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Final Cut (No Quartz Extreme Error)

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Mauricio Santana
Final Cut (No Quartz Extreme Error)
on Mar 27, 2009 at 3:24:16 am

Hello everyone!

This is my first post that I think can actually give something back to the community!

First of all I would like to thank very much Bob Zelin, as he had helped me without even realizing it (That's how good he is!) as well as a couple of other professionals (including Walter Biscardi, Peter Wiggins and Warren Elg) that have had the good will to share their experiences here.

Hence, I decided to post my experience in case somebody finds it useful as well.

The post is a little lengthy but it describes the problem AND the solution, so please bear with me...

I have a Mac Pro with an AJA 3 board and I recently had a problem with Final Cut giving me the message that I needed a Mac with a Quartz Extreme in order for it to run at all. Strange, since I have been using it for years.

My setup:

Mac Pro (Mac Pro 2,1) 8-Core 3GHZ
16GB of RAM
NVidia QuadroFX 4500
Apple RAID Card with 4 750 GB Enterprise grade SATA drives
AJA Kona 3 with 6.0.3 drivers
OSX version 10.5.6
and Final Cut 6.0.5

I primarily use this for producing and editing HD (1920x1080) animations and aside from the Apple RAID card's battery, haven't had any issues with the setup.

In hindsight, the problem arose when I needed to demo an animation and had to connect a monitor to the AJA board. When I did, I checked the "Enable Desktop Display" option in the video setup tab in the AJA control panel. And I didn't give much thought to what I had just done.

The funny thing (and when I say funny I really mean dumb) is that I kept using this system like this for a month or so, since I was working on finishing an animation. Meaning that I had disabled Quartz extreme and didn't really notice it! When it was time to fire up Final Cut, I saw the "need quartz extreme" dialogue in order to run, which I found very odd. Needless to say everything, from Final Cut to Compressor gave me the error. I thought something was seriously wrong with my system. I uninstalled final cut with the utility that more than one person has suggested in this forum (Final Cut uninstaller) and found out that the installer refused to run since it gave me exactly the same error!

Hmmm... that is when I decided to google the error and lo and behold there was a creative cow post by none other than Bob Zelin having the same issue with an Aja Kona 3 having a conflict with an NVidia GE8800 board back in Aug 21 2008. The fix? Just DO NOT use under any circumstances the "Enable Desktop" option in the AJA control panel. Otherwise, the NVidia board will show up in system profiler as to NOT supporting Quartz Extreme. I went to my System Profiler and sure enough my QuadroFX 4500 was shown as NOT supporting Quartz Extreme. Hmmmm... I went to the AJA control panel and violá, unchecking the "Enable Desktop Display" box and restarting the Mac fixed this nonsense.

Apple, NVidia or AJA's fault? AJA has been very good to me, so I would like to point the finger to mostly at the first two. Because of their faulty drivers I have had all this nonsense, but I can tell you one thing, Bob Zelin along with Warren and Mitch solved my 2009 problem back in 2008... so thanks Bob and Creative Cow! You have (again) saved my behind!

Mauricio Santana
High Def Animation professional in San Francisco

http://web.me.com/m.santana/Site_2/Welcome.html


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gary adcock
Re: Final Cut (No Quartz Extreme Error)
on Mar 27, 2009 at 1:27:04 pm

[Mauricio Santana] "I went to the AJA control panel and violá, unchecking the "Enable Desktop Display" box and restarting the Mac fixed this nonsense... Apple, NVidia or AJA's fault?"

did you try changing the port on the Nvidia card was plugged into?

The DVI port closest to the logic board is the higher performance one on that card. ( facing the DVI ports - that would be the one on the right closest to the side of your computer)

gary adcock
Studio37
HD & Film Consultation
Post and Production Workflows

Inside look at the IoHD
http://library.creativecow.net/articles/adcock_gary/AJAIOHD.php




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Mauricio Santana
Re: Final Cut (No Quartz Extreme Error)
on Mar 27, 2009 at 8:05:41 pm

That is strange, I wasn't aware there were performance differences in the DVI ports of the QuadroFX 4500.

Being digital both of them and feeding from the same GPU I would imagine the resolution, bit depth, Quartz Extreme and OpenGL performance are all the same on both. I am positive both of them can drive exactly the same monitors up to 2560x1600 at millions of colors (32-bit).

I changed the DVI from left to right (facing the DVI ports) and didn't notice any change in OpenGL performance in Maya.

The Apple System Profiler didn't show anything different. What performance differential are you referring to?

Thanks for the reply!

Mauricio Santana
High Def Animation professional in San Francisco

http://web.me.com/m.santana/Site_2/Welcome.html


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gary adcock
Re: Final Cut (No Quartz Extreme Error)
on Mar 28, 2009 at 1:40:40 pm

[Mauricio Santana] "That is strange, I wasn't aware there were performance differences in the DVI ports of the QuadroFX 4500."

