Video capture (to standalone or not)

so with the forthcoming TBC2 and all the recent talk of upscaling I’m thinking more about video capture

I know people have used the intensity shuttles for input into the computer and thus recording. I expect once the TBC2 comes out we may even see a decent amount of the shuttles showing up for sale.

However I’m also considering an all in one solution as they seem to be getting to a nice point of price/size/performance

Video assist

any thoughts on how you will be recording in the TBC2 future?

I have a matrox mini that I never figured out very well if I record a couple seconds of video it ends up being a crazy large file and it doesn’t want to playback. I hope I’ve just got something messed up in the settings but didn’t ever get any further with it. If anyone is willing to help me through that process or even just general settings that would be wonderful.


I’m very happy with my UltraStudio Mini HD for capture, but it needs additional converters to get analog outputs. It has two output channels for RGBA graphics (RGB + A.) I’m planning to experiment with sending full alpha channel motion graphics from the PC to Memory Palace (which has alpha channel input.) This should be lots of fun.

If you want to capture via Memory Palace’s DVI-D output, you will get the native quality of the A/D converters used in that module – in other words, 24-bit RGB in LZX native format! And you can use a much cheaper capture/recorder, like this:


@creatorlars so it sounds like you will get a better resolution capture from MP vs Cortex?

@DesertMuseum Well if the Memory Palace output is what you want to capture, yes. The DVI-D will be the output in its native buffer format. If you want to capture your analog patch use a capture device with 10-bit YPbPr capture like Blackmagic Intensity Shuttle.

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I’m brand new to all this but enjoying the research. Does the USB port on the TBC2 mean that TBC2 can act as a capture device / output device similar to what I expected from the Blackmagic shuttle?

I caught the bug from a copy of Lumen. Have been considering the jump into either a Vidiot or small system based around Visual Cortex. If the TBC2 is a capture device, the that might make more sense for me than the Shuttle.

I’m sorry, TBC2 is not a capture device. We recommend Intensity Shuttle for capture/recording, but I prefer the UltraStudio Mini HD personally, it’s a bit more stable in my experience (but requires Thunderbolt 3 interface.)

Glad to have you and thanks for the question. :slight_smile:


I am a big fan of capturing output on a dedicated device versus using a computer (w/Intensity Shuttle) for capture. I do use the Intensity Shuttle to output video into the LZX system.

If you look for slightly older standalone recorders you can usually find them with Component Video I/O so you don’t need to buy any conversion boxes in line.

3 Likes I was just looking at this one it seems like it is pretty decent
there is some room for growth from component output to having a scaler
ambery seems to be a pretty trusted place as far as video stuff goes

Related to this: what’s a good standalone composite->HDMI converter?

A lot of the broadcast converters use SDI as the basic standard, so there are a ton of options if you look for Composite/Analog to SDI and then SDI to HDMI. If you want upscaling that sometimes requires another box. For example in my studio I have Analog to SDI -> UpDownCross -> SDI to HDMI for this (all Blackmagic Mini Converters.) I believe Atomos sells one that does Analog to HDMI with scaling. A dedicated rig is very useful and highly recommended.


The use case is playing out at live shows: the house projectors at places around here usually have just a HDMI cable and no easy way to run anything else to the ceiling-mounted projector.

I am a big fan of the Blackmagic UltraStudio Mini HD for capture to a computer, but don’t always have it set up (read: did not plan ahead :P) when the video gods are smiling. For quick jams and avoiding “I wish I had recorded that” syndrome, I love having a dedicated recorder. My workflow is largely SDI, and I use a Blackmagic Hyperdeck Shuttle SSD recorder for “standalone” capture. It also doubles as an HDMI capture device/cross converter. It has a built in battery (ALWAYS ready to record, even if you run out of outlets/forget the AC adaptor!) and is built so solidly you could use it for self-defense. Dedicated recorders have the advantage of also being dedicated PLAYBACK devices. It opens up a lot of additional flexibility for live performances.

Even if you don’t have a lot of SDI gear, I’d still recommend one. The Blackmagic “whatever”->SDI mini converters are VERY reasonably priced.


I can second all CountFunkula’s comments on the Hyperdeck Shuttle. Totally solid and always ready to record. Mine sits under my monitor. The mini converter sits under the synth. I edit on a computer in another room. The internal battery means it won’t lose anything if the power suddenly goes off. It’ll always have time to save the last frame.

Are all of the $30 usb -> component “digitize your old VHS tapes” dongles on Amazon total garbage? Are there any that are reliable?

You definitely won’t get professional results with them. It’s like being in a band when you’re a kid… you can use the cheap amps and cheap guitar and still write awesome songs, though.

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Makes total sense. Are there any that are at least so so? I’m not ready to buy a black magic product but I did recently get a sweet vcr from goodwill.

UPDATE: I picked up a webcam. Pointing the webcam at the television is easier for me at this stage, plus it ends up looking kind of cool.

Lately, I’ve been live streaming my video explorations and performances. Live streaming would not be possible with a stand alone device. Using OBS (open broadcaster software) one can stream and/or capture to disk, even multiple sources. Works great for tutorial type videos. So typically I use a Canopus and Intensity Pro card at the same time to stream- PiP or switching sources. But, I’m pretty settled in and don’t play out much.

Aja Helo will stream and/or record without a computer.

Of course that exists! Thanks for the correction :wink:

AJA HELO is a great addition to the mid level encoder world. Super stable. Front panel controls vs all browser controls.

Best in category!

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