FORUMS: list search recent posts

Anyone else a little frustrated?

COW Forums : Blackmagic Design

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
Scott Francis
Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 13, 2011 at 12:41:34 am

First off, I love what BM says their products do, and that they are always seeming to try to resolve issues with their products.
With that said, I am amazed at how they seem to release products that only work halfway and give poor product support as well (at least via email). I had purchased the H.264 Pro encoder only to have very limited success on 3 different computers all with system requirements met. Finally after over a month I returned the item (thanks B&H) after I had not heard anything from their support. After yet another month and not even thinking about the product, I finally get an email back suggesting I update the drivers. In the meantime I have heard nothing back from another email (sent around the same time, asking why my Intensity Pro no longer captures in SD format after I had used it for countless BETA SP tapes in the past. WHAT GIVES! I am using the ATEM TVS next month for a VERY important IMAG gig and here is hoping that it doesn't randomly freak out before
Anyone else having issues like this?

Frustrated,

Scott Francis
Mind's Eye Audio/Video Productions


Return to posts index

Danny Hays
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 13, 2011 at 6:37:07 pm

If your using it on a Windows machine, can you restore it to before you installed the H.264 Pro Encoder?



Return to posts index

Scott Francis
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 13, 2011 at 7:42:41 pm

Has nothing to so with restore, it was a fresh install on a new machine. A moot point since I returned it. My real issue is that BM does not over the best support after they release products that are not really ready for prime time...

Thanks

Scott Francis
Mind's Eye Audio/Video Productions


Return to posts index


Joshua Helling
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 15, 2011 at 6:22:39 pm

Of course we understand the frustration when a product comes out and doesn't have the features you expect. That's one of the toughest things.

We are constantly making choices that basically equate to, put the product out now (example TVStudio without SD support) or hold it back for another few months. For those that needed the SD, this is less than ideal. Though for people using HD only, this actually works out better. It's a bit of give and take. Though we do our best to add those features in as soon as we possibly can.

As for the H.264 Pro Recorder, that's a very strange situation. The response time seems VERY long which should not be happening. Interestingly enough the updating drivers advise was probably good advice as there have been several stability tweaks in the Desktop Video drivers specifically for that product. Though it is clear that as you mentioned the point is rather moot.

But I apologize that you had a bad experience, we'll try to make it better next time.

Sincerely,

Joshua
Director of Support
Blackmagic Design Inc.


Return to posts index

Richard Freemantle
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 16, 2011 at 1:09:33 am

Hi Joshua,

Hopefully, things have quietened down for you guys & you or a colleague will have opportunity to respond to my queries (I assume everyone at BMD have been quite busy recently).

I also share in Scotts frustrations. After receiving no official response on this forum (which was surprising given the size of the threads) I contacted support, although they did get back to me fairly promptly they couldnt tell me anything remotely useful, as it seems communication between support and the developers is non-existent. The closest thing to progress was an apparent mentioning of my questions / ideas for solutions at an event (I think it was another product launch)

I bought the H.264 Pro recorder for its hardware encoding, naturally assuming this would equate to low cpu overhead.
But to my horror, to actually record with it uses ~80-90% of my quad core CPU just to view the video stream (VLC uses ~30%).

So for my purposes I get better performance using FREE screen recording software!!!

The solutions I have already suggested are as follows;

Media Express - Possible alternate preview modes (in order of increasing cpu usage)

1: Off = Dont decode the stream at all
2: Minimum = Just check stream integrity ie. gop/frame headers ok (pos unrequired)
2: Reduced = Only decode I-Frames in low priority background thread (allowing skipping frames if neccessary)
3: Full

The thinking being that if CPU use is an issue, a user could start at full (or reduced) preview mode & then drop to a lower level once they are sure everything is connected ok etc...

If not the above, could we not at least have a [REC]/[STOP] style super basic interface with no preview!
nb. the streaming overhead of the encoded stream is only ~4%

And why is there a Win 64-bit requirement when the software /drivers are 32-bit? I can only assume this relates to cpu usage issue!
I only ask because I know it can work in 32-bit (earlier builds did) & its annoying having to dual doot.

Please respond


Return to posts index

Joshua Helling
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 18, 2011 at 5:38:25 pm

So the encode itself is done on the hardware and does not require much overhead at all. But as you've mentioned the preview is generated in software is quite intensive.

I think we'd like to optimize this in the future, but I don't know if there is any specific plan for it. I'd personally like to see the file decoded on the GPU which would reduce overhead greatly as the GPU's do this very elegantly already. But doing this for all types of graphics boards on Mac and Windows is not necessarily a small task. But still it's something I'd like to see done.

If I'm not mistaken the driver itself is actually a 64 bit driver. I thought the software was 64bit as well but it is curiously in the 32 bit folder. So I'll try to verify that if I can.

