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Multi channel video playback synchronisation

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Anita Delaney
Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on May 27, 2010 at 10:39:43 am

Hi there,

I am looking for solutions on what is the best way to synchronise 2 different video files on 2 separate projectors. They need to be sychronised to the frame (PAL, 25fps).
I have been looking at Dave Jones DVD synch systems but am wondering if synch is possible using HDD media players?

Any advice welcome.

Many thanks,
A


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Mark Beazley
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on May 27, 2010 at 2:24:48 pm

DT Labs Playback Pro. Mac OS based. You can run files from multiple computers synced up.

-mark



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Thomas Leong
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on May 28, 2010 at 7:01:35 am

If you are PC-based, look at AvStumpfl's Wings Platinum.

You will need the Pro version as a minimum (look up the Versions Table in its Help files for features of various versions; free download and install).

The Pro and the Multi-displays versions are both capable of outputting dual frame-synced video streams from a 3rd party's graphics card dual outputs. But you would loose the control screen in the process unless you add a 3rd monitor via a USB2VGA solution or Soundgraph's FingerVU? (I haven't tried).

Cheaper might be hardware-based Rokulabs' Brightsign players.



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Anita Delaney
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on May 28, 2010 at 8:54:07 am

Thanks for the response- sounds more complicated than I had envisioned but I'll look in to it!

Anita


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Thomas Leong
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on May 28, 2010 at 4:18:40 pm

Frame-syncing 2 or more video sources has never been easy, or cheap even in the old days of tape.

Nowadays, you can try starting the same video on two media players or PCs but it is more miss than hit. Try with the freeware Input Director (http://www.inputdirector.com), create a macro key that will start playing the video on 2 networked computers, and visually check the sync on 2 monitors. Chances are it won't be frame-synced. Therefore the need for specialized software.



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Walter Soyka
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on May 28, 2010 at 2:39:26 pm

There was a pretty good thread on synched HD playback last year, and the poster had a successful installation with the Brightsign/Roku players:

http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/158/855777

The DJD sync systems are very nice if you prefer to use optical media.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Marc Morel
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on Jun 1, 2010 at 12:49:37 am

Hi,

Although I understand your interest in using HDD players, they're compact and quite reliable. I've had some playing 24/7 in a museum environment for 8 months at a time, I've yet to find a way to synchronize them properly. Unless your program is more than 2 hours long, I suggest you save yourself a lot of grief and look into the DVD/ synchronizer option. I've heard good things about the Dave Jones system and I've had bulletproof results with this device: http://www.technovision.com/kpc2.html

Frame accurate control for up to 4 DVD players and once IN and OUT points on each DVD are identified and stored, units will stay locked for weeks if not months at a time.

Good luck with whatever solution you choose,

Marc



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Anita Delaney
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on Jun 1, 2010 at 7:45:56 pm

Thanks again, looks like industrial DVDs will be the way!

Anita


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Walter Soyka
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on Jun 1, 2010 at 7:52:17 pm

Hi Marc -- I've got a couple questions for you on your post, if you don't mind.

[Marc Morel] "Although I understand your interest in using HDD players, they're compact and quite reliable. I've had some playing 24/7 in a museum environment for 8 months at a time, I've yet to find a way to synchronize them properly"

I'm curious as to which units you've used, and what connection the vendor recommending for running sync (Ethernet, RS-232, GPIO). I've heard conflicting reports on how well they're working, and I'm trying to figure out which systems work as advertised and which are causing users trouble.

[Marc Morel] "I've heard good things about the Dave Jones system and I've had bulletproof results with this device: http://www.technovision.com/kpc2.html "

I specified the Technovision synchronizer for an install 5 or 6 years ago, and like you said, it ran flawlessly. Do you happen to know if they have a Bluray solution?

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Marc Morel
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on Jun 1, 2010 at 11:59:57 pm

Hi,

- Never ran them networked but as a standalone player, I've used Mvix MX-780HD (http://www.mvixusa.com/) players with both SD and 720p HD material for long periods of time without problems.

- Don't think they have a Blu-ray solution yet but this may be due in part to the relatively low number of Blu-ray players with RS-232 interface. Their devices work like a charm with Pioneer DVD players maybe they'll update to control one of the Pioneer Elite series (BDP-23FD)

Regards,

Marc



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Bob King
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on Jun 2, 2010 at 10:05:58 pm

Look at the AJA KiPro. they are supposed to be releasing a new firmware this summer that will allow for sync rolling via timecode or machine control. We use a Shot Box for all of our sync roll stuff in our shop. These are fairly cheap to buy and cheaper to rent.

Currently, we use Grass Valley Turbos. If sync rolled using the Shot Box, they will hold sync for at least 15 minutes. I have done this on a 7 projector blend fed with four HD stream from four Turbos and the image is seamless.

If all you need is sync roll and not frame accuracy, Playback Pro or Qlab should do the trick. Both are Mac based.


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Walter Soyka
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on Jun 3, 2010 at 1:19:57 am

[Bob King] "Currently, we use Grass Valley Turbos. If sync rolled using the Shot Box, they will hold sync for at least 15 minutes. I have done this on a 7 projector blend fed with four HD stream from four Turbos and the image is seamless. "

DDRs are another great playback option, though they are in a higher pricing tier than the DVD synchronizers.

If you're thinking about using DDRs for a two-screen sync roll, the new Grass Valley T2 has two output channels and can do an internal sync roll. The Doremi V1HD is designed for stereoscopic playback, so it too is capable of an internal two-channel sync roll. I've used both reliably with looping media for hours of show. The caveats: the T2 is extremely picky about its input formats, and the V1HD's user interface is not intuitive.


[Bob King] "Look at the AJA KiPro. they are supposed to be releasing a new firmware this summer that will allow for sync rolling via timecode or machine control."

I have been eagerly awaiting this update. Bob, I'd love to hear about your experience with it when it's released.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Joel Hufford
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on Jun 5, 2010 at 4:16:19 am

I would second PlaybackPro. The software suite comes with SimpleSync, an application you can use to sync multiple machines over a self contained LAN. I have used the software to run anywhere from 2 to 5 machines in sync and they have ran flawlessly.

While it does require more hardware than the DVD solution, the software is much more flexible than the GrassValley solution in terms of accepted input formats. And (I think) the user interface is simple and straightforward. Everything you need, and nothing you don't.

joel


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Bill Lewis
Re: Multi channel video playback synchronisation
on Jul 18, 2010 at 2:53:46 pm

It that a DNF Shot Box? (GPI) Just curious. Thanks.


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