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Hugh DiMauro March 23rd, 2005 03:36 PM

Also, if you're using a laptop with 512 mg of ram, make sure you have some space set aside for your page file (that section of your hard drive that is put aside as "ram" to supplement your regular ram which all ads up to "virtual memory". Virtual memory is RAM + Page File = Virtual memory). DV Rack may not capture unless you upgrade your ram chips to 1 GB or supplement your 512 mb with a hard drive page file.

Karl Soule March 24th, 2005 01:32 PM


Pat Sherman April 8th, 2005 07:50 AM

Karl da man..

HDV captures would be sweet, however I would like to before that I would like to see the SD version of it, have a little better project manager interface.

Maybe a menu that spells out where you want to save your clips.. Currently u just right-click anywhere and create a new project on the drive you want, and the clips go there. Just a end-user interface suggestion really..:)

Pat Sherman April 8th, 2005 07:54 AM

Before I bought my new setup I was using DV Rack with a PIII 500MHZ Laptop and the oem system drive at 4200 and it captured fine. Albeit it the menus were not very responsive..

Since them I went to:
IBM Thinkpad X31
Pentium M 1.6
Pyro DV PCMCIA Card W/ 6 Pin and 4 pin DV connections
Onboard 4 Pin DV Connector
I capture to a Lacie 320GB FW drive now..

I did notice that things went alot smoothing connecting the camera to the PCMCIA card and the drive to the laptop 1394 port.. I think maybe because they were using seperate resources..

Pat Sherman April 8th, 2005 08:04 AM

That is totally your call..

I'll start by giving your a little background for my decision. I currently have a full-blown certified Matrox RT.X100 desktop with mega ram, mega hard drive space and a 3.6GHZ processor.. This of course is my main editing system.

I have a second system I initially built a year ago which is a dell optiplex desktop with 500GB HD Editing Space, 1GB Ram, 2.8GHZ processor with the RT.X100 setup. I use this to help teach others how to edit and off-load smaller projects to it when my other system is working a large project. I also use it for my analog conversion system.

So then I stumbled across DV Rack and really I liked it initially because it's a DVR as well.. So it was time for me to get a system for it.. I just purchased a laptop that would double as a standard system for email, internet and photoshop and of course run DV Rack well..

I wasn't interested in editing on the road and frankly I never saw a need for it in my particular situation. So I didn't go with a full blown mobile editing laptop..

My final system for DV Rack:
IBM Thinkpad X31
Pentium-M 1.6Ghz
60GB OS Drive
Ati Graphics
1 OnBoard Firewire Port
1394 Pyro DV PC Card (Dual Firewire Ports)
External Lacie 320GB Firewire Drive

In closing I find this setup sufficient it's not the fastest processor or the best new technology, but it works.. However if DV Rack starts HD captures and I start shooting HD this laptop will not do..:)

Karl Soule April 8th, 2005 10:22 AM

How many of you plan on coming to NAB this year?

Christopher C. Murphy April 8th, 2005 11:13 AM

Karl, I'm going to NAB just to kick Serious Magic in the butt. (ok, not literally)

HDV should be #1 on your "to do" list!

Brent Marks April 8th, 2005 01:54 PM

Will SeriousMagic have DV-RACK ready for HDV at NAB??

Barry Green April 8th, 2005 04:24 PM

Sounds like that's what Karl was hinting at...

Karl Soule April 14th, 2005 12:28 PM

Ask me that question in a week. ;)

Christopher C. Murphy April 14th, 2005 12:33 PM


I just might have to buy a PC laptop.....damn it.

Brent Marks April 14th, 2005 01:13 PM

Please let it be true!

Christopher C. Murphy April 14th, 2005 01:39 PM

April Fool's is over, so it better not be!

Brent Marks April 19th, 2005 12:46 AM

So did they release it for HDV?!?!?!?

Hugh DiMauro April 21st, 2005 08:31 AM

DV Rack Question for Mr. Soule
How long of a firewire cord may I use with DV RACK?

Shannon Rawls April 21st, 2005 11:43 AM


Originally Posted by Hugh DiMauro
How long of a firewire cord may I use with DV RACK?

I have used a 75 foot 4-pin firewire cord with 100% success. Remember, digital video only uses about 1/4th the datarate that firewire provides, so long runs are OK. 15 feet is the maximum length to get 400mbs, but you can go up to 150 feet and run 100mbs no problem.

- ShannonRawls.com

Hugh DiMauro April 21st, 2005 11:51 AM

Is that taking into consideration shielded/braided "premium" cable or our good old garden variety bottom-of-the-line firewire cable? The reason why I ask is because those questions were thrown out to me when I made an inquiry at Serious Magic phone support. I was told that anything over six feet requires shielded/braided cable and maybe even "power boosters" if my laptop (plugged into wall current) and XL1s (battery powered) weren't powerful enough to push the signal through.

