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View Full Version : Digital VooDoo Leaving the Mac! (Yikes!)



Ed M.
09-25-2003, 01:07 PM
WOW, I don't know if this has been posted yet, but apparently Digital VooDoo is dropping Mac development. What a shame. I wonder what's *really* behind the move? Any thoughts?

http://maccentral.macworld.com/news/2003/09/25/voodoo/

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Ed

Ed M.
09-25-2003, 01:10 PM
And check this out...

http://www.creativecow.net/forum/read_post.php?postid=106435914958548&forumid=81

Ohhhhhh boy, I can just see the PC trolls howling in glee over this.

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Ed

mlinde
09-25-2003, 01:53 PM
Um, I'm not a Digital Voodoo owner, but after reading both those links, it's certainly not the end of the world. So if you own a Digital Voodoo card, ebay it now, and buy a card from one of the other half-dozen video I/O manufacturers for the Mac.

renderingfarmer
09-25-2003, 01:55 PM
I don't get it. What kind of a dick move it that? Well screw 'em, I say. No matter what reasons blah blah they give, that's still a large part of their client base that they've just alientated, and I don't see how that can be good for business.

eblu
09-25-2003, 03:13 PM
the guy who started the company is now at blackmagic. He lost control of the company in a management dispute, and left to be involved in low cost, high quality capture export cards. He has put out a response to the claims of Digital Voodoo, ( I'm looking for the link, will update when i find it again)

heh, ed found it first.

http://www.creativecow.net/forum/read_post.php?postid=106435881162997&forumid=124

basically he says every assertion of Digital voodoo is false and that they have lost direction and have failed to be competitive in the market. If you take a good long look at the current crop of cards, you'll see that this is true, based on price and performance alone.

Digital voodoo is eating sour grapes, and very dramatically trying to tear down the market they are leaving. They can't compete, so why not try to hurt the entire market, and generate business for themselves?

Beamtracer
09-25-2003, 04:23 PM
Digital Voodoo lost the plot some time ago, with the departure of key personnel to form Blackmagic Design.

User forums were full of complaints about non-functioning drivers and other troubles.

Blackmagic is now the premiere company for video capture cards, making the Kona and Decklink cards which have blitzed the competition for price and performance.

riki
09-25-2003, 06:31 PM
Hey Beam how do you know stuff like that :)

mlinde
09-25-2003, 07:07 PM
Originally posted by Beamtracer
Blackmagic is now the premiere company for video capture cards, making the Kona and Decklink cards which have blitzed the competition for price and performance.

Um, what about the Aurora cards? They've been in the game quite a while, and their line of IgniterX cards seem quite competitive in price/features to me. Also, AJA makes the Kona|SD card, Blackmagic makes the QT drivers/codecs. I'm not knocking Blackmagic, but isn't the statement "premiere company" your opinion?

FWIW:
Igniter cards: $999-$3999
Kona|SD card: $2499-$3499
Decklink (HD): $1999

eblu
09-25-2003, 08:25 PM
back magic has the best price/performance... their newest card (dont think it has shipped yet) is HD for just about $2,000 american dollars... thats a rediculously low price

Ade
09-26-2003, 01:07 AM
In other news 3Dlabs is talking about releasing a mac card for 3d design, Jobs is said to be the main push..

Red_Oddity
09-26-2003, 03:43 AM
Yes Ade, we know, you're gonna post that news on every friggin thread now,aren't you?:D

Back to Voodoo...

The Voodoo drivers we have kill OSX when you leave the screensaver/powersaver on...kinda tricky since we use those stupid Apple Cinema displays that somehow (how typical Apple) have no friggin off button...
Ahwell...too bad they drop the Mac, it was a great card when doing uncompressed editting on location (all you need is a G4 with this card and monitor)...
Just another gap in the market that will be filled really soon...companies come and go...

Beamtracer
09-26-2003, 11:15 AM
I think some people might confuse video capture cards (for digitizing video to your computer) with graphics cards (GPUs) like 3Dlabs or nVidea.



Originally posted by mlinde
Um, what about the Aurora cards? They've been in the game quite a while
Your right, Aurora has made a lot of improvements in the last year or so. Aurora's cards were previously not 10-bit uncompressed, but now they are.

