ultrastudio 4K thunderbolt2

Slightly usurping AJA, Blackmagic Design has announced a new UltraStudio 4K. Priced at $995, it's the first video device I/O with Thunderbolt 2 technology, offering 20 Gb/s capture and playback of SD, HD, Ultra HD and DCI 4K.

We expected more Thunderbolt 2 peripherals to be launched after the new MacBook Pros were released that had the new connector built in. We were however expecting AJA to be right there with the Io 4K, maybe its release is imminent, but Blackmagic has jumped in there first.

The UltraStudio 4K now features Thunderbolt 2, it replaces the older model which only had the original Thunderbolt connector. We have to laugh here as both types of Thunderbolt are extremely quick and in no way should the old model seem slow!

You can see that Blackmagic are firmly behind the move to Ultra HD and 4K with this box and the addition of the new double speed Thunderbolt helps even more. Capture and playback Ultra HD 4K YUV video at 60 frames per second and Ultra HD 4K RGB video at 30 frames per second is now possible.

"The speed of the new Thunderbolt 2 is mind blowing!" said Grant Petty, CEO, Blackmagic Design." We are incredibly excited to deliver the worlds first video capture and playback solution that features this amazing technology and includes almost every video and audio connection available! Now with faster more powerful Thunderbolt 2 computers on the way, video professionals will be able to work with multiple streams of 4K and get more layers of realtime effects and color correction than ever before." 

The well populated back panel of the 1 inch rack mount 1U unit has got a Thunderbolt loop through which means it won't be an end of chain device. Not important maybe if you have a new mac Pro with six ports, but essential if you edit with a laptop.

(click for larger image)

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We understand that most people won't be doing Ultra Hd or 4K at this point in time, but it is good to have the ability to go large should a job arrive that needs it. 

UltraStudio 4K Key Features
• Dual Link 6G-SDI compatible with SD, HD-SDI and 3G-SDI,  to support SD, HD, Ultra HD up to 60p and 4K.
• Compatible with Mac OS X computers with Thunderbolt™ 2 and Thunderbolt.
• SDI inputs include full SDI re-clocking for capture from poor quality SDI sources.
• HDMI in and out, supports SD and HD formats up to 1080p60, frame packing 3D and 4K.
• Component analog in and out.
• Component analog switches to s-video and composite. 
• 2 channel balanced analog audio in and out. Additional RCA HiFi audio in.
• 2 channel AES/EBU unbalanced audio in and out.
• Timecode in and out on XLR connectors
• Genlock/tri-sync input.
• Sony™ compatible RS-422 deck control.
• Supports uncompressed 8/10 bit and compressed video capture and playback.
• Supports Ultra HD and 4K DCI capture and playback using new Single Link 6G-SDI or Dual Link 3G-SDI connections and HDMI.
• Capture/playback of side by side, line by line, top and bottom and frame packing 3D via HDMI.
• Capture/playback of side by side, line by line, top and bottom and dual stream 3D via SDI.
• Includes hardware up down and cross conversion on playback.
• Includes hardware SD and HD keying.
• Supports Final Cut Pro X , Avid Media Composer 7® Adobe® Premiere® Pro CC6, Adobe® Photoshop® CC6, Adobe ® After Effects® CC6 , DaVinci Resolve and more.
• Includes free developer SDK
• Supports free DaVinci Resolve Lite software.