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Sony HVR-A1 and HDR-HC Series
Sony's latest single-CMOS additions to their HDV camcorder line.


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Old December 11th, 2006, 02:47 PM   #16
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Mikko, can you elaborate a little on that then? What do you recommend for smooth editing and playback of HD?

See this is where I (and likely some others trying to build a solid HD system) are getting confused in terms of hardware specs needed for a good system.

Some say dual core, some say dual processor... and some say it's all in the card.

Having said that, an article on http://www.videoguys.com/HDV.html#system highly recommends the FX Quadro cards since the range in speed of graphic memory bandwidth from 17.6GB/sec to even 40GB/sec.
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Old December 11th, 2006, 04:30 PM   #17
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...and to follow up with my last post I also just read that Sony Vegas 7 does not use GPU power available in Quadro FX cards... so anything like a FX540 or similar will do.

Use Premiere Pro however and it's a different story you need the GPU power.
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Old December 11th, 2006, 04:30 PM   #18
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...and to follow up with my last post I also just read that Sony Vegas 7 does not use GPU power available in Quadro FX cards... so anything like a FX540 or similar will do.

Use Premiere Pro however and it's a different story you need the GPU power.

Okay @#% it , I'm buying a MAC ; )
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Old December 12th, 2006, 12:35 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Dennis Hingsberg
Use Premiere Pro however and it's a different story you need the GPU power.
No you don't. Quadro cards are basically hardware accelerated opengl 2.0 cards. They are for 3d-work. Premiere needs processor power, but some plugins (which you will never use) are 3d-accelerated.

After Effects utilises opengl more.

What you really need is lots of memory and a great cpu.

It's funny that the hdv handbook article is recommending quadro cards instead of gaming cards when they are basically rebadged gaming cards with different drivers. How much bandwidth do you really need? It's not like they're texturing gaming worlds, just displaying one picture at a time.
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Old December 12th, 2006, 04:15 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Dennis Hingsberg
This question is for Tim or Larry...

With your dual processor systems, what frame rate and output resolution are you able to preview your editing timeline and please also include the setting ie. preview/best or full/auto, etc.. (this is if you're using Vegas, I'm not sure if AVID displays playback framerate)

As far as "how powerful a system has to be for HD" I've noticed that capturing HD footage does not seem to be as intensive as playing back from a timeline at full frame rate (ie. 29.97). Throw a filter or two on your footage and then watch your PC bog down and grind to a halt.

So the real question for the guys using dual processor PC's with the Nivida cards is what's the "highest" output you can get out your PC before taxing out the CPU?

A killer dual core 2GB of RAM high end Nividia FX card is pretty useless if you can only preview your timeline at a 320x180 preview/good setting.
Dennis,

I can't give you any numbers yet because I'm still buying all the pieces! I just received Avid Xpress Studio Complete today and hope to have everything installed by the weekend. When I bought my workstation, I just went with one of Avid's "qualified" systems (HP xw8200) and bumped it up to the fastest CPUs available at the time I placed the order (3.6 GHz Xeon), and went with 4GB of RAM (Avid recommended 2GB).

As far as the Nvidia Quadro cards, I went with the Quadro FX 1400. Avid supposedly makes heavy use of OpenGL, especially in the Studio suite. I think that's why they push the Quadro's so hard. At least that's what I've read in various places.

Once I have everything up and running, AND teach myself how to use all these nifty new toys, I'll be happy to let you know what this thing will do.

Aloha,

Larry

"So many hobbies, so little time..."
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Old December 12th, 2006, 02:00 PM   #21
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Cool Larry - if you get some numbers please post 'em! That would be great...
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Old December 29th, 2006, 09:59 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Mikko Lopponen
No you don't. Quadro cards are basically hardware accelerated opengl 2.0 cards. They are for 3d-work. Premiere needs processor power, but some plugins (which you will never use) are 3d-accelerated.

After Effects utilises opengl more.

What you really need is lots of memory and a great cpu.

It's funny that the hdv handbook article is recommending quadro cards instead of gaming cards when they are basically rebadged gaming cards with different drivers. How much bandwidth do you really need? It's not like they're texturing gaming worlds, just displaying one picture at a time.
I disagree Quadro cards is not a rebadged gaming card with different drivers, otherwise people would just be installing these "drivers" to the cheaper Geforce cards in order to obtain Quadro features.

Differences...

Quote:
There are notable differences between Quadro and GeForce cards, and a great effort is put into creating the perfect solution for both parties.


Anti-aliased points and lines for wire frame display

A unique feature of Quadro GPUs is supporting anti-aliased lines in hardware, which has nothing in common with GeForce's full-scene anti-aliasing. It works for lines (but not for shaded polygons) without sacrificing system performance or taking extra video memory for over-sampling. Since this feature is standardized by OpenGL, it is supported by most professional applications.


