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  • Blackmagic Design NAB 2010 Update

  • Luke Maslen

    April 13, 2010 at 1:26 am


    Grant Petty asked me to post his big Blackmagic Design NAB 2010 Update email to the Cow. We hope you enjoy it!


    Luke Maslen
    Blackmagic Design.


    It’s NAB 2010 time, and we have some exciting new products I would like to update you on!

    We have lots happening this year, including new 3D versions of DeckLink HD Extreme and HDLink Pro, multiple new USB 3.0 based products, a complete evolution in color correction with DaVinci Resolve now on Mac and starting at US$995, a new portable UltraScope, some new routers, a fantastic new router control panel and much more!

    New products include:

    • New DaVinci Color Correction!
    • UltraStudio Pro
    • Intensity Shuttle
    • DeckLink HD Extreme 3D
    • HDLink Pro 3D
    • Pocket UltraScope
    • Videohub Smart Control
    • Videohub Control for Apple iPad!
    • Micro Videohub
    • Smart Videohub
    • Mini Converter UpDownCross
    • H.264 Pro Recorder
    • DeckLink Duo
    • Media Express Update
    • UltraScope for Mac Beta

    This is a long update because each new product needs to be explained, however I have added headings for each product, so you can skip to the sections you’re most interested in!

    Revolution in Color Correction!

    We have made some big changes to how DaVinci color correction systems are sold. In the past DaVinci Resolve systems were pre built and priced from $200,000 for a 1 GPU based system, to over $800,000 for a 16 GPU top of the line system. However this has been way too expensive for most people to afford, so we have been working hard to fix that.

    In the last 6 months we have invested millions in expanding DaVinci engineering, and have been working on a new updated version of DaVinci Resolve 7.0 software. This new update includes a complete overhaul of the user interface, a new EDL library, new database support, improved field support and much more.

    Plus we are now introducing 3 models of DaVinci Resolve. A new Mac based software only version, a Mac based version that includes the incredible DaVinci control surface, and a high end Linux version that lets you build multiple GPU supercomputer based systems for unlimited power. We are also making it easy to upgrade as you need more power.

    The new Mac based software only version of DaVinci Resolve will retail at only US$995 and includes all the powerful DaVinci Resolve features. When running on a Mac, DaVinci Resolve is limited to a single GPU based solution because of slot availability and lack of InfiniBand for Mac, however this does not mean it’s limited on power!

    We have been running tests and the single GPU performance on Mac is similar to the single GPU Linux systems that cost $200,000 only 6 months ago. It’s a fantastic solution for SD and HD, and even works in 2K. You can rotate images, re-frame, add corrections, blurs and trackers, and then just hit play. It’s all real time. Plus, because no features are disabled on this software only version, when faster GPU cards are released in the future, you can just plug them in for more power! This really is a true high end color correction system!

    DaVinci Resolve might be affordable now, but it’s still a high end solution, so requires a third party control panel such as the Tangent Wave, and single CUDA capable GPU card. If video I/O is required, then it also requires a DeckLink HD Extreme card. Of course we will work hard to open DaVinci Resolve up to other brands of control panel, capture cards and GPUs as fast as we can.

    Next is the main DaVinci Resolve model that includes both the Mac based software and the incredible DaVinci Resolve Control Surface. This control surface is amazing and lets you adjust settings in DaVinci with over 60 knobs and buttons. You can work incredibly fast while keeping your head up and looking at the grading monitor. You get the same power of a single GPU system and because it’s Mac based, you can install it yourself. The DaVinci control surface is so incredibly fast to use, and this is an incredible solution! DaVinci Resolve with the full control surface will be priced at $29,995.

    Finally, when you’re working with heavy corrections in HD, 2K, 4K or even 3D, we have a Linux software upgrade that can be added to the DaVinci Resolve Control Surface for US$19,995. This is a full DaVinci Resolve Linux license, and lets you connect your control surface into Linux computers that have more slots to allow more GPUs to be installed for faster processing.

