Decklink in a laptop's expresscard slot?

Do you have questions about Desktop Video, Converters, Routers and Monitoring?
  • Author
  • Message
Offline

Ville Pakarinen

  • Posts: 30
  • Joined: Sat Jul 13, 2013 4:20 pm

Decklink in a laptop's expresscard slot?

PostFri Oct 20, 2017 10:05 am

Hi everyone,

I recently learned about the magical things one can achieve with a laptop's expresscard slot; mainly the "ghetto" eGPU configurations using one of these babies:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0725 ... 6d8a130a8d

I've been wanting to turn my Lenovo P50 into a more editing/grading capable machine while still keeping it as portable as possible. Mine has Quadro M2000M, which is quite amazing for video work, but I've come to the conclusion that it won't do the job with HEVC/h.265; I'm battling with green video in viewports. Nvidia's Pascal GPUs promise excellent HEVC hardware encoding, so I'd like to attach one of those to my laptop.

While contemplating the idea of building one of these expresscard eGPU monstrosities, it occurred to me: could it be used for my Decklink Studio 4K instead?

Why? Well, I'd want to avoid buying two Akitio TB3 Nodes, cause that, while cool, would utterly defeat the purpose of a laptop -- well not utterly since it's still a powerful computer on the go. But I'd like to be able to do HEVC and basic monitoring without carrying hardware worth a small desktop computer.

What I'm not so sure of is whether a Decklink would still require external power supply using the expresscard slot (I know it doesn't inside a desktop). Anyone have a definite answer to this? Because in that case, two daisy chained Akitio Nodes with their own power supplies would make more sense, of course.

Thanks for reading and any advice!
Offline

Andrew Kolakowski

  • Posts: 2776
  • Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2012 10:20 am

Re: Decklink in a laptop's expresscard slot?

PostFri Oct 20, 2017 9:02 pm

It's unlikely to work, but you have way simpler solution for not much of the cost (if any). Express card is old and slow, not suited for modern GPUs.
Modern GPUs need rather TB3 (even TB2 is to slow for general usage).

If your Lenovo P50 has i7 CPU then it means it has Intel HD 530 which does support hardware h265 encoding.
All you need is to export master out of Resolve, e.g. DNxHR and feed this into solution which can use QuickSync h265 encoding. ffmpeg, Handbrake etc for free or things like TMPEGEnc. Intel QS encoder is probably better than Nvidia one.
Video monitoring can be done over BM TB2/3/USB3 based card quite cheaply and lightly.
Offline

Ville Pakarinen

  • Posts: 30
  • Joined: Sat Jul 13, 2013 4:20 pm

Re: Decklink in a laptop's expresscard slot?

PostFri Oct 20, 2017 11:18 pm

Andrew Kolakowski wrote:It's unlikely to work, but you have way simpler solution for not much of the cost (if any). Express card is old and slow, not suited for modern GPUs.


Really? There's a whole forum of people reporting success stories hooking modern power hungry GPUs in expresscard slots and being able to play recent releases. Not that I'm not on the same page with you about expresscard being inferior to TB3 etc.

Andrew Kolakowski wrote:If your Lenovo P50 has i7 CPU then it means it has Intel HD 530 which does support hardware h265 encoding.
All you need is to export master out of Resolve, e.g. DNxHR and feed this into solution which can use QuickSync h265 encoding. ffmpeg, Handbrake etc


Aha! I have been able to transcode other codecs into h265 in Handbrake, but had no clue why; but the crux of the problem is CUDA playback in Premiere, which doesn't seem to work with my M2000M GPU no matter what I try -- tried switching to software too. All I get is ugly green corrupted video when I import h265 footage into Premiere; that's why I figured going Pascal is pretty much unavoidable.

Sent from my Moto G (4) using Tapatalk
Offline

Andrew Kolakowski

  • Posts: 2776
  • Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2012 10:20 am

Re: Decklink in a laptop's expresscard slot?

PostSat Oct 21, 2017 3:31 pm

With 3.2GBit/sec effective speed it's far from being good enough for modern GPUs.
This is about 7x to slow to push 4K 24p 32bit float GPU data between host and external GPU.
TB3 blows exprescard by miles in every aspect- not sure what you are talking about?

Exprescard is basically dead technology. http://www.expresscard.org website is dead and last update to the spec was in 2009 if I'm correct.
Offline

Ville Pakarinen

  • Posts: 30
  • Joined: Sat Jul 13, 2013 4:20 pm

Re: Decklink in a laptop's expresscard slot?

PostSat Oct 21, 2017 6:02 pm

Sorry, forgot the link to the forum: https://egpu.io/forums/expresscard-mpcie-m-2-adapters/

Like I said, I'm not disagreeing on the superiority of TB3 or the fact that expresscard is hopelessly outdated. But since these people seem to be succeeding in eGPU setups without TB3 enclosures, I just thought there's more to it than meets the eye.

Also, on that site, they state that "2015 6th generation Lenovo workstations have a rare Expresscard 3.0 (8Gbps-EC3) port". This includes my P50.

The reason why I'm interested in this possibility is because I already own Decklink Studio 4K from my previous desktop.
Offline

Andrew Kolakowski

  • Posts: 2776
  • Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2012 10:20 am

Re: Decklink in a laptop's expresscard slot?

PostSun Oct 22, 2017 12:29 pm

Even 8gbits theoretical, which after overhead will be more like 6Gbit (maybe) is still not fast enough.
You can always try as those adapters are not crazy expensive. How are you going to power your eGPU? If you attach some card it needs big external case with good power supply which makes portability gone (+ all those cables etc.).

As I said- I expect nothing but issues (specially when your Lenovo has something "rare") and instead of battling with this "convoluted" idea simply make a use of your Intel HD 530 GPU, which does what you're after.

I spent 5min on this forum and see nothing but problems and also opinions that these setups as far as very cost effective come with substantial compromises and performance hits. It's just not fast enough for GPU needs, simple as this, specially when you think abut 4K work.

If you have time and energy play with it- up to you :) I would rather learn how to use existing Intel GPU.
Offline

Ville Pakarinen

  • Posts: 30
  • Joined: Sat Jul 13, 2013 4:20 pm

Re: Decklink in a laptop's expresscard slot?

PostSun Oct 22, 2017 1:50 pm

I think your reasoning is sound :)

Andrew Kolakowski wrote:simply make a use of your Intel HD 530 GPU, which does what you're after


But can Premiere use it for realtime h265 playback? Like I mentioned, right now, all h265 footage looks "corrupted" in premiere (I suspect my non-Pascal Quadro as the culprit), despite the fact that they're not corrupted -- I can transcode h265 to DNxHR or h264 in Handbrake. But I'd like to be able to view/work with h265 straight out of camera. Any idea if this can be done with my M2000M GPU?
Offline

Andrew Kolakowski

  • Posts: 2776
  • Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2012 10:20 am

Re: Decklink in a laptop's expresscard slot?

PostTue Oct 24, 2017 2:12 pm

Not sure and this is to both Intel and Quadro. Not sure if current Premiere will use GPU to play h265 files. Make sure you are on current version. Also- it has to be 4:2:0 h265 (can be 8 or 10bit), but it can't be 4:2:2.
Test it in player like MPC-HC where you can see if GPU decoding kicked in. This will give you some hint.
GPU decoding is always problematic- GPU driver can be issue also, so try different one. Latest not always means the best.

Return to Post Production

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 7 guests