ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

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stlplayersclub

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ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostFri Jun 26, 2020 5:07 pm

Hi all, I just picked up a used ATEM Mini (as we can't really wait the 4 months or whatever the timeframe is for the next production batch to hit the market). The unit came with everything and appears flawless in condition, not a single scratch, not even around the power jack.

When I plugged it in via USB, the PC saw it and when I connected to it in the ATEM Setup software it updated the firmware without issue. I did this yesterday, so it's the 8.2.3 version of the software. (Although it did remove/corrupt my install of BMD Media Express - that's another battle)

I am having an issue with the USB video feed - it's flickering some sort of scramble every couple of seconds. I've tried 3 different cameras/cables coming into the ATEM, and I've tried setting the source signal of the camera to several different qualities - although I'm not sure the ATEM is actually registering those changes as I'm not power-cycling the ATEM after switching.

Camera 1: Canon G10 HDMI Cable (25') -> ATEM
Camera 2: Canon G10 HDMI Cable (35') -> ATEM
Camera 3: Sony CX240 HDMI Cable (10') -> ATEM

Previously the cameras were plugged into the now-ancient BMD Decklink Mini Recorder 3G for a couple years now with these same cables. (I have 3 cards in my pc) I unplugged one of the G10s from the PCI card and plugged that camera into the ATEM. The G10 was previously outputting a 1080i @59.94 signal (as that's the highest the Decklink 3G will take). I did not set it manually. The ATEM saw the signal and I can ingest it in OBS, but immediately noticed there's a scrambled flicker that's happening every second or so. I thought maybe it was because it an interlaced signal and not progressive, so I grabbed a CX240 (where I can set the output signal manually and easily). I tried setting the signal from 1080i to 1080p, but the flicker remained. I swapped to a 720p signal, same thing, still with the flicker. I tried moving the cable to Input 1, 2, 3, and 4 on the ATEM (powercycling each time) - no change.

I tried setting the ATEM's output to a variety of framerates, though none of the changes made any difference to the video being capture.

Flicker example and some troubleshooting using the CX240: My account is too new to post urls, I'm assuming, but you append /watch?v=C-iqQRHT0Do to youtube's homepage url you will get the video

I tried swapping to a different USB port on the PC, but no change. I used USB 3.0 ports on the PC even though the cable is a 2.0 version. I did not try connecting to a 2.0 port (yet).

So here are my questions:

Is it possible the 2.0 USB cable isn't fast enough for the video? (I've ordered a 3.0 version to test)
Is it possible the ATEM really just doesn't play well with interlaced signals?
Is it possible I bought a defective unit?
Is it possible the ATEM really doesn't respond well to longer HDMI cables, even though 10' should be well within reason?

It took some convincing to get approval to buy this and you can imagine my heartbreak to see such a poor first impression.

As my 3G decklinks won't read the 1080p output from the HDMI Preview out, I was unable to test that method - but I ordered a Deckink 4k last night (and a cheap HDMI -> USB capture device which will arrive much sooner) to test that output to help narrow down the issue.

If anyone has any thoughts or similar experience, please share them.

Thanks,

John
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Dave Del Vecchio

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostFri Jun 26, 2020 8:44 pm

stlplayersclub wrote:Is it possible the ATEM really doesn't respond well to longer HDMI cables, even though 10' should be well within reason?
Yes, long HDMI cables are a huge source of problems. And depending on the output resolution and frame rate of the cameras, this can also cause HDMI signal problems (often due to EDID negotiation issues).

A mix of cameras outputting different signal formats can exacerbate this issue, especially if you have the ATEM set to auto-detect the video standard (which it does based on the HDMI signal plugged in to the first HDMI input). You might try explicitly setting the ATEM video standard (via the gear icon in the ATEM software), and then setting the cameras HDMI output settings to match this resolution and frame rate. You may also be able to set the ATEM video standard to a resolution compatible with the DeckLink Mini Recorder you are using.