As far as using it on 32bit, we haven't done anything to make it NOT work. However it is not a platform that we test. Currently all of our testing is done on 64 bit platform. It is quickly growing as the dominant Windows OS and it helps to streamline our testing (we have a lot of products).

Many of us at Blackmagic try to respond to as many threads as possible but we simply can't get to all of them. But we do our best.

Sincerely,

Joshua
Director of Support
Blackmagic Design Inc.


Return to posts index


Jack Welten
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 20, 2011 at 2:38:59 pm

Hello Joshua,

so you are telling us, we all bought a fuel efficienct car with a big hole in the fueltank! Don't forget Black Magic Design is also the supplier of the big hole!

I could better bought a state of the art laptop and a cheap intensity shuttle i think,

I am still not able to capture in 1050@50p due to the high CPU load I get glitches, so I have to reduce quality,

Please do what Richard askes for and make the preview switchable, now the complete computer gets unusable/unreliable by the 100% CPU-use,

regards Jack Welten


Return to posts index

Richard Freemantle
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 21, 2011 at 11:22:39 pm

Hi Joshua,

Thanks for taking the time to respond.

And thanks for the information regarding what you would like to see & naturally we would like to see these things too. However, as a customer I would really like to know what we will see & when? (ie. concrete information!), as I must make financial decisions based upon it!

Who actually has the plans? (/are there any?)

I whole-heartedly agree with Jack & a media Express light version is a requirement!

To this end, could I suggest an interface as Jack has described in his previous (linked to) post & to minimise your development time; The simplest preview solution would be to pipe the h264 stream across the internal network via UDP, so that we could use the very efficient VCL player to preview it (if required). Hence this light version would require no preview at all!

As a software developer, the solutions I have presented are the simplest (ie. quickest to implement) I could think of. Please..., please! talk to the developers, or get them to talk to us directly so we can discuss & explore this!

Without any real communication, we are left asking questions such as: Am I wasting my time with BMD Products?...Is it worth the risk?... Should I return it?...

Please note, I originally raised this issue over 4 months ago! (see http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/124/877024 & again 3 weeks later http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/124/877307). I believe I & others have been extremely patient regarding what I feel is an easily fixable yet critical flaw in the product we have purchased.

Very much, looking forward to hearing from you

Thanks,

Richard Freemantle

[NOTE: This is a repost as I originally, accidentally replied to the wrong post, sorry. I wanted to ensure that you got it]


Return to posts index

Jack Welten
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 20, 2011 at 5:50:18 pm

Look my response 3 months ago, http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/124/877308

almost the same, please Johua create a media express light version

regards Jack Welten


Return to posts index


Richard Freemantle
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 20, 2011 at 6:20:09 pm

Hi Joshua,

Thanks for taking the time to respond.

And thanks for the information regarding what you would like to see & naturally we would like to see these things too. However, as a customer I would really like to know what we will see & when? (ie. concrete information!), as I must make financial decisions based upon it!

Who actually has the plans? (/are there any?)

I whole-heartedly agree with Jack & a media Express light version is a requirement!

To this end, could I suggest an interface as Jack has described in his previous (linked to) post & to minimise your development time; The simplest preview solution would be to pipe the h264 stream across the internal network via UDP, so that we could use the very efficient VCL player to preview it (if required). Hence this light version would require no preview at all!

As a software developer, the solutions I have presented are the simplest (ie. quickest to implement) I could think of. Please..., please! talk to the developers, or get them to talk to us directly so we can discuss & explore this!

Without any real communication, we are left asking questions such as: Am I wasting my time with BMD Products?...Is it worth the risk?... Should I return it?...

Please note, I originally raised this issue over 4 months ago! (see http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/124/877024 & again 3 weeks later http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/124/877307). I believe I & others have been extremely patient regarding what I feel is an easily fixable yet critical flaw in the product we have purchased.

Very much, looking forward to hearing from you

Thanks,

Richard Freemantle


Return to posts index

Joshua Helling
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 22, 2011 at 1:58:21 am

Err...um. Perhaps there is confusion. I don't write software? I just help narrow down what's wrong. Development is done by a completely different team.

This is something we'd like to see improved, but there is no timeline for such a thing.

Sincerely,

Joshua
Director of Support
Blackmagic Design Inc.


