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  • Writer's pictureH Peter Alesso

The Beginner's Guide to Creating Deepfakes

Updated: Jul 30

Introduction

Deepfakes are artificial intelligence (AI) that uses machine learning to create realistic videos or images of people saying or doing things they never actually said or did. They have been used for various purposes, including entertainment, social media pranks, and even political manipulation.


In this article, I will walk you through the basics of deepfake creation, from choosing the right tools to understanding the potential risks and benefits. I will also share some personal anecdotes about my own experiences with deepfakes.


Deepfake Creation: The Basics

There are two main types of deepfakes: face swaps and voice clones. Face swaps replace the face of a person in a video or image with the face of another person. Voice clones create a new audio recording of someone saying something they never actually said.


To create a deepfake, you will need a few things:

  • A high-quality dataset of images or videos of the person whose face you want to swap.

  • A deepfake creation tool. There are a number of tools available, both free and paid.

  • Some technical expertise. Deepfake creation can be a complex process, but there are a number of tutorials available online that can help you get started.

Choosing the Right Tools

There are a number of deepfake creation tools available, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Some of the most popular tools include:

Deepfakes Web is a service that lets you create deepfake videos on the web. It uses Deep Learning to absorb the various complexities of face data. It can take up to 4 hours to learn and train from video and images, whereas it takes another 30 minutes to swap the faces using the trained model. The free version will output the deepfake video in around 5 hours, whereas the premium version will spit out the video in just 1 hour.

Reface AI is the Generative Adversarial Network (GAN) behind the scenes. To use the app, all you need to do is capture your photo and then choose the GIF that you want to use. It will superimpose your face on the GIF. It doesn’t work perfectly, and the face superimposition will depend on the symmetry of your face and the GIF you are using. That said, there are so many gifs on the internet that you will always have options. This can be your personalized GIF maker app that you can use to impress your friends.

MyHeritage developed an app Deep Nostalgia that feature gained popularity among social media users as it lets you animate old photos. To use the service, all you have to do is upload an image and press the animate button. In a few seconds, you get an animated version of the image with the face, eyes, and mouth moving like it’s straight out of The Daily Prophet magical newspaper from Harry Potter.

DeepFaceLab is a Windows program that allows you to create deepfake videos. It’s primarily built for researchers and students of computer vision. However, if you want to learn about deepfake videos, you can definitely try out this tool. It uses machine learning and human image synthesis to replace faces in videos. Since DeepFaceLab is an advanced tool mostly for researchers, the interface is not user-friendly, and you will have to learn its usage from the documentation. Again, it goes without saying that you need a powerful PC with a dedicated high-end GPU. Simply put, if you are a student specializing in computer vision.

Lensa AI is not exactly deepfake in the sense that it will put your face on other people’s bodies or in videos. However, it has the insanely cool ability to create photorealistic portraits of yours from a few selfies. What’s more, the app creates portraits in multiple styles, including superheroes, anime, and more. Though the app is free to use for general purposes, if you’re trying to make portraits, you will have to pay for each set or subscribe to the app’s premium version.


Understanding the Potential Risks and Benefits

Deepfakes have the potential to be used for a variety of purposes, both good and bad.


On the one hand, deepfakes can be used to create entertainment content, such as comedy videos or music videos. They can also be used for more serious purposes, such as training AI models or helping people with disabilities.


On the other hand, deepfakes can also be used for malicious purposes, such as spreading misinformation, creating fake news, or damaging someone's reputation.


It is important to be aware of the potential risks of deepfakes and to take steps to protect yourself from them. This includes being critical of the information you see online and being aware of the signs of a deepfake.


Personal Anecdote

I first became interested in deepfakes when I saw a video of a celebrity saying something they had never actually said. I was amazed by how realistic the video was, and I started to wonder about the potential implications of this technology.

I decided to learn more about deepfake creation, and I eventually started experimenting with different tools and techniques. I was able to create some basic deepfakes, but I quickly realized that this was a complex process that required a lot of technical expertise.


I continued to learn about deepfakes, and I eventually published an article on the topic. The article was well-received, and I received a lot of positive feedback from readers.


I am still learning about deepfakes, and I am excited to see how this technology evolves in the future. I believe that deepfakes have the potential to be a powerful tool for both good and evil, and it is important to be aware of the potential risks and benefits.


Conclusion

Deepfakes are a powerful technology with the potential to be used for a variety of purposes. It is important to be aware of the potential risks and benefits of deepfakes and to take steps to protect yourself from them.


I hope this article has given you a better understanding of deepfake creation. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment below.


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