    When we say you can add faster processing, we mean you can keep adding GPUs as you need, and you get all GPUs working together to increase the resolution you can run in real time, and also the number of corrections that can all be done in real time. DaVinci Resolve is a real time system, so being able to add extra CPUs and GPUs gives you virtually unlimited power.

    You can keep adding hardware such as GPUs and CPUs, which are pre-certified by us and available from DaVinci Specialist Resellers, and because it’s a full Linux license you don’t need to pay anything more for the software. We have done some price checking, and we think that the most powerful system you can build would still be less than $150,000, which would give you dozens of real time corrections even in stereoscopic 3D at 2K, or even 4K. That’s well less than the over US$800,000 it cost only 6 months ago!

    We think this new DaVinci product lineup will make it easy for beginners to get started with a professional product, as well as allow high end facilities to install the seriously powerful systems they need for feature film work without breaking the bank. DaVinci Resolve on Mac at US$995 is the same user interface and has the same features as the Linux version, so it’s easy to move up as you need more power. The features are absolutely identical, apart from the limitations of using a single GPU based system.

    Also, as a special treat to all existing DaVinci customers, anyone who has a DaVinci Resolve or Splice will get this new version 7 software at no charge. Also, anyone who has an older DaVinci 2K system can use the control surface they have, and upgrade to DaVinci Resolve just by paying the Linux license only.

    This should make a fantastic, and very affordable way for current DaVinci customers to upgrade to the latest technology. Ever since I started in postproduction as a teenager, I have just loved color correction and film. For me this is a dream come true letting DaVinci become affordable for everyone, and it’s very exciting!

    DaVinci Resolve v7.0 will be available from June for the Linux version from DaVinci Specialist Resellers, while the Mac version will ship soon after from Blackmagic Design Authorized Resellers.

    Introducing UltraStudio Pro

    UltraStudio Pro is our exciting new high end capture and playback solution for USB 3.0!

    USB 3.0 is the new version of the USB connection to computers that runs 10 times faster than regular USB. This means it has more than enough speed for 10 bit HD video with loads of real time effects. USB 3.0 products are easy to install as you just plug them in! USB 3.0 means we can design products in completely new ways.

    UltraStudio Pro is a revolutionary new design that actually hides the cables behind it. It’s incredibly thin with more video and audio connections combined with incredible 10 bit quality plus full up, down and cross conversion.

    UltraStudio Pro includes fully independent connections for capture and playback of 3 Gb/s SDI, HDMI 1.3, analog component, composite, s-video and an extra standard definition SDI output that’s down converted when running in HD. It also includes connections for 4 channels of balanced audio and 2 channel AES/EBU. Analog audio outputs 3 and 4 can be switched to provide 4 extra channels of AES/EBU audio out.

    We include a long 7 foot break out cable with XLR and BNC connectors so you save hundreds of dollars on cabling! Quality is full 10 bit, so it’s a true professional solution. The built in up, down and cross converter works at full 10 bit with highest quality multi-tap filtering. Now you can edit once, and master out anywhere!

    USB 3.0 connections are currently found only on Windows machines, and we have found big differences with speed between different models of computers. However Intel x58 based computers work well, and we recommend these for UltraStudio Pro. UltraStudio Pro will be able to support other platforms when USB 3.0 becomes available on them.

    Of course you get all the benefits of working with Premiere Pro, After Effects, Photoshop, Fusion and more. We also include our Media Express software, and there is a free developer SDK available.

    UltraStudio Pro will we available in late April for US$895.

    Intensity Shuttle

    Intensity Shuttle is a USB 3.0 version of Intensity Pro, however it also includes separate connections for HDMI 1.3, component, composite and s-video, with full 10 bit quality. It powers from the USB 3.0 connection, and is very compact in an attractive white inline design.

    The quality of Intensity Shuttle video is amazing, and I think one of the most exciting things we have done is to build in broadcast quality video at a consumer price. There is just nothing available with such high video quality as Intensity Shuttle! I think Intensity Shuttle will continue to bring high quality video to even more videographers for true professional work.