Are you using the "good stuff" or the "regular stuff?"

Thanks, Shannon.

Barry Green April 21st, 2005 12:07 PM

I've been using a 30-foot cable from Laird with no problems.

The FireWire specification calls for a maximum cable length of 4.5 meters, or under 15 feet. Anything longer than that is technically out-of-spec, so you would be best served to be using the very best cable you can get. Laird and some others are making long cables that seem to work. I don't know what magic they're employing to get past the length restrictions, but it is working.

Shannon Rawls April 21st, 2005 12:10 PM

good stuff.

i can't seem to find it online anymore to give you a link. I bought it from markertek.com but they dont seem to carry it any longer. Wow....i must have a classic cable then. *smile* I was gonna give it away, but I think i'll hold on to this puppy now. *smile*

either way, i dont think they make a 'cheap' 75 footer, so if you find one in that length, then you are probably ok. remember, DV is less then 100mbs, not 400mbs that the spec calls for, so thats why the longer cables are working without a problem.

- shannonrawls.com

Hugh DiMauro April 21st, 2005 12:51 PM

Thank you both very much for your prompt, courteous replies. Shannon, when you say "good stuff" do you mean the fancy, braided cable with the see-thru covering?

Hugh DiMauro April 27th, 2005 07:10 AM

How Do I Reset Clip Numbers?
How do I reset the clip numbers to start at #1 when starting a new project? I have a few different projects going on at once and only the first one starts with clip #1. The fourth project's first clip begins with clip #15 instead on #1. Why is this and how may I reset each new project's first clip to clip #1?

Colvin Eccleston April 27th, 2005 11:38 AM

I think it will start from 1 if you rename the first clip.

Mark Mapes April 27th, 2005 12:50 PM

Renaming DV Rack Clips
You can rename any DV Rack clip at any time (as long as the DVR isn't recording). Click the clip's name to set the cursor there, then revise it at will. Press Enter to apply the new name (or click anywhere that takes the focus away from the name field).

Each time you rename any clip, the new name becomes the base name for future clips. DV Rack appends a number to name to make it unique--and it's smart enough to keep incrementing the number until it finds one that's unique, so it will never overwrite an existing clip.

Hugh DiMauro April 28th, 2005 06:39 AM

I will try that again. I could have sworn that even though I changed the clip name, the numbers did not change but just to make sure (so I don't sound like the fool I am) I will try it again.


Dominic Jones May 2nd, 2005 01:28 PM

Yeah, update please - what's with all the teasing?!?

This'd be a godsend for us...

Gary Bettan May 2nd, 2005 02:12 PM

DV Rack HDV annpounced at NAB!
DV Rack for HDV was officially announced at NAB. It will be a $200 add-on for owners of DV Rack.

HDV PowerPak enables current users to acquire HDV footage natively.

April 18, 2005 (Las Vegas, NV) Booth # SL4910—Today at NAB 2005, Serious Magic, Inc.™ announced its HDV PowerPak for DV Rack. This solution allows videographers who own HDV cameras to capture, display and analyze high-resolution HDV content seamlessly into DV Rack. The HDV PowerPak for DV Rack will be available for $195 in late June 2005.

“HDV PowerPak for DV Rack should enable users to extract extremely high production value out of their Sony HDV cameras delivering high-quality results for their productions,” said Bob Ott, vice president of professional audio and video products in Sony Electronics’ Broadcast and Production Systems Division. “It’s an invaluable complement to Sony,s HVR-Z1U which is making its debut at NAB this year.”

We'll have more info later this month - and we will start taking back orders.


Barry Green May 2nd, 2005 07:05 PM

Yes it's coming, as Gary said. It's a plug-in pack for DV Rack itself. Along with the announcement, they also announced a permanent price reduction on DV Rack, so the whole package even including the HDV Power Pack will still cost no more than the original DV Rack did.

So if you already have DV Rack, you can upgrade to HDV Rack (okay, that's not what it's really called) for $195. DV Rack itself now goes for $295.

Dominic Jones May 3rd, 2005 04:39 AM

That's great news - thanks Barry and Gary!!

Any info on how well this plug in performs/required system differences/known issues etc. yet, or is it still to early?

Was there a working version at NAB?

Hugh DiMauro May 3rd, 2005 06:16 AM

Now I can finally consider HDV. I was in a bit of a quandary because DV Rack worked so well with my SDV (what I saw in the monitor is exatly what I got on the hard drive! Way to go Serious Magic!) that I was planning on staying with SDV much longer than expected just so I could use DV Rack. In my mind perfectly exposed shots was more important than HDV but now Serious Magis will be giving us the best of both worlds.

Andy Coughlan May 3rd, 2005 08:04 AM

Downconverting to DV Rack
Hi All,

I'm thinking of purchasing a Z1 with an eye to my next shoot at the end of the month. I use DV Rack and they have announced the HD upgrade, but that won't be out in time.