In terms of troubleshooting this problem, I would also suggest simplifying the setup. Use a single camera at first and a single HDMI cable (preferably the shortest you have), and then connect the ATEM Mini's HDMI output to a monitor (rather than using the USB output). See if there is any flicker. If there is flicker, start changing settings one at a time to see if you can resolve it (this includes camera output settings, ATEM video settings, and HDMI cable).

If there is no flicker with a single camera, then add cameras one at a time (using the same HDMI output settings) until you identify what is causing the problem.
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stlplayersclub

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostMon Jun 29, 2020 5:20 pm

Update: I was able to get a clean video signal from my Canon MkIII with a short cable. So I'm no longer worried the device is faulty (although it does get really hot and I don't hear any fans running in it).

I took the rig back to the streaming location and plugged the HDMI out into a USB capture device and whenever the ATEM was set to Output -> Program I only ever got the color bars. However, if I set it to Camera 1 Direct, I was able to see the video without issue. It gave me some hope at first because the camera in the slot 1 was giving me the flashing problem when viewing over USB, but when viewing it "direct" it was clean.

I was not able to view any other output from the hdmi-out, not program, not preview, when the signal was being captured. Is this some sort of weird limitation on the device? Shouldn't I be able to ingest that signal into anything - a monitor, an hdmi recorder, another capture device?

I also just received my hdmi-cat6 extender kit so I'll play with that as well and my BMD Mini Recorder 4k (assuming I can ingest that hdmi-out without issue).

I'll be doing more testing tonight, but if anyone has any other thoughts, I'd love to hear them.
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stlplayersclub

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostTue Jun 30, 2020 3:34 pm

My luck has to be terrible, or I'm not doing enough research. The HDMI-Cat kit I bought is giving me problems, not even integrated with the ATEM. I can't get a clean signal from it. Now, the device says it's a CAT5e/6 device, but I accidentally bought CAT7 cable. So I can maybe blame the odd video signal I got with that cable on that (it was blinking, no scrambled frames, just blinking every 2 seconds or so). I did swap that out with a network patch cable I had laying around, which I don't think was a CAT5e (pretty sure as it came from a cheap 5-pack of cables); which gave me a different problematic video signal (video was constant, but had red snow littering the image). LOL

Has anyone here used Bullet Train cables? They are ridiculously expensive, but maybe they'll solve the distance issue? Not ready to pull the trigger on $300 cables, but just curious.
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stlplayersclub

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostTue Jun 30, 2020 6:03 pm

If anyone is still curious, it appears that the cables are not the issue at all. I brought the entire setup home and tested on my home PC (with a newer mobo/cpu than the streaming rig), the ATEM works with all the cables I have. 25' hdmi, no problem, 10', super cheap 6' same thing. The HDMI-CAT5/6 extender works with with the CAT7 cable. This leads me to believe it's a USB issue in the streaming PC. Perhaps a driver version, or maybe there's a conflict with the PCI lanes/traffic on the MOBO causing some sort of collision.
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redrob

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker -- ME TOO

PostSun Jul 05, 2020 5:32 am

My ATEM Mini Pro came in about a week ago, just tested this evening.

Very similar experience to yours.

My computer sees the unit fine

When viewing the USB "Blackmagic Design" camera via ANYTHING on the computer, it's mostly a dark green output with flickering lines throughout. I've tried viewing via Windows Camera, VLC and OBS -- identical results. I've tried different resolution/framerate settings without any noteable difference. I've tried different USB ports, and different USB 3 cables.

HDMI Output via HDMI port (program out, multi-view, etc) is perfect to a NINJA monitor I used to test.. looks great.

Streaming output via Ethernet to Facebook Live as well as custom RTMP port also look great.


I just can't get the USB Webcam to look proper, and this is a big deal for me so I can use it with OBS if I want (vs built-in streaming features).

Here's what it looks like:
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redrob

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker.. How To Fix?

