So, while doing some video game footage capture, I'm realizing that there isn't any 480P option on the BMD card. Why is this? Is this something that could be upgraded with software?
I still have devices, such as the Wii that need 480P for the highest supported quality output. I was hoping to avoid the need for any kind of conversion from any TV signals.
Sorry we haven't chatted sooner over e-mail, man. Things have been a little busy.
In answer to your question, no... There are currently no capture cards (AJA, Blackmagic, or otherwise) that offer native 480p input and capture. And there are also no upgrades (official or user-created) that I know of that offer this option.
480p is really odd "consumer" format, originally created for "Enhanced Definition Televisions"... "EDTV's" were basically a cheap way for people to buy better-looking TV's, without dropping the cash for a high-def set. It was a stupid idea, really. Now, Nintendo didn't want to bother with making the Wii a high-def system in an effort to keep the cost of making the machine down, so they went with 480p.
The solution, like you said, is to go with a converter. I mentioned in my previous post that got us chatting that I'm using the Gefen Home Theater Scaler to up/down-convert the signals from my game systems. In the case of the Wii, I have the 480p output of the Wii connected via component cables to the Home Theater Scaler, which is feeding into my Blackmagic Multibridge Pro via HDMI. While I'm with you... I'd rather capture the native 480p output of the Wii without futzing with the signal... It's just not possible.
Still, the nice thing is that I'm cutting everything in 720p, so the Home Theater Scaler does the upconversion for me. (And it does a pretty good job at it, too.) Also, while I'm still converting the signal, I know that I'm outputting the best quality possible from the Wii... It still looks better than capturing the Wii's basic 480i signal. Also, you don't have to use the Gefen products, but I figure they might be useful for you, since the Home Theater Scaler will accept a 480p signal and upconvert it to whatever you want. (The Home Theater Scaler will also output at 480p, but since the Blackmagic doesn't recognize that format, that ability is kind of useless to me.)
Anyway, sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but I hope that helps answer your question. (Not the answer you wanted to hear, I know.) Hope you're doing well, and take care!