Star Trek fan Billy Reichard has kicked off a project to get the 90s era show remastered in 4K, using an AI machine learning engine.
Taking six hours per episode to process, Reichard has produced five episodes so far, working from a DVD source. Take a look at the early results in the YouTube upload below:
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As you can see, the results are pretty special. As a show that kicked off in 1995, Star Trek Voyager's 4:3 ratio can't be extended for modern widescreen displays – but the machine learning engine does a great job of sharpening the existing picture and interpreting further details than were present in the original.
The main issue is audio syncing, as Voyager wasn't filmed at a fixed frame rate – which Reichard's method can't automatically fix, and thus needs manual tweaking.
Will Star Trek Voyager license holders CBS allow this project to continue? It's unlikely, but it would be a shame to see it shut down, as an official remaster would be difficult to achieve. With its effects shot on video rather than added afterwards, touching up the original source would be a painstaking job. For now, Reichard's glimpse at what might be is the best we're likely to get.