PostSun Jul 05, 2020 3:22 pm

Has this happened to anyone else here (see picture/video)? If so, how did you fix/

FYI -- tested on a different computer (laptop) and the USB output as Web Cam looked proper! So something about the USB ports/drivers in my editing computer? I tried the hub, front-side USB3 port, front-side USB2 port and rear USB 3 port.

Here's what it looks like today:

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redrob

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostTue Jul 07, 2020 8:33 pm

Am I the only one having a USB "webcam" issue with the Mini Pro?

I can swap/exchange units if I have to, but don't want to do so if the problem is not the unit's fault.
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big-foot

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostWed Jul 08, 2020 8:14 am

Good day,

unfortunately i also have a problem with the output on usb-s. This is how it is cut in cooperation with vmix. Unfortunately I can't add a sample, because I don't have permission to enter the URL :-( If I'm streaming directly from the atem, everything is OK
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gardnerc

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostWed Jul 08, 2020 6:19 pm

I'm also having this webcam flickering problem. I have a Windows 10/1904 PC (Intel i7-6700K, 32gb DDR4, 1tb SSD, nVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080. I have a USB webcam (Logitech C920) connected to the computer which works exactly as designed.

I just received my new BMD ATEM Mini Pro, installed the setup app and updated the software (ver. 8.2.3), installed the ATEM Software control, it all works great (sans one dealkiller). HDMI Out from the ATEM shows rock-solid video. For testing I'm using HDMI 1 connected (2m cable) to Canon XF100, HDMI 2 connected (3m cable) to Sony HDR-XR100.

The ATEM is showing correctly in my device manager (Sound, video & game controllers > "ATEM Mini Pro" & a separate entry "Blackmagic Design") and there are no unrecognized devices.

The dealkiller is flickering video when viewed as a webcam (using Win10's Camera app, Zoom, etc.). Same as the vid posted by redrob (thanks!).

I have tried different USB ports and cables (2.0, 3.0, 3.1, USB-C), depower/repower the ATEM, reset camera outputs, use just 1 camera, reset the ATEM video standard to various settings (1080p30, 29.97, 60.59.94). I even propped up the ATEM for better ventilation and stuck a fan right beside to blow cool air both under the unit and into the side vent. All to no change in the bad video.

I'm at a standstill, I can't put this unit into production. I've only had it a day, so I want to give a chance that there's some mystery setting that will resolve this. It's an awesome value piece of tech if it will work. Does anyone have any answers?

Update 7/13/2020: I updated the ATEM software to 8.3 (first uninstalling 8.2.3), and then ran ATEM Setup. Was not presented with an update to 8.3 offer, and the About page still shows 8.2.3, although the control software is 8.3. The flickering problem is less today but still more than enough to keep it out of production mode. I've submitted an email support request to BMD.
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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostSun Jul 19, 2020 11:53 pm

New ATEM Mini, same issue. Updated to the latest ATEM software 8.3. Still occurs. Oddly, I've also been seeing the flicker when no input besides the ATEM Mini has been connected (I've also tried two cameras). This leads me to believe it's a firmware issue. I've been using a good quality USB-C cable. HDMI output from the ATEM Mini is fine. No issues with overheating, the issues ocurred the moment the new device was plugged in.
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gardnerc

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostMon Jul 20, 2020 2:17 pm

After going around and around with BMD support and trying all sorts of things to resolve the issue, we determined the ATEM Mini Pro was defective and I returned it. Given that I'm seeing so many others on this forum with similar issues, I'm not getting a replacement unit. While I love the feature set & price point of the ATEM Mini Pro, I can't put a piece of kit into production that isn't rock-solid reliable.
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TechWhisperer

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostThu Jul 30, 2020 5:06 pm

A new update 8.4 was released today, which I'm hoping solves this problem. It happens to me after my machine goes to sleep. If I reboot the PC, it doesn't happen during that session.

