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Blackmagic Design *** SUPPORT HELL ***

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Martin Smith
Blackmagic Design *** SUPPORT HELL ***
on Jul 27, 2012 at 5:44:50 pm

I just got off the phone with BlackMagic Support about issues with the UltraStudio 3D and ProRes 4444 1080p footage. This doesn't not happen with other ProRes flavors. Called Support at 8:27am and talked to somebody at 9:15am. Around 48min wait time. The "support call" lasted less than 2min total with NO resolution.

We emailed multiple times in the last month about this and never got a reply. The person was extremely rude and impatient to get off the phone. This person should not be in support.

Here's the kicker..

I was told by the "support" person that they do not have equipment in their lab matching our workflow. I asked what equipment he was talking about as our workflow is very simple. (Thunderbolt laptop running CS6 > Ultrastudio 3D > HDMI out > PLASMA TV)

The person then tells me they don't have a thunderbolt equipped computer to test!

I am calling BlackMagic support, I have emailed them multiple times and they don't have a thunderbolt equipped computer to test THEIR thunderbolt equipped UltraStudio 3D???? Then he tells me they have to get a CS6 license.. I tell him that the problem occurs with all versions of CS 5 and up and all driver versions since 9.4 - at this point even though I am calm and keeping it together dealing with a total incompetent and rude jerk. (I won't mention his name out of respect...) he just wants to hang the phone and won't answer anything I ask. I tried to ask for a email reply, a support ticket number, try to tell him that I have uploaded small clips of ProRes 4444 footage for them to test on an FTP server. Nothing, the jerk just won't do anything for us.

There are a LOT of things that could have been sorted out by taking notes on our issues over the phone but nothing is being done.

Are we really waiting for them to buy a thunderbolt computer? Does this make any sense, maybe this @$$ didn't like me for some reason? In the end we are stuck with this useless burning hot aluminum I/O device that is not working.

..and yes I did install 9.6.1 released today. Nothing is working.

Sorry about the rant I am EXTREMELY pissed off. See below for the issues:


I have major issues with Ultrastudio 3D and Premiere Pro CS6. I am using a Retina Display MBP and HDMI connection to a Pioneer KURO monitor. I sent emails to support and NO one ever responded so I will ask here.

1. I get blue flashes on my timeline between clips. Example: If two clips are snapped together one after the other there is no blue flash at the "cut" point. If I move the clip on the right and create a gap between the two clips, when the play head reaches the gap a blue flash will occur and another one when the playhead start playing the next clip after the gap. If I place black footage on a track below the 2 clips with the gap and extend it so it fills up the space between the gap, there is no blue flash. I tried all versions of drivers 9.5x as well as the new 9.6. This is with 1080p PRORES 4444 footage with ANY sequence presets including Blackmagic ones.

2. The Premiere monitor is not synced with the HDMI output. There is a delay. Example: If there's a cut between 2 clips I will see the cut in the Premiere monitor first and then in my HDMI reference monitor.

3. I cannot edit 4K RED material because Premiere CS6 "transmit" function does not scale the output to 1080p. Even worse, if I want to edit widescreen 2.4:1 at 1080p and make a sequence of 1080x800 the Ultrastudio can't send the signal to my reference monitor.

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Sarah Jones
Re: Blackmagic Design *** SUPPORT HELL ***
on Jul 27, 2012 at 7:15:56 pm

Hello Martin,

As the Support Representative discussed with you on the phone this morning, at the moment we did not have CS6 installed on our Thunderbolt MacBook. We have since been able to get this loaded to test your setup. I believe there was a misunderstanding regarding the equipment available. I just want to clarify that we do have Thunderbolt machines. In this situation, the issue was a lack of software on a particular machine.

After testing with ProRes 4444 footage, I was unable to reproduce the blue flash issue you are reporting. I'm going to move things over to email so we can run through more specifics in your workflow and try to retest if needed.

Regarding the delay between your Premiere playback window and the HDMI monitor, you should expect some degree of delay, but again I'll move this over to email for more details on the delay you're seeing.

For the issue where you change the sequence to 1080x800, the UltraStudio 3D (as well as any of our capture/playback devices) does not support this resolution. It supports broadcast resolutions as listed in the device's tech specs found on our website.

I'll be emailing you shortly to discuss further specifics.

Support Representative
Blackmagic Design Inc.

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Martin Smith
Re: Blackmagic Design *** SUPPORT HELL ***
on Jul 27, 2012 at 9:08:23 pm

Thanks for following up Sarah. I got your email and will continue from there.

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tom gray
Re: Blackmagic Design *** SUPPORT HELL ***
on Jan 3, 2014 at 10:44:05 pm

i had the same issues with that jerk. told them their pocket charger was junk and charged nothing but a shallow charge and this was the reason the batt only lasted several min. the thing is i have to sell this thing because i have to spend so much money to shoot raw... new laptop yada yada and by the time i get done i should have just gone ahead and bought a red epic. yes the body costs more but the glass is going to be the same tripod same and so forth and in the end I'm only several grand off but the camera is so much more. be careful when you buy this thing because if you computer does not have the right chips in it you will have to purchase another one which happens to be my issue. if i had an epic i can use what i already have in that department. yuk were speaking raw here not PR hq

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Bo Higbee
Re: Blackmagic Design *** SUPPORT HELL ***
on Jul 29, 2012 at 7:23:10 pm

Just a thought ... I don't do Mac, but I used a Decklink SDI to an BM HDLink Pro box until the other day when I discovered a THIRD output (HDMI) jack on my GTX560 Nvidia graphics card.

I set it up to output Program output in PPRo CS6 and I'm going into a 23" Samsung 1080p monitor/TV and it works WITHOUT using Decklink HDLink Pro monitoring hardware directly from the graphics card ... you just have to set up output device in CS6.

My PC, quad core 2.4ghz oldie, but it works very well ... even with 4k test footage playing out at 1/2 res. to 1080p monitor using CUDA help.

If you have a SECOND output (VGA/DVI,etc.) on your graphics card that you're not using, you may be able to set that for monitoring ... even a DVI with a HDMI adaptor maybe ... just a thought.

Hope this gives you something you can use.

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