We take a look at the first Thunderbolt video device to ship – The Blackmagic UltraStudio 3D.
After months of waiting we were pleased to be able to try our first Thunderbolt device. From the moment Apple announced this high speed interface back in February 2011 we have been waiting for a video capture device. The 10 Gbps bidirectional interface is made for video, with the theoretical capability of carrying 3 full HD streams concurrently. We were not disappointed and the UltraStudio 3D is probably the easiest video capture device we have set up. It even worked first time with Telestream’s Wirecast which is always a good test.
Unfortunately we couldn’t test the 3D capability or the video out from Premier Pro, Avid or Final Cut Pro 7, while we have Premier Pro and FCP 7 they are installed on a current Mac Pro – the only Apple computer without a Thunderbolt interface.
Overall we were very impressed with this unit – it just worked and would make a great addition to many studios or portable setups. The only downside is the single Thunderbolt port which doesn’t allow daisy chaining of devices, but this of course is reflected in the price.
With Blackmagic shipping a cheaper Thunderbolt device, the HDMI only Intensity Extreme, in the next couple of months this pair of devices is going to open up many exciting new possibilities. We already have a couple of interesting projects on the drawing board!
Note:This unit was loaned to us by Blackmagic UK for 1 week to allow us to look at the unit and share our findings with you.