Hopefully this update fixes the issue.
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American56

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostMon Aug 31, 2020 2:47 pm

My original ATEM Mini never flickered. When I got my new ATEM Mini Pro I uninstalled the software on my PC, rebooted, then downloaded the software and did the 8.4 update. I have the flicker problem and cannot find a solution. Have any of you figured this out?
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awi1964

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostFri Sep 04, 2020 9:42 am

I came across this post with a research on this topic.
Seems I have that problem, too, or at least something similar. But I solved it.

The ATEM Mini's HDMI Out goes to a second ATEM Mini (Pro), so in my case USB is not involved.
Firmware is 8.3.

Input 2 of my ATEM Mini flickers every other second when a SONY A7s is connected, and both inputs 3 and 4 even remain completely black when I connect it there. Sometimes I get dark green rectangles on the screen and the camera picture is shifted.

Input 1 never has any problems at all.
The same happens when I connect a Panasonic HDC-SD707, which is an older comsumer camcorder.

All four HDMI inputs work fine when connected to a PC graphic card, or an iPhone, or a tablet, even a Raspberry Pi, you name it ...

I found two solutions that work for me and my camera setting.

1.) Settings of the camera => HDMI output format => Switch "Auto" off and select a value that matches the ATEM Mini's project settings (in my case, PAL 1080/50p) or at least some fixed setting. Never "Auto". It seems that camera and ATEM Mini would run their EDID negotiation over and over again when "Auto" is selected - hence the blackouts.
That did the trick for my SONY, but not for the Panasonic.

2.) Invest some money:
Buy a Blackmagic HDMI to SDI converter, use a short HDMI cable to connect the camera to it, let the signal pass through an SDI cable of any length (I sometimes use 15 meters without any difficulty).
Then buy another Blackmagic SDI to HDMI converter for the hot end, again use a short HDMI cable (50 cm) to connect it to any of the ATEM Mini's input.

Solution Nr. 2 is perfect for me and has been reliable ever since. And the most important thing is, I don't care about the cable distance any more, which is crucial for on-location shoots.

Yes, another hundred bucks :-(
and the need for USB power on both converters.
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MarkRoth80

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostSun Nov 22, 2020 10:28 am

Hi, we have the same issue, usb output is unusable on our brand new Atem Mini Pro. We are using the latest software and have tried several webcam viewers on different computers but always have a lower screen flicker.
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MarkRoth80

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostTue Dec 01, 2020 3:26 pm

MarkRoth80 wrote:Hi, we have the same issue, usb output is unusable on our brand new Atem Mini Pro. We are using the latest software and have tried several webcam viewers on different computers but always have a lower screen flicker.


Quick update, we tried a new laptop with the same USB cable and the problem vanished. Looks like this must be either the USB drivers or USB hardware used in our 1st laptop.
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WRPILATES

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostSat Dec 05, 2020 2:13 am

WE to have this issue.. After many hours of Trouble Shooting we have discovered that the ATEM Min USB c Port is Faulty. IT Heats up after about 5 mins of use then It freeze.. If your using this to Send Camera Feeds to Skype or Zoom this will cause the Video Feed to Freeze up. If your using the Atem Mine Via the USB C Port for Computer Access the Computer will loose connection when the USB C Port Heats up.

Placing the Unit on a Cooling Block helps it last a bit longer.. But something is up with the Atem Min ISO and Heat Causing the USB C To lock up.

Now we are hoping we can get a Replacement Fast.. Its still under Warranty from the Vendor As well.. So I am considering returning it to them.(B&H Photo). I am Concerned ill get more Bad Parts off the B&H Photo Shelf, And Possible might get a Better ATEM Mini ISO if I let BM RMA repair / replace the unit. ??.

Can Anyone here speak to the RMA Process.. What might be faster and more likly to get me a working piece of equipment.. Thanks
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WRPILATES

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostThu Dec 17, 2020 1:58 am

Does Anyone Read these? No help ??