Does anyone know if it's possible to record HD onto tape, but downcovert the firewire output to DV on the fly so I can use DV Rack as a monitor to quickly review takes? I've checked through the manual and can't see anywhere where it explicitly says this is possible, though I'm guessing it is.

If so, do you lose much in the way of cropped images?


John Beale May 3rd, 2005 10:48 AM

FX1 has firewire convert "HDV->DV"
Since the FX1 can do this, I'm sure the Z1 can as well. You just go to the "IN/OUT REC" menu and set "i.LINK CONV" to ON (HDV->DV)

In addition to that, you can convert to DV in one of two ways, anamorphic widescreen (which only shows up correctly if your display is native 16:9) or letterboxed so it looks correct on a 4:3 display.

Both of these show the full width and height of the image recorded in HDV mode, but the anamorphic mode gives you more actual resolution since it's using all the scanlines of the standard-def raster.

My laptop running Vegas 6 can actually record the live HDV via firewire to disk. However that uses about 100% of the CPU, and if I close the laptop lid, which triggers a few additional processes briefly, the capture quits. I was able to close the lid when capturing with Scenalyzer Live in SD mode.

Karl Soule May 3rd, 2005 12:18 PM

Hi Guys,

Sorry for the long wait to reply - I was in Vegas from the 15th to the 23rd, and after that, I took some well-deserved time off to recuperate. :)

We did show a working version of the software at NAB. Hardware specs are not released yet, and it's always difficult to judge at this stage of coding. One of the last steps in the coding process is speed optimization, and that hadn't been done yet at NAB. We were running the software on 2.6-2.8GHz Pentium 4 systems, and it was very responsive in it's current state.

The HDV PowerPack for DV Rack will include a new HD monitor module, in addition to the SD monitor. The HD monitor is 16:9 natively, and has similar features to the SD monitor, like twin zebra patterns, blue gun, underscan, etc. The "zoom" function on the monitor samples the original video, so you can look at 1:1 pixels in the HD signal.

Barry Green May 3rd, 2005 12:52 PM

Yes you can use DV Rack's monitor/waveform feature on the downconverted DV footage, while recording HDV to tape.

Barry Green May 3rd, 2005 01:33 PM

Karl -- that's great news about the 1:1/sampling-native-image for the monitor in HD, but can we *please* get that in the SD version??? That's my biggest disappointment with DV Rack, and I'm hoping that it's going to be addressed -- I haven't heard that it is. Please verify?

Regarding performance: yes a working version was shown. The monitoring didn't look like it was running at 100% speed, looked like it was updating at maybe 10 or 15fps? But that's all dependent on processing power, as computers get faster the performance will improve. What's important is that the recording be flawless, and I'd easily sacrifice monitor refresh rate for proper recording, and that's the tack Serious Magic took.

What's great about HDV Rack (can I call it that?) is that it shows you what the footage looks like after the MPEG compression gets through with it. You won't see that on your LCD or on a live monitor hooked up to the camera. The only way you can know what you actually got on tape, is through something like HDV Rack.

Karl Soule May 3rd, 2005 01:39 PM

It's coming for SD users as well, Barry. :) I don't have a time set, but the zoom/1:1 pixel feature will be in the SD monitor at some point in the future.

Mark Grant May 3rd, 2005 02:59 PM

The Z1 also lets you crop the edges for a 4:3 display, rather than letterbox.

Cody Dulock May 3rd, 2005 11:33 PM

hey karl, i know this is a little off topic... but have ya'll added or can you add feature where you can capture the image flipped 180 for us homemade mini35 adapter users? or is it as easy as making a plugin for the program itself?

again, sorry for the off topic post.

Karl Soule May 4th, 2005 11:52 AM

I'll check with the programming team, Cody. I don't have any information on this request right now.

Andy Coughlan May 9th, 2005 02:51 AM

Excellent! Thanks for all your replies.


Greg Kuchta May 17th, 2005 09:13 PM

Pat, you're right on with your assessment of the PCMCIA card being a separate resource. This would be similar to having two 1394-PCI cards in one's pc.

Besides the increased performance of your PC, there are several other factors which all contribute to the good experience you are having with your Lacie drive and X31:
1. The 320GB drive is 7200 rpm - much faster than the drive in your X31.
2. The Lacie probably has an 8MB buffer which will smooth any "moments" when the drive is busy seeking while video data is being captured.
3. Having a capture drive separate from your system (OS & app.) drive means one can better control how busy the drive is.

I've recently seen "maximum data rates" on drives upwards of 70GB/sec. This far exceeds the data rate of 3.5MB/sec for video capture. The point being there's plenty of margin for "marketing fluff" and the reality that data rates across a drive are not constant.

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