Release Notes for Drastic DDR 3.0.0

General Notes

  HSDL 2048x1556/1536 Transfers When switching to or from 2K HSDL (14.98/15 fps) formats, you must exit QuickClipXO, change the setting in LocalConfig and re run QuickClipXO. If you are running a server you must stop and restart the service to make this change. This is NOT necessary for real time 2048x1556/1536 formats that use the HD output at 23.98 or 24 fps. Also, if you use LocalConfig to change your setup to a 2K frame size, it will default your input and output to dual link. If you need single link, change it before exiting LocalConfig.

  Real Time 2048x1556 with HD downconvert Please note, due to bandwidth this is only available when running a single channel system. If you are running a Typhon2 (or VVW7002), you must first change the Maximum Boards setting in LocalConfig from 2 to 1, and then set the first channel to 2048x1556/1536 @ 23/24/25 fps.

  1080p 50, 59.94 and 60 Setups When switching to or from 1080p 50, 59.94 or 60 formats, you must exit QuickClipXO, change the setting in LocalConfig and re run QuickClipXO. This is only required for these dual connector types. 720p 50, 59.94 and 60 work without restarting the software. If you are running a server you must stop and restart the service to make this change. This is NOT necessary for real time 2048x1556/1536 formats that use the HD output at 23.98 or 24 fps.

  WMV Uncompressed Recording This file format was written for internal tools at Microsoft. If you are not using these tools, this file format will not be useful and you should use AVI instead. Also, once the record is complete, an index is generated and added to the end of the WMV file. This can take up to 20% of the total record time to generate.

  JS File Format (Jaleo) If you have the audio type set to .wav in LocalConfig the first two channels will be overridden to .aiff for compatibility with Jaleo. To get all aiffs, switch LocalConfig to aiff. Also, only 16 bit audio is supported by Jaleo.

  DVS File Format This format is read and write for 8 bit YCbCr and RGBA, but read-only for 10 bit YCbCr, as the old DVS 10 bit format is translated in software to the modern standard. DVS files are limited to 4Gb of disk space. If more than 4Gb is encoded, the video in the file will become corrupt.

  HDR-YUV/RGBxx This streaming format cannot support 720p 10 bit YCbCr due to a variety of hardware alignment issues (8 bit is fine). AVI, MOV and YUV stills do support this format.

  TGA, BMP, TIFF 24 Bit 24 bit RGB/BGR (also including avi, mov and hdr/rgb) is only certified for playback. Some of our DDRs can record it as well, but because it is a software translation it is not available on all machines, even if it still appears in the Setup/LocalConfig for playback purposes.

  10 Bit Frame Sizes In some cases QuickClipXO may display a slight difference in the system frames size and the file frame size for the same signal standard. This is normal and will have no effect on operation. It generally occurs with some NTSC 10 bit types. There are some 720p 10 bit types that actually do have different line padding sizes and may not play properly from one system to another without translation.

  4:2:2:4 Frame Types The DDR provides automatic conversion for 8 and 10 bit YCbCr types in real time. If those types have an alpha channel (e.g. 4:2:2:4 instead of 4:2:2), the alpha plane will not be translated.

  Compressed File Playback Playback of compressed files is not officially supported on Drastic DDRs. It does, however, work under some circumstances. It is possible to play back some MPEG-2, WMV (Windows Media) and other compressed files. They must be compressed to a standard size and the DDR must be setup for 8 bit YCbCr MOV (QuickTime movie) playback. Below is a chart of possibly supported frame sizes and what you should set the DDR to:

Vertical Input Size Horizontal Input Size DDR Setting
480, 486, 508, 512 720, 704 486 NTSC
576, 696, 608 720, 704 576 PAL
720, 740 1280 720p
1080, 1088, 1092, 1112 1440, 1920, 2048 1080 p/i/sf

  Series of stills/images naming There are specific naming conventions for series of stills or images so that they may be associated with metadata, picture icon (picon) and audio file(s). Basically the secondary files need to use the 'base name' of the image sequence. The base name is the directory and file name without any of the digits signifying the position in the sequence. For example:
The base name would be:

so the secondary files would be:
V:\TestSeq\Test_.wav (or aiff)
V:\TestSeq\Test_.a34.wav / .a56.wav / .a78.wav / .a9A.wav / .aBC.wav / .aDE.wav / .aFG.wav

