Which problem does Intensity Shuttle solve?

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JoeSchroecker

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Which problem does Intensity Shuttle solve?

PostSat Oct 07, 2017 1:24 pm

Hi,

a friend just bought the Intensity Shuttle and this is how it came to my attention. But I just don't get, which problem it tries to solve.

I suspect it's just outside of my usual workflow: I get footage after the shoot (in best quality possible) and then grade it in Resolve and then convert it for web (h264, youtube, vimeo), a fullrange master in dnxhd for archive and sometimes make a dvd für a TV station (the last one I made 4 years ago...)

Does the Intentsity Shuttle help me somehow with this task? I have a windows workstation with gtx 970 and connected via displayport 4k AdobeRGB monitor calibrated to rec709 or sRGB.

Stuff I think I groked:
  1. Sometimes there are different blacks between PP, FCP and Resolve, but you can solve it with attention to details (data levels in output and clip attributes)
  2. It's not possible to use 10bit output on windows 10 via a consumer graphic card (if at all)
  3. When you export to h264 there is a slight color shift to magenta compared to the preview window in resolve, which people often try to make the preview window responsible for not accurately displaying rec709, but I found the shift doesn't happen if you export to dnxhd and also happens if you export from e.g. premiere pro another source. so the shuttle won't help in this case, especially if it's the codec.
  4. So the preview window is not accurately displaying rec709, there are some workarounds, but they are not perfect. But even then, if you render to h264 it will look different anyway

My questions
So what the shuttle does, it makes it possible to take an ordinary FullHD TV, connect it (e.g. via HDMI ) to the PC and then I get a accurate rec709 output to grade in Resolve? Is that right?
I won't have to calibrate that TV separately, because the shuttle outputs a standardized 10bit hd output, which then the TV can bring into whichever colorspace it want. for e.g if I use a factory rec709 calibrated flanders, I will then have accurate rec709 colors.
But this doesn't work with the resolve preview viewer, because it's not designed for this?

but the shuttle has now way to know the colors on the TV are accurately displayed without feedback/calibration? so I need a factory calibrated monitor for this (e.g. a rec709 calibrated review monitor)

What if I need 4k, do I just need to buy a more expensive version?

Does this help me, if I almost never grade for TV, only for web and it looks the same there as on my monitor? And almost no consumer has a calibrated monitor anyway?

Ok, I stop asking questions now, I think there must be a point that I completely missed or I just don't have the problem it tries to solve?
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Andrew Martin

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Re: Which problem does Intensity Shuttle solve?

PostSat Oct 07, 2017 4:42 pm

I think your over thinking this, as to me the shuttle is /was a external capture card allowing devices with differing 'consumer' connectors to pass video to a pc for streaming or recording. The multi outs are 'agn to me' pass through for display of the captured signal.
But it's getting to be a bit long in the tooth now and the needed USB3 chipset it was designed to work with aren't used in many PCs of today so it is 'IMOHO' fast becoming somewhat of a paperweight .
A.
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Steve Fishwick

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Re: Which problem does Intensity Shuttle solve?

PostSun Oct 08, 2017 12:29 pm

The Intensity Shuttle usb 3.0 works here with Avid Media Composer very well with a modern i7 quadcore laptop, with intel usb 3.0 chips. It is only HD but I work in broadcast UK television and that is all that is needed. It captures and outputs 1080i 4:2:2 10 bit perfectly to full broadcast spec over hdmi. It's easy to convert that hdmi to SDI if needed. I also have a Keyspan RS422 deck control working concurrently with it for capture in Avid. I have outboard Sonicflex consumer to professional XLR line analogue line converters and a mic preamp going into that for scratch com.

It's far more than a paperweight still for me and is the only solution for I/O available to non Thunderbolt equipped laptops. Avid downscales 2K/4K quite happily to it too.

You cannot colour correct reliably with a consumer graphics gpu output from DaVinci - you can in HD from the Shuttle but you still need to have a grade A calibrated monitor, this is true of all I/O devices too.

The only problem with the Shutlle (but this is common to most all BMD devices) is the audio always needs a video signal to clock sync correctly. In Avid I have to feed a B&B signal whilst capturing audio only and this works well too. I just wish BMD would add audio only clock sync to their drivers - the hardware is certainly capable of it.

Overall I would say if you are an offline editor working in broadcast TV on a laptop (that works) with no Thunderbolt the Shuttle is the cheapest and only solution - if you are working in 4K then you obviously should be looking at a much higher powered setup. It is not true that it only works with specific old Usb 3.0 chips, it's just that BMD have done no further testing for a long time on modern Intel based laptops. I followed invaluable advice here to get it working and despite the audio issue the drivers are slowly getting better.

