Foxvideo Productions

Media Production

January 2016

A loss, 2 gains and a compromise.

Intensity Pro

A very sad loss in the edit suite this week, my Blackmagic Intensity Pro died. This little card fits a PCIe slot in my MacPro and works wonders, it allows capture from analogue sources, the HDMI output of my JVC HD deck, it upscales and downscales and at the same time displays via HDMI or component to an HD monitor - I’m lost without it!

Off to the Bay of E and there’s 2 on offer, one has no mounting plate and the connections cut off the multi-plug, not a problem as I have the plate and multi-plug from the old card, it’s currently at £10.65 with a couple of days to go, the second is complete but again without the multi-plug and currently at £30. The first ends on Saturday and there’s still very little interest in it with 3 hours to go, then a couple of small increment bids take it £25, a new card would cost me around £150 so I’d given myself a limit of £50, at 12 seconds to go a bid for £45 goes on, I’m sitting waiting to press submit on my bid which goes in with 3 seconds to spare and the card is mine! In total there were 18 bids, mostly last minute.

On Sunday the second card is still sitting at £30 with a couple of hours to go, due to the amount of interest in the first card I thought there would be a lot of bids on this one, with just 7 seconds to go a bid for £32.50 went in, with 4 seconds to go I placed a bid for £35, my thinking was if the first card was faulty I’d have an alternative, if both worked I could resell one back on eBay, I won again!

The second card arrived first in the post, now comes the complicated bit, does it work and which Firmware has it got? I have a dual boot MacPro, 10.8 (Mountain Lion) with Final Cut Pro 7 which needs Decklink 9.2.2 from Blackmagic and won’t work with FCPX and a second boot drive with 10.11.2 (El Capitan) with FCPX 10.2 which needs Decklink 10.5 and certainly won’t work with FCP7. It occurred to me I might be able to use both cards in 2 slots, one for each boot drive so I emailed Blackmagic Support (still waiting for an answer on that one!). I opt to put the card in the FCP7 system, load the 9.2.2 drivers and everything works fine, we’re back in business.

When the second card (the first one I won) arrives I put the mounting plate from my duff card on, remove the second card from the Mac, boot to El Capitan and install Decklink 10.5 and I get a popup saying I need to update the Firmware which I do. The card then works fine with FCPX!

I take a chance and re-install the first card (actually the second card if you’re still with me) alongside the FCPX card, FCPX works fine but there’s a popup asking if I want to update the Firmware which I don’t as I’ve already done it.

So now to the compromise, I have an Intensity Pro card for FCP7 and another card for FCPX, I’m going to have to swap cards for whichever edit software I want to work with, much of my work is re-edits of FCP7 stuff and I’m still learning FCPX, it’s only a 2 minute job to switch cards so until I get another MacPro it’s down to cards swaps!

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