View Full Version : Need Help

11-06-2003, 01:28 PM

I have been monitoring this group for quite some time looking for answers.

I have taken over an account that uses the VT2, do not bother they will not upgrade to the VT3 until they get the VT2 working properly.

The person who built the system before, installed a machine using

4 WD 120 GIG, 8 meg cache IDE Drives connected to an Escalade 7000 series RAID Card.
The drives are configured in a volume set as one drive. 480GIG
They have a seperate 60 GIG IDE drive for the OS and page file.
It is running 2 gig or DDR memory
2 AMD MP 1900+ Processors
A Matrox G550 Card

We have the SX8.

The machines runs great for doing some standard switching etc, whenever we want to capture video, not switching at the same time it never works, gives us a dropped frame.
Everyone has told us to go SCSI.
Should I go with 4 36.7 GIG Seagate U320 15K drives or just the 10K?

Do I need to replace this system? What upgrades should I do? I am shooting in the dark here as the Toaster seems to be specific to hardware. What should the machine be spec'd out to? Intel? AMD? I really do not want to have to purchase a whole new machine, but they cannot use it the way they want to now.

We are running a TYAN Mb (Sorry the model I do not have right this sex) with the latest bios.

Any help you guru's can provide will be very much appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

Greg Sweers

11-06-2003, 01:45 PM
As for capturing, you should be able to capture w/out dropped frames.
Heres some settings in Preferences that might help.

BG processes while recording - Disable

Disable PGM out while recording - Enable

Maximize PCI usage - Enabled
What does auto config give as the speed of your raid.

Intel's are preferred over AMD but hopefully someone will jump in with more exacts there. Its been a while since I built mine. (a whopping 10 months) so there are better boards and such out now, but the rock solid machine I have at home is
supermicro p4dce+ MB
dual 1.8's
1 gig of rdram
Nvidia Quadro nvs 200 graphics
4 ibm deskstar 15k 36 gig

Here at work we run on a Compaq w6000 workstation with dual 2.0 xeons. w/6 seagate cheetahs in an external box. Its been a rock also. You can pick w6000 and 8000's up inexpensively on ebay.

BUT your system on paper looks good. esp with the addition of scsi's.


11-06-2003, 07:39 PM
By "volume set" do you mean the same thing a RAID 0 ?
If it's not, a software RAID 0 would be in order.

In the past I've tried VT[2] on a Tyan Thunder K7 dualie board. It never did run right and ran only slightly better on an Asus A7M266-D. If I get real brave, I might try one of the new K8 "Hammer" boards, but I want to see how other fare with them first.

11-07-2003, 08:09 AM
Yes it is a Raid 0 HW being handled by the Escalade card.
The MB is a Tyan MP S2460 running the 1.05 bios revision.
We are going to upgrade it to Xp Pro, Currently 2k Sp3, Sp4 bombed the machine to pieces. Newtek said Sp4 was not supported.

Thanks Jim, those settings are already in there as you specified. Still drops frames when recording. We are not switching at the same time either.

Ideally we would like to do both at the same time, what type of machine would be required to handle that? What type of HD setup. Two high performance SCSI cards with 4 SCSI drives each in a RAID 0 config? Would that do it?

Or do I simply need 2 machines to do what I want?

Thanks again.

Greg Sweers

11-07-2003, 08:17 AM
When I reran the autoconfig The C and D drive and infact the same drive partion into two logical drives. It reads it as 34 MB/sec

The F drive which is the 4 WD 8 meg Cache 120 GIG drives it reads it at 28MB/sec and tells me that the F drive is the best drive for storing video onto it.

Should I be seeing the F drive do 100MB/sec or more, as I understand it the 4 drives pushing 34MB/sec each out should throretically give me a thoroughput of 136MB/sec not 28MB/sec?

AM I wrong in this assumption. I do recognize that 136 is not accurate but simpy theoretical.

Thanks again.


11-07-2003, 08:32 AM
That quad-drive setup seems quite skimpy, thoughput-wise. A simple striped pair of those drives does around 65megs per second, os there has to be something set up incorrectly - drivers, perhaps, or incorrect cabling...

11-07-2003, 09:01 AM
Yea, like Steve said, your raid is a little screwey.
Im not sure of speeds folks are getting with 4 ide's but I know it should be faster than that. Certainly faster than your single system drives.
I'm not sure if it will hit the 100+ mark. That's usually scsi numbers, but maybe.