There is also the case where the numbers are separated by a period (.). In this case, the extra period must be maintained as part of the name:

would have the names

Hardware Driver Versions

All drivers are available from

AJA Kona2 Kona/Xena LS(e) -
AJA All Others (LH, HS, OEM2K) -
BlueFish 444 -
DVS - 2.7p48
VideoPump 401 - 2.0.8
VideoPump All Others - 3.2.17

QuickClipXO Interface

  Dual Monitor Java - On some NVidia driver revisions, Java will upset the direct draw 3d implementation when using two monitors, even when only using 2D software (like QuickClipXO). Normally this shows up as a temporary (or occasionally permanent) freeze of the system and a blank second monitor. To fix this problem, please read this web page

  Starting QuickClipXO from the command line - To start QuickClipXO from the command line, type:
java -jar QuickClipXO.jar
while in the directory QuickClipXO.jar has been downloaded to.

  Ubuntu Compatibility - To run QuickClipXO on Ubuntu linux, you will need to install Sun java. The GIJ/GCJ implementations of AWT and Swing are not powerful enough to run QuickClipXO.

Hard Disks, File Systems, SAN and NAS

  Checking Speeds Please use SpeedLimit to test your video drive's speed. The target data rates in SpeedLimit are exact, so you should make sure you are seeing at least 15% faster than required for general playback.

  Local File Systems For local file systems any Windows XP supported file system that is fast enough may be used, but NTFS is recommended. The default cluster size is a good choice, or the largest size available (if you are using HD/2K). Once initialized (formatted) you must disable the indexing service. Open an explorer window, find the video drive and right click on it. In the pop up menu select 'Properties'. On the bottom of the 'General' tab, un-check the 'Allow Indexing Service to index this disk for fast file searching'. Also, the 'Compress drive to save disk space' must be un-checked.

  SAN and NAS Drastic Servers are tested and compatible with a number of SAN file systems. Before running the server, you will need to supply a SAN client to install on the server. Once the file system is available, it should be tested with SpeedLimit for throughput.

VGA, DVI and Audio/Video I/O Issues

  1080p50, 1080p59.94 and 1080p60 It is critical in these formats that there is enough bandwidth (320~400 mega bytes per second) and that the A and B cables match from the camera to the DDR. Running a fast motion sequence, then playing it back on the VGA/DVI window will make it obvious if it is cabled correctly.

  720p25, 720p29.97 and 720p30 If your source supports Varicam, it is better to enable that rather than use these settings. These settings use frame dropping and duplication to re-sample up to and down from double their rates. There is no standard for 720p 25/29/30 on the cable, so all devices supporting these modes simply duplicate on playback and drop on record.

  VariCAM (720, 1080, etc) The DDR supports the Varicam flag for dropping duplicated frames from Arri D-20, Viper and Panasonic cameras. This can be enabled on the 'Internal H/W' tab in LocalConfig. When enabled, an expected frame rate can be set. This has no effect on the capture, but will mark the out going file(s) with that frame rate.

  Video Processing Delays You can compensate for video delays during record by setting the 'Audio Capture Offset' on the 'Advanced' page of LocalConfig. If this delay is set, it may change the edit settings for subsequent records. If you change it, it should be thoroughly tested with your controller, and changed back to zero when the processing equipment is removed.

  QuickClip Admin (MDI) On some systems, starting the DVI window in QuickClip Admin (not QuickClipXO) can leave black on the screen. Refreshing the desktop and moving the windows off screen and back on screen will correct the problem and it will not re-occur until the application is restarted. There is currently no other workaround for this problem.

  Matrox Parhelia The Matrox Parhelia reports that it supports RGB Direct access, but it actually does not. For this VGA card series the 'RGB Direct' type under Direct-X Enable on the Advanced tab of Local Config must be disabled.

  NVidia 7800,7950,1000,4000,4400,5000 The latest NVidia drivers will automatically copy any overlay to the second monitor, if available. We have our own second monitor processing, so this should be disabled.

  Dual Monitor Positioning When running on a dual monitor system, the primary monitor MUST be on the left (e.g. Monitor '1' on the Display Properties must be the left one. Also, the tops of the two monitors must be aligned. If the bottoms are aligned, the top of the second monitor will not be used for video.

Serial port issues, RS-422, RS-232

  Drastic PCIe 4 Port RS-422 With the 3.0 software the direction of the RS-422 port must be set by an external program. This is currently a DOS based utility that auto boots if you boot from the card install CD. On early versions of this software the device and controller settings are backwards. The lights on the card are correct, and the red LED does mean device.

