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Blackmagic Intensity Extreme or Matrox MXO2 mini?

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Christopher Kechichian
Blackmagic Intensity Extreme or Matrox MXO2 mini?
on Dec 27, 2011 at 4:51:26 pm

Hey guys,
First of all I already read the 2 posts concerning this subject but didn't get exactly what i was looking for.
Does Matrox MXO2 mini work with Davinci Resolve? Second is the calibration utility included with the hardware good enough to rely on? I don't need all the extra features included with mxo2 mini (the 7.1 audio and others) I just want better quality footage (i capture using sony Z7 or Z5) and faster editing with my softwares. And I believe that the intensity extreme give these results.
Any advice would be helpful.
Thanks in advance.

Christopher


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Bret Williams
Re: Blackmagic Intensity Extreme or Matrox MXO2 mini?
on Dec 27, 2011 at 9:23:26 pm

Well first, the Matrox exists, and the Extreme doesn't yet. Supposed to ship in December. Who knows?

I believe the Matrox is 10bit HDMI out while the BlackMagic is 8 bit. Could be wrong but it's a major difference. I don't think the blackmagic has any sort of calibration utility either. The Matrox comes with the utility as part of it's control panel. The Matrox also does real time output to both SD and HD, even while cross converting 720p to 1080p. From what I read on Blackmagic, if you're editing HD and outputting to a SD monitor, it's a software only downconversion, so good for preview but not for final output. The Matrox does a hardware downconversion that's as good as anything out there. Same with ingest up conversion. It really is a product up there with AJA and the higher end matrox devices. The only difference is the in and out limitations of analog or HDMI (no sdi) and only stereo in/out phono connections instead of XLR. But for many working digitally and going to DVD or File for final, this hasn't been an issue. Those needing SDI in/out of tape formats would need a step up on either.

FYI - I have an extreme on backorder for my thunderbolt iMac that I'm going to make into a Premiere or Avid system. Have the pegasus 8 tb raid and I'm just waiting for the BlackMagic extreme to give it a go. So even though I'm very impressed with the mini, it crashes premiere like crazy, and to use it on the iMac will cost $200 for adapter, so I figured I'd get the extreme and have a MacPro FCP system, and and iMac Premeire system. Hopefully 8 bit will be ok, but I will miss the output to SD and HD at the same time. Looks like BlackMagic comes with some great software as well. The Matrox comes with some very basic playback and ingest software.

With Matrox, I use a keyspan serial adapter to have RS-422 control of decks via USB when I need to grab betacam or other tape format via component and all is well.


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Christopher Kechichian
Re: Blackmagic Intensity Extreme or Matrox MXO2 mini?
on Dec 28, 2011 at 8:45:32 am

Hey Bret thanks a lot for the valuable information so i think that the matrox mxo2 mini is a better solution for me than the intensity extreme, but do you know if it is compatible with the Davinci Resolve 8 ? You also mentioned something about matrox crashing with premiere pro, did you try it with final cut pro x as well because I use both premiere pro and final cut pro for editing, but if it crashes the software all the time then i'll have to go back to the intensity extreme.
Thanks


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Dennis Kutchera
Re: Blackmagic Intensity Extreme or Matrox MXO2 mini?
on Dec 28, 2011 at 11:42:36 pm

Only BMD i/o devices are going to work with Resolve. I suggest you download the configuration guide from the BMD website to make sure you build a system that works.

Regarding the Matrox MXO2 Mini. I have one. It does not work with Resolve, In fact, It will not work with more than one chosen application at a time because suddenly, Matrox has started writing separate drivers for Avid, Adobe, etc for OS X Lion. It has not always been this way. In Snow Leopard, I could run FCP, Adobe and Avid from the same driver. Now, for me to move to Media Composer 6, I have to either make my Mac dual boot or find another hardware i/o solution now that Avid supports all kinds of third party hardware.

If you are really smitten with Matrox MXO2 mini, I will gladly sell you mine. I need to have I/o for multiple apps at the same time. The calibration utility is quite comprehensive, although I don't use it. I have a monitor I can properly calibrate without it.

Dennis


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Bret Williams
Re: Blackmagic Intensity Extreme or Matrox MXO2 mini?
on Dec 29, 2011 at 4:35:22 am

The mini has two drivers basically. One that handles FCP, Premiere, AE, Photoshop, Encore, and everything Adobe and pretty much everything else. And another driver that handles Media Composer 6 only as I understand. But most assume that was sort of a temporary release to get something out there for MC6 as quick as possible and that future drivers will handle the apps all at once again.

Matrox does not work with FCP X. I'm kinda annoyed that they lead people on to believe they do. There are no 3rd party hardware options with FCP X. All Matrox can do is take your final proves output and open it in the matrox player and play it out to hdmi. Nothing new there. It can't monitor your editing in fcp x.


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Dennis Kutchera
Re: Blackmagic Intensity Extreme or Matrox MXO2 mini?
on Dec 31, 2011 at 3:39:23 pm

Don't count on it being temporary or short term.In Matrox's own support forums, they stated that they have no plans to support multiple applications with one driver. I could not find that comment today (perhaps it was removed?), but now they state this:

We are looking into supporting a multiple workflow in the future, and will post back our updates as soon as we can.

I will tell you from years of experience dealing with Matrox, all the way back to 1993 with the Matrox Studio and since 2007 with the Matrox MXO, then since 2010 with the Matrox MXO2 mini, that future to Matrox means 6 months to one year to never. I would not have bought the mini except that it was the only 3rd party hardware Avid supported with MC 5. And it worked great up to MC 5.5 with one driver and other apps in Snow Leopard. Now, their Avid driver only works with Lion and the only driver that works with Lion is the one for Avid. So I have to make dual boot with two OS and two drivers to continue to work as I have been or forget MC 6 or switch to another hardware base. I am thinking the hardware change is the way I am going to go. Matrox makes a really good product; really good, but their driver support is the absolute worst I have personally encountered.

Dennis


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Bret Williams
Re: Blackmagic Intensity Extreme or Matrox MXO2 mini?
on Dec 31, 2011 at 8:57:14 pm

[Dennis Kutchera] "the only driver that works with Lion is the one for Avid"

I edit every day with the most current Matrox mxo2 mini driver (sans the single App Avid driver) on an ancient mac pro 1,1.

So right now I'm using the second most current driver and monitoring PS, AE, and FCP all at the same time. Every once in awhile the Matrox gets confused if I switch back and forth between AE and FCP and the best thing is a reboot. It seems I've had that little hiccup with drivers in the past.


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Christopher Kechichian
Re: Blackmagic Intensity Extreme or Matrox MXO2 mini?
on Dec 29, 2011 at 8:07:55 am

Thank you Dennis and Brett for making things much clearer! If matrox MXO2 mini doesn't support Davinci Resolve, and is not compatible with final cut pro X,and doesn't work with more than one application at a time then it's useless for me. And thanks for your offer Dennis.
Just one more last question, does the intensity extreme work with final cut pro X or not?
Regards


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Bret Williams
Re: Blackmagic Intensity Extreme or Matrox MXO2 mini?
on Dec 31, 2011 at 8:56:33 pm

NOTHING works for FCP X. There is no external monitoring for FCP X. Clear that one up? Matrox wants you to output a QT and play it back in their terrible playback app. AJA has some sort of screen shot deal for the interim. I don't think BlackMagic pretends to have something and I commend them for that. There is no external monitoring of FCP X unless you hook up your computer to a TV. Which of course isn't real video monitoring.


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