9 Benefits of Upscaling Video: Revive Old Footage (2024)

Benefits of Upscaling Video

Key Takeaways on The Benefits of Upscaling Video:

  • It looks much clearer to the viewer!
  • You’re able to add lower-quality stock video footage to your film and improve the quality so it looks like it belongs with your own footage.
  • You’re improving the resolution, clarity, and detail of the footage.
  • Reducing “noise” and graininess.
  • You’re making sure that your videos will still look good on higher-resolution future screens and devices.

Are you wondering if upscaling your old footage is really the right move for you?

As an indie filmmaker myself, I’ve had plenty of old footage that I thought was basically useless now that picture quality has gotten so much better.

But after I discovered the right way to upscale my low-resolution videos, my mind was blown!

My old footage was blending in perfectly with my new 4K video clips.

This saved me SO much time and energy, and I’m shocked at how many people don’t even realize you can upscale low-resolution video content.

In this article, I’m going to walk you through the top 9 benefits of upscaling video so you can see for yourself why you should start upscaling your lower-resolution video content today.

What is Video Upscaling?

Before we go into the benefits of upscaling videos, it’s important to understand exactly what video upscaling is.

Video upscaling is a process that enlarges and enhances the resolution of a lower-quality video, making it look sharper, clearer, and more modern.

It works by creating new pixels from the existing ones, resulting in increased pixel density and detail. And it’s not just for old videos – even newer footage can benefit from upscaling to increase resolution and get better, high-quality video.

What is AI video upscaling? (Custom Graphic)

Top 9 Benefits of Upscaling Video

1. Enhanced Video Resolution

As mentioned above, AI video upscaling technology improves low-resolution footage by increasing its pixel count.

For example, a 1280×720 aspect ratio means that the video has 1,280 lines of pixels along the horizontal axis and 720 lines of pixels along the vertical axis. If you upscaled this video to 4K, you’d now have 3,840 lines of pixels along the horizontal axis and 2,160 lines of pixels along the vertical axis.

These extra pixels make the output crisp, enhancing the video resolution.

Now, you’re able to play the video on high-resolution displays, like 4K screens, without losing quality.

If you tried to play the 1280×720 video on a 4K screen without any upscaling, the TV would automatically stretch the video to fit the screen, which stretches the pixels and results in a blurry image.

2. Improved Clarity and Detail

One of the best aspects of video upscaling is its ability to not just add more pixels but to genuinely improve picture quality.

Beyond the pixel count, AI video upscaling software also sharpens edges, enhances texture quality, and improves the clarity and detail of the video. It makes every scene clearer and more detailed for the viewer.

Imagine revisiting your favorite moments and seeing them with new eyes, where the textures of clothing, the blades of grass, and even the expressions on faces are more defined and vivid.

It’s practical magic at its best!

Example of a low resolution video vs a 4K upscale side by side on Topaz Video AI

3. Time and Cost Efficiency

Upscaling with AI is a smart, practical solution for saving both time and money in post-production.

Before I discovered upscaling software, I really thought I would have to reshoot several b-roll clips I had saved in my archives from years ago. Either that or pay a bunch of money to find similar stock footage online.

Researching my problem is how I was first introduced to AI upscaling, and it saved me so much time and money! I was seriously so impressed, now I write articles about how great it is because I want everyone else to learn about this magical discovery too.

With just a few clicks of AI technology, your old videos are transformed to meet today’s quality expectations. They will also seamlessly fit into your current work. It’s a financially savvy move, and it allows you to repurpose and enhance existing content without breaking the bank or the clock.

4. Revitalize Archival Footage

By transforming historic clips through video upscaling technology, we preserve important visual history for future generations.

Filmmakers and content creators can now improve these classic moments while making them relevant and usable in contemporary projects. This process respects and retains the footage’s nostalgic value and ensures that while the visuals are updated, the essence and original atmosphere of the footage remain untouched.

5. Improved Distribution Options

High-resolution, upscaled videos open up a world of distribution possibilities that were previously out of reach for older or lower-quality footage.

