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Idea YAO - Yet Another Overlay
It all started with the Soft+Open Matte™ hack (

During the various tests, I thought about different way to use this hack...

[Image: tumblr_lp8fltcBuL1qcqpbqo1_500.gif]

I needed to choose a given language to identify the hacked subtitle; for the moment, I'd go with YAO - Yet Another Overlay - but I'm open to use another acronym, that should be created using the following:

yao (alternative acronym)

why there? Because they are the only ones which appear the same in all players, as these are the only three-lettered languages with the same three letters abbreviations; I thought also, for example, to use "bar" - that is awesome for added black bars - but in some players it would show as "Austro-Bavarian" - not that great...

OK, I bet you still have no idea of what I'm talking about, but your eyes have surely spotted the following images, so with much further ado, this is a subtitle hack to overlay images to video, with several purposes... first let's see some examples:

Why limit us with those boring black bars? Let's have them in color!

[Image: YAO_bluebars.jpg]

[Image: YAO_redbars.jpg]

Or you can have them on the sides, to spice up a bit those old 1.33:1 material...

[Image: YAO_sidebars.jpg]

So, what's about a logo over those bars?

[Image: YAO_sidebars_logo.jpg]

I prefer fancy curtains...

[Image: YAO_curtains.jpg]

In few words, this is a "poor man" Bonus view, it works with m2ts, ts, mkv files (mp4 should work as well), on free software players (with some limitations for some of them), *should* work on BD players (even old ones without Java - testers are neede!)

Some ideas for practical applications:
  • black bars for open matte with 1.85:1 OAR - this is the main use; think that 99% of them, opened to 1.78:1, can benefit of this; just slap two 20px high bars on top and bottom, and presto! You have the OAR version!
  • black bars for open matte with higher OAR - this is a less common, as often the image has a different framing, but it happens sometime; I can think of Timeline, for example: apart three (yes, THREE!) shots that are cropped at the sides, ALL the movie is full open matte; add the black bars for all but those three shots, and you have the OAR version (yep, sorta of, it would still miss three shots for a total of maybe ten seconds...)
  • variable aspect ratio -> OAR - there are some movies which have some (or many) shots full open matte, while the main framing is OAR; it's possible to add black bars only to these shots, so to have a real OAR version. Note: this is valid both for letterbox and for pillarbox.
  • frame transition - it's possible to add a transition from OAR to open matte and vice versa, instead of abrupt change; this could be a nice touch to your projects
  • colored bars - to identify certain parts of a movie (for example, added scenes), it's possible to overlay colored bars onto the existing black ones
  • side curtains - like Disney View, you can add nice graphics on the sides of 1.33:1 and higher aspect ratios up to 1.78:1; obviously, not limited to curtains... metal, paper, wood, bamboo, columns...
  • top/bottom curtains - same as the previous, but on top and bottom
  • custom logo - there could be some use of it; it could be fixed, appears only sometimes, be in the same corner or change position
  • info nugget - like VH1, you can add interesting info here and there
  • pop-ups - still no idea why one would use them, but it's possible...
that's enough for the moment... if there will be some interest, I would post more technical details and specification, and eventually a guide to create one of this hacked subs - it's not that hard!

Waiting for your comments!
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The hack works flawlessly with the following free software players:

SMPlayer (which is based on MPV)

it works but has a 1 frame gap between "lines" (the minimum line lenght is 2s) with these:


so it's useless with them for continuous bars; it could be used for example with VAR sources, but keep in mind that maximum shot lenght should be less than one minute.

If someone would like to test the black bars (or other colors, or curtains, or what you have in mind), just send me the PNG file with what should be overlaid, the exact time of your project, resolution and fps, and I'll prepare the SUP file for you.
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Another nice application could be to add rounded corners, to get that "old style" look somehow!

[Image: jaujaframe4.jpg?w=240]

or with uneven borders, scratches etc...

[Image: image451.png]
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Working on a new project involving black bars hack; it's a PITA!

Apart calculating the exact time for each frame (that is not that hard, once you know what to do, and not, it's not only mathematics involved), when finally you got the right ones, sometimes they are not right... why? Don't know, frankly... sometimes the subtitle bars are one frame ahead, sometimes behind, and few times jump a frame.

For example, let's say you have a shot that start at HH:MMConfusedS:FF, where FF (frame) is 15; if you put 15, the subs start at 14, if you put 16, it starts at 16, so there is no way to let it start at 15! I tested everything - changed frame rate, dropped frames false or true, but nothing... if someone has an idea, it would be nice to hear that!
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OK, project is released, it's Alien: Covenant IMAX edition -

Feedbacks about YAO are welcome!
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