OpenGL logic operations

Another unique feature of Quadro GPUs is supporting OpenGL Logical Operations which can be implemented as the last step in the rendering pipeline before contents is written to the frame buffer. For example workstation applications can use this functionality to mark a selection by a simple XOR function. When this function is done in hardware, such significant performance loss as a GeForce adapter would cause will not happen. OpenGL can be used for either consumer or workstation adapters.

The most common applications for GeForce adapters are full-screen OpenGL games. CAD applications work with OpenGL windows in combination with 2D-elements.


Up to eight clip regions (GeForce supports one)

A typical workstation application contains 3D and 2D elements. And while view ports display window-based OpenGL function, menus, rollups and frames are still 2D elements. They often overlap each other. Depending on how they are handled by the graphics hardware, overlapping windows may noticeably affect visual quality and graphics performance. When windows are not overlapped, the entire contents of the color buffer can be transferred to the frame buffer in a single, continuous rectangular region. However, if windows do overlap, transfer of data from the color buffer to the frame buffer must be broken into a series of smaller, discontinuous rectangular regions. These rectangular regions are referred to as "clip" regions.


GeForce Hardware supports only one clip region which is sufficient for displaying menus in OpenGL. Quadro GPUs support up to 8 clip regions in hardware, keeping up the performance in normal workflow using CAD/DCC applications.


Hardware accelerated clip planes

Clip planes allow specific sections of 3D-objects to be displayed so that users can look through the solid objects for visualizing assemblies. For this reason, many professional CAD/DCC applications do provide clip planes. The GPU of the Quadro family supports clip-plane acceleration in hardware - a significant improvement in performance when they are used in professional applications.


Optimization on Memory usage for multiple graphics windows

Another feature offered by the GPUs of Quadro family is Quadro memory management optimization, which efficiently allocates and shares memory resources between concurrent graphics windows and applications. In many situations, this feature directly affects application performance and offers considerable benefits over consumer-oriented GeForce GPU family.

The graphics memory is used for frame buffer, textures, caching and data. NVIDIA's unified memory architecture allocates the memory resources dynamically instead of keeping a fixed size for the frame buffer. Instead of wasting the unused frame buffer memory, UMA (Unified Memory Architecture) allows it to be used for other buffers and textures. When applications require more memory from quad-buffered stereo or full scene anti-aliasing, manage resources efficiently has becomre a more important issue.

Support for two-sided lighting

Quadro hardware supports two-sided lighting. Non-solid objects may display triangles from their "backside" when viewing the objects from the inside. Two-sided lighting prevents the lighting effect from dropping to zero when the object surface normal points away from the lighting source. As a result, these "backward-facing" triangles will remain visible from all possible viewing angles.


Hardware overlay planes

The user interface of many professional applications often require elements to be interactively drawn on top of a 3D model or scene. The cursor, pop-up menus or dialogs will appear on top of the 3D-viewport. These elements can damage the contents of the covered windows or affect their performance and interactivity.


To avoid this, most professional applications use overlay planes. Overlay planes allow items to be drawn on top of the main graphics window without damaging the contents of the windows underneath. Windows drawn in the overlay plane can contain text, graphics etc - the same as any normal window.


The planes also support the transparency function, which when set allows pixels from underneath the overlayed window to show through. They are created as two separate layers. This prevents possible damage to the main graphics window and it also improves performance. Likewise, showing an overlayed window as transparent with graphics inside allows items in the user interface to be drawn over the main graphics window.


Clearing and redrawing only the overlayed window is significantly faster than redrawing the main graphics window. This is how animated user-interface components can be drawn over 3D models or scenes.


Support for quad-buffered stereo for shutter glasses

The Quadro GPU family supports quad-buffered stereo, but GeForce GPU family does not. Quad-buffered stereo is a type of OpenGL functionality which does not depend on any special stereo hardware to show the effect. Two pictures, both double-buffered, are generated. Display is done alternately or interlaced, depending on the output device.


Many professional applications like 3ds max, SolidWorks or StudioTools allow users to view models or scenes in three dimensions using a stereoscopic display. It can be done by a plug-in like in Solidworks, an application driver like MAXtreme in 3ds max, an external viewer like QuadroView for autocad-based products, or by the application itself. The use of stereoscopic display is to have an overview in complex wire frame constructions, making walkthroughs much more realistic and impressive or simply to improve the display of large 3D-scenes. Stereo support on Quadro GPU family significantly benefits professional applications that demand stereo viewing capabilities.


Unified driver Architecture

Quadro GPUs provide several additional features and benefits for professional optimization and certification in applications.


Application Optimization


Quadro works closely with all workstation application developers that include Alias, Adobe, Autodesk, Avid, Bentley, Dassault, Discreet, Multigen-Paradigm, Newtek, Nothing Real, Parametric Technology Corp. (PTC), SDRC, Softimage, SolidEdge, SolidWorks, and Unigraphics, and it ensures that every application takes full advantage of the features provided by GPUs and that performance of graphics drivers are fully optimized.