Uncompressed video (I should say lossless compression) is mandatory in a lot of situations.

It's amazing how cheap you can get in to HDTV these days with Final Cut Pro and a Blackmagic Decklink HD card. Voodoo used to sell these cards for $20,000!

js33
09-26-2003, 11:53 AM
Someone was a little/lot on the greedy side weren't they.
Those kind of overpriced addons gave the Mac it's overpriced image. Not only was the Mac expensive but all the addons were a rip off as well. A lot has changed and it needs to keep changing to be price competitive. One could buy an entire NLE with uncompressed capability including a dual computer on the PC side for less than $20,000. Also with a lot of people using DV and firewire capture these cards are not even necessary for most.
At $20,000 for a capture card I could find better ways to spend that money.

Cheers,
JS

Beamtracer
09-27-2003, 09:05 AM
Originally posted by js33
Someone was a little/lot on the greedy side weren't they.
Those kind of overpriced addons gave the Mac it's overpriced image.

JS... you're muttering anti-mac stuff again, just to be anti-mac.

Really. Mac "overpriced addons"?

When those video capture cards came out for the Macintosh there was nothing comparable on Windows. You couldn't do 10-bit video editing on Windows at any price.

Also, at the time, $20,000 video capture cards were considered a bargain compared to the broadcast equipment that was previously available.

mlinde
09-27-2003, 12:45 PM
Originally posted by Beamtracer
JS... you're muttering anti-mac stuff again, just to be anti-mac.

Really. Mac "overpriced addons"?


Beam, hate to agree, but he's right. Mac add-ons are more expensive. Take the current crop of video cards. Mac v. PC, the PC card can be as little as 1/3 the cost. How about storage. Before Apple got a brain and went more mainstream, an IDE drive was about 3/4 the cost of a comparable SCSI drive. Apple monitors have always been more expensive than alternatives. And you can't tell me they've always been better. When WinNT got into video editing, WinNT systems were coming in at $1000 and up. Mac systems were coming in at $1500 and up. If you channel profits directly back to the development costs, it will cost more to do it on a Mac because there are fewer units sold.

Ed M.
09-28-2003, 07:59 AM
mlinde, you write:


If you channel profits directly back to the development costs, it will cost more to do it on a Mac because there are fewer units sold.

I'm not sure what you are saying here.

As far as *tools* go, their initial cost soon becomes *nil* depending on what you do. If you are in an actual production environment, this is certainly true. If you are a simple hobbyist then the cost might not be justified.

Don't believe me? Just go to an automobile repair facility, automotive body shop, local resturante... Go to a construction site where a house, apartment building or even a skyscraper are being built. The same goes for a bridge, aircraft... ANYTHING that's commercial or industrial and you'll soon realize that the initial cost of the tools simply don't matter because they are factored into the cost of doing business and usually pay for themselves in very little time; I'm guessing that mid to large-size video and animation houses understand this.

Again, the industries I've mentioned (as well as many others) aren't using the cheap home/consumer junk you'll find at Wal-Mart, K-Mart or Don's power-tools and comic book shop.

Now, you might see some Craftsman hand tools from Sears being used, but that's about it. Craftsman hand tools have come a LONG way from the quality that they used to be (compared to the competition).

Most consumers are only aware of what they see loaded on store shelves, what's being peddled on infomercials and TV adds etc. That doesn't mean that it's the *good stuff*. In fact, most people don't even know what the good stuff is or how to find it. Yeah, you can buy a 2000-piece tool set off of one of those infomercials for about $200.00. You'll never see that same set at any facility worth it's salt. PERIOD. What are some of the tools of which I speak?

Tools like:

Snap-On
BOSCH
Milwaukee
MAC
SK
Xcelite
Hobart
Lincoln
Henkle
Wusthof
All-Clad
Skill
Portercable
John Deer
Honda
Billy Goat

The list is enormous!

Add-ons? They are a plenty and they are PLENTY expensive as well. This isn't for consumer/hobiest work. The cost of the add-ons for the pros evaporate as well. What are the add-ons for these tools? Well, lets see...

Routers, drills, lathes etc. all need bits. These bits can become amazingly expensive. Go price a full set of 14 carbide plug-cutter bits and you'll see that these small things that comprise the set will cost in excess of $2300.00! What about a good set of carbide or cobalt drill bits? What about the ceramic and diamond dits that are available? You could probably buy 2 fully loaded G5s for that price.