WRPILATES wrote:WE to have this issue.. After many hours of Trouble Shooting we have discovered that the ATEM Min USB c Port is Faulty. IT Heats up after about 5 mins of use then It freeze.. If your using this to Send Camera Feeds to Skype or Zoom this will cause the Video Feed to Freeze up. If your using the Atem Mine Via the USB C Port for Computer Access the Computer will loose connection when the USB C Port Heats up.

Placing the Unit on a Cooling Block helps it last a bit longer.. But something is up with the Atem Min ISO and Heat Causing the USB C To lock up.

Now we are hoping we can get a Replacement Fast.. Its still under Warranty from the Vendor As well.. So I am considering returning it to them.(B&H Photo). I am Concerned ill get more Bad Parts off the B&H Photo Shelf, And Possible might get a Better ATEM Mini ISO if I let BM RMA repair / replace the unit. ??.

Can Anyone here speak to the RMA Process.. What might be faster and more likly to get me a working piece of equipment.. Thanks
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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostMon Dec 21, 2020 2:44 pm

Problems with USB webcam output are sprinkled all over this forum, and I'm convinced they must be related. The problem is that they are not always repeatable or consistent.

Your USB overheating hypothesis is interesting. Do you have a way to reliably replicate it? What is your room temperature? Is the ATEM Mini being warmed by other equipment?

Possibly related threads:
https://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=129199
https://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=121609
https://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=126513
https://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=123010 (?)
https://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=124680 (Edit: recent addition)
https://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=129689 (Edit: another one)
Last edited by ianw01 on Tue Dec 22, 2020 11:02 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Raphaël Jacquot

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostTue Dec 22, 2020 7:35 am

stlplayersclub wrote:Camera 1: Canon G10 HDMI Cable (25') -> ATEM
Camera 2: Canon G10 HDMI Cable (35') -> ATEM
Camera 3: Sony CX240 HDMI Cable (10') -> ATEM

HDMI is good for 6 feet, past that, you're asking for trouble
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Phil999

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostSun Jan 03, 2021 10:40 pm

what HDMI cables are recommended? I need a couple of them, 5 meters long. I have some short ones that I use for field monitors on camera, and now for the Atem Mini Pro I need some longer cables.
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elslunko

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostTue Jan 19, 2021 5:21 am

Hello Everyone,

Made an account to share my experience with this issue. My windows Laptop has the green flicker when I'm using the webcam usb-c output however when I unplugged the same cable and plugged it into my Mac, I had zero green flicker.

Used Discord on both systems to test. Makes me think it's a Windows driver issue.
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jjblock

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostSat Mar 20, 2021 11:10 pm

I seem to have stumbled onto a fix that has pretty much resolved this for me with an ATEM Mini under Windows 10:

I noticed that the issue was basically only happening when the control software was running, so I played a hunch and hooked up a network cable and got the mini onto my network and changed the connection in the control software to go via the network. (Might have to change that setting each time)

Once the control software is talking to the mini over the network instead of the USB, I have no more issues with flickering in the USB video.

Perhaps trying to use the same connection for both control and video data is the issue?
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Netwizard

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostSun Apr 11, 2021 8:25 am

Wow, this was the hardest forum registration ever!

I use the Atem Mini Pro ISO for over half a year now and everything works fine.

After swaping the Atem Pro now to the Extreme ISO I experienced massive flicker during transitions (1.0 Mix and others, only "cut" works) and even when selecting sources there is one frame of the newly selected source flickering in to USB-pgm out.
On the multiview and HDMI Outs everything is just fine, but on the USB-Out (Webcam) this problem shows up. I tested in OBS and Zoom, both same result.
I tested different USB-Ports on the Laptop and both USB-Ports on the Extreme ISO.
Same Problem every time.

Firmware is 8.6 btw..

I switched back to my Atem Mini Pro ISO, same cables, everything works fine as normal.

Then I found the last reply in this thread and tried that.
It worked.
Disconnect USB-Cable, Open ATEM Setup, connect Atem Mini Extreme ISO via network and access remote control via network.