    Intensity Shuttle requires the same Intel x58 series computer with USB 3.0 connection as the UltraStudio Pro above.

    One exciting feature of Intensity Shuttle (and UltraStudio Pro) is it includes full support for HDMI and component up to 1080p60. However even though current USB 3.0 computers support full 10 bit uncompressed at normal 1080i HD frame rates, current USB 3.0 computers don’t yet have enough speed to operate at progressive frame rates. But Intensity Shuttle is ready as computers get faster!

    Intensity Shuttle supports working with Premiere Pro, After Effects, Photoshop, Fusion and more. We also include our Media Express software, and there is a free developer SDK available.

    Intensity Shuttle will we available in early May for US$199.

    DeckLink HD Extreme 3D

    Now with new exciting 3D workflows, we have a new model of DeckLink HD Extreme that not only supports 3D, but also includes an hardware up, down and cross converter, support of SDI, HDMI and component analog capture and playback at video rates up to 1080p60, hardware support for 12 bit SDI, and a sync cable feature for using two cards together.

    DeckLink HD Extreme 3D is ready for 3D workflow using both interleaved/side by side and dual stream capture and playback. Interleaved is where the left and right eyes are interleaved as fields so you can edit using standard editing software.

    Dual steam is where DeckLink HD Extreme 3D uses the dual link SDI connections to capture and playback two streams for left and right eye, and records them into two separate media files. Dual stream 3D is higher quality because each eye is full resolution, but less compatible with current editing software.

    Media Express has been upgraded to handle both interleaved/side by side and dual stream 3D, so it’s a great solution for capture and playback of 3D media. This means DeckLink HD Extreme 3D is a complete 3D solution!

    DeckLink HD Extreme 3D includes a high quality up, down and cross converter so you can edit in SD and play out HD, or edit in HD and play out SD. The cross converter lets you edit in 720p and output in 1080i, or edit in 1080i and play back in 720p. It’s incredible quality and full 10 bit with audio.

    DeckLink HD Extreme 3D is also based on a new internal hardware design with support for 12 bit SDI video and full support for video rates up to 1080p60 via SDI, HDMI and analog component. For developers, two DeckLink HD Extreme 3D cards can be joined together with a cable for synchronous dual card operation.

    Sony is also announcing at NAB 2010 support in their HDCAM SR deck for the 2K format that’s been built into DeckLink HD Extreme, Multibridge, Videohub and HDLink, and this is exciting news. Now you will be able to edit in 2K film with a workflow as easy as video. This will make 2K film editing and design much easier!

    DeckLink HD Extreme 3D is available now for US$995.

    HDLink Pro 3D

    With the new DeckLink HD Extreme 3D, and other 3D equipment becoming more popular, we have a new model of HDLink Pro DisplayPort with 3D support.

    HDLink Pro 3D with DisplayPort supports both interleaved/side by side or dual stream 3D inputs via the two SDI inputs, and supports 3D on compatible computer monitors and 3D HDMI televisions. If you’re using HDMI televisions you need a DisplayPort to HDMI adapter, and then simply connect.

    HDLink Pro 3D supports HDMI 1.4 as well as older HDMI 1.3 based televisions. HDMI 1.3 televisions allow you to select the interleave format for 3D display, while HDMI 1.4 sets this automatically.

    HDLink Pro 3D will also allow you to convert dual stream 3D input into interleaved 3D video on the SDI output. The best news is any older HDLink Pro DisplayPort model can be upgraded to 3D with the new software from our web site at no charge!

    HDLink Pro 3D with DisplayPort also includes great features such as 17 point lookup tables, 6 channel audio monitoring out and support for 30 inch DVI and DisplayPort displays which are perfect for monitoring 2K capture and playback with the new Sony HDCAM SR decks. Of course HDLink Pro 3D is a fantastic HD monitoring solution using normal 24 inch computer monitors!

    HDLink Pro 3D with DisplayPort is available now for US$495 and the new 3D software update will be released in late April from our web site.