That def seems to be your culprut right now.
Your raid 0, not your Toaster.


Jim Capillo
11-07-2003, 03:21 PM
I have (4) 40gb IDE's that consistently hit 79-80 mbs.

11-07-2003, 04:24 PM
Thanks guys. Thats the info I am looking for.
The only options I have on the Escalade is to enable write caching. It is set to Raid 0. I am wondering if I just need to remove it from the raid and set it as individual drives then raid 0 it in the OS.

How are you guys doing it on Raid 0. HW/ SW/ What controller card? I normally do not do performance stuff with IDE. They just do not seem to go together when dealing with video and streaming.

Thanks again, this group rocks!!!

My current plan is to get a SCSI 3 Card with 3 or 4 36 gig SCSI 3 drives.
I am looking at the Seagate 68 pin SCSI3 10K drives. The 15K just add to much to the bottom line. What controller card should I get and are there other drives that I need to look at?

Forgive me for my ignorance, but I want to make sure this is the best setup we can do. Would I put all of the drives on a single scsi channel or should I break it up like 2 drives on one scsi channel and 2 on the other. That way 2 buses, 4 drives, 2 on each which would maximize bandwidth.

One more thing, if you have read this long. We have a Matrox G550 card using 2 monitors. Is there a better card? Any problems with this one that you are aware of?

11-07-2003, 04:48 PM
The following are like always, just opinions, and like always, may be wrong.

Favorite scsi controller.
Adaptec 39160.
I use a lesser priced LSI Logic 53C1010-66 at home with no problems and super speeds.

Group the 4 together.

Favorite graphics card
Nvidia Quadro FX line.
I use a lesser priced Quadro NVS 200 at home, again no problems and I really don't see much difference than the FX at work.

I'm not sure how 2 1.9 amd's stand compared to 2 Xeon 1.8's, but I can switch and capture and more with 4 scsi's striped together. So hopefully with a proper throughput you should be able to also.

Maybe the other and as I often say, wiser Jim C can help in the raid controller situation.

good luck


Jim Capillo
11-07-2003, 06:17 PM
I think the IDE controller is an Escalade, but don't quote me - it's dealer built. Blaine?

SCSI is onboard on a Supermicro X5DA8 - (4) 73gb 320's get from 190-210 or so. I have found the autoconfig to be much less accurate on the SCSI raid, for some reason. You can do 2 autoconfig's in a row and get different results (10% difference or more).

Wiser? Well, I've had more than a few call me a wise guy.......

11-15-2003, 01:39 PM
I recommend skipping the hardware controlled RAID option on the escalade and simply use the card as a "connection" to the main board and stripe the 4 drives in software in win2K. This should get your drive speeds up to something more reasonable, probably around 80-90MB/s.

That is the first step.

Second thing, ditch the Matrox card. Go nVidea. Even at 30Mb/s through put on your drives you should be able to record at 1 stream of video on it. A single 7200RPM IDE drive connected to the onboard controller will do this no problem for recording and playback so my though is that the video card is giving you issues. I will never recommend as a dealer or as a use of 3D, 2D and video apps any of matrox's products in the GX50 line up. The performance is brutal, the drivers suck and the cards are over priced for what you get.

They are not recommended by NewTek for use in the T2 or T3 and never have been. I know people have managed to get the cards working with the T3, but its a bad idea to start with.

Direct X (specifically direct draw and direct show) support on those cards is barely stable with anything past DX 7.0.

Get rid of it. :)

And don't buy an ATI card either. nVidea or nothing.

11-15-2003, 03:54 PM
I just wanted to thank you all for your responses. I found a setting on the Escalade card that disabled any kind of caching or acceleration. Using it I am getting a throughput of 129 reported by the VT Auto configuration.

I have successfully recorded and switched at the same time using this configuration and will see if it works.

Thanks for the info on the Matrox card, I am seeing some problems there and will be switching it shortly to a Nvidia. Many have recommended several.

I want to avoid going to the Xeon for now as I basically buy a new system, but we will be upgrading to the T3 shortly. Thanks for all of your help.

Greg Sweers
Crosstown Community Church

11-15-2003, 10:18 PM
You will love the jump to VT3! Not so much difference for live, but like a totally new product for VTEdit with 3D positioner, splines and more... not to mention Batch Capture, Print to Tape, Spreadsheet, improved CG, new look (skin), and a FULL version of Lightwave 7.5c! Overall system performance is also improved, though not everyone agrees on this...