  AJA Video Cards and Breakouts For all AJA boards that support external breakout boxes (currently: OEM2K, Kona3/Xena3, LH(e), LS(e)), the software requires that the breakout be used. The cable sets included with the boards are not supported, as they do not allow setup of downconvert and other required features.

  Internal RS-232 Ports These are normal NS16450 compatible chips and have been in use by Drastic for over 15 years. They are the most reliable solution, but the do require RS-232 to RS-422 conversion devices. The basic RS-232 to RS-422 converter will allow the DDR to control an external VTR. To emulate a VTR, you will also need a Drastic NULL 422 converter.

  Colin Broad USB-422 To properly configure these ports in software you must follow the directions below under Standard USB-Serial (FTDI based). Normally, RS422-B will be used as an external control of other devices. To use it to emulate a device, you will need a Drastic RS-422 NULL converter. Normally, RS422-A will be wired as to emulate a device (I/P as marked on the case). If the RX led is not flashing when connected to your controller, the jumpers need to be set to I/P. They are inside the case, underneath the orientation diagrams.

  Standard USB-Serial (Prolific chip based) DO NOT USE if at all possible. If these serial-usb converters are used, with any driver revision, the system will eventually blue screen or reboot. It is possible to use these to control an external device for a long time before the driver crashed, but when used to emulate a device (as a slave) it will crash very quickly.

  Standard USB-Serial (FTDI based) For the FTDI based devices to work properly, they require a specific setup in the driver. Open the the Windows Control Panel, Administrative Tools, Computer Management and select the device manager from the tree on the left. Open the Ports (COM & LPT) branch of the tree on the right. For each FTDI 'USB Serial Port', double click on the entry, select the Port Settings tab and click on the Advanced button. Change the settings to:

  Standard USB-Serial (Other chip based) Unknown, of course. Try and set the latency to be as low as possible. If 232, follow the conversion setup specified under

  RocketPort RS-422 Ports Reboot/Move card issue. Wiring issues?

Alternate Configurations

  Dual Channel DDR On One Board In this mode, each of the dual link inputs and outputs is split into two independent DDR channels. This is not fully supported but may be possible depending on your application, please contact Drastic for more information.

  Dual Channel Locked Mode This mode uses the two dual link inputs and outputs to present two independent YCbCr 4:2:2 10 Bit streams that are locked under the control of one interface/RS-422. This mode only works with stream video files (MOV, AVI, WMV, etc) not individual frames (dpx, tga, etc). This is not fully supported but may be possible depending on your application, please contact Drastic for more information.

  Multi Channel/Multi Machine Locked Record and Playback There is a secondary application called SyncControl available from Drastic that can lock up to 256 channels together for synchronized playback and record. Please contact Drastic for more information.

System Setup

  OS Power Setup The Windows XP operating system's power options must be set to 'Always On' and the 'Turn off hard disks', 'System standby' and 'Hibernate' must be off/disable. These settings can be changed in the Windows Control Panel, using the 'Power Options' icon.

  Screen Savers If you are running QuickClipXO, DrasticPreview, PreviewPro or other software that displays video on the DVI/VGA screen, you must disable all screen savers or once the screen saver completes, the video will not return until you restart the software.

Drastic DDR Service Setup

  Group Policy for Shutdown To properly shutdown the Drastic DDR service (vvwService.exe), a group policy must be added to send a signal to the service at shutdown. To add this policy script:

  1. Click on the 'Start' menu, and then 'Run'
  2. In the Open: box, type 'gpedit.msc' without the quotes
  3. In the Group Policy editor, select:
    • Local Computer Policy
    • Computer Configuration
    • Windows Settings
    • Scripts (Startup/Shutdown)
    • In the right pane, double click on 'Shutdown'
  4. Click the 'Add' button
  5. Click the browse button, and click on 'C:\Program Files\Drastic\QuickClip\vvwService.exe"
  6. In the 'Script Parameters' edit box, type '-e' without the quotes
  7. Click the 'OK' button
  8. Click the 'OK' button on the Shutdown Properties dialog
  9. Close the Group Policy editor

  Service Command Line Flags The Drastic DDR service executable is named vvwService.exe. It supports the following flags:

VVWService [-i] [-l account] [-p pass] [-u] [-!] [-d] [-e] [-s]

NOTE: -s and -i may not be used at the same time

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