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Chances for a Thunderbolt version of Pocket UltraScope?

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Hampus Lager
Chances for a Thunderbolt version of Pocket UltraScope?
on Feb 18, 2012 at 7:17:36 pm

What the title says. I just think it weird that there's a USB3 version when almost every Davinci Resolve is Mac based. And people working on Macs in this business usually have Macs all the way, not Windows PCs. It would be very easy to use a MBP instead of buying another computer that I wouldn't use for anything else.


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Bob Zelin
Re: Chances for a Thunderbolt version of Pocket UltraScope?
on Feb 18, 2012 at 7:44:57 pm

If you are building a Davinci Resolve system, then you are not running on your laptop. You are in a studio. Which means that you have plenty of room for the regular Blackmagic Ultrascope - which does not require USB3, and runs on a PC or MAC.

Bob Zelin



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Mike Squires
Re: Chances for a Thunderbolt version of Pocket UltraScope?
on Feb 18, 2012 at 8:36:43 pm

imo, it's a money thing. Most production houses have plenty of PC's, even if editing is done on a Mac. So for BMD, the initial release is a simple one, go with USB 3.0. The cost of buying a PC that can handle the requirements for the Pocket Ultrascope is about 1/3 the price of a Mac.

Thunderbolt I believe is a proprietary technology owned by Apple, which has to be licensed (imagine that), so paying for the license isn't priority number one for BMD.

As I said, this is only my opinion, so someone feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

I'm sure some (or even most) won't like to hear this, but the days of even editing on a Mac in the professional market are coming to an end. You can get better performance out of a PC for half the price. I personally gave up on Mac (and FCP) last summer, and couldn't be happier.


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Bob Zelin
Re: Chances for a Thunderbolt version of Pocket UltraScope?
on Feb 18, 2012 at 10:18:02 pm

The Ultrascope is about $60 more than the Pocket Ultrascope at B&H.
And you can get a "qualified" graphics card for the Ultrascope for about $100. (The pocket ultrascope requires a specific graphics card too).

So we are talking about $160 to take an existing PC and turn it into an Ultrascope. IS THAT TOO MUCH MONEY ? So let me get this straight - you are doing color grading - and you own Davinci Resolve (ok, the free version) - or Apple Color - and you want a scope because you ahve to meet Broadcast requirements - and you can't take an existing PC from your company, and buy a $100 graphics card, and a $660 Ultrascope PCI card, and save FOUR TO EIGHT THOUSAND DOLLARS for an equivalent scope ? Is that what you are saying ?

And exactly how much to you charge your client for your conform and grading for broadcast delivery ? As I work for a lot of non profit, charity, and churches, let me make this perfectly clear - NON PROFITS, CHARITIES AND CHURCHES SPEND MONEY. So I don't want to hear that you can't afford an Ultrascope if you are in fact doing broadcast delivery to a network.

The ONLY person that has this excuse is a student, who has no money, and is learning about this stuff.

Use your PC (I assume it's not running Windows NT).

Bob Zelin



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Mike Squires
Re: Chances for a Thunderbolt version of Pocket UltraScope?
on Feb 18, 2012 at 10:33:57 pm

I agree with Bob. Though, $4k-$8k in savings in a little low. A good broadcast quality HD scope is around $20k. ;)

I understand one wanting Thunderbolt support for such a product, but it doesn't make any financial sense for BMD. And remember, don't blame BMD for Apple not adopting USB 3.0.

And I'm sorry if it sounds like I'm bashing Apple, that is not my intent, and I hope this doesn't turn into a PC vs Mac thread.


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Hampus Lager
Re: Chances for a Thunderbolt version of Pocket UltraScope?
on Feb 19, 2012 at 1:23:23 am

I would use an existing PC if I had one xD I'm not really building a system since I'm a teacher in high school and we don't deliver for broadcast... yet.

We're looking into BlackMagic a lot. We already got Resolve Lite, Decklink cards, an ATEM switcher and we're waiting on an Intensity Extreme (sending pre edited videos to the ATEM from a MBP) and a couple of Smartview HDs so that the guys doing live music mixing of concerts in the studio can see what's going on and the guy operating the lights on the stage can see if some lights are too bright (But I'm also planning on using them for CC/grading instead of the Panny plasma we got now). Also thinking about using a HDLink to "grade in real time" with a custom LUT, putting it between the switcher output and the input of the decklink card.

But mostly I'm a tech geek that really hope to be a professional colourist. Very tight budget, all the stuff we got now the first year (and not that many students yet) is not cheap. It's gonna take a couple of years to be on the right side of the money line :P


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Richard Crowley
Re: Chances for a Thunderbolt version of Pocket UltraScope?
on Feb 19, 2012 at 7:37:18 am

You could probably get the parents of one of your students to donate an PC when they upgrade.

Following their usual pattern, Apple did NOT develop and does not own Thunderbolt (or USB or Firewire, or GUI, or mouse or tablets or voice response, either). They simply have better PR and are faster to market in their closed little world. Don't believe all the hype you hear. Particularly if it is coming from Cupertino.

You will see Thunderbolt interfaces appearing in PCs as new motherboards are brought to market. BMD (and most other vendors) know that there is an order of magnitude more Windows customers out there than Mac.


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Mike Squires
Re: Chances for a Thunderbolt version of Pocket UltraScope?
on Feb 20, 2012 at 1:13:37 am

Richard, thanks for the update. I assumed (and we all know what that means) that Thunderbolt was an Apple technology, though it's actually an Intel technology.

I stand corrected.


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Patrick Sproule
Re: Chances for a Thunderbolt version of Pocket UltraScope?
on Feb 21, 2012 at 10:21:31 am

Is the MBP a 17 inch version? Get a USB 3 to Express card adaptor.


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Hampus Lager
Re: Chances for a Thunderbolt version of Pocket UltraScope?
on Feb 21, 2012 at 1:54:46 pm

Unfortunately, no. Only the 15-inch. Anyone knows a USB3 to Thunderbolt converter? Using windows in Boot camp?


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Zeb Chadfield
Re: Chances for a Thunderbolt version of Pocket UltraScope?
on Jun 14, 2012 at 8:03:12 pm

Now that we have MacBooks with USB3 hopefully we will be seeing Pocket Ultrascope support soon.


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