The same goes for saw blades of any type. In these industries, the cost of the tools is insignificant to qa large extent because they are factored in and quickly pay for themselves. What's more, these add-ons are often thrown away when they ware out and others are bought top replace those!

It also applies to any other type of add-on for these *tools*. Boy, if you think the Mac is an expensive tool, you're sadly mistaken.

I suggest that you and anyone else that doubts me, take a field trip and go out to these facilities and see for yourselves.

Why should a mechanic use Snap-On or MAC or Craftsman when there are cheap alternatives from China and Japan, etc., that will do essentially the same thing?

Why should a Carpenter choose a Milwaukee, BOSCH etc. saw or drill over a Black & Decker or some other inexpensive alternative that can be had in Sears or Wal-Mart?

Hell I can buy a 20-pc. Screwdriver set for $5.99! Why would I prefer Xcelite, Snap-On or SK etc?

Why should a landscaper choose commercial grade lawn equipment from Snapper, Honda, John Deer, Billy Goat etc. when the $299.00 dollar stuff at the Home Depot and Sears will arguably do the same thing?

The same goes for cookware. Farberware is just plain junk IMNSHO. The good stuff costs, but it's worth it. Why use All-Clad cookware when I can use cheap Farberware? Heck, with all the cheap alternatives All-Clad, Snap-On and all the others should have gone out of business YEARS ago!

The same goes for knives. Why buy Henkle or Wusthof when you can buy the 6-pc. Diamond set for $9.99 over at Shop-Rite, Stop&Shop. A&P or any other store?

So, I'm not sure your argument holds any merit except that it might only apply to the hobiest markets where the price matters.

If you *still* don't believe me then go out and talk to anyone in the commercial or industrial markets and ask them the same questions about why they choose the tools that they use and see what they tell you.

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Ed

mlinde
09-28-2003, 08:34 PM
Ed, I must admit, I didn't read your reply. I was talking about the position of the developer of the software and hardware, not the end user or buyer. As a software developer (or hardware/software developer) you have a BIG up front cost to develop your product. To stay in business, you need to sell enough of that product to cover your initial development cost and your continued development cost. If you develop HW or SW for Windows, you have a larger initial userbase to purchase your product, so you can sell more units cheaper to cover your costs. If you develop for the Mac, you have a significantly smaller base to buy your product. To break even, you need to sell at a higher margin.

The end user is only in this equation in the position of the buyer of the product, and there are fewer mac buyers than windows buyers.

Red_Oddity
09-29-2003, 05:20 AM
But how many of that 'PC' market are actual customers...looks to me the media computer market is pretty even...

If the market share of Apple is 5% concerning computers (not sure if this true i'm just trying to explain something here...)
And the PC market share is 95%, it doesn't necessarily mean that this is also the market share concerning professional tools like the capture cards we're talking about...

Most Apple computers sold are bought by people in the media industry...
Most PC sold are bought by Joe Average who doesn't even know the difference between Quicktime and WMP...

...

anyway, i was going to make a point...but i kinda forgot what it was...bloody mondays :D :D :D

Ed M.
09-29-2003, 11:44 AM
What red oddity is trying to say is that within the niche market for video the Mac and Windows platforms are probably more or less even. ? Unless Beamtracer comes up with the actual market share of each platform in that arena ;-)
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Ed

eblu
09-29-2003, 11:49 AM
i think the red oddity thrust is that alienating practically half of the content creation field is a very bad move, especially if its the growing half.

mlinde
09-29-2003, 02:13 PM
The PC/Windows side is going to be larger. Unless, of course, 90% of all Macs are buying these kinds of accessories. If 5% of all Windows machines are Digital Content Creation machines (and I think that's a conservative estimate), that's 4.5% of the entire desktop computer market. To match that, 90% of all Macs have to be DCC machines. Including iMacs and iBooks. I don't think that's likely. I think the number is probably high (maybe 60-70%) but not 90% high. So the market is going to be smaller.

Ed M.
09-29-2003, 03:12 PM
If 5% of all Windows machines are Digital Content Creation machines

That's just a guess, but I highly doubt it.. I'd say more like 2% Unless you have numbers, it's pointless to guess.

