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Slave computers and video


  • Tech Staff

    I just discovered that a lot of composers use slave computers to handle to mass of instruments and patches when working for a big orchestra score. A standard seems to be VEPro http://www.vsl.co.at/en/211/497/1685/1990/1680.htm

    Then I asked myself, if there is something similar in the video-world. Anyone knows about something similar?
    From their website:
    _Vienna Ensemble PRO 5_ is a cross-platform MIDI and audio LAN solution that works universally on Macs and PCs, hosting _Vienna Instruments_ as well as third-party 64-bit and 32-bit AU (Mac) and VSTi (PC) plug-ins. Use it as a host on the same computer as your sequencer to integrate all your 64-bit and 32-bit instruments and effect plug-ins from third-party manufacturers (such as Spectrasonics, Native Instruments, Waves, you name it), or use it as a master-slave solution with multiple Macs and PCs, all connected with a standard Ethernet cable. You can easily route the audio streams of a whole arsenal of computers back to your main machine without the need of external hardware. The Preserve function keeps all of your templates and samples loaded while switching from one project to another


  • Hello,

    Yes, there is some, primarily made for audio post production and linked by MTC.
    Hardware one : principally Doremi, very expansive http://www.doremilabs.com/
    Software: Virtual VTR, quite expansive http://www.virtualvtr.com/
    Video Slave, a little bit less expansive http://www.non-lethal-applications.com/video-slave.html
    and some other media server (Avolite, Modulo Pi etc.)
    But I think the strength of Isadora is modularity and versatility for a quite cheap amount and on the same machine, with same codecs and quality, there is the same load.
    jacques

  • Tech Staff

    Hi Jacques,

    Thank you for the links. I really like that Isadora is affordable. 
    Virtual VTR looks interesting! Have you worked with it?
    What fascinates me is to use the CPU, RAM or even if possible GPU on the slave where the incoming material comes from the master.
    So I have my DAW, mine is Cubase and with VEpro I can use effects and sample libraries on the slave, and all in sync using the power of both machines.
    In the video world that would be something like rendering effects on the slave, sending video (maybe through ethernet cable) between the machines (is this possible between a mac and a pc? syphon is mac only and spout is pc, or?) or using the graphics card of the slave. Dont know if I am thinking the right way, just merging ideas/reality from the audio world into the video world. 
    All the best,
    Alex


  • Hello,

    For the moment, the delay to stream video from one computer to other is too long to do that. The possibility is to have distributed play and effect and I do that often with miniMac piloted centrally via OSC. But the video itself stay on each computer.
    All the best,
    Jacques


  • If you look at the boygrouping function in vvvv it (with some preparation) do a pretty good version of what you want. There are huge differences to video and audio obviously so not all of your VE pro parallels will work but it is pretty advanced. As above if you need to pass frames between machines it is not easy. I often use a setup with a hardware video mixer with 3 aux feeds. All the computers output to the mixer, all cameras also go the computer and capture boxes on all machines are hooked up to the aux outputs of the switcher. This means I can pass any signal to and from anywhere, including passing the output of one machine to the input of another for further or simultaneous processing (one machine taksa camera and does motion analysis and another takes the camera to generate live key effects and data is shared.

    This was pretty rudimentary to setup and could have become a very advanced system had I needed it to be. This in conjunction with something like the vvvv boygrouoping and a file server and high speed network would get you what you want, you could access any singla and any file from any machine and combine and mix outputs of several computers to make a composite image.
    There is no out of the box solution but boygrouping takes care of most of the KVM hassle and a file server and a hardware video matrix and capture cards let any image go anywhere for processing, the rest is your imagination.
    Oh and by the way even with this setup if you are creative about distributing the work the latency in a system like this can be quite low (I can get 3 frames in to out with processing)

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