Return to posts index

Scott Francis
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 22, 2011 at 2:16:51 am

Can you relay this to THAT team? This is exactly what we are talking about! "Umm, err uh....that's not my department"...."we would like to see that too"....there are no answers and the whole reason this product would be awesome to to offload the encoding from the CPU.....but a piece of hardware that can be more CPU intensive that if we used the computer's CPU to encode with from the start! Sorry, just frustration talking but seriously....see where we are coming from. For another instance, the ATEM TVS, now when I am watching TV, I hear audio EVERY TIME, but for the ATEM TVS there is no audio unless you bring it in after the fact in a less than common audio format. Wouldn't it be better to call it an ATEM Video Only switcher? Every other switcher I am aware of has audio as well....so we get duped, just a little bit...gotta buy something else for it to get something basic like audio...Feels just a little misleading to the customer....like saying, Hey this car is the quietest in its class, but then you have to pay extra for an exhaust....Many of us business owners are looking at costs all the time, and not knowing what really will work, having to plan testing time, finding out there are way more additional adapters, processors, outboard gear than expected or waiting for updates can kill our bottom line! Not to mention productivity, cost us money (often from JOBS lost because something doesn't work as advertised or we loose future gigs) and just be plain annoying. I think I can speak for most of us here in saying we LOVE what BM products are SUPPOSED to do, just getting them there is often a real pain and verging on making us look at products from other companies....If we are gonna be Beta testers....at least give us a price break and make us aware of the fact....thanks for listening to us at least...
Regards

Scott Francis
Mind's Eye Audio/Video Productions


Return to posts index


Gunter Puszkar
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 22, 2011 at 10:33:18 am

Hi
I would like to extend this to: the blast of products are lacking quality control in hardware and software and support.

Just some samples from the BMD tools we use:

1: 72x144 Broadcast Video Hub with SmartControl Panels: You can not use the panel for switching a group of signals more than 2. You can not return routing states from RS 422 Remote Levels only, the buttons don't light after switching. We supplied this bug 2 years ago. Nothing was improved since that.

2: HyperDeck Shuttle and Studio: They dont record RP188 embedded timecode information in the files as advertised. Bad for multicamera shoots you will need it...
If you playback a Clip in the Loopmode, the Loop jumps and freezes for 3 frames at the beginning. Reported as bug, but nothing changed so far.
On the Studio, you cannot playback seamlessly from SSD1 to SSD2, as its advertised. But you can record from SSD1 to SSD2. Logical? I Reported the bug, but no success.....
I don't need DNxHD Codec that much...

3: SmartView Duo: after 1 Week of usage the right screen is gone. Return to Sender...
Furthermore, there is no signal indication on screen that shows an overlay for audio signal presence or even the system format.
- The crafted frontpanel covers some pixels, so for underscan you need the flex...

4: Ultrascope: Its not showing 3G 444 or 3G 1080 50p/60p signals... Its on the feature list on the package. one year ago we supplied the issue.. No response at all...

5: Decklink SDI, Extreme,: They are great products no complaints here.

6: ATEM Switcher: Reading in the manual shows how limited this device is: MediaPlayer 180 frames for HD Video Content shared for A and B Channel is laughable these days ...

7: H264 Recorder: Totally bad on Mac Platform, works OK on windows 7. The quality of the USB 3 driver integration seems to be the limiting factor, as we tested on different SandyBridge Motherboards. The Mac Pros are dropping frames in the higher rates. The i7 Macbook Pro with SSD do not....

8: Support: Its better to keep an open community to see other users needs. This let me guess how much demand and different views are existing... OK, thanks to the CreativeCow here...

But I still buy their products, because than you know, why you buy reliant gear from ... And by the way BMD buzzed out to our clients "everything is cheap!" YES of course.... This helps me marketing.

Cheers.
Gunter.

Gunter Puszkar
Head of Postproduction

PostFactory GmbH
Leuschnerdamm 13
D-10999 Berlin, Germany


Return to posts index

Joshua Helling
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 29, 2011 at 6:21:32 pm

Gunter,

I'd just like to respond to this to provide perspective here.

1: 72x144 Broadcast Video Hub with SmartControl Panels: You can not use the panel for switching a group of signals more than 2. You can not return routing states from RS 422 Remote Levels only, the buttons don't light after switching. We supplied this bug 2 years ago. Nothing was improved since that.

Not being able to route more than two is not a bug. Being able to link 2 is for dual link formats that require two routes be switched at the same time. As for gangs and salvos, these are something we very much want to add, but haven't done so yet. But we do want to do it.

I happen to use a Broadcast Videohub and SEVERAL smart controls at every tradeshow I go to and I have no problems with lights not changing. So if you think there is a bug here, please contact your local office and tell them how to recreate your situation so it can get logged as a bug. I'm not quite sure what you mean by return routing states from RS422? Are you using Telnet to check this?


2: HyperDeck Shuttle and Studio: They dont record RP188 embedded timecode information in the files as advertised. Bad for multicamera shoots you will need it...
If you playback a Clip in the Loopmode, the Loop jumps and freezes for 3 frames at the beginning. Reported as bug, but nothing changed so far.
On the Studio, you cannot playback seamlessly from SSD1 to SSD2, as its advertised. But you can record from SSD1 to SSD2. Logical? I Reported the bug, but no success.....
I don't need DNxHD Codec that much...

