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Ultrascope System Requirements

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Alex Geis
Ultrascope System Requirements
on Mar 2, 2010 at 5:54:31 am

This looks like the place for CPU spec questions for the Ultrascope, since I haven't been able to get too much detail for Blackmagic directly. Simple question for you guys:

After shopping around and looking at the prospect of building a case, etc... I found the Z400 has liquid cooling (as the most important thing here is that the machine is as quiet as can be under the desk), so I'm fairly sold on that model. Issue is: Some of the specs on the customize page don't line up with the ultrascope req's. So:

- What Xeon speed should I get, since it only has mentioned what core2/ix speeds are recommended
- What's the minimum graphics card I should pop into this beast... also, which would probably be the quietest - ie, no ridiculous fan
- Config mentions it uses a x58 express, although the ultrascope page says to stay away from x58?

Thanks guys,
-Alex


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Bob Zelin
Re: Ultrascope System Requirements
on Mar 3, 2010 at 1:17:59 am

Alex -
you should really go to -
http://www.blackmagic-design.com/support/detail.asp?techID=195

Get the cheapest Z400 you can find on the web, with the minimum specs. Do not order a Z400 with a graphics card.
Get this graphics card -
•ATI Radeon HD 4670
which is copied from this support page at Blackmagic - it's under $100 and it works great, and you don't need special power adaptors.

If you want a monitor that displays all 6 views at once, the minimum resolution is 1920x1080. If you only care about 2 views (like waveform and vectorscope) you can get any modern LCD screen which will show a "2 up" display.

IT's all on the Blackmagic site - why do you need to talk to anyone ?

Bob Zelin




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Alex Geis
Re: Ultrascope System Requirements
on Mar 3, 2010 at 1:36:21 am

Hey Bob,

No joke: I called up Blackmagic, asked them about that page, and the person literally told me "Since we've verified the Z400, any configuration right off of HP's page will work as is." Basically didn't say anything about needing to replace the graphics card with one of the ones on the list, so that threw me for a loop and wanted to double check if there was anything else to it. I basically only run MacPros and xServes, so I've never had the need to custom config a machine except memory, fibre channel cards, external storage and the occasional Digidesign board.

Besides the CPU itself, I've got 3 apple LED's on my own work desk with DVI to MiniDP converters and DVI KVM's, so should be a breeze to hook up!

Thanks for the clarity!
-Alex


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Margus Voll
Re: Ultrascope System Requirements
on Mar 3, 2010 at 6:38:28 am

HI.

Bob, it is like a social thing :)

Gurus like yourself giving out tips etc.
It makes people feel better.

Secondly it is just plain boring to go to the data directly, no talking no nothing.



--

Margus

http://iconstudios.eu


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Bob Zelin
Re: Ultrascope System Requirements
on Mar 4, 2010 at 9:51:01 pm

OK, from now on, I want a massage for every piece of accurate advice that I give out. No more freebies.

Or maybe you will let me massage your two beautiful dogs.

Bob Zelin




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Margus Voll
Re: Ultrascope System Requirements
on Mar 5, 2010 at 5:33:07 am

Hi.

;)

I got good laugh for the first thing in this morning.

Really good one :)



--

Margus

http://iconstudios.eu


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cowcowcowcowcow
Piers McDonald
Re: Ultrascope System Requirements
on Mar 16, 2010 at 8:14:45 am

I had a bit of fun setting up our Ultrascope box.

It's unfortunate the Blackmagic specs aren't particularly helpful and mostly refer to obsolete equipment, although I found it to be much more tolerant than is suggested. What I gathered from my experiments are:

1/ CPU, Important, but not as important as GPU, anything Core2Duo, i5 or dual core i7 over 2.8Ghz should suffice. Quad core i7's may not work. I found increasing cpu speed does not necessarily increase the Ultrascope performance. Although BM do not specify that Xeons work, they probably do.
2/ RAM, only got 2GB in the system I built and it barely uses half of it, don't think 4GB would really make any difference.
3/ Motherboard, most likely just about all motherboards will work, I'm yet to hear of a single case of a misfunctioning Ultrascope that was due to the motherboard, except for X58 based boards, which BM states are not compatible. I would recommend any mid to high end board from a reputable manufacturer that's not X58 based.
4/ GPU, Very important, I found the GPU was the most important factor in influencing performance. I tested a 4670/512MB, a 4670/1GB, a 4850/512 and a 4870/512. There was definite lag when using the 4670s, probably up to 5 frames, and would drop frames frequently, was rather annoying to use. Also no perceptible difference difference between the 1GB and the 512MB card.
The 4850 was substantially nicer to use than the 4670 and the 4870 even better still. There is probably only a 1 frame delay with the 4870 and rarely drops frames. Haven't tested any of the 5000 series cards yet.

Hope someone finds this helpful.

If anyone is curious we settled on a Shuttle SXP48P2 with a 3.0Ghz Core2Duo/1GB RAM/ATI 4850/512MB (couldn't fit a 4870 in the case), it's small, light, quiet, portable and the case isn't too ugly. But for the next setup I'm making a rack mount, the shuttle internals were a little too restrictive for GPU choices, and I want it to be as realtime as possible.


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Margus Voll
Re: Ultrascope System Requirements
on Mar 16, 2010 at 4:10:09 pm

Hi.

Let us know how it goes on rack unit also.



--

Margus

http://iconstudios.eu


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Awan Setiawan
Re: Ultrascope System Requirements
on May 22, 2010 at 12:11:20 pm

Hi Piers,

You are using HD4850 and yet it is not in BM supported list, is it work really well? how is the lag, much better than HD4670?

Does anyone know whether intel G41 or G31 express chipset motherboard will work for BMU?

Thanks,
Awan

awan


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