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Avid DNxIO Frequently Asked Questions

Avid Artist DNxIO

Q. What is Artist | DNxIO?
A. Avid Artist | DNxIO is a powerful, professional video I/O interface designed to simplify and accelerate your entire HD, Ultra HD, 2K, and 4K workflow. Available as standalone hardware or bundled with industry-standard Media Composer software, Artist | DNxIO enables you to capture, monitor, and output media quickly—in the highest quality possible. And because the interface is designed to be open and flexible, you can use it with Avid and other creative tools too.

Q. What are the differences between Avid Artist | DNxIO and the similar-looking Blackmagic Ultrastudioproduct?
A. Avid has the exclusive ability to offer the following:

  • Real-time DNxHR hardware encoding, Avid | Artist DNxIO has a built in hardware encoder that now enables users to encode UHD and 4K media to DNxHR LB (Low Bandwidth) in real time during base band capture.  Avid DNxHR encoding gives you greater beauty without the bandwidth, with encoding that is optimized for the needs of post-production.
    • This functionality requires Media Composer v8.4.5 and higher and Desktop Video Software v10.5.4 and higher
  • Audio punch-in. With a front-panel microphone input jack, it’s quick and easy to record audio on-the-fly.
  • Sold and Supported by Avid: Backed by Avid’s world class Customer Care organization.
  • Agency Certified: Only DNxIO is certified by industry standard safety certifications including UL, cUL, China RHOS, and more
  • Two power cables for redundant connection
  • Choice of Standalone or Bundled with Media Composer:
    • Standalone Artist | DNxIO. Ideal if you already own Media Composer or other applications, including Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro, Resolve and more.
    • Artist | DNxIO with Media Composer perpetual license. This tested, proven solution includes everything above, plus a full perpetual Media Composer license and activation card (software download required—software never expires), and a one-year Avid upgrade and support plan providing all Media Composer upgrades and expert help for 12 months (renewable annually).
    • Artist | DNxIO with Media Composer 2-year subscription. This tested, proven solution includes everything above, plus a 2-year Media Composer subscription (software download required—must renew subscription after 24 months to continue using the software), and an Avid upgrade and support plan providing all Media Composer upgrades and expert help throughout an active subscription

Q. Will the upgrade that supports DNxHR hardware encoding be for Media Composer only, or for other applications as well?
A. Avid’s goal is to provide DNxHR hardware encoding in a meaningful way to all customer of Avid Artist | DNxIO. The easiest path is for Media Composer owners that have an upgrade & support plan.  Other creative editorial applications like Blackmagic Design Resolve, Adobe Creative Cloud, Apple FCPX and others will be able to access this capability via an updated SDK that will be available to the developers of those applications.

Q. What are the offerings?
A. Avid will offer the following offerings for sale.

Avid Artist | DNxIO with a Perpetual (software based) License of Media Composer – $4,899.00  NOW $4,399.00 

  • Artist | DNxIO video hardware interface
  • Two power cables (for redundant connections)
  • Media Composer perpetual license and activation card (software download required—software never expires)
  • Fusion Edit Connection for Media Composer plug-in
  • One-year Avid upgrade and support plan—provides all Media Composer upgrades and expert help for 12 months, renewable annually
  • One year standard Avid hardware warranty

Avid Artist | DNxIO with a Perpetual (Dongle) License of Media Composer$5,399.00  NOW $4,899.00

  • Artist | DNxIO video hardware interface
  • Two power cables (for redundant connections)
  • Media Composer perpetual license and activation card (software download required—software never expires)
  • Fusion Edit Connection for Media Composer plug-in
  • One-year Avid upgrade and support plan—provides all Media Composer upgrades and expert help for 12 months, renewable annually
  • One year standard Avid hardware warranty

Avid Artist | DNxIO with 2 Year Subscription to Media Composer$4,899.00  NOW $4,399.00

  • Artist | DNxIO video hardware interface
  • Two power cables (for redundant connections)
  • 2-year Media Composer subscription (software download required—must renew subscription after 24 months to continue using the software)
  • Fusion Edit Connection for Media Composer plug-in
  • Avid upgrade and support plan—provides all Media Composer upgrades and expert help throughout an active subscription
  • One year standard Avid hardware warranty

Academic pricing available for above options

Avid Artist | DNxIO Standalone$3,999.00  NOW $3,499.00

  • Artist | DNxIO video hardware interface
  • Two power cables (for redundant connections)
  • Fusion Edit Connection for Media Composer plug-in
  • One year standard Avid hardware warranty

