At this years NAB the biggest and most important new product announcement for our customers is the Matrox MXO2 Mini. This "under $500 wonder" allows you to add full HD I/O (analog and HDMI) to your PC or Mac.
The Matrox MXO2 Mini gives all of the great features of the MXO2, without broadcast / professional I/O such as SDI or balanced Audio. That means you get HD crossconversion and HD/SD up/down converting as well as the Matrox HDMI color calibration tool. When you consider the price, and the fact that many editors working with HDV, AVCHD or tapeless workflow like P2 or XD Cam do not require SDI, we expect the MXO2 Mini to be a top seller. Initially MXO2 Mini will support Final Cut Studio on the Mac and Adobe CS4 on Windows. I've already had conversations with Matrox, Cineform and Sony about this product and I am happy to report that Matrox is actively investigating what is needed to support Vegas Pro 9 and Cineform.
Matrox had more then just the MXO2 Mini up their sleeve for NAB introduction. The magicians at Matrox were about to deliver the biggest productivity tool to hit video editing since the introduction of real-time editing hardware back in 2000! Today no matter what format of HD you are shooting in, you need to be able to deliver your content in HD and SD for so many different audiences. Blu-ray disc, Flash, iPods and webstreaming sites like YouTube or Vimeo. What do all of these delivery methods have in common? H.264 compression. What is H.264? Simply the best compression available today to deliver the highest possible quality video at the lowest possible bit rates. H.264 video looks fantastic, but there is a big catch, the encoding times are horrendous. Even with an 8-core PowerMac loaded with RAM it can take you hours upon hours to encode your HD timeline into H.264 hi-def video. Not anymore. Abra-Cadabra, Hocus-Pocus, Matrox CompressHD is here! With CompressHD that same 1 hour timeline that needed to render overnight to H.264 for Blu-ray can be encoded in less then an hour - that's faster then real-time! The most amazing magic trick of all is the price - just $495! That's right for under $500 you can add CompressHD to your existing HD workflow. It works with your Aja or Blackmagic I/O solution, so you don't have to worry about replacing your I/O card or having to tinker with your existing HD workflow. Just pop the CompressHD card into an available PCIe slot, and start encoding H.264 faster then you ever thought possible, without any sacrifice to video quality!
As if that wasn't enough, the Matrox magicians had one more rabbit to pull out of their hat! It's called Max technology and it allows you to purchase any flavor of MXO2 with the CompressHD chips integrated inside the box. For just $400 more you can get your choice of MXO2 (Standard, Rack or the new Mini) with Max technology inside. (Sorry existing MXO2 owners, you can't upgrade your exisiting MXO2 to Max, but you can add the CompressHD card). Wow!! Think about how many different ways you can integrate and MXO2 with Max into your workflow. Add it to your Laptop for field editing and encoding, design it into your production van, or add it to your existing tapeless workflow. At $849.95 the MXO2 Mini with Max is sure to become the go to I/O solution for pro-sumers , event videographers and hobbiests working with HD who want to deliver the very best possible HD footage for Blu-ray disc as quickly and efficiently as possible!
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