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MOTU display their HDX-SDI with Thunderbolt running with FCPX

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MOTO Inc is a relative stranger to the capture and playback market for video, so we thought we'd take a look at the new Thunderbolt equipped HDX-SDI.

The video capture hardware industry is made up of the three giants, BlackMagic Design, AJA Video Systems and Matrox Digital Video Solutions. They all make good products, but tend to eclipse the newer companies to the market such as MOTU.

To put this straight we visited the MOTU stand to take a look at the HDX-SDI with Thunderbolt. How could we not take notice when one of MOTU's other products, an audio unit won a "Most Badass Interface" award.

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It's not the first time the box has been here at the Convention Centre, it debuted back in January 2012 at CES.

The HDX-SDI with Thunderbolt is a $895 19 inch rackmount capture and playback device that is very similar to their existing HDX-SDI, but benefits from the now 'industry standard' addition of Thunderbolt. (End of chain device)

The box works with FCPX (obviously playback only) Final Cut Pro 7, Media Composer 6, and Premiere Pro. The HDX-SDI with Thundrbolt supports all standard SD and HD video formats up to and including 1080p30 (720p, 1080i, 1080p & 1080PsF).

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For the best-possible image quality, users can capture uncompressed pixel-for-pixel HD video input via HD-SDI or HDMI with 4:2:2 10-bit color depth and full-raster 1920 x 1080 resolution. For compressed workflows, users can choose ProRes, ProRes HQ, Avid DNxHD, or the codec of their choice.

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Advanced features include ASC CDL color grading, RS-422 (SONY 9-pin) machine control, bi-level and tri-level video ref sync, time code in/out with front-panel time code display, 16 channels of simultaneous audio input and output, multi-stem 5.1 and 7.1 surround sound capturing/monitoring, 8-channel analog audio I/O on quarter-inch TRS connectors, 8-channel AES/EBU digital audio I/O, 8-channel SDI and HDMI audio with embedding/de-embedding, and more. Time code support includes LTC, VITC (SD analog), D-VITC (SD-SDI) and embedded (SD/HD-SDI).

Although the box has SDI and HD SDI outputs, it won't do any up or down conversion. It also seemed a bit limited in codecs, but hopefully more will become available in time.

As MOTU have an audio hardware background, the audio monitoring has a few nice touches such as audio level monitoring, a headphone socket with volume control and also a cool timecode readout. Hopefully the video software component of the box will be developed to turn this in to a very versatile tool.


Written by
Top BloggerThought Leader

I am the Editor-in-Chief of FCP.co and have run the website since its inception ten years ago.

I have also worked as a broadcast and corporate editor for over 30 years, starting on one inch tape, working through many formats, right up to today's NLEs.

Under the name Idustrial Revolution, I have written and sold plugins for Final Cut Pro for 13 years.

I was made a Freeman of Lichfield through The Worshipful Company of Smiths (established 1601). Though I haven't yet tried to herd a flock of sheep through the city centre!

Current Editing

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2020 has been busy, the beginning of the year was finishing off a new property series (cut on FCP) for Channel 4 called The Great House Giveaway. I also designed and built the majority of the graphics as Motion templates. It has been a great success and the shows grabbed more viewers in the 4pm weekday slot than any previous strand. It has been recommissioned by C4 for 60 episodes, including prime-time versions and five themed programmes. The shows have also been nominated for a 2021 BAFTA.

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Although both were postponed to later in the year, I worked again on ITV's coverage of the Tour de France and La Vuelta. 2020 was my 25th year of editing the TdF and my 20th year as lead editor. The Tour was the first broadcast show to adopt FCPX working for multiple editors on shared storage.

 

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Covid cancelled some of the regular corporate events that I edit such as trade shows & events. I was lucky however to edit, from home, on projects for Amazon Kindle, Amazon Black Friday, Mastercard and very proud to have helped local charitable trust Kendall & Wall secure lottery funding.

As for software, my weapon of choice is Final Cut Pro and Motion, but I also have a good knowledge and broadcast credits with Adobe Premiere Pro, MOGRT design and Photoshop.

Plugin Design & Development

I'm the creative force behind Idustrial Revolution, one of the oldest Final Cut Pro plugin developers. It hosts a range of commercial and free plugins on the site. One free plugin was downloaded over a thousand times within 24 hours of release.

I also take on custom work, whether it is adapting an existing plugin for a special use or designing new plugins for clients from scratch. Having a good knowledge of editing allows me to build-in flexibility and more importantly, usability.

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Now in its 10th year and 4th redesign, running FCP.co has given me knowledge on how to run a large CMS- you are currently reading my bio from the database! Although it sounds corny, I am pretty well up on social media trends & techniques, especially in the video sector. The recent Covid restrictions has enabled live FCP.co shows online. This involves managing a Zoom Webinar through Restream.io to YouTube and Facebook. 

The Future

I'm always open to new ideas and opportunities, so please get in touch at editor (at) fcp.co. I've judged film competitions, presented workflow techniques to international audiences and come up with ideas for TV shows and software programs!

 

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