El gato Turbo. 264 HD

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by puckhead193, Oct 24, 2009.

  1. puckhead193 macrumors G3

    puckhead193

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    Location:
    NY
    #1
    Does anyone use el gato's Trubo. 264 HD encoder/accelerator? link I currently work for a TV station and my export times are out of control. Granted they are long clips almost 40+ plus minutes. Would this help speed up my render times enough to justify the expense?
    My workflow is as follows. I shoot in HD using a canon HF 200 in HD. I come back to my edit suite using FCP 6 to edit, add graphics etc. then i export using quicktime conversion to downscale to 720 x 480 (16x9) w/ other custom settings. Then I wait about 2-3 hours to export a 40 minute clip. Granted I know its not going to be like night and day but cutting it down to 45 minutes to an hour would be nice. Can I set it up so I can use my station's spefici export settings for data rate and motion key frames etc?
    Thanks
     
  2. foshizzle macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2007
    #2
    what kind of workstation are you using?

    I've used the older version of that so I can't vouch for the new version, but i never saw that much of an increase in export times (2-3 hours down to 45 minutes). I also didn't get many options for configuration. This may have changed with the new one hopefully, but I wouldnt count on it doing much unless your machine is really old.

    If you get it, I'd make the workflow go: export to quicktime movie, then pull it into the turbo.264 app and add settings there to pull it down to standard def.
     
  3. huntercr macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2006
    #3
    What codec to you encode this into BTW? I
     
  4. puckhead193 thread starter macrumors G3

    puckhead193

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    Location:
    NY
    #4
    It will be used on my imac (see sig)
    I compress using H.264
     
  5. Griffter macrumors member

    Griffter

    Joined:
    May 28, 2008
    Location:
    Exeter, UK
    #5
    As long as your encoding using H.264, you will really notice the difference in speed. I'm not sure whether you have to use their proprietary software to encode though.
     
  6. CyberBob859 macrumors 6502

    CyberBob859

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2007
    #6
    Elgato Turbo 264 HD

    I used both the older version and the newer HD version on my MacBook (2006 1.83 GHz Core Duo) primarily to convert DVD's to Apple TV or iPhone format.

    On this machine, I can encode a 2 hour movie to Apple TV with their default settings in about 30-minutes with the newer HD hardware and software. I find the output to be very good. My conversion frame rates have been consistently 50-60 fps, and can go as high as 70. (The older stick took about twice as long with about half the frame rate on this MacBook.) When I tried to do the same thing without the stick and their software, it took me over four hours!!

    My experience with these Elgato sticks is that they work best with older hardware. (The new HD only works on Intel Macs, the older version also works with PPC.) For instance the older stick/software combo on a 2.0 GHz Core 2 Duo iMac didn't perform much better than Handbrake on the same machine in terms of encoding time and frame rates. I haven't tried the HD version on that iMac yet. I expect some improvement, but not as dramatic as on the MacBook.

    Earlier software had problems with audio/video sync, but I haven't come across any problems with the latest version upgrades.

    I like the Turbo 264 HD for older Macs. You have to use their software (Handbrake won't work) and it isn't free, but if you only have older equipment to use, you can get more use out of them with this solution.
     
  7. puckhead193 thread starter macrumors G3

    puckhead193

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    Location:
    NY
    #7
    anyone know if i can use this with FCP 6?
    Also will help speed up the process of the log and transfer process?
     
  8. weckart macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    #8
    I noticed several of these in my local used computer store. One of these belonged to one of the assistants, who was quite forthcoming about its shortcomings. Quality is apparently still an issue with the Elgato along with file sizes. He found he could get much better results with Handbrake and the time saved with the dongle was not worth the dip in output quality.

    YMMV, as ever. I am happy enough with the SD version, but then I only use it to export to iPod.
     
  9. foshizzle macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2007
    #9
    With the old one, when I installed the software it added some generic options to my FCE export options such as export for iPod, iPhone, appletv, etc. To have the video export using the turbo, one of these options had to be used.

    It will not speed up log and transfer.

    Maybe get a quad-core imac in november? You'd notice significant gains in speed across the board in FC, from log and transfer, to rendering, to exporting.
     
  10. puckhead193 thread starter macrumors G3

    puckhead193

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    Location:
    NY
    #10
    I just came back from the apple store to get a few goodies and checked out the new imacs...man that 27" screen is huge, but isn't in the cards :(
     
  11. bairda macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 13, 2009
    #11
    You may want to check out the new Matrox "MAX" enabled hardware for h264 encoding ( http://www.matrox.com/video/en/solutions/encoding/ ). This is a hardware based, dedicated encoder that can run on both the PC and Mac. It has been integrated into a standalone PCI-e card (the compresshd) and their breakout boxes (MXO2 series).

    I have had the MX02 mini with MAX for about 2 weeks and it has VASTLY reduced rendering times while significantly increasing quality of the finished video. A 20 minute, HD prores clip can be rendered to blu-ray quality on compressor using the MAX hardware in real time (20 minutes). The output is significantly better looking than the same qmaster encoded clip. It is also ready for direct blu-ray or dvd-5 (blu ray/AVCHD on regular DVD) burning in both Toast and Encore (NO re-encoding needed). Encoding for Ipod/Iphone/Touch and youtube h264 is even faster

    I have seen the test videos for the Elgato usb stick and the Matrox solutions seem to have much better quality as well as faster encode times. They should as they are more expensive. Price for the CompressHD is ~$500, the Mini with Max is ~$800. With the mini you also get HDMI, color accurate monitoring and HDMI ingestion of HD from any non copy protected source (no AVCHD transcoding) along with the h264 compression acceleration.

    The only cons to the Matrox encoding are:
    - Can only encode to h264 or mov extensions on the mac. They will be coming out with an mp4 extension wrapper soon.
    - There is a bug where you can't go directly from FCP to compressor and use the MAX hardware without having the encode poop out. Supposedly this is a FCP/compressor issue and not a Matrox issue.
    -The PC functionality is still not as full featured as the Mac.
    -The MAX hardware is not supported in too many apps outside of Compressor. MPEG streamclip can use it and Telestream episode just came out with an update to support it. I wish the media encoder would see and use it.

    Hope this helps.
    -Alex-
     
  12. bairda macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 13, 2009
    #12
    Sorry, just read a little closer and saw you were on an Imac, which means no PCI-e slot. That would preclude the Matrox hardware!

    Still great stuff if you have a Mac Pro or Mac laptop with a PCI-e card slot.
    -Alex-
     

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