I became the victim of robbers, but a neighbor’s camera filmed their car. I want to know whether it is possible to extract the car’s serial number from these:

Video Link:


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    In theory continuous video taken at proper video frame rate could contain hundreds of frames more material from where high end pattern matching software could decide something useful. Crime investigators and intelligence officials can have it. We have only ordinary photo processing software which cannot find what's common behind a set of images nor can utilize the fact that there's a license plate. None of your included images contain enough data when used separately. Video compression unfortunately removes much data by flattening low contrast areas to zero contrast. – user287001 Jun 25 '19 at 8:08
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    Welcome to Graphic Design. What you are showing us appear to be photographs taken from a screen showing a recording. We cannot tell which quality problems arise from your photographing and which are already present in the actual recording. Therefore we can only tell you what can be done with the very images you are showing us. If you want to do this yourself, I strongly recommend that you work with the raw data from your neighbour’s camera. – Wrzlprmft Jun 25 '19 at 9:42
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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it i not related to graphic design. This, if anything, would require forensic image analysis which is a special field unto itself. In most cases, real-life can not mimic things you see on television shows where things are miraculously edited in an image to show the impossible. If you are truly vested in trying to pull data from your images hire an image analysis professional. They are specifically trained and experienced in such matters. – Scott Jun 25 '19 at 12:56
  • As I said in my answer, your video file is extremely low quality and it doesn't help to post it here, go to the police with the files and let them handle it. Your edit doesn't make the question any better / easier to answer. – Luciano Jun 26 '19 at 9:22
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    The best practice is always to go to the police if you have evidence regarding a crime. Graphic Designers aren't crime solvers. :) – Scott Jun 26 '19 at 9:32

Let's get this out of the way first: we can't help with your image. Now onto the why:

There's not enough data to be recovered from your image. Take this one for example (I reduced to fit the screen, original size here):

enter image description here

  1. The number plate is completely white due to the over-exposure of that area (the camera's aperture / exposure was adjusted to capture dark images, so it blows any bright light source).
  2. There's quite a lot of noise (both from the jpeg quality and the screen capture)
  3. The number plate has a size of approximately 385px * 85px, which would be fine to recover details from if not for 1 and 2 above.

A quick adjustment of the levels shows you that there is not enough detail in the image to recover anything. Also the camera didn't capture enough light information - It could be possible if the original image was shot as a RAW file, since it stores more light information - but even then there would be a chance that the image was just too blurry to start with. That vertical pattern (looks like a TV screen pattern) also obfuscates the details even more.

enter image description here

In short, only in TV shows like CSI this sort of recovery is possible - because it's fiction, made to move the story forward.

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  • I would assume that the vertical pattern is due to the images we have being photographs of a TV screen. – Wrzlprmft Jun 25 '19 at 9:47
  • @Wrzlprmft yep that's also what I thought – Luciano Jun 25 '19 at 10:24
  • Thanks all for reply, I submit here the video link, drive.google.com/file/d/1NuJnCQ0iIpbo7_YTbHvEF1mqvY71xsqh/… – hill flame Jun 26 '19 at 9:11
  • @hillflame you should hire an image analysis professional or take your video to the police, I'm sure they'll be able to handle this. – Luciano Jun 26 '19 at 9:17
  • Please can someone redirect me to topics that deals my case? Thanks. – hill flame Jun 26 '19 at 9:25

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