True...neither record RP188 currently. Though both are supposed to be getting this in an upcoming firmware update. Also true about the loop not being truly seamless. Right now, that's not a bug, but a feature we'd like to improve. Also true about playing back between SSDs on the Studio. This is because they are technically just two files with no relative link. We also can't guarantee that the drive will be there as it might be removed for a seamless record. Also, not a bug but as designed. I'm sorry you don't need DNxHD, but many people will need and appreciate the feature.

So, some of these are not bugs at all, they just don't work the way you want them to. Which is fair enough, but not fixing a bug, and not adding features are two different things.


3: SmartView Duo: after 1 Week of usage the right screen is gone. Return to Sender...
Furthermore, there is no signal indication on screen that shows an overlay for audio signal presence or even the system format.
- The crafted frontpanel covers some pixels, so for underscan you need the flex...

Sounds like you had a bad LCD. This has so far been rare. I've not had a completely bad one in my region. Of course that sucks, and I hope you got it replaced really quickly. Correct, no overlay of any type on those units by design.

4: Ultrascope: Its not showing 3G 444 or 3G 1080 50p/60p signals... Its on the feature list on the package. one year ago we supplied the issue.. No response at all...

1080p50/60 work, just not in RGB. It will sample every other frame in the high P formats. It will not do 444 at all, there is not enough bandwidth in a 1x lane PCI-express card to fit it.

5: Decklink SDI, Extreme,: They are great products no complaints here.

6: ATEM Switcher: Reading in the manual shows how limited this device is: MediaPlayer 180 frames for HD Video Content shared for A and B Channel is laughable these days ...

So this product doesn't fit for you. I'm sure there is one that will fit your needs exactly. But this one just isn't it. But not a bug there?

7: H264 Recorder: Totally bad on Mac Platform, works OK on windows 7. The quality of the USB 3 driver integration seems to be the limiting factor, as we tested on different SandyBridge Motherboards. The Mac Pros are dropping frames in the higher rates. The i7 Macbook Pro with SSD do not....

There's no USB3 driver, so I assume you meant USB2. I have a feeling that some of these issues are related to the software decode of the incoming signal (which goes back to the heart of this thread). Offloading the decoding will probably help, or even shutting off decode. We've passed this suggestion on.

8: Support: Its better to keep an open community to see other users needs. This let me guess how much demand and different views are existing... OK, thanks to the CreativeCow here...

Of course, and that's why I try to post. And we may not always agree. We always want to hear your opinions. Even if we don't always respond. If it turns out we don't add a feature you want, does not turn it into a bug.

Sincerely,

Joshua
Director of Support
Blackmagic Design Inc.


Return to posts index

Gunter Puszkar
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 29, 2011 at 7:13:17 pm

Hi Joshua,

many thanks for your indepth explaints. As you can see, we still buy your products and we like your rapid developments in so many areas.

I'm still confused about the small pass of defining "bug" and "feature".

1. Still use on the smartcontrol panel one source button and one destination button to apply only a remote level route change. Switch it. Switch it on a different videohub control panel and change the remote only route away from the previous source to some different... This is not reporting back at the first panel...

2. I would suggest to implement the timecode world (laughing) back into the files. So it can order the clips straight to advancing timecode. Or give the user the choice... like a cliplist...
Another question there: how many times can I remove the SSDs to swap the drives for activation? It feels not too strong to do it so many times. I think a "DISK" button could be useful.. maybe on the dead "DISP" button? A could relabel it by myself. Is there any SDK available? ;-)

3. My reseller sent it back to the distributor for change... Will have it back soon... Wait for it. The front cover is definitly laying over active pixel area? Is this by design?

4. Wondering... Our Snell Archangel PhC works in 3G mode with our DVS Clipster in 3G over the Blackmagic Broadcast Videohub Router. But the Ultrascope is not showing the signal... But your Smartview Duo was showing the signal there... The signal is only 1080 422 50p
Strange, we check this more out...

7. Its weird because we use the H264 Recorder on a SandyBridge Z68 Chipset. There is no native USB 2.0 anymore. Just 3.0 There we had some 2 ports, which are working good, and others not...
But we got it working steady so far. Still with older i7 MacBookpro (2010) we had the issues with higher frames were dropping.

8. Thanks again for your heads up.

Cheers.
Gunter.

Gunter Puszkar
Head of Postproduction
PostFactory GmbH
Berlin, Germany


Return to posts index


Jack Welten
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 26, 2011 at 1:17:20 pm

I see this as a third vote for media express light?

please Johua pass this info to Kristian Lam, or someone else of de development team,

with kind regards

Jack


Return to posts index

Joshua Helling
Re: Anyone else a little frustrated?
on Nov 29, 2011 at 6:02:15 pm

I can assure you this has been passed on.

Sincerely,

Joshua
Director of Support
Blackmagic Design Inc.


Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]