    Pocket UltraScope

    This is very exciting, and ever since we introduced UltraScope at last year’s NAB, I have wanted to do a portable version. Now with USB 3.0, we have the technology to be able to do it!

    The new model is called Pocket UltraScope, and it’s a very small unit with a 3 Gb/s SDI input that lets you plug in a SD, HD or 1080p, 3 Gb/s SDI video input. It connects to any USB 3.0 computer and even powers from the USB connection.You can run Pocket UltraScope on a laptop and it will power from the laptop battery!

    This means you get a truly portable solution, which is fantastic for on set, or engineers can use it behind racks, and in other mobile locations! Most good USB 3.0 laptops support 1920 x 1080 resolution screens, so you can even run the full screen 6 scope view for an incredible waveform monitoring solution!

    Pocket UltraScope will we available in late April for US$595.

    Videohub Smart Control

    Ever since we introduced our routers, people have been asking for a hardware control panel. Now we have, with the new Videohub Smart Control!

    We looked at hardware control panels and realized that most control panels cost thousands of dollars so most people could only afford to buy 1 or 2. This means most people don’t get the speed advantage of having a routing switcher.

    We thought it would be much better if we built a panel designed to be installed under each monitor or deck. Smart Control lets you specify a router output, and then each button can be customized to a router input. This means if you had a Smart Control under a monitor, every time you press a button, you would see the monitor change to the input configured on that button.

    This is an incredibly fast way to route inputs to devices such as monitors and decks. Smart Control is low cost enough that you can get one for each deck or monitor, and then with a press of a button, the input to that deck or monitor is set. It’s so fast to use, that once you see it working, you’ll never go back to the old way of routing!

    Smart Control is low cost, but it’s also technically advanced. We have full RGB LEDs under each button, so Smart Control can be customized to have more than one destination. If you have more than one destination, the destination buttons become gold colored. Sources are white. You can also customize a “take” button, and the take button becomes red.

    Smart control is very customizable, and we include a software utility for Mac and Windows that makes it very easy to set the buttons just by connecting to the USB port. This means it’s easy to set up a Smart Control yourself.

    Smart Control connects directly via ethernet, and even includes a loop through ethernet connection. It also supports power over ethernet, so if you have a powered ethernet switch, you don’t even need the power supply. It does include a power supply for people who don’t have powered ethernet.

    The keys are an attractive crystal look design, and the front of the unit unscrews and slides off so you can add key labels under the caps. The keys are a high reliability design for an incredibly long life, even in hard use.

    We worked hard in getting Smart Control looking fantastic, and because we were not happy with the quality of the white light from an RGB led, we also include an extra white LED under each button! Buttons can even be backlit when used in dark rooms! Smart Control will also include an SDK for developers who want to use it for custom solutions!

    Smart Control will we available in late April for US$495.

    Videohub Control for Apple iPad!

    This is exciting, and we will be showing our Videohub software running on an iPad at NAB! This will be available in May free of charge and lets you use an iPad as a low cost XY router control panel. It looks amazing, and an iPad as a router control panel looks fantastic when wall or rack mounted. An iPad is a wonderful touch screen computer with a beautiful screen, and it looks fantastic as a router control panel. Of course it was just fun to make! if you’re coming to the show, please check it out!

    Micro Videohub

    Micro Videohub is the world’s smallest 16 x 16 router. We designed Micro Videohub for when people need an SDI only routing solution that’s smaller and lower cost.

    Micro Videohub is only 1 rack unit high and less than an inch deep. It includes all the same advanced auto switching SD, HD and 3 Gb/s SDI, as well as full SDI re-clocking. It also includes more control interfaces such as USB, plus now direct ethernet and serial interfaces.

    Direct ethernet means it connects direct to your network for control, and it works with our current Videohub control software panels, as well as the new Videohub Smart Control panels. Micro Videohub is perfect when your budget is tight, or you need to fit routing into an incredibly small space.

    Micro Videohub will we available in late April for US$1995.

