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Getting Broadcast Quality Video From Your Mac
Matrox's new highly portable external box

By Jim Fisher

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Mac editors are well aware of the power that the platform gives to them. They also know its limitations; if you want to output video to something other than a computer monitor or a FireWire-equipped deck, you’ll have to add a card or bulky external device to your computer system.

This is where the new Matrox MXO steps in. Taking the shape of a compact and external box, the MXO accepts video input from your Mac’s digital DVI video output and converts it to a broadcast-quality NTSC or PAL video signal. Connections are included for SDI, Y/C and Composite video. A DVI pass-through lets you use the MXO while retaining your dual-monitor configuration. The MXO is even compact and portable enough to allow you to easily use it as part of a mobile MacBook Pro-based production studio.

This is a fairly niche product, it’s not uncommon for someone to say “Wow, exactly what I’ve been waiting for!” or “Why would I ever need this?” when hearing about the MXO for the first time. We’re sure that those of you who have been waiting for such a device have already pre-ordered. That leaves the question, why do you need the MXO?

Well, if you’re using a Mac in a broadcast environment the MXO will let you output SDI video in either SD or HD in true broadcast quality. You won’t encounter dropped or repeated frames and you’ll be able to run SD video over a cable length of 300 meters and HD over 100 meters. You’ll be able to quickly output footage from Final Cut Pro, Adobe After Effects, Apple Motion and other QuickTime-based video applications and output video that will be ready for broadcast. This could also be beneficial for professionals who work in corporate environments that feature closed-circuit TV for corporate meetings and other events.

The MXO also features a “Presentation Mode” that outputs the contents of your secondary display to video. This lets you record computer-based training sessions, PowerPoint and Keynote presentations and even guided web site tours. This would be a great tool to help archive training resources or for use in employee orientation videos.

If you think that it is a product that could fit into your workflow, give it a closer look. The experts at B&H are always available to answer any questions you have about it or any of our products.

The Matrox MXO is available for ordering on the B&H website.
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