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Nitris DX versus third-party I/O hardware for Symphony

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Timothy Miller
Nitris DX versus third-party I/O hardware for Symphony
on Apr 14, 2013 at 6:48:03 am

Bonjour everyone!

Paris based freelance editor with my own set-up I bought a Mojo SDI some five or six years back for about 2500 usd, quite a rip-off compared to the then almost equivalent BlackMagic card! Some two years later I acquired a Mojo DX at around 5000 usd. Quite a price!
As you all know, Mojo SDI support has been (Thank you Avid!) dropped since MC 6.5. But (Thank you Avid!!) I can trade it in for a rebated Nitris DX.

I am rather happy with my Mojo DX and was only keeping my Mojo SDI for capture of non-digital material. Of course Nitris DX can do both. But has those noisy fans, not so cool in a home set-up...

The questions are : what are my alternatives to Nitris DX? How does it compare with other I/O options? AJA for instance? Is Nitris the best I can get? Should I go for it and give another 5K to Avid or is there another option? Either a full one which will enable me to in/out digital and non-digital footage or is there a functioning replacement for my Mojo SDI I could consider?
I would also like to know if there is a real gain in using Nitris DX vs Mojo DX?

If I go the costly Nitris DX way, I will have to deport my computer and the Nitris some 30 feet away from my work station in order to work in silence. Quite a hassle as well as extra cost.

FYI : I am currently running Symphony 6.5 on a hexacore MacPro and want to keep my system rocking!

Than you for sharing your opinions.

Best,

Timothy Miller


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Michael Phillips
Re: Nitris DX versus third-party I/O hardware for Symphony
on Apr 14, 2013 at 1:05:13 pm

If you're only looking to use it to capture non digital sources, then any of the cards will do - most editors with third party cards tend to grumble more on the performance of the cards while editing, scrubbing, and such not being as fluid as Avid hardware - and there are a few missing features such as audio punch-in, universal mastering and such that may or may not matter to you.


Michael


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Timothy Miller
Re: Nitris DX versus third-party I/O hardware for Symphony
on Apr 14, 2013 at 1:29:53 pm

Thank you Michael for what seems like an early morning reply.
Would you know if there is a dramatic performance improvement in using Nitris dx rather than Mojo dx?
Best,

Timothy


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Shane Ross
Re: Nitris DX versus third-party I/O hardware for Symphony
on Apr 15, 2013 at 1:03:36 am

I use the AJA Kona 3 with Symphony. I haven't noticed any difference in performance. But that's comparing my stand alone system against a Mojo DX on ISIS. I have system slowdown issues due to the ISIS mainly. So it isn't Apples to Apples comparison.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Timothy Miller
Re: Nitris DX versus third-party I/O hardware for Symphony
on Apr 16, 2013 at 8:33:59 pm

Dear Shane,

Thank you for your reply and your constance es I think I remember you answerinfg a previous question a few months back.

The bottom line question is : " Is Nitris dx the best I/O hardware I can get ? "
or " Is it worth the 5k I will have to pay to get it ? "

Thank you for your time!

Best,

TImothy


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James Beattie
Re: Nitris DX versus third-party I/O hardware for Symphony
on Apr 16, 2013 at 12:40:44 am

In my experience, I always recommend AJA. Blackmagic makes great cards, but AJA has treated me right. It's like choosing a Toyota over a Honda. They are both great devices.

The Avid I/O devices are the only way to get closed captioning data in from SD/HD sources reliably. So if this may be an issue, you should consider buying at least the Mojo.

The Nitris has DNxHD and the option for AVC decoder boards. So it does actually accelerate DNxHD and AVC-intra, and pretty much guarantee playback of 2 streams.

If you are buying net new with software, a Mojo with Media Composer software that includes support and 1 year warranty, it is actually cheaper than buying software, 1 year support and an AJA card.

If it were me, I would buy the Mojo DX and put it on a supported Avid computer. Playing with a tested config ensures that any issues you have can be replicated and corrected by Avid support swiftly. In the end it is all about working and making money instead of swapping cards and reinstalling software.

James Beattie
ACSR Elite/Avid ACI, Apple Certified Technician

Consulting for Workflow and Digital Technologies at Comprehensive Technical Group


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Timothy Miller
Re: Nitris DX versus third-party I/O hardware for Symphony
on Apr 16, 2013 at 8:49:02 pm

Dear James,

Thank you for your reply.

I already have a Mojo DX and unfortunately a condemned Mojo SDI and am running both MC 5.5 to keep the SDI Mojo functional as well as Symphony 6.5 with my Mojo DX.
Capturing SD is a hassle as I have to reboot, recable and the lot toward my Mojo SDI.
I've understood that I can continue this way - at least as long as MC 5.5 is compatible with Symphony soon-to-be 7 - or that I can buy a cheap SD I/O solution, Matrox or other, but that still means going through the cabling gimmick each time I need to input SD.

So the question is : do I dump both my Mojos and get a Nitris DX or get an AJA which would be cheaper even with converter.
Does the AJA perform as well as Nitris DX?
I don't really need closed captioning options for the work I do and over here in France we do not require universal mastering as much as you do in the States...

Don't really need support although my question might reveal not-so-perfect technical savviness!

Thank you for your suggestions.

Best,

TImothy

P.S. If you work at/for AVID, I would have a few suggestions for improvements to the software and would love to know who to send them to. I mean, someone who would actually read them!


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Rob Alexander
Re: Nitris DX versus third-party I/O hardware for Symphony
on Apr 16, 2013 at 9:52:38 pm

An alternative thought...

Why not keep your Mojo DX and add a BM Multibridge pro (or equivalent from another manufacturer) running in standalone mode. It will convert your analogue sources to SDI and you can keep your AVID workflow without the cost of a Nitris DX box. You can of course connect directly and see whether your system is more sluggish.

There is of course codec acceleration in the Nitris but it seems that would not be of too much concern to you.



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Neil Patience
Re: Nitris DX versus third-party I/O hardware for Symphony
on Apr 22, 2013 at 4:19:23 am

Like Shane I use a Kona 3 with Avid Symphony 6.5 on my own suite. As others have mentioned you don't get universal mastering and a couple of other features also mentioned. Closed captioning etc. As a freelancer I use many suites with Nitris DX, so I am also used to the performance of those systems.
The Kona works just as well as the Nitris as long as you are happy with the feature limitations and accept that. The first time I tried the Kona I was actually very impressed with the speed and reliability.
No doubt Nitris opens up all the features of the MC and overall is the "proper" option but the Kona runs a very close 2nd for considerably less cash and from what you have said the few limitations don't sound like they will be an issue for you at all.

best wishes
Neil
http://www.patience.tv

8 Core MacPro, Kona 3, Tangent Wave, Mackie Universal Symphony 6.5 FCP7
i7 2.7 Gig MBP (non retina) 16Gigs Ram Blackmagic Monitor Mini Symphony 6.5 FCP7


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Timothy Miller
Re: Nitris DX versus third-party I/O hardware for Symphony
on Apr 24, 2013 at 8:46:39 am

Many thanks Neil for your advice which will definitely tip my decision.
Just one further queery : how noisy is the fan on the Kona?
Do you think I can work comfortably with the Mac Pro just under my editing table?
FYI, I find the fan in the Mojo Dx slightly, but only just slightly, annoying!
Best,
Timothy

P.S. Went to have a look at your site. Interesting read indeed!


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