With prices of camcorders and digital cameras dropping, you would definitely have one at your disposal. Most entry-level camcorders usually have limited features for shooting videos. The most you can do is adjust the video capture parameters such as white balance and exposure values. When the video is displayed on the screen, you might fi nd it shoddy with insu  cient lighting, incorrect focusing, pale colors and other such issues. Using a simple freeware utility called vReveal, you can give these videos a professional touch with a few clicks. The utility can be used to crop and enhance your videos in minutes. You can download it from www.vreveal.com and install it to your computer.

Step 1: Getting ready
Download the video from your camera to the computer. You can also use existing videos or movies on your PC that need enhancement. Start vReveal, click on the ‘Import’ button and locate the video you wish to edit. The video thumbnail will be shown in the left pane under the ‘Gallery’ section. Double click on the video and it will be automatically sent to the ‘Enhance’ mode.

Step 2: Cropping and rotation
Mark the portion of the video that you wish to crop on the seek bar at the bottom of the video using the mouse (see the selected portion in the adjoining image). You can also rotate the video using the ‘Rotate’ icon located at the bottom.

Step 3: Enhancements
Now that you have selected the portion of video you require, it is time to enhance its quality. From the list of auto enhancement features (icons) on the left pane, select each ne
and notice the e  ect on the video in the work pane. You can either pause the video at a particular scene or play the video in a loop to see a live preview of the enhancement.

A pre-defi ned setting button called ‘One Click Fix’ can apply a bunch of enhancements to your video with a single click. This applies the following enhancements—‘Stabilize’ which removes minor handshakes and tilts, ‘Auto Contrast’ for brightness and contrast levels, ‘Auto White Balance’ for improving the colors and hue, ‘Sharpen’ for sharpening the image, ‘Clean’ to remove fi ne grains that are caused due to low light and finally ‘Deinterlace’ for correcting the interlaced video lines. You can additionally enhance the brightness using the slider in the ‘Fill Light’ option. Alternatively, you can select individual enhancement levels as per your preference.You can compare the output with the original video by clicking on the ‘Compare Original Vs Enhanced’ button at the bottom of the right pane. You can drag the slider on the playback area using the mouse cursor and preview the effect in real time.

Step 4: Fine tune
If you are not satisfied with the preset values, you can make fine adjustments to these enhancement options using the ‘Fine Tune’ mode. In this mode you can manually adjust each parameter using sliders in the respective section. In the ‘Fine Tune’ mode, you can get additional options such as ‘Focus’, ‘Color saturation’ and ‘Glow’.

Step 5: Adding effects
Once you have finished enhancing the video quality, you can add effects or simply finalize your videos and save it. To add effects, move over to the ‘Add Effects’ tab and you shall find six options for adding different effects to the video. These effects are ‘Black and White’, ‘Sepia’, Vivid Colors’, ‘Glow’, ‘Grain’, and ‘Vintage’.  These effects can also be fine-tuned in the ‘Fine Tune’ section.

Step 6: Finalizing
Now that your video looks good, playback the video to ensure the quality and effects are to your liking. If you find anything amiss, go back and redo the necessary steps. Once done, your video is ready to be finalized. You can either save the video on your system which can be later burned to a video disc or transcoded for your multimedia phone / portable media player or simply uploaded to your Facebook account or shared on YouTube—the software automatically sets the encoding parameters. To save it to your PC, click the ‘Computer’ icon and select the resolution and format of the output video file.

The ‘Advanced’ option allows you to choose the destination and quality of the video file. You can save it in the original resolution or upscale the resolution to 720p or 1080p and also set the video format (WMV or DivX). Once done, hit the ‘Save’ button and your video will be ready at the specifi ed destination in sometime. vReveal is a free utility designed for amateur videographers and is developed by ‘MotionDSP’. The software can harness the power of CUDA-enabled graphics cards by Nvidia and process videos five times faster. For this you need an Nvidia GeForce 8-series or better graphics card installed in your PC. The minimum requirements for running the application is a dual-core processor (Intel or AMD), 2 GB of RAM and Windows XP operating system.

However, you will get quicker results with a quad-core processor, 4 GB of RAM and Windows 7. For processing HD 1080p videos, the developer suggests an Nvidia 400-series graphics card with at least 512 MB of video memory. The free version is available for basic use and the Premium version is available for USD 39 (approx Rs 2,000) which enables features such as ‘Vintage’ and ‘Clean’ e  ects and the ability to process 720p and 1080p videos.

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