What does Thunderbolt mean for FSI ?
Given that the new macbook pro's and eventually iMac's will be using the new Thunderbolt standard to pass through video monitoring what plans does FSI have to support this?
Here is why this is important:
Currently we need to pass through a breakout box from Matrox in order to get HD-SDI. This goes through the mini-displayport and bypasses the computers video card when it pulls the video files.
Thunderbolt replaces this port, but it also allows all the essential peripherals like super fast hard drives to be daisy chained. It also means that monitors can be daisy chained at any point in up to 6 peripherals.
A monitor without Thunderbolt has to be pulled directly from the computer port in order to bypass the video card. Thus no superfast peripherals can be attached, including the new hard drives which are the backbone of a speedy video editing solution.
Working in the field with the FSI 17" monitor would mean sacrificing all the advantages of this new system.
It strikes me that FSI has an interest in developing solutions around this question because Thunderbolt clearly is too advantageous to be crippled for the video monitor market, especially when you can daisy chain several monitors very easily through the new system and still attach fast hard drives at the the end of your chain.
In the short term this really does not change much from the monitoring perspective. You would not really want to use thunderbolt for direct professional monitoring anymore than you would want to use displayport, HDMI, or DVI for that same purpose because that is essentially what you currently have with thunderbolt (support of displayport over thunderbolt port).
I think the solution most professional users will be looking to use with thunderbolt equipped computers for professional monitoring is actually still going to be a standalone box. I envision a box with thunderbolt input that gives SDI out for the pro monitor and also likely has thunderbolt out for connection to downstream thunderbolt peripherals. My guess is that these boxes will not be using the same methodology of overriding the display port (or HDMI/DVI port) that is common with current non-PCIe I/O solutions, but will instead use the distinct PCIe portion of the thunderbolt port. I would be surprised if we did not see such solutions from the usual suspects (AJA, Blackmagic, etc.) in the near future. I would be equally surprised if we saw the wide scale acceptance of direct thunderbolt connection to thunderbolt monitors for professional monitoring applications. For less critical monitoring (like an extended desktop to an ACD or Dell monitor) this makes sense, but for not for pro monitoring.
FSI (Flanders Scientific, Inc.)