Hope this helps.
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JoeSchroecker

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Re: Which problem does Intensity Shuttle solve?

PostSun Oct 08, 2017 6:22 pm

Hi,
Steve Fishwick wrote:You cannot colour correct reliably with a consumer graphics gpu output from DaVinci - you can in HD from the Shuttle but you still need to have a grade A calibrated monitor, this is true of all I/O devices too.

thanks for your Input. Could you clarify why I can't grade with a consumer graphics gpu, if I have a calibrate(-able) monitor? BMD states in there manual this, I uploaded a screenshot of the passage in the manual which I understood accordingly.

Thanks
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Steve Fishwick

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Re: Which problem does Intensity Shuttle solve?

PostSun Oct 08, 2017 10:24 pm

The last paragraph in that extract says it all from "Strictly speaking..." onwards. Consumer gpus and computer displays are limited to 8bit and often the displays can in fact sometimes be 6 bit. The colour space is completely different to video. Although you can emulate 601/709 you are still limited by the bit depth. Most of that extract refers to grading for the web which is far less critical.

You can only grade for professional broadcast online HD with full spec I/O hardware and a true grade A calibrated 10 bit monitor to Rec. 709. Happily most cost effective I/O hardware, even the Shuttle, can achieve this, these days, but the required quality monitors are still not cheap. When you come to grading for 2K/4K and new technologies such as HDR, those costs can spiral and the technical demands are even more critical.

But I would suggest that if you get something like the Shuttle and a reasonably good quality Full HDTV (not a computer monitor), and follow one of the many online tutorials for calibrating SMPTE colour bars as closely as it will allow, you'll be many times closer to getting acceptable output than a Geforce and computer screen. Not professional grade standard by any means but much nearer the ballmark and acceptable for offline.
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Mohsen Ibrahim

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Re: Which problem does Intensity Shuttle solve?

PostMon Oct 09, 2017 4:53 am

Hello, I am using Davinci Resolve 14 free version to try out first. I shoot with GH5, clips that are 4K 422 10 bit 150Mbps don't work, its offline but there is audio only. Is this because the free version does not support 422 10 bit? Thanks in advance.
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JoeSchroecker

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Re: Which problem does Intensity Shuttle solve?

PostMon Oct 09, 2017 1:37 pm

Thanks for expanding your answer, it's a lot clearer now for me what I can or can't do with the intensity shuttle or pci card. It's actually simple, but I guess all the game streaming related stuff on the product page confused me enough to question everything! :)
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Steve Fishwick

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Re: Which problem does Intensity Shuttle solve?

PostMon Oct 09, 2017 5:38 pm

No problem Joe, yes I think the only reason BMD are still selling the Shuttle is that it has been quite popular I gather with gamers for FHD high quality capture, with it's consumer I/O, having ended production of all other Usb 3.0 products, but since the internals work in the same way, with the same pro software, with the same quality as the other HD capture cards it's easy to adapt it for professional I/O - for me it was a no brainer as I had a laptop with only usb 3.0 and that gear already hanging around from my old Adrenaline, which incidentally it does everything that unit did only better. The Avid Adrenaline cost 20k and the Shuttle 150 quid - how times have changed! With the addition of a £95 Decimator HDMI/SDI bi-directional converter I can capture and layback to a broadcast rented HDCAM-SR - not that there is any call for that anymore either - here it's all AS-11 file delivery, which saves a ton on rental and tapes. But you see what a Shuttle can solve now, for one specific use, I'm sure, not that I'm in the biz of selling BMD stuff for them haha.

I would add that I have onlined many hours of UK telly, often with less than stellar monitors - they were professional but what we call grade B. But that was in the CRT days and with careful reference to Y/C waveform at the same time - never had a tech review failure and the fines for those can be high (touch wood). I am still confident to be able to do that with the present HDTV monitor I use (also less than grade A), in the same way, and as long as the grade is more for legal levels/balance etc, rather than very creative grading. I can vouch for the software waveform/safe limit accuracy in Avid, I'm sure Resolve is equally accurate. The only error a lot of people make is to hard clamp for safe limit, which can compress highlight and crush the blacks too much. For the web I swap between the pc I still grade in the same way but refer to how it looks on a pc screen too, as you are presently doing. Why don't you borrow your friend's Shuttle and first see if it works on your pc (they are quite finicky with some usb chips)?

But in the end of the day what many people overlook are the most important quality investments in the chain - the transducers, so to speak - the microphones, monitoring loudspeakers/headphones and video monitors. Audio and Video I/O devices are dirt cheap and high quality now but you still only get what you pay for in the realm of broadcast recording and monitoring gear.

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