Upscaling ensures your videos meet the high-quality standards that streaming platforms, social media, or film festivals demand.

What’s really exciting is that upscaling actually boosts your film’s marketability, as a clearer visual presentation makes a stronger impression on audiences and distributors.

6. Make Footage Cinematic Quality

Imagine transforming everyday footage into something that looks like it’s straight out of a blockbuster movie.

AI upscaling can improve anything from your old home movies to lower-resolution stock footage.

Maybe you found the perfect stock clip to add depth to your story, but it’s not at the same level as the rest of your high-resolution shots. AI upscaling bridges this gap and ensures that every frame, regardless of its original quality, contributes to a cohesive project.

Through AI upscaling, you can achieve a level of polish that was once only possible with significantly higher budgets and resources.

Cinematic video mode being used to shoot a sunset video on an iPhone

7. Makes Filmmaking Accessible

AI upscaling makes cinematic filmmaking accessible to creators of every level, regardless of their budget.

Gone are the days when achieving a high-end look in your videos was reserved for those with deep pockets or access to the latest and greatest technology.

With the advancements in AI upscaling, anyone from hobbyists working in their living rooms to indie filmmakers piecing together their passion projects can now create footage that looks polished and professional.

I mean, do you even realize how many award-winning films are shot on iPhones? I remember back in the day, you needed a $50K camera at least to make a high-quality film worthy of winning in festivals.

Upscaling really does level the playing field – it makes sure that great stories aren’t held back by less-than-great video quality.

8. Future Technologies

In the rapidly evolving world of technology, where screens are continually becoming sharper, clearer, and more intricate, it’s important to know that your film will remain visually captivating for years to come.

AI upscaling pretty much future-proofs your projects by making sure your content can always exceed the current highest standards. When your film is played on future generations’ screens, the visuals will be just as good in the future as they are today.

9. Noise Reduction

One of the hidden gems of AI upscaling is its ability to significantly reduce noise and remove compression artifacts from video footage. This process is particularly useful for old film footage, where, over time, it might have become more grainy, or for digital footage that had heavy compression and lost quality.

That’s the beauty of noise reduction and artifact removal – it guarantees that your visuals are not only high resolution but also clean and pleasing to the eye.

Topaz Video Enhance AI before and after comparison mode

Final Thoughts

I hope you can understand now why I’m so ecstatic about the revolution of AI video upscaling.

Using the best AI video upscaling software combined with understanding how to upscale video can significantly improve your projects from good to phenomenal.

The accessibility and benefits of AI video upscaling are amazing for both indie filmmakers on a tight budget and YouTube content creators! It levels the playing field, allowing your creativity and storytelling to shine.

I always recommend that people use AI upscaling tech for their films and videos so that they are future-proofing their work for future viewers and technologies!

Common Questions (FAQs)

Does upscaling improve video quality?

Yes, upscaling can significantly improve video quality by increasing the resolution of the footage, making it appear sharper and more detailed on higher-resolution screens. However, the quality of the upscaling process can vary depending on the software used.

What’s the best video upscaling software?

The “best” video upscaling software often varies based on user needs and preferences, but Topaz Video Enhance AI and AVCLabs are my top choices for their advanced AI-driven upscaling capabilities. Personally, I use Topaz AI for my upscaling needs. You can learn more in my article on Topaz Labs vs. AVCLabs for video upscaling.

What are the disadvantages of upscaling?

A disadvantage of upscaling video can be that the process might introduce artifacts or unnatural sharpness if not done correctly. Also, upscaling cannot add original details that were not in the source footage, so it can’t work on extremely low-quality and blurry videos.

How well does 1080p to 4K upscaling actually work?

Upscaling from 1080p to 4K can work remarkably well, especially with sophisticated AI-based software. However, the success of the upscaling process largely depends on the quality of the original footage and the software used in the upscaling.

Interested in upscaling tech? Check out these articles for more specific info:

How to Upscale Videos Using Topaz Video Enhance AI

How to Upscale Videos Using AVCLabs Video Enhancer AI

How to Upscale Videos Using Pixop

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