[wellylug] A fresh life for some aging images
jeremy.naylor at r2.co.nz
Wed Jan 19 16:55:16 NZDT 2005
A fresh life for some aging images
17 January 2005
By SUE ALLEN
*A routine pregnancy scan may be important for many reasons, but for
Frenchman Edouard Chalaron it was the event that sparked a business idea.*
After seeing his yet-to-be-born daughter Louise on a monitor, the Lower
Hutt man headed home to transfer the scanned image from the
hospital-issued video to DVD.
Months later, and after a fair amount of trial and error, that transfer
led to a birth of a different kind - the home-grown technology behind Dr
Chalaron's company, DViDeo, which can transfer video and 8 millimetre,
Super 8 and 16mm film footage to DVD.
Bringing together "a bit of computer technology, some optics, some
electronics and a tiny bit of engineering", Dr Chalaron's digital
telecine machine uses a digital camera to reshoot the old film frame by
frame before sending the image to a computer.
The images can then be retouched on screen, improving colour and
definition, before the "revived" film is transferred to DVD.
The process also knocks out flickering and loss of definition, which
happens when film is transferred using the do-it-yourself method - by
projecting and reshooting it.
"That's the cheap and nasty option and it's not terribly good," he says.
Though it takes five to seven hours to transfer a three-minute film,
most of the process is automatic once Dr Chalaron has set it up, which
keeps the cost down.
Though a small film costs on average about $20 to transfer, the price
varies according to length and how much post-processing work needs to be
Having studied as a geologist, Dr Chalaron has spent most of his life
working with computers and this left him with a desire to find answers
His doctoral thesis was on erosion and tectonic movement in the
foothills of the Himalayas.
He also worked on similar projects in Canada for the National Institute
of Scientific Research in Quebec, and while lecturing in Ottawa he met
other geologists and New Zealander Karyne Rogers. That prompted his move
here in 1997.
Dr Chalaron spent time working for the National Institute of Water and
Atmospheric Research and Institute of Geological and Nuclear Sciences,
before he got tired of "chasing after contracts" and decided to start
his own business.
Now he is kept busy bringing back to life images which have often been
gathering dust in the attic.
More at: http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/0,2106,3157857a13,00.html
p: +64 21 374 689
e: jeremy.naylor at r2.co.nz
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