Just ordered one on these. Watch for a hands-on report this week!
When Apple released the new iMacs based on the i7 chip in 2012, I decided the time was right to move from my 2009 MacPro tower with Apple xServe Raid storage. I was ready to embrace FCPX and Thunderbolt back then and have been modestly happy with the performance.
Since that time, Apple has announced and started shipping, albeit in limited quantities, the new MacPro tower. I am not actual sure the term “tower” is correct, as the new MacPro is quite small and round compared to the former.
After months of teasing the specs and speculation on the pricing, Apple finally announced the pricing and BTO options on December 19th 2013.
After mulling over the options, I decided that I did not want to spend almost $10K on the system. I feel like the money spent on the GPU’s will be the best bang for the buck with FCPX 10.1. With that in mind, I spec’d the following system:
3.5GHz 6-Core Intel Xeon E5
32GB 1866MHz DDR3 ECC – 4X8GB
512GB PCIe-based Flash Storage
Dual AMD FirePro D700-6GB VRAM
I ordered this on December 19th, and the lead time says “February”. I know that some people who ordered lower specced systems were able to get them right away. I will wait the extra month or so to get the higher performance machine. I feel that my money will be well spent on the upgraded GPUs. It appears that the D700’s will have a later availability than the D300 and D500 options.
FCPX 10.1 which Apple released in conjunction with the MacPro announcement, has been “tuned” to take advantage of the dual GPUs in the new MacPro.
As I right this blog, I just read on BareFeats that the 6Core D500 test machine they have outperformed the 12Core D700 machine. Maybe that is the sweet spot, 6Core D500.
Convergent Design made a big impression with their new Odyssey line of recording displays at the 2013 NAB show. The company, known mainly for their stand alone video recorders like the NanoFlash and the predacessor to the Odyssey, the Gemini 4:4:4, displayed a 7.7″ OLED display that promised 4K recording as well as 2K and HD formats.
I placed an order shortly after NAB, and was hoping for a unit in September. Well September came and went without a shipment, but to their credit, they were still adding features to the design.
My unit finally shipped the third week of December, and after a few days with it, I have decided to write a short review.
Previous to my receipt of the Odyssey7Q, I was using a Panasonic BT-LH910 monitor on my Canon C300 rig. This was tops at the time I purchased it, and cost about $4500. It is thick (about 3″) and heavy (3.7lbs) when compared to the Odyssey 7Q (1″ and 1.3lbs).
While my primary use for the Odyssey7Q will be as a on-board monitor, I do think that having a ProRes recorder will come in handy. In fact, one of the features that was announced after i purchased was the multi-camera recording in HD. Up to four cards can be recorded simultaneously at 1080p resolution.
In addition to the quad recording, CD has announced a switched record option for live multi camera jobs.
The monitor itself is tremendous, with great picture quality even in bright light. The focus in red, and 1:1 pixel mode is very helpful in focusing with a large sensor camera, and the touch screen makes navigating easy.
Should I need to record in 2K, or 4K modes, I have the option of purchasing the codec license online from CD or renting buy the day. This is a very flexible method that I think more manufactures will adopt.
There are some bugs that I have run into, like the SDI trigger not working from my C300. I also found an issue when using the multi-cam mode. It seems that the SDI loops do not loop, instead passing the quad split output on the loop out.
Overall, the Odyssey7Q and the 256GB ssd’s I purchased cost me about $3100. Certainly less than I paid for the 910, and I get not only a monitor but a digital recorder to boot.