This was the work around I found since this is a real issue when running German and Italian as the language on quads and the first 8 cores on OS 10.5.

however let me clarify. the performance is not in that card, but in the way driver software senses the different hardware that Nvidia/ ATI uses. Since many of the graphics cards are designed to handle only 1- 30in cinema display and that display needs a higher thruput DVI-D connection, the software often sees the port closer to the logic board has higher performance,even when it is not.


OK back to the issue- by changing the DVI port you were connected to did it stop your issue?





gary adcock
Studio37
HD & Film Consultation
Post and Production Workflows

Inside look at the IoHD
http://library.creativecow.net/articles/adcock_gary/AJAIOHD.php




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Bob Zelin
Re: Final Cut (No Quartz Extreme Error)
on Mar 28, 2009 at 3:15:05 pm

Don't thank me. Thank AJA. This is my long story.
This is the SECOND TIME that AJA has bailed me out when Apple could not help. The graphics card was an NVidia 8800, which gave the Quartz Extreme error (which does not occur with the ATI cards). I spoke to EVERYONE at Apple (no names, but big boys), and all I got was excuses and stories.

It was Rudy at AJA that told me the answer. And it was AJA support that told me about the "cache flusing" problems with the Apple XServe RAID - not Apple Enterprise group. AJA is amazing.

And you can thank Creative Cow, for allowing me (and others) to post information like this. I never figured this out by myself - it was AJA, and I just repeated the info they gave me (which obviously worked).

Bob Zelin




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Mauricio Santana
Re: Final Cut (No Quartz Extreme Error)
on Mar 31, 2009 at 5:32:41 am

Well, thanks Rudy @ AJA, AJA and Creative Cow. This forum has easily being a valuable source of tech support as well as a learning tool that easily surpasses some paid-only options.

AJA is superb. I very much appreciate how they conduct business. Superb products, superb tech support and they do look after us. I don't want to rant (at least not too much) since everyone is very busy, but, I find it surprising that AJA's attitude comes as a surprise rather than a norm. Apple charges a premium over other hardware manufacturers and some hardware support is really below par.

Anyway, I found also surprising that they didn't listen to you Bob, you make very straightforward, loud points. If they don't listen to you, well, what chance do we have.

Thanks again for sharing your expertise. Apple charged me a lot and didn't help me much. You didn't charge me a cent and you, along with other people, brought me closer to the answer. Thanks.


Mauricio Santana
High Def Animation professional in San Francisco

http://web.me.com/m.santana/Site_2/Welcome.html


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Joel Arvidsson
Re: Final Cut (No Quartz Extreme Error)
on Mar 30, 2009 at 8:28:22 pm

Yeah, it helped for me to use the other dvi port on the graphic card. Before that I had to reboot the computer everytime I needed to switch off the enable desktop display. I have thank you once more for that Gary.

joelarvidsson@gmail.com


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Mauricio Santana
Re: Final Cut (No Quartz Extreme Error)
on Mar 31, 2009 at 5:22:21 am

Hmm guess what Gary... It did fix the issue! I just restarted my computer with the monitor connected to the other DVI port and while the Enable Desktop Display checkbox is enabled (after restart) the card is recognized as being accelerated.

Thanks for that piece of advice!

I will echo Bob's sentiment, Apple really does need to rewrite their 3D/GPU drivers. This is unacceptable on a piece of hardware that doesn't have a negligible price tag and that they fully control, hell, they sell the computer, the application and don't have that many possible configurations to handle as in the windows world...

I wish I could say that to someone at Apple rather than here. If anyone knows where I should direct my complaints I would gladly like to talk to them. Since Bob's complaints were ignored... (and he is a very loud straight-shooter!) oh well. (if anyone has Steve Jobs' email... I would gladly email him after he recovers...)

Thanks again for the tip!

Mauricio Santana
High Def Animation professional in San Francisco

http://web.me.com/m.santana/Site_2/Welcome.html


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gary adcock
Re: Final Cut (No Quartz Extreme Error)
on Mar 31, 2009 at 11:20:19 am

[Mauricio Santana] "Thanks for that piece of advice! "

you are most welcome.

I was fortunate enough to run into this issue more than a year ago, and my simple little fix has now been used dozens of times.

I am glad it was able to solve your problem - without undue stress.




gary adcock
Studio37
HD & Film Consultation
Post and Production Workflows

Inside look at the IoHD
http://library.creativecow.net/articles/adcock_gary/AJAIOHD.php




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Russell Lasson
Re: Final Cut (No Quartz Extreme Error)
on May 22, 2009 at 9:34:51 pm

This just saved me some time too!

I reinstalled AJA drivers right before I took some time off work. When I got back I had this error. I should have known better.

Thanks guys,

-Russ

Russell Lasson
Colorist/Digital Cinema Specialist
Universal Post
Salt Lake City, UT


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