    Smart Videohub

    With the new Micro Videohub, and the Videohub Smart Control, it was obvious we could combine them together and create a fantastic and easy to use routing switcher that’s perfect for small facilities.

    We call it Smart Videohub, and it’s perfect for people starting out who need a professional router and also want something incredibly easy to use. Smart Videohub has 16 buttons on the right for destinations, and 16 on the left for sources. Just press a destination and then select a source. It’s so easy!

    Smart Videohub also includes the same USB, ethernet and serial connections for router control. Use the front button panel, or connect it to your network to allow software control by computers or Smart Control panels! Smart Videohub really lets you grow and add control panels as you need!

    Smart Videohub buttons are the same design as the Smart Control and feature crystal look button caps in a high reliability design. You can also remove the front panel and put custom labels under the buttons. We include an Illustrator file on the installer CD that you can use to generate labels.

    Smart Videohub will we available in May for US$2495.

    Mini Converter UpDownCross

    Now we have a fantastic way to convert between SD and HD video formats with our new Mini Converter UpDownCross. This new Mini Converter can do full up, down and cross conversion, as well as full NTSC/PAL standards conversion.

    SDI audio is looped through with automatic audio delay based on the video processing delay. Processing is full 10 bit, with high quality filtering for truly professional performance. A reference input is included, so Mini Converter UpDownCross can even re-sync video sources.

    We also include a single SDI loop through output, and 5 SDI processed outputs. You can bypass processing so Mini Converter UpDownCross becomes a fantastic SDI distribution amplifier with 6 SDI outputs!

    Mini Converter UpDownCross can be used on the input of decks so that when you route or connect various video standards, it can be converted to the correct format for the deck. For example, if you had a Digital Betacam deck connected to your router, you could use Mini Converter UpDownCross on the input to the deck, and if someone connects a HD video source, the video will automatically be converted to standard definition so the deck gets a nice stable picture.

    Even if you connect a 1080i59.94 HD input to a PAL deck, the video will automatically be down converted first and then standards converted to PAL for the deck. Audio is automatically delayed to match the video processing, so the deck gets a stable SDI input and multi channel audio!

    Mini Converter UpDownCross will we available in June for US$495.

    H.264 Pro Recorder

    With so many new ways of watching video content now, such as iPhones, web, iPad and more, we need a simple way to move content from the video world to the computer world in H.264 format.

    H.264 Pro Recorder is a compact size that includes analog component, balanced analog audio using jack connectors, HDMI and SDI video inputs. It connects to your computer via a regular USB 2.0 connection and then uses our Media Express software for capture.

    H.264 Pro Recorder powers from the USB connection and makes it incredibly easy and low cost to get full HD and SD capture direct to H.264 video files!

    H.264 Pro Recorder will be available in July for US$349.

    DeckLink Duo

    We have a new DeckLink card that’s actually two DeckLink cards in one! DeckLink Duo features two independent SDI capture and playback engines built into a single card with a 4 lane PCI Express connection.

    DeckLink Duo is perfect for developers who need two completely independent capture and playback streams in and out of a computer, as both capture and playback channels are completely independent. There are two SDI inputs, and two SDI outputs plus a common tri-sync/black burst reference.

    DeckLink Duo appears as two independent SDI cards to the computer, but only uses a single PCI Express slot. DeckLink Duo is perfect for servers where there are multiple streams or simultaneous capture and playback per system.

    DeckLink Duo will be available in May for US$495.

    Extra Bits!

    We have a new version of Media Express that supports smaller monitors. This new Media Express also includes our new EDL import library for additional compatibility for import of batch lists. The new Media Express is available for download now.

    We have been asked for a Mac version of UltraScope, and will post a public beta of UltraScope for Mac on our support page in the week after NAB. If you want to run UltraScope on the Mac, please download it and give it a try. It requires a faster graphics card than some Mac Pro systems have, however please check the release notes for system details.

    That’s all for this update, and if you’re coming to NAB 2010 in Las Vegas, then please drop by for a visit, and pick up a copy of our latest catalog!


    Grant Petty
    Blackmagic Design

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