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Ed

eblu
09-29-2003, 03:22 PM
mlinde,
you've got a misinterpretation there.

market share has nothing to do with viable machines in the wild so to speak. market share deals only with quarterly sales volume. so as when we hear that apple's share is 5%, it does not have anything to do with how many macs are on desks world wide. Many factors are not even considered there, such as the fact that PCs have a seriously high turnover rate, and that mac users tend to have high owner satisfaction (and thus use their macs on average more so than PC users). 5% is not pertinent to this discussion.

Ed M.
09-29-2003, 03:37 PM
Still beating that drum - even louder it would seem.

Market share... They have no other metric by which to rate. When the only tool you have is a hammer.....

<sigh> for want of a nail... :rolleyes:

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Ed

mlinde
09-29-2003, 04:44 PM
Ed, how else do you measure sales volume than market share? There is no other metric to measure sales volume by, within the microcosm of the mac market or the macrocosm of the computer market.

As for my numbers, I'm guessing on both counts. Since the Mac has a big representation in education, 60-70% is probably too high as well. I tried to make a close guess. You just want to bash me for trying to explain the reality of business, and (on top of that) suggest that I'm some sort of PC-Troll.

Let me put that second bit to rest -- go to hell. I've been working on and promoting Macs for over a decade. I've done free and paid promotional work for Apple with the release of OS 8, 8.5, 9, the iMac, the iMac DV, and the G4. I've been in the digital content creation market for that same decade. I've watched entire Mac-only businesses go to Windows NT then Win2K purely on cost comparison outside the box. I spent 3 years in a Windows-only DCC shop explaining and demonstrating the advantages of the Mac in 80% of the work being done, finally getting the shop to go 50/50. My annual christmas card is a list of "which mac is best for you" to my 50 closest friends and clients. If I'm a PC troll, you are the lead developer for the Intel Itanium.

Ed M.
09-29-2003, 04:55 PM
You just want to bash me for trying to explain the reality of business, and (on top of that) suggest that I'm some sort of PC-Troll.

Eeee-Gads no, man! I'm not trying to bash you at all. Apologies if my post came across that way. It's just that I've been hearing the market share argument well.. forever. It's gotten lame, that's all.


Let me put that second bit to rest -- go to hell.

huh? However, if you are referring to the world of Windows-based systems, I can honestly say I've already been there ;-)

No matter though. As with everything... It's all about tradeoffs. We'll see.

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Ed

fxgeek
09-30-2003, 08:29 AM
IDG recently said that the Mac has 70% of the creative market.

robewil
09-30-2003, 11:51 AM
Define "creative market".

If someone enters numbers in a spreadsheet or names in a database, is that not creating?

Ed M.
09-30-2003, 01:16 PM
Define "creative market". If someone enters numbers in a spreadsheet or names in a database, is that not creating?

No, that's called splitting hairs ;-) (just some humor)

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Ed

Beamtracer
09-30-2003, 03:46 PM
The "creative content" market is a term used by the computer industry to describe those who produce media involving pictures and sound. It doesn't define who is creative or not, nor does it include "creative accountants", like we saw in the Enron debacle.


Originally posted by Ed M.
What red oddity is trying to say is that within the niche market for video the Mac and Windows platforms are probably more or less even. ? Unless Beamtracer comes up with the actual market share of each platform in that arena ;-)

I don't have exact figures at hand, but my own observation is that the Mac would have over 50% of the broadcast video market.

It's been like that for a long time.

There are reasons why more major television productions will be edited on the Mac...

1. AJA/Blackmagic has lowered the price of 10-bit YUV video cards, and lowered the cost of getting into HDTV.

2. Final Cut Pro. FCP is eating its competitors for dinner. It's a juggernaut, and it's market share just keeps growing and growing in the professional realm.

3. The G5. The new G5 is a dream machine for the video professional. Video files are huge. Migrating to a 64-bit platform is a real benefit in this area.

Apple will take an even bigger chunk of the professional video market. There is no doubt about that.

robewil
09-30-2003, 04:10 PM
Originally posted by Beamtracer
The "creative content" market is a term used by the computer industry to describe those who produce media involving pictures and sound.
Okay, now that makes more sense. :D