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Do I need an HDLink?

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Belal Hibri
Do I need an HDLink?
on Feb 15, 2009 at 8:25:14 pm


I am currently trying to figure out what the best possible combination of equipment I should get is.

I am do mostly color-grading work of HD projects. I will be using Apple Color to grade. I already have two displays which I will need to use for color-grading. I have a Mac Pro (Early 2008) and a Blackmagic Decklink HD Extreme 2 card.

Which is the best (highest quality) of the following choices:

Decklink --> HDMI --> Panasonic Pro Plasma (like the Panasonic 42PZ85U)
Decklink --> HD-SDI --> HDLink --> DVI --> Panasonic Pro Plasma
Decklink --> HD-SDI --> HDLink --> DVI --> ACD 23"
Decklink --> Analog HD Component --> Dell 2408

I do want to be able to view 1080p at 24fps and 23.98fps.

Have I left an option out? As you can tell from the options I've listed, I can't justify a getting an HD monitor that supports HD-SDI (like the 24" JVC). I've worked with it extensively.

Right now, it seems that going to the Panny Pro Plasma via HDMI might be the best option? The reason I thought I might need to go through the HDLink is to be able to ensure proper processing and calibration.

Belal Hibri

Seattle-based Colorist/Video Artist

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Sean Donnelly
Re: Do I need an HDLink?
on Feb 16, 2009 at 11:53:03 am

I use a Panasonic TH-50PF9UK for client monitoring and a decent amount of grading. Just so you know, the 42PZ85U is not one of their pro plasmas. I can't tell you this for sure, but it most likely will have a less accurate white point, less consistent gamma correction, and probably won't handle 24 p/psf without a pulldown applied. The one you should be looking for is the Panasonic TH-42PF11UK. That will handle just about any framerate/signal format with additional input boards. I would recommend getting an HD-SDI board and monitoring that way. With a little effort you can calibrate it fairly well, and I think you'll get better results than the dell 2408. I'd be interested to hear how it works with HDMI from the decklink card, as the HD extreme I'm using doesn't have HDMI.


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