Mac Book Pro / Data Path X4 / Mac Pro combo

Bro, does your rig even lift?
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KB15
Met Resolume in a bar the other day
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Mac Book Pro / Data Path X4 / Mac Pro combo

Post by KB15 »

I am relatively new to resolume and mapping across multiple outputs (3 months experience). I work in a mac environment but dual booting to windows would be fine if I must.

I have a MacBook Pro early 2014, a MacBook Pro mid 2012 and a Mac Pro trash can late 2013.
We plan to drive 6 1080p LED screens (probably at 720p), two projectors (VGA resolution so not amazing) that share the same feed and a monitor for resolume.

I plan to purchase a Datapath X4 for certain, however, i'm unsure how to configure the rest of the setup.

Option 1
Mac Pro
2 Datapath X4

Option 2
Mac Pro
1 Datapath X4
1 Matrox TH2G

Option 3
MacBook Pro
2 Datapath X4

Ideally, I would use the MacPro as it has 6 DP out and two video cards. However, would it be possible to use either MacBook Pro to run this setup? The 2014 model has 2 DP out and the 2012 model only has 1 DP out. And I like the compact idea of using a laptop instead of bringing a tower and monitor everywhere.

Do the DPX4 'daisy chain' and allow me 7 outputs? If this is a possibility, at what resolution would the second DPX4 run at?

If the DPX4 doesn't work like that, has anyone had success running two of then from a MacBook Pro (like the 2014 model?)

Thanks!

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lotech
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Re: Mac Book Pro / Data Path X4 / Mac Pro combo

Post by lotech »

A couple of handy tips -

You could daisy chain the X4 but its a really messy way to do it and as the X4's max DVI output is 1920x1200 the second in the chain will only be receiving that resolution - although it can be a scaled version of the original output.

Next - You'll need a Dual link DVI Adaptor for each Datapath so make sure you get one as theres no way to get high enough resolution out of a Minidisplayport connection no matter which way you go.

Although the X4 can do 4096x4096 you'll be forced to lower the frame rate to 25/30Hz at such a high resolution as you're limited to a 330Mz max clock speed. This means 3840x2160 has to lower its framerate going in. You can output from the Datapath back at 50/60Hz but I've never liked the idea.
That said you can totally do 4x 720P outputs at 50/60Hz no problem.

As for the MBP - I was doing some testing a couple of days for an upcoming show trying to run 2x X4's running at 3840x2160@30Hz on my rMBP (750M 2GB) and it brought everything to a stand still - mouse movements on the laptop screen were struggling so don't even think about it. It is happy doing either 4x 720P via the X4 or 3x 1080P via a TH2Go DP.

I had planned to test our MP (2x D700 6GB) with the same setup yesterday but didn't get a chance - although will be doing it in the next few days as the show is a week away.

My general feeling is doing everything at 720P will be visually hard to distinguish from 1080 and will give me some safety in output. Personally for me the biggest flaw in the the datapath is its inability to do 3840x2160P50/60 which has caught me short a few times.

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Oaktown
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Re: Mac Book Pro / Data Path X4 / Mac Pro combo

Post by Oaktown »

lotech wrote:A couple of handy tips -

You could daisy chain the X4 but its a really messy way to do it and as the X4's max DVI output is 1920x1200 the second in the chain will only be receiving that resolution - although it can be a scaled version of the original output.
Rather than daisy chaining Datapath X4 units, you'd want to use a datapath dL8 upstream.
lotech wrote:Next - You'll need a Dual link DVI Adaptor for each Datapath so make sure you get one as theres no way to get high enough resolution out of a Minidisplayport connection no matter which way you go.
You only need a DL DVI adapter if you're pushing more than 165Mhz so 1920x1080 or 1920x1200 @ 60Hz woudn't require that you use dual link.
lotech wrote:Although the X4 can do 4096x4096 you'll be forced to lower the frame rate to 25/30Hz at such a high resolution as you're limited to a 330Mz max clock speed. This means 3840x2160 has to lower its framerate going in.
You can do 3840x2400 @ 30Hz in CVT reduced blanking and I personally think it looks great.
lotech wrote:You can output from the Datapath back at 50/60Hz but I've never liked the idea.
That said you can totally do 4x 720P outputs at 50/60Hz no problem.
You could scale up and change the timing on the X4 no problems. So with 1 dL8 and 2 X4s, 3840x2160p30 could be easily be split into 8 @ 720p60 (actually 9 but...).
lotech wrote:As for the MBP - I was doing some testing a couple of days for an upcoming show trying to run 2x X4's running at 3840x2160@30Hz on my rMBP (750M 2GB) and it brought everything to a stand still - mouse movements on the laptop screen were struggling so don't even think about it. It is happy doing either 4x 720P via the X4 or 3x 1080P via a TH2Go DP.
We've got a system going out on Monday with 1 @ Datapath dL8 to 4 @ Datapah X4 units feeding 15 @ 1024x768@60Hz projectors. It's not designed for a MBP but we tested on Thursday and we can push a 15360x768 R4 comp on a late 2013 MBP at about 32fps with 1 layer and 20fps with 4 layers.

