video files in the patch directory with all the other files. I'm not sure why they would need to go in the viewpatch directory.
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Re: Translating the Premium Disc Interview

Postby Elite Evil » Sat Apr 06 2019 10:51pm

Proof of concept video was uploading. :) It is still processing so only low resolutions are available until youtube finishes.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nAfCt928k64

Captured on Japanese saturn via framemeister to avermedia live gamer extreme.



I have also got all my work together ready to upload so other people can work on it, but it has copyrighted stuff so I don't know if I can just upload a link here or PM it to people? I don't think the RIAA or Metallica will care about a 20 year old ISO and a 320x224 cowboy bebop intro but that isn't my decision to make.
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Re: Translating the Premium Disc Interview

Postby legalize freedom » Sat Apr 06 2019 11:59pm

Nice results. This is a pretty special contribution.

I know a video editor who can bring this home. If you want to upload everything somewhere for me, I will make sure it gets in V21... as well as a subtitled vid on YouTube.

Thanks for your effort, Elite!
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Re: Translating the Premium Disc Interview

Postby Elite Evil » Sun Apr 07 2019 5:44pm

Doing it for youtube should be easy. It has its own tools for soft coded subtitles. :)

If your other guy falls through then I can probably do it for you satisfactorily... everything except converting it back to Saturn. I have got a bunch of other .CPK tools but don't have a lot of success on Win 7 64bit with them.

I PMd you on here. Anyone else who is interested just PM me and you can have the files too. :excited:
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Re: Translating the Premium Disc Interview

Postby legalize freedom » Sun Apr 07 2019 8:43pm

Thanks!

Wait, didn't you convert back to Saturn for your proof of concept vid?
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Re: Translating the Premium Disc Interview

Postby Elite Evil » Tue Apr 09 2019 7:33pm

Yes it was the ISO I sent you made as above and recorded on a real Saturn. :)

I think it could be better though, but it is beyond me how as I don't have any more CPK writing tools. :)
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Re: Translating the Premium Disc Interview

Postby WolfTJD » Fri Apr 12 2019 4:04pm

Good to meet you Elite! and THANKS for the help and files! :shock:
Long Live All Things Shining!!
Long Live All Things Shining!!
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