Nitris DX or Mojo DX Trade-In for Artist | DNxIO$3,399.00  NOW $2,899.00

  • Artist | DNxIO video hardware interface
  • Two power cables (for redundant connections)
  • Fusion Edit Connection for Media Composer plug-in
  • One year standard Avid hardware warranty

For additional details on limited time trade in offers, including a list of qualified Open I/O Partner hardware, please see http://www.avid.com/US/specialoffers/dnxio-trade-in 

Q: Will Avid Artist | DNxIO support surround sound audio output?
A: Surround 5.1 and 7.1 audio monitoring are supported through SDI and HDMI embedded audio signals.  A real-time four channel down mix of 5.1 and 7.1 can be chosen for monitoring through the four analog audio outputs, in your choice of quadraphonic, LRCS, or LRCLfe configurations.

Q: How does Avid Artist | DNxIO connect to a host computer?
A: DNxIO will connect to a host computer via a Thunderbolt 2 connection or a PCIe connection to a HIB card in the host.

Q: Will DNxIO ship with a specific host connection cable type? 
A: No, the host connection cable needs to be ordered separately since there is a choice for how to connect (Thunderbolt 2 or PCIe).  For Thunderbolt 2 connectivity, Avid offers a 2 meter powered cable.  For customers that require Thunderbolt connectivity over longer distances, Avid has tested and qualified 30 meter and 60 meter optical Thunderbolt cabling offered by Corning.  For more information, please visit www.opticalcablesbycorning.com/
For PCIe connectivity, Avid offers a PCIe Gen2 adapter bundled with a 3 meter PCIe connection cable.

Q: What options are available for purchasing PCIe connectivity?
A: Only Avid sold/supplied PCIe cables and Host Interface  cards will be supported  for PCIe connected DNxIO configurations

Q: Will the PCIe cable and adapter that worked with Mojo DX and Nitris DX work with the DNxIO?
A: The most recent revision of the PCIe Gen2 x4 card and cable that was sold with Nitris DX and Mojo DX are supported for use with Artist | DNxIO.  The part numbers for the supported PCIe Gen2 x4 cards are 7030-30048-01 and 7030-30048-02.

Q. Does DNxIO support audio punch in?
A: Yes, Audio Punch-in is supported on Artist | DNxIO. Note that the DNxIO needs to have a video signal connected to the unit even when capturing audio only.

Q. Does DNxIO support Video Satellite?
A. DNxIO is qualified for Video Satellite workflows with Pro Tools 12.3 and higher. Please see this page for further compatibility information and known issues.

Q. Does DNxIO work with Pro Tools? 
A. DNxIO is qualified for video playback with Pro Tools 12.3 and higher when used with Blackmagic Desktop Video 10.5.1 and higher. For more information, click here.

Q. Does DNxIO support simultaneous capture of high res and proxy?
A. DNxIO will support a single stream of ingest- there are no current plans to support simultaneous proxy generation.

Q: Can DNxIO be used with older versions of Media Composer software?
DNxIO, Media Composer, Upgrade offerA: DNxIO is supported with Media Composer v8.4.1 and higher. Previous versions of software have not been tested or qualified.  There have been several changes in Media Composer 8.4.1 (and higher) to support new features not previously available in Open I/O. Media Composer v 8.4.1 (and higher) is available to Media Composer customers with an active upgrade & support plan

Anyone who currently owns Avid Media Composer v3.0 or higher, Avid Symphony v3.0 or higher or Avid NewsCutter v7.0 or higher, qualifies for this special limited time offer to upgrade and reinstate their Avid Media Composer software to v8.8. Find out more about the upgrade and reinstatement offer here.

Q: Does DNxIO support Closed Captioning and Ancillary data?
A: Yes, with the release of Media Composer v8.4.5 and Desktop Video Software v10.5.4, Playback of Ancillary Data including Closed Captioning and Ancillary Timecode (ATC) are supported. Capture is not supported.

Q: Will the Fusion Edit Connection for Media Composer plugin work on both Mac and Windows?
A: Initially, the Fusion Edit Connection for Media Composer plugin will only be available on Windows (v7.7.1).  Mac support is expected to be added when Fusion 8 becomes available.