KB15
Met Resolume in a bar the other day
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Re: Mac Book Pro / Data Path X4 / Mac Pro combo

Post by KB15 »

Oaktown wrote:
lotech wrote:A couple of handy tips -

You could daisy chain the X4 but its a really messy way to do it and as the X4's max DVI output is 1920x1200 the second in the chain will only be receiving that resolution - although it can be a scaled version of the original output.
Rather than daisy chaining Datapath X4 units, you'd want to use a datapath dL8 upstream.
Is it possible to just eliminate the dL8 and use two separate DVI out from the computer? Just to eliminate an extra purchase or is the dL8 required to drive more than one X4?

Has anyone had success slapping a VGA active adapter on to the X4 and run a VGA cable to the destination (if outputting in 720p) or are there technical limits to switching cables?

Thanks for your help.

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Oaktown
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Re: Mac Book Pro / Data Path X4 / Mac Pro combo

Post by Oaktown »

KB15 wrote:Is it possible to just eliminate the dL8 and use two separate DVI out from the computer? Just to eliminate an extra purchase or is the dL8 required to drive more than one X4?
You could use two different Datapath X4 units on two outputs no problems but first make sure your GPU can handle the load. The dL8 is great when you want to breakdown one 4K output into a bunch of independent outputs.
KB15 wrote:Has anyone had success slapping a VGA active adapter on to the X4 and run a VGA cable to the destination (if outputting in 720p) or are there technical limits to switching cables?
The 4 outputs on the X4 are either analog or digital so you can go either way. (Outputs : 4 x single-link DVI or Analog RGB outputs: To 165 Mpixel/s) You get to choose in the X4 menu whether you want the output to be digital or analog and you can use any combination thereof on the 4 outputs..

Also as a note, DVI to VGA adapters only work when the DVI port is a DVI-A or DVI-I not a DVI-D and I don't believe there is any DVI-D to VGA adapter on the market besides hardware like the X4. But that would be an expensive adapter!! The DVI-A & DVI-I have the following pins that carry the Analog signal (the cross plus the last pin on the top row) :
  • Pin 8: Analog vertical sync
    C1: Analog red
    C2: Analog green
    C3: Analog blue
    C4: Analog horizontal sync
    C5: Analog ground Return for R, G, and B signals

hulksiño
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Re: Mac Book Pro / Data Path X4 / Mac Pro combo

Post by hulksiño »

Hi good evening everyone, I'm searching for answers about the datapath x4 any of you can help me?
I would like to know how to install it on Mac , and download the files of Datapath .

greetings

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Oaktown
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Re: Mac Book Pro / Data Path X4 / Mac Pro combo

Post by Oaktown »

Unfortunately there is no easy way to program the Datapath X4 on a mac. It has to be done in Command Line Interface such as Terminal. It's not impossible but it requires some understanding to program the X4.

Take a look at this document named [Command Line Interface]: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B2Lh5p ... sp=sharing

I personally always program my X4 units on a PC or virtual PC on my mac (windows 8.1 on VMware) and it saves me a lot of headaches. Once the X4 is programmed all you have to do is select the right resolution in your display controls and you're set since all the other parameters are programmed in X4.

As a head's up, if you use the X4 for anything that require DVI dual link, make sure you have the right cables or you'll get weird results.

Don't hesitate to ask questions if you have issues setting it up.

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