Although some historians are not happy about upscaling and colorizing old footage, there are still many people, including me, who enjoy watching videos like that. NASS has recently published one from the 1930s, showing the vibrant streets of Los Angeles in the 1930s. Upscaled and colorized, it gives a new life to the footage and it’s a real treat for everyone who likes this kind of video work.
NASS enjoys restoring and upscaling old videos with neural networks and modern software tools. They stabilize the footage, correct the speed, contrast, and sharpness; and remove noise, dust, and scratches. Finally, they add color with AI and even sound for the ambiance.
It’s important to note that the colorization isn’t historically accurate in this video, as NASS emphasizes. Still, the results are quite decent considering that it was done by an algorithm. This is the process behind this piece:
- FPS boosted to 60 frames per second
- Image resolution boosted up to HD
- Improved video sharpness and brightness
- Colorized only for the ambiance (not historically accurate)
- Added sound only for the ambiance
- restoration: (stabilization, denoise, clean, deblur)
You can also see the original black and white video at A/V Geeks on archive.org, and you’ll see the difference between the two.