A Quick Guide to Setting Up AspectHD/Premiere Pro/Matrox Parhelia APVe at DVinfo.net

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Old December 17th, 2005, 10:12 PM   #1
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A Quick Guide to Setting Up AspectHD/Premiere Pro/Matrox Parhelia APVe

I just went through this setup of these elements in my video editing computer: two analog (VGA input) computer monitors, an HDTV display, a Matrox Parhelia APVe (PCIExpress) video card, Premiere Pro 1.5 and AspectHD. I ran into a few issues and wanted to go through a step by step for setup that I achieved with the help of David Newman and Patricia Lamm.

First, this arrangement allows you to use two VGA computer displays (in my case each was set to 1280x1024) and a separate HDTV television (through its analog YPbPr input). The two computer displays share the Adobe Premiere work windows (monitors, timeline, project bin, history window, etc.). The HDTV displays a preview of whatever you play in your Premiere monitor window - either Preview or Program. This arrangement is especially valuable in that it gives you the ability to preview a high quality HDTV signal while you work.

Note that this arrangement involves using all VGA and HDTV analog connections, not DVI. DVI connections introduce complications that may prohibit you from setting up Premiere this way.

Here's how it works:

1. Set up your monitors according to the pictorial guide in the Matrox documentation (for two HD15 monitors and one HDTV). Be careful to check that each monitor is connected exactly to the displays as they are in the guide. This is just about all the documentation that comes with the Parhelia.
2. Install Premiere, AspectHD and the Parhelia software that came with the card. Reboot.
3. Click the Matrox PowerDesk-HF icon in the system tray.
4. Click "Multi-Display Setup."
5. Under Current Display Setup, make sure it reads "2 displays, Independent mode + 1 feature display (HDTV)." Radio button 3 should be selected (I am using independent displays, not stretched mode). If you click on "Display Properties..." you will get the standard Windows Display Settings Dialogue, where you can set each display's resolution and color depth. Click "Back."
6. Click "Video Playback Settings." Select the "Use video overlay" button and the "Use PureVideo/DVDMax" button. Press "Back."
7. Select "Monitor Adjustments." Click on "Settings for feature display... ." Click on the picture of the HDTV and set its properties to match the native display of your own HDTV. (Mine is a 27" LCD HDTV monitor with a native resolution of 1280x720. Select the setting closest to yours. You may have to play with these settings to get optimum results from your HDTV display.) You can now close PowerDesk.
7. In Windows, check the HDTV display by bringing up Windows Media Player and playing any video file on your computer. You should see it on the HDTV display.
8. If that goes OK, start Premiere. Select "New Project" and when the dialogue opens, select "HDV," then your camera's specs (such as 1080i 30fps). Select "Custom Settings" and under "Editing Mode" be sure to select "Cineform HD RT" (which is the Cineform real time mode). Leaving Premiere at the default HDV editing mode, without selecting the Cineform mode, will result in no display on the HDTV monitor. It will also result in your not getting real time playback of the Cineform effects. Start a new Premiere project.
9. Place your Premiere monitor window on the secondary display and arrange your other Premiere Windows as you wish. (If you don't you may get video on the HDTV, but not the Premiere preview or program monitor window during playback.)
10. Play something in the preview or program monitor. You should see it on the HDTV display.

After I followed these steps, I was up and editing with a full HD preview window on my 27" LCD. This represents a much better way of previewing your work than looking at the small Program window in Premeire.

Thanks to David Newman and Patricia Lamm for helping me through this process. It was a lot better than waiting for Matrox tech support to get back to me.

And Patricia, it was good to see a woman on one of these forums. My experience tells me that women are just as capable as men in these sorts of endeavors, but there seems to be a cultural bias that prevents many women from pursuing this sort of thing. I hope we can get past that and see a lot more women in this field. It would be much richer if that happened.
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Old December 17th, 2005, 10:25 PM   #2
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One other thing - you get video on the HDTV display only when you hit play on the preview or program monitors in Premiere, or when you hit space or enter. Once you begin to scrub through the timeline, the image will disappear from the HDTV monitor. Scrubbing alone will not give you an HDTV image.
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Old December 18th, 2005, 12:33 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joseph Clark
One other thing - you get video on the HDTV display only when you hit play on the preview or program monitors in Premiere, or when you hit space or enter. Once you begin to scrub through the timeline, the image will disappear from the HDTV monitor. Scrubbing alone will not give you an HDTV image.
In Aspect HD's playback settings panel (within Premiere) you can enable scrubbing to the Parahelia by checking "Scrub video to external overlay surface."
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Old December 18th, 2005, 01:31 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Newman
In Aspect HD's playback settings panel (within Premiere) you can enable scrubbing to the Parahelia by checking "Scrub video to external overlay surface."
Thanks, David. Good to know and very helpful. I just finished a 16 minute rough cut of a piece about our Missouri Botanical Garden shot a few weeks ago with my HDV camera. The Premiere/AspectHD workflow is so fluid and easy, it's a real joy to work with. The only real problem is that all the footage I've shot in the past is hard to watch, now that HDV has arrived. I just keep wishing I'd had it for that trip or that event.
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Old December 18th, 2005, 08:07 AM   #5
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Joseph, I'm glad you got it to work. Thanks for taking the time to write out the step-by-step instructions, which will save a lot of people many hours of work.

