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Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion

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Tim McLaughlin
Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 11, 2008 at 4:47:47 pm

With the introduction of the MXO 2, has anyone had the chance to test the cross/down conversion of this box?

I'm becoming increasingly unhappy with the ringing / artifacting coming on the downconversion of my Kona3...

AJA has acknowledged that there can be issue with "high frequency" material (ie: graphics and letterboxing on Downconversion). I'm surprised that this hasn't been a bigger issue in the forums.

So I'm possibly looking for a new option...

Tim McLaughlin
Final Cut and Avid Editor


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Dan Riley
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 11, 2008 at 5:44:07 pm

Is that new box being delivered?
I hadn't heard it was on the street yet.

As for downconverting an HD sequence in real time to SD centercut to DigiBeta,
I couldn't be happier. It looks great here. But I haven't done ANY letterbox
outputs. Is that where you see most of the issues?

Dan



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walter biscardi
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 11, 2008 at 5:49:26 pm

[Tim McLaughlin] "I'm becoming increasingly unhappy with the ringing / artifacting coming on the downconversion of my Kona3... "

Haven't seen anything like this here on HD originated material.



Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Biscardi Creative Media
HD and SD Production for Broadcast and Independent Productions.

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Aaron Neitz
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 11, 2008 at 6:24:00 pm

I think what Tim is seeing are mild "ghosty" lines/artifacts that appear around especially contrasty and hard edges(i.e. Graphics and text). I see them too.





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gary adcock
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 12, 2008 at 1:41:22 pm

[Aaron Neitz] "I think what Tim is seeing are mild "ghosty" lines/artifacts that appear around especially contrasty and hard edges(i.e. Graphics and text). I see them too.
"


Yes you may, that means your graphics were not built correctly for SD.

Hence the reason most broadcasters prefer that you create graphics separately for HD and SD deliverables and IMHO the reason for creating generic masters so that the video can be converted separately from the graphics which almost never survive the conversion process correctly.

gary adcock
Studio37
HD & Film Consultation
Post and Production Workflows
Inside look at the IoHD




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walter biscardi
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 12, 2008 at 2:10:50 pm

[gary adcock] "Yes you may, that means your graphics were not built correctly for SD.

Hence the reason most broadcasters prefer that you create graphics separately for HD and SD deliverables and IMHO the reason for creating generic masters so that the video can be converted separately from the graphics which almost never survive the conversion process correctly. "


Yep, for SD shows that are heavily influenced with graphics, your best bet is to create a separate set of graphics for the SD show. Your graphics are being reduced in size 2 to 4x so as they get smaller, you get all sorts of jaggies. If they are created in the correct size / proportion in an SD frame to begin with, they are full size and clean.



Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Biscardi Creative Media
HD and SD Production for Broadcast and Independent Productions.

STOP STARING AND START GRADING WITH APPLE COLOR Apple Color Training DVD available now!
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Mitch Ives
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 13, 2008 at 5:52:47 pm

[gary adcock] "Yes you may, that means your graphics were not built correctly for SD. "

Good call Gary. When I do this, I down convert first, then add the graphics made for SD... it's the only way I'm happy. Personally, I don't think this is a K3 problem, I think that you're going to want to do it that way no matter what hardware you use...

Mitch Ives
Insight Productions Corp.
mitch@insightproductions.com


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Rich Rubasch
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 15, 2008 at 3:25:08 am

In defense of Tim, we have been struggling with downconverting ProRes 1080i material letterbox. Almost looks like a single field. On playback from the timeline the output looks clean...as soon as we edit to tape to a 5100a DVCAM it gets ratty at any diagonal lines in the footage. DVCProHD has been a better codec overall with less "surprises", but so far we have not had the degree of reliability and stability that we have experienced with our SD Aurora Pipe systems. Just oddball issues along the way in a perfectly configured system.

Most of what we have seen was with either 10-bit or 8-bit proRes material in 1080i 24p and 720 60p.

We have troubleshooted the heck out of it and Kona will be getting a call tomorrow, but we wanted to check all possibilities...it's very befuddling.

Regardless what you other guys say, Tim has an issue and Kona has somewhat admitted to a letterbox downconvert issue.

Rich Rubasch
Tilt Media



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walter biscardi
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 15, 2008 at 3:29:27 am

[Rich Rubasch] "In defense of Tim, we have been struggling with downconverting ProRes 1080i material letterbox. Almost looks like a single field. On playback from the timeline the output looks clean...as soon as we edit to tape to a 5100a DVCAM it gets ratty at any diagonal lines in the footage. DVCProHD has been a better codec overall with less "surprises","

I just have not been impressed with ProRes at all quite honestly. DVCPro HD is still a much more solid codec to work with both in FCP and in Color.

I have not seen any sorts of issues downconverting DVCPro HD in either 1080i or 720p.



Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Biscardi Creative Media
HD and SD Production for Broadcast and Independent Productions.

