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Cross platform digital intermediates for independent filmmakers.

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Old July 10th, 2010, 01:51 PM   #16
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 3
Steve, what BlackMagic hardware have you tried using with your ASUS U3S6?
And is NEC aware of the issues you have encountered?
Aaron Paul is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 10th, 2010, 05:24 PM   #17
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Chicago, IL
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Aaron, I have not used any BM hardware.

About NEC: several people at my local microcenter know about the driver issues and there are reports online as well.
Steve Kalle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 11th, 2010, 04:01 PM   #18
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Melbourne
Posts: 1

Just to clear up a few things regarding USB 3.0:

There should be no serious issues regarding the NEC (now known as 'Renesas') driver. You should download their latest one (version I think...). Firmware also should be at version, but this is less important.

I'm not sure why you are having problems with windows 7 crashing. I have used many NEC cards in many machines and have not seen this issue. Maybe you have a faulty card?

Now, regarding USB3.0 cards in general there are some very important issues that you should be aware of:

The NEC USB3.0 host controller is a single lane PCIe Gen 2 device. PCIe Gen 2 is 5Gb/s which, surprise surprise, is exactly the same bandwidth as USB3.0 (their specifications are very similar at the electrical level). It is however possible for this device to run on a PCIe Gen 1 slot, which is only 2.5Gb/s. Now obviously this is going to impact your USB3.0 bandwidth.

Whether your USB3.0 host plug in card (or on board USB3.0 host for that matter) gets a Gen 2 PCIe connection is down to your motherboard. I've seen some motherboards that always give a Gen 2 PCIe connection, some that never do and some that have BIOS settings to allow you to control it (but then override this when other cards are plugged in the system). As general advice I would say that X58 based motherboards always seem to give PCIe Gen 2 and P55 based motherboards are variable.

So, in order for you to *guarantee* that your USB3.0 host gets a PCIe Gen 2 connection you need to use a USB3.0 card (or motherboard) that uses a 2 lane PCIe Gen 1 to 1 lane PCIe Gen 2 bridge (like the ASUS U3S6 card which uses a PLX PCIe-PCIe bridge chip in front of the USB3.0 host controller).

The ASUS card is a 4 lane PCIe card so you obviously need an appropriate slot to plug this in. But the important thing is it doesn't need to be PCIe Gen 2 so if you have a 4/8/16 lane Gen 1 slot then you will have the full 5Gb/s bandwidth.

Clear as mud?
Matthew W. Smith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 11th, 2010, 08:43 PM   #19
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Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 1,554
Matthew, I already stated that I used both the ASUS U3S6 card and the Siig Expresscard USB 3. I installed the ASUS in both of my desktop PCs, a HP Z800 and a custom built w/ ASUS P6T motherboard. For the Siig adapter, I used it in a Dell laptop and my custom built PC through a Siig PCIe to Expresscard adapter (which I use to download SxS cards and have also used it with the Matrox Mini).

The HP Z800 has Win 7 Pro x64, custom PC has Win 7 Ultimate x64, and I tried both Win 7 Pro x64 and 32 bit in the Dell.

The Sata 6 on the U3S6 worked just fine.

On the HP Z800, the display was completely screwed up after installing the NEC drivers. At first, I thought my Quadro FX3800 was bad but I have Win 7 installed on 2 different drives in the HP, and Win 7 on my 'work' drive was completely fine. I even tried restoring to before the NEC drivers, but my display was still screwed up; thus, my conclusion that the NEC drivers corrupted my installation.

I still have the ASUS card and several Vantec USB 3 enclosures; so, I do want it to work.
Steve Kalle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 23rd, 2010, 04:12 PM   #20
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Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Posts: 25
Received Blackmagic Shuttle, installed OK, can monitor from AE CS4.

Wondering if Cineform has any further news about making this device work with Firstlight?

(I am currently using v420b240 - does not appear to work with this.)
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