Certification

Quadro drivers undergo rigorous in-house quality and regression testing with various workstation applications. By testing new workstation drivers against numerous applications, higher quality drivers can be released.
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Old January 1st, 2007, 04:47 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Conrad Gibbs
with different drivers, otherwise people would just be installing these "drivers" to the cheaper Geforce cards in order to obtain Quadro features.
People were doing just that. A new bios and whallup, a geforce had turned into a quadro.

http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/72

That article is from a couple of years ago.
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Old January 1st, 2007, 06:07 PM   #24
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Interesting. This is the first thing I've seen that says anything remotely close to this.

I'm not completely convinced, but I'm sure going to do some more research.
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Old January 1st, 2007, 10:52 PM   #25
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I kinda skimmed this thread, but I don't see Joseph mentioning what NLE(s) he plans to use. The issue of whether a high-end graphic card will be helpful or not depends entirely on that.

Most (all?) of the items on Conrad's list will have no bearing whatsoever on Premier Pro performance (for example) - in that case, as Mikko says, better to spend the $$ on a faster processor with more cores.

AfterEffects makes greater use of OpenGL for some (but certainly not all) of its features, and other programs like Vegas and Liquid have their own different functionalities.
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Old January 2nd, 2007, 03:23 PM   #26
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I will mostly be using vegas 7.
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Old January 3rd, 2007, 07:56 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by Mikko Lopponen
People were doing just that. A new bios and whallup, a geforce had turned into a quadro.

http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/72

That article is from a couple of years ago.
The last Geforce you can apply SoftQuadro is the Geforce 6800...beyond that its unworkable...

With Quadro FX, its the added 3d capabilities and features and certified/stable drivers you're paying for.

You'll generally find that both Quadro and GeForce will provide excellent performance. The Quadro however will provide additional performance characteristics in OpenGL applications. The finely tuned drivers will provide application specific optimizations for you, as well as enhanced anti-aliasing support.

The Quadro cards also support additional OpenGL calls which may not be supported in the GeForce drivers. These additional functions are mainly utilized in hardware based final frame rendering in most cases, such as Mayas hardware renderer and NVIDIA Gelato. There has been notable image quality differences between Quadro and GeForce in these respects.

One additional thing to note as well though is you will be paying a premium regardless of these advantages for hardware support and quality assurance. Additional testing is generally done on each GPU and board that will be classified as a Quadro to insure that it will be functioning properly both when you get it, and years down the road. Support I believe is lifetime as well.

Last edited by Conrad Gibbs; January 3rd, 2007 at 08:32 AM.
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Old January 8th, 2007, 12:16 PM   #28
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Happy New Year

I finally upgraded to a dual core E6700- 2 gb ram- 500gbhd- nvida quadro fx1400 and it is absolutely awesome! My new system really flies.

However, I have noticed a new little issue, and this concerns Vegas Video 7. Iíve been in post production, for the better part of last year, on my first feature film and Iíve noticed that Vegas does not seem to handle footage that has been shot with red lighting. I see severe pixalation on the footage as well as some artifacts. I thought that it might be a codec issue, but now Iím not sure.

To see a sample of what Iím talking about- view my trailer, hereís the link:

http://www.deleoproductions.com/prosandcons.htm

Have any of you experienced any of this?
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Old January 8th, 2007, 12:55 PM   #29
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Hi Joe, checked out your trailer - great stuff... liked the actress too!

I don't think the issue has anything to do with Vegas. I remember an old post I read on this with regards to SD video and the DV format. The issue is more related to limitations around the DV codec. In particular the way the chroma (color) information is sampled versus the luma (black + white) information. (YUV information is sampled at 4:1:1 for NTSC DV)

The technical explanation (taken from www.adamwilt.com/DVvsMJPEG.html ) for why it happens is because of the down-sampling technique that takes place when going from RGB color of your image, to YUV color space 4:4:4 which then gets downsampled to 4:1:1 so for use by the DV algorithm. Basically 4 times your color information is thrown away and the result can be pixeled edges around color.

Many SD camera's have this issue including XL1, XL2, VX2000, PD150's.. . it's mainly observed by people when shooting the color "red".

A fix for it that I have read of (if your software lets you do it) is to do a 4 pixel horizontal blur on the chroma channels of your video. If your software doesn't let you do it, you might have to seperate your channels, perform the blur, then recombine your channels to one picture. There is probably some easy way to do this.

I just found this free resource by VASST explaining how to do it: www.vasst.com/search.aspx?text=Chromablur but I think you have to sign-up to read it.

Let me know how you make out with this.
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Old January 8th, 2007, 01:57 PM   #30
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Thanks man! see ya tonight!
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