I'll add my own configuration information, in case someone wants a set-up like mine. I have 2 Dell 2405FPW's and one HDTV. I really wanted to make use of the 1920 x 1200 resolution (or second choice, 1680 x 1050) in the secondary display. This is because I have been frustrated when editing in any resolution that did not have a 1.6 ratio (even with the correct ratio showing up in my HDTV) because people-proportions just weren't right in the secondary display (my main working display).

Matrox has a beta utility called Monitor Manager which helps get resolutions set up, but I was never able to get this to work in the configuration that I wanted. I also preferred using digital (DVI) output to the second display and felt that since the Matrox APVe card was supposed to be capable of doing this I should take advantage of it. Unfortunately, after MANY trials and calls to Matrox, I gave up using the Matrox card + Monitor Manager to achieve my goal of 1 VGA monitor (with no special resolution), 1 DVI monitor (1920 x 1200, or 1650 x 1050), and a non-banded HD-display on my HDTV. (Also, you should give up trying to drive 2 DVI monitors + HDTV using the APVe -- no can do, according to the Matrox people.)

My final resolution was to get a Radeon 9250 PCI graphics card ($39 on sale at CompUSA) and use it to drive the primary VGA monitor. The Matrox APVe drives the 1 DVI monitor and the HDTV, using the cable setup described in the Matrox instructions. You have to install the driver for the Radeon card prior to installing the Matrox drivers if you want the VGA to be primary. I was then able to get full 1920 x 1200 resolution on the secondary monitor and non-banded HD output on the HDTV. One happy camper here...
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Old December 18th, 2005, 10:12 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patricia Lamm
Joseph, I'm glad you got it to work. Thanks for taking the time to write out the step-by-step instructions, which will save a lot of people many hours of work.

I'll add my own configuration information, in case someone wants a set-up like mine. I have 2 Dell 2405FPW's and one HDTV. I really wanted to make use of the 1920 x 1200 resolution (or second choice, 1680 x 1050) in the secondary display. This is because I have been frustrated when editing in any resolution that did not have a 1.6 ratio (even with the correct ratio showing up in my HDTV) because people-proportions just weren't right in the secondary display (my main working display).

Matrox has a beta utility called Monitor Manager which helps get resolutions set up, but I was never able to get this to work in the configuration that I wanted. I also preferred using digital (DVI) output to the second display and felt that since the Matrox APVe card was supposed to be capable of doing this I should take advantage of it. Unfortunately, after MANY trials and calls to Matrox, I gave up using the Matrox card + Monitor Manager to achieve my goal of 1 VGA monitor (with no special resolution), 1 DVI monitor (1920 x 1200, or 1650 x 1050), and a non-banded HD-display on my HDTV. (Also, you should give up trying to drive 2 DVI monitors + HDTV using the APVe -- no can do, according to the Matrox people.)

My final resolution was to get a Radeon 9250 PCI graphics card ($39 on sale at CompUSA) and use it to drive the primary VGA monitor. The Matrox APVe drives the 1 DVI monitor and the HDTV, using the cable setup described in the Matrox instructions. You have to install the driver for the Radeon card prior to installing the Matrox drivers if you want the VGA to be primary. I was then able to get full 1920 x 1200 resolution on the secondary monitor and non-banded HD output on the HDTV. One happy camper here...
That's quite an impressive editing environment, Patricia. Just to be clear, you are using DVI on both the Matrox and the Radeon cards, right, and both at 1920x1200? The problem with 1280x1024 displays, as you point out (and which some folks don't realize) is that the display is 5x4, not 4x3, so the display is not accurate in the Premiere program monitor. It's squashed.

No matter how good the computer monitor, there's a real valuable advantage in having the large real time HDTV output to watch. I'm enjoying the Parhelia arrangement.