Q: How do I access the Fusion Edit Connection for Media Composer plugin?
A: The Fusion Edit Connection for Media Composer plugin is installed when you install Blackmagic Design Desktop Video (required to connect Artist | DNxIO).  The Fusion Edit Connection for Media Composer plugin will work with both Fusion Free and the full Fusion Studio (requires purchase).  The plugin is installed with the Desktop Video software but the Fusion Free and Fusion Studio need to be downloaded separately from https://www.blackmagicdesign.com/support.  Look for Fusion 7.7.1 under Latest Downloads

Q: Is there a feature comparison between Artist | DNxIO and previous Avid I/O Hardware?
A:  Yes, a comparison of Avid Video I/O Hardware features can be found Here

DNxIO Troubleshooting and guidelines

PCIe slot location DNxIO vs. Nitris-DX / Mojo-DX

+ Thunderbolt HBA – For local Thunderbolt storage support with DNxIO (in the same system where applicable)
  1. PCIe is the interface to be used to connect DNxIO when used with a Windows workstation or Mac Pro Westmere tower
  2. The target I/O slot for DnxIO is not the same as Nitris-DX and Mojo-DX hardware.
  3. The target I/O slot for DNxIO is Gen3. Gen3 will support the higher performing features of DNxIO.
  4. Exception – The target I/O slot for DNxIO and Nitris-DX / Mojo-DX will be the same in CPU’s that do not offer Gen3 technology I/O slots.
  5. More recent windows workstations such as the HP Z840, Z640 etc, and equivalent models by DELL and Lenovo offer a Thunderbolt HBA option. With Nitris-DX / Mojo-DX , simultaneous installation of both an Avid DX HIB HBA and a Thunderbolt HBA was not possible because the two HBA’s required the identical slot location. With DNxIO this limitation no longer exists. A user can now connect DNxIO via PCIe in one slot and accommodate a Thunderbolt HBA in another slot for Thunderbolt storage. This insures optimal performance because the DNxIO PCIe interface and the Thunderbolt HBA reside on separate I/O buses. Daisy chaining Thunderbolt devices on the same Thunderbolt bus can degrade performance due to “bus-sharing” and should be avoided whenever possible.
  6. Although DNxIO and Nitris / Mojo use different I/O slots , a user cannot simultaneously connect DNxIO and Nitris-DX or Mojo-DX in the same system. This will not work and is not supported.

PCIe considerations for Avid Artist | DNxIO

  • Our target is to be able to simultaneously have a TB HBA and PCIe HBA in all of the HP, DELL and Lenovo systems that support a TB HBA. Currently in all of these systems, the HIB card (for DX hardware) and TB HBA required the same Gen2 slot, so it would be one or the other.
  • The location of the Thunderbolt HBA is dictated and “Locked-down” by each MFG (HP , DELL , Lenovo) for each Workstation model that supports a TB HBA. so there is no flexibility in moving the slot location of the TB HBA. Also, each of these systems can only accommodate a single TB HBA. None of the HP, DELL or Lenovo systems allow for multiple TB HBA’s.
  • Also, it is important to note that older qualified systems (such as the Z800 Westmere) do not have any Gen3 I/O slots (as that technology was not yet developed). Westmere systems have only Gen2 and Gen1 slots. So, Westmere generation and earlier systems will never be able to support UHD/4k RGB 10 bit or 12 bit @ 48, 50, 59.94 or 60 fps formats with DNxIO. This includes the Mac Westmere tower.
  • Accommodating both the PCIe HBA and TB HBA in different slots provides the user “the best of both worlds” , for example the advantage of allowing the user to use the TB connection for TB storage (without bogging down the TB bus with both the DNxIO and storage on the same bus). Things will run more efficiently when busses are not shared. The PC workstations have a lot of busses i.e., I/O slots , so let’s get devices on their own individual bus whenever possible. Also running native PCIe is beneficial compared to sending PCIe packets over the Thunderbolt bus and having to re-packetize and decode them.

 Thunderbolt considerations for Avid Artist | DNxIO

  • Thunderbolt 2 is required for DNxIO
  • Thunderbolt 1 is NOT supported (host computers and expansion chassis).
  • Thunderbolt 1 has the same bandwidth as PCIe gen1 (both limit around 1000MB/sec).  Both PCIe Gen1 and TB 1 are not supported for DNxIO

DNxIO to the Mac Pro (Ivy Bridge)

Importance of separating Thunderbolt devices on separate Thunderbolt busses.

Avid Artist | DNxIO – Drivers and Documentation

 Please note: You should only install Avid supplied/supported Desktop Video software

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By Jim, March 7, 2017