STOP STARING AND START GRADING WITH APPLE COLOR Apple Color Training DVD available now!
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Christopher S. Johnson
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 15, 2008 at 8:21:12 pm

Walter, can you tell us about your disappointments with ProRes? I am advocating it to many producers I meet. From feature docs for the big screen to television. Even budget feature films, without ever going to uncompressed.

Also, have you ever seen an example of a difference in quality between the regular and the HQ version that is perceptible?

Thanks for the info.



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walter biscardi
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 15, 2008 at 8:29:01 pm

[Christopher S. Johnson] "Walter, can you tell us about your disappointments with ProRes?"

Bad Renders from time to time. Weird artifacting sometimes from Color Renders. Just enough issues that I don't deal with it right now in HD, just small SD projects.



[Christopher S. Johnson] "Also, have you ever seen an example of a difference in quality between the regular and the HQ version that is perceptible?
"


Nope, but then we don't use it much.


Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Biscardi Creative Media
HD and SD Production for Broadcast and Independent Productions.

STOP STARING AND START GRADING WITH APPLE COLOR Apple Color Training DVD available now!
Read my Blog!
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Mitch Ives
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 22, 2008 at 2:50:24 pm

[Christopher S. Johnson] "Also, have you ever seen an example of a difference in quality between the regular and the HQ version that is perceptible? "

While it's a promising codec, let's not forget that the difference was visible in the Apple booth at NAB when they introduced it. Artifacting in the sky was visible. Now, am I beating up on it... no, but the notion that it has all that compression and no reduction in quality is right up there with "perpetual motion"... not possible.

Like Walter, I think ProRes will be huge at some point, but for those of us that need to get work done now, many of us are still using DVCpro HD. I'll let those with more free time and patience continue to beta test ProRes...

Mitch Ives
Insight Productions Corp.
mitch@insightproductions.com


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Gary Bettan
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 25, 2008 at 2:06:32 pm

The MXO2 does a great job with down / cross conversion.

The following is from the new MXO2 FAQ that we helped the gang over at Matrox put together http://www.videoguys.com/mxo2_faq.html

What can the Matrox MXO2 upscaling and downscaling feature do for me?

Matrox MXO2 provides realtime 10-bit hardware scaling on the outputs. You can upscale from NTSC or PAL to either 720 or 1080. You can downscale 720 or 1080 HD footage to NTSC or PAL. Matrox MXO2’s realtime scaling feature is particularly useful when you need to master both HD and SD because it lets you output both simultaneously from the same timeline. It is also invaluable when you need to proof DVD content from an HD video source or make quick SD rushes from HD material.

Can Matrox MXO2 convert my 720p timeline to 1080i and vice versa in real time?
Yes. Matrox MXO2 provides realtime cross conversion in hardware, saving you hours of rendering when your source material does not match your client's delivery requirements.

Gary
Videoguys.com

Videoguys.com 800 323-2325

We are the desk top video editing and DVD production experts!


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Tim McLaughlin
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 25, 2008 at 6:23:39 pm

Right - and the Kona can do all that too.

BUT - How well does the MXO2 handle graphics on Downconverson, 'cause on the Kona 3 it doesn't look so good...

Tim McLaughlin



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walter biscardi
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 25, 2008 at 7:04:54 pm

[Tim McLaughlin] "BUT - How well does the MXO2 handle graphics on Downconverson, 'cause on the Kona 3 it doesn't look so good... "

I guess it depends on your graphics. As Gary Adcock has already noted on this thread, sometimes graphics have to be created differently for the SD version.

I just laid off 5 1080i shows to BetaSP here last week with no changes to the graphics and they look amazing.

Another 5 shows we converted from 720 to 1080i for the BluRay discs and those look awesome too.

If the graphics contain a lot of thin lines or horizontal lines, those will sometimes have to be recreated for SD. Only the Terranex does a superior job of downconversion for items like that.



Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Biscardi Creative Media
HD and SD Production for Broadcast and Independent Productions.

STOP STARING AND START GRADING WITH APPLE COLOR Apple Color Training DVD available now!
Read my Blog!
View Walter Biscardi's profile on LinkedIn


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Mitch Ives
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 22, 2008 at 2:46:05 pm

[walter biscardi] "I just have not been impressed with ProRes at all quite honestly. DVCPro HD is still a much more solid codec to work with both in FCP and in Color.

I have not seen any sorts of issues downconverting DVCPro HD in either 1080i or 720p. "


I'm going to second Walter's thoughts. I like ProRes and I really want it to work (badly actually), but it's clear that people keep reporting issues with it. DVCPro HD has given us zero problems and we down-convert from it all the time on an LH and a K3...



Mitch Ives
Insight Productions Corp.
mitch@insightproductions.com


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Christopher S. Johnson
Re: Kona 3 vs. MXO2 for down / cross conversion
on Jul 22, 2008 at 7:03:37 pm

Would love to learn more about the problems. If any of you know of a thread or article you could pass on to me, that would be great.



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