David, if you'd like, we might be able to clean up that guide a little. Maybe with Patricia's and my input, we could cover the bases a little more effectively. What do you say, Patricia?
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Old December 18th, 2005, 12:31 PM   #7
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Actually, I'm using analog input to the VGA monitor. The Radeon can drive both analog and DVI, but this particular monitor is on an analog KVM switch so I wanted to keep it analog for the time being. So I have one analog monitor at 1920 x 1200, one DVI monitor at 1920 x 1200, but only a small (Sony 17") widescreen HDTV.
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Old December 19th, 2005, 05:01 AM   #8
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Just to add a note: you have to update to the newest drivers 1.10.x.x, otherwise you get hickups with apve“s output while switching between aftereffects an premierepro.

alex
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Old December 26th, 2005, 04:13 PM   #9
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Another Parhelia multi-display choice

Some may be interested in this multi-display choice: Again it uses the Parhelia APVe but is attached DVI to two Gateway FPD2185W 21 inch panels which are speced 1680x1050 native with support for 720p and 1080i on both the DVI and analog component inputs and are currently $599 each.

When not doing video editing, they are arranged as two independent desktop displays. To prepare for video editing I use Matrox PowerDesk to change to "one display and one feature". After reboot but no change in cabling, I have Premiere/AspectHD on the primary display and a full screen monitor which at 1680x1050 is at least as good as HDV, if not quite 1920 across. At other times I could also use the HD/YUV analog inputs to attach to a cable box to watch TV on the secondary while working on the primary too.

A couple of notes: The MatroxMonitorManager could never set the uncommon display size, but the EzTune software that came with the monitors could. Second, in PowerDesk/Playback/PureDVDsettings, be sure to declare your "TV" to be 16:9. This results in full screen monitor on HDV which is slightly stretched vertically, since the display is 16:10, not 16:9. I've requested Matrox add that screen proportion choice. I'm sure there will be more of these type of displays as Windows Vista and HDV become more common. By the way, the screens do support HDCP so copy protected material will display (a Vista requrement too).
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Old December 30th, 2005, 01:58 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patricia Lamm
My final resolution was to get a Radeon 9250 PCI graphics card ($39 on sale at CompUSA) and use it to drive the primary VGA monitor. The Matrox APVe drives the 1 DVI monitor and the HDTV, using the cable setup described in the Matrox instructions.
Are these both in the PCI Express ports?

I was under the impression it is impossible to have two DIFFERENT video cards in the PCI Express ports. I am curious because I plan on having a 7800GTX and the Matrox or the Quadro for Component Output. I keep being told that I can't do it but what you've described is a perfect example of it...
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Old December 30th, 2005, 08:33 AM   #11
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Are these both in the PCI Express ports?

I was under the impression it is impossible to have two DIFFERENT video cards in the PCI Express ports. I am curious because I plan on having a 7800GTX and the Matrox or the Quadro for Component Output. I keep being told that I can't do it but what you've described is a perfect example of it...
No, that would be a perfect world. I have the Matrox card in the PCI Express port and my second graphics card is PCI only. I'd love to have a 7800GT or GTX as my second card.
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Old December 30th, 2005, 09:09 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Patricia Lamm
No, that would be a perfect world. I have the Matrox card in the PCI Express port and my second graphics card is PCI only. I'd love to have a 7800GT or GTX as my second card.
Even with the ASUS A8N 32 SLI Deluxe?

The 32 refering to dual 16xPCI-Express ports; to me it should be possible... Do you know for sure that it can't be done?

If it can't, I'm going to have to make a decision to go with one over the other... and that will be a difficult decision to make...
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Old December 30th, 2005, 04:42 PM   #13
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Even with the ASUS A8N 32 SLI Deluxe?

The 32 refering to dual 16xPCI-Express ports; to me it should be possible... Do you know for sure that it can't be done?
No, I don't know for sure with that MB. Sorry if my reply was misleading. The "perfect world" replied to my setup, which doesn't have a dual PCI-Express slot.
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Old December 30th, 2005, 07:46 PM   #14
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Good news Patricia,

Over at the Matrox forums, someone has said the following:

Quote:
A8N-SLI + XFX 6800 GT PCI-E + Matrox Parhelia APVe PCI-E ===>> 5 monitors alive ! ! Very Happy :D Very Happy :D Very Happy :D
That's good news!
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Old January 1st, 2006, 11:57 AM   #15
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Wow, that's great news... except that a new MB isn't in my budget right now! But I'm glad you're going to get it to work.
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