Then reconnect USB-Cable and the image is just as it should be.

This can only be a workaround!!!!
There must be another solution that permanently fixes the issue even if you only connect via USB!
So what to do now?
Return the Extreme ISO and hope the next unit works properly?

I guess there is a Problem with the USB-Socket in the Extreme ISO I have. Perhaps some ground isolation issue? Bad soldering?

I will contact my reseller tomorrow for a replacement.
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Netwizard

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostMon Apr 12, 2021 8:47 am

Although my first post is not yet public I have an adendum:

Today I tried another Laptop, still same cables.
I almost couldn't believe it, it worked just fine.

Going back to my regular Laptop as soon as I start the "ATEM Software Control" I have glitches and flicker in my USB Program-Out.

Disconnecting powersupply and running on battery does not change anything.

So the problem only occurs on this specific Laptop, the moment I connect the ATEM Mini Extreme ISO and start sending data via USB return feed from the ATEM Software Control to the Mixer.
Any other constellations work just fine.
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Netwizard

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostMon Apr 12, 2021 9:15 am

SOLVED

Since it worked on the other Laptop there almost couldn't be a hardware issue on the ATEM Extreme ISO.

So I went to Windows 10 settings and deleted the USB 3.0 driver.
After a reboot Windows reinstalls the latest driver automatically.

What can I say, it worked and now the ATEM Mini Extreme ISO does smooth transitions in OBS and Zoom even with the ATEM Software Control open and running as if nothing ever happened.

So if this Problem occurs in the future I suggest the following:
1. Update USB drivers
2. As a workaround it is possible to connect the ATEM Software Control via network cable and then connect USB afterwards for Program-Output.

So Blackmagic thank you for the ATEM Mini Extreme ISO, this newest member of the "Mini" family solves almost every shortcomming I ran into on the venues I had.
The only thing that would make it even better would be to be able to choose what should be displayed on the USB-Output in the same manner as for the HDMI-Outs.

And on the "normal" ISO please swap "ISO" and "Streaming Status" windows in multiview.
They are the wrong way around if you look at the mixer.
Multiview: "Streaming Status" is on the left, "ISO Status" is on the right.
Mixer: "Record" buttons are on the left and "Streaming" buttons are on the right.
For me this is confusing.
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Andrew K

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostTue Apr 13, 2021 12:28 am

I think the best FIX for this issue that I can find right now, is to not use a USB C to USB C cable. For some reason I have had nothing but flickering issues using USB C Cables. And they're not cheap one's either. They're startech high speed usb c cables.

I solve my issues with flickering using a USB C to USB 3 cable.

Why? No idea, seems a little backwards if you ask me, but solved my problem.
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Netwizard

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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker

PostWed Apr 14, 2021 9:44 am

The issue with USB-C cables ist that they have chips built in the plugs that "define" the properties of the cable.
If you own a bunch of them and as time goes by you do not know anymore wich cable had wich properties and you will never find out again. Perhaps there is an app for displaying the capabilities of USB-C cables?

Does the workaround using network cables solve the problem temporarily for you?
If so, try uninstalling your USB 3 driver and reboot for windows to get a new one.
Should u use a Mac I can't help u with how to "reset" USB drivers there unfortunately.
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Re: ATEM Mini USB Video Flicker (Resolved)

PostMon Apr 19, 2021 3:21 pm

I had the same problem on a new ATEM Mini Extreme ISO, I reinstalled drivers and moved it from port to port to no avail. I finally resolved it by using a USB 3.1 Gen 1 (A to C) high quality charging cable, which is 6.6' long. My guess is, due to it being better shielded with a 32 AWG data core and 24 AWG power core, it can handle the bandwidth and provide a stable signal. I even have it sitting behind a USB 3.1 Gen 2 hub without issue. "Search on this Fast Charge & USB 3.1 Data Sync - Braided USB Type C Cable"

Regards,
Mediaeam

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