Blackmagic Design Intensity Pro - HDMI and Analog Editing Card
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- True HDMI Digital Connections: Intensity features HDMI-in for connecting to cameras and digital set-top boxes for the highest quality capture.
- Go Beyond HDV Video Quality: HDV video compression suffers from not being full 1920 HD resolution and the extra processing
- Live Production with On-Air 2.0: Experience the incredible excitement of filming events live. Included with Intensity is Blackmagic On-Air 2.0
- Windows and Mac OS X Compatible: Plug into Windows or Mac OS X computers with the same card and use your favorite software, including Final Cut Pro
- The included break-out cable connects Intensity Pro to all types of analog video and audio equipment. This gives you full compatibility with analog component, NTSC, PAL, S-Video and analog audio.
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Top Customer Reviews
I have put together 4 SATA drives in a RAID 0 configuration that maintains a minimum of 180Mbyte/s. It's running on a 3GHz Xeon processor and 16GB of RAM. I'm using a video scaler that can basically translate the component input into (almost) any kind of HDMI signal which feeds into the Intensity's HDMI input.
This product has some good points and some issues. In an effort to be thorough I downloaded the manual several months before I bought the product. There was no mention that a software program named "Blackmagic Media Express" was included. While this program is a simple capture/replay screen, it has limitations in the configuration and setup. There are actually TWO configuration programs: 1) a control panel addition named (appropriately) "Blackmagic Control Panel" and 2) Edit->Preferences inside Media Express. The Blackmagic Control Panel selects the types on inputs and ouputs and pre and post processing. The Media Express Preferences sets captures at a) "Uncompressed 8-bit YUV" or b) "Compressed Motion JPEG".
Initially I couldn't get any audio thru whatsoever. I had HDMI audio or analog audio and nothing would work. Tech Support said that this has happened to a lot of people and asked if I had on-board audio. I do. They suggested adding an audio card and turning off the on-board audio. This partially worked, but I can't use HDMI audio, only analog. And I had to buy a new audio card!
I consistently had a problem with video/audio synchronization after 31 minutes of recording. You could watch the output and Media Express screens get more and more frames apart until, after 31 minutes, a message comes up and says "Frames have been dropped".Read more ›
What this review will try to do is explain my experience so far with the card with the hope that it may help someone decide whether or not to buy this card.
I am no video production/recording professional (if I were, I wouldn't be buying this card), and don't know much about video capturing/compression/encoding, but here are my impressions of the card so far:
- Very easy to setup,
- Very easy to use.
- Blackmagic Media Express (Blackmagic Design's capture/playback software) is pretty much garbage.
As I have not tried capturing anything other than HDMI source 720p 59.94fps material, I cannot discuss any limitations for other input modes. However, for 720p 59.94fps video, the YUV capture format is HDYC (YUV 4:2:2).
The reason why I mention that the YUV format is HDYC is because this kind of limits the capture compression codecs that can be used. If you use Blackmagic Media Express in Windows, you are limited to what they call "AVI 8-bit YUV", "AVI Motion JPEG", and "DPX 10-bit RGB".
- I think AVI 8-bit YUV is uncompressed HDYC capture (haven't tried it, because I use VirtualDub for capturing anyway),
- I think that the "AVI Motion JPEG" capture format is pretty bad---seems to be Blackmagic's own MJPEG compression implementation, and there's no way to change any settings (e.g. quality, etc.). I tried using it once. Never again.
- Have not tried DPX 10-bit.Read more ›
- the setup for these cards is pretty undocumented, so you're sort of on your own. The control panel interface for the cards is somewhat vague as well; if you know what you're doing, you'll figure it out, it just might take some time.
- if you have more than one card in your system, the control panel (either Mac or Windows) will not uniquely identify them, so when you go to change the settings, you'll get a drop-down window that simply says "Blackmagic Intensity Pro", not knowing if you're changing the settings for card 1, card 2, card 3, etc. That's not a very good design.
- I think that there used to be some pretty decent capture software that came with the card, but as far as I can tell, they changed it (for the worse) and you can no longer get the older software. I contacted them and they said that it was discontinued.
- If you're using the card as a switcher for a live show, it works well enough. There's a fairly robust community in the Wirecast forums using these cards, so despite Blackmagic's lack of documentation and information, they can usually get you going.
- The card does not support 1080p30 as far as I can tell. I had to set the card up to capture in 720p...which is probably fine since switching between three cards, I don't know if the system would be able to keep up with three 1080p30 streams anyway.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
IF you can get it installed, it's pretty good. HOWEVER, the support site is horrible and not helpful. Installation is hellish ....Published 15 days ago by D. Kohler
Very good product, high picture quality, highly durable. Reaommend...Published 5 months ago by Viktor Marinkovic
I bought this to capture the output of an ATEM 1 M/E switcher, and feed that signal into a live web stream. All my cameras and sources went into the switcher. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Media Write Group
Bought this for a computer at church to deliver the slides to the screens...works great!Published 6 months ago by Kelly Ruhl
Works really well, once you figure out how to use it. There's not a lot of documentation out there for this, so it does take a bit of fooling around to set it up correctly. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Todd Kelmar
Needed this for a build. It came right away, drivers were needed. Worked and is still working over a year later. Can't ask for more!Published 8 months ago by cwc
I picked this up because it has around $200. While it does a good job of recording HD streams (such as those from HD video game consoles), it can't record all the way up to 1080p,... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Jason A.
Kind of finicky to setup, little worried since I had to put it in a ePCI x16 slot so it doesn't fit snugly. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Mike