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  Matrox RT 2000 Mega Pack 3.0 
  Jul 02, 2001, 09:00am EDT 


By: Daniel Renaud

The Matrox RT 2000 Mega Pack 3.0 has impressed me immensely. I frankly am quite surprised how much this product has matured since the release of version 1.0 over a year ago. The first version of this product was for the most part a barely functional, buggy, non-stable piece of equipment that created more headaches then completed video projects. Thankfully Matrox has worked very hard at making the RT 2000 an inherently more functional piece of NLE (non-linear-editing) hardware and with each new version of the software they have succeeded at getting closer to that lofty goal.


Of the many things Mega Pack 3.0 offers almost all of them bring more value to an already attractively priced editing solution. Foremost among the new additions is the inclusion of Windows 2000 support. For all its problems and issues Windows 2000 is a much more stable operating system than Windows 98 or ME which means video editors should spend more them editing video and not rebooting their PC. Windows 2000 also allows the usage of dual processors, which can greatly speed up any tasks that require rendering (such as compressing to the VCD format or doing complex composting effects).

Mega Pack 3.0 also brings full 16:9 (widescreen) support, which is a must for those thinking of producing for the future broadcast television standards, which are on the verge of being fully implemented. Support for the audio mixer in Premiere 6.0 allows, “hot mixing” of your audio tracks, Media Tools is a very robust stand alone capture utility, real-time title preview using Title Express, and last but not least tons of new effects/filters that are all totally customizable and keyframeable.

One of the best reasons to purchase the RT 2000 Mega Pack 3.0 is that Matrox is committed to continually adding more functionality to this product without making you spend any more money. Continued development is assured as the RT 2000 is based on the same technology core as the new RT 2500 and the Digisuite Max option for Digisuite users.


Of course not everything is rosy with the RT 2000 Mega Pack 3.0. First of all there is still too many restrictions when it comes to hardware compatibility because of the huge resource demands of the RT 2000 hardware (of course this problem should be less of an issue with the new RT 2500 that has been recently released).

Something that bothers me quite a bit is the need to render before going back out to DV tape (this is not needed to go straight out to analog video). This is required because of the transcoding process the RT 2000 puts DV video trough in order to do all those cool 3D effects in real-time (it would take an article of its own to explain this is detail). Other editing devices such as the DV Storm don’t need to render before outputting but this is a very minor issue as RT 2000 renders very quickly.

Also many of the remaining problems with the RT 2000 (timeline sluggishness, non intuitive editing, and random crashes) are directly tied to Adobe Premiere itself and can only be improved upon and not eliminated all together. Unless Matrox develops compatibility with higher end editing software packages (which is unlikely as it could cannibalize the higher end DigiSuite market) the RT 2000 will never be a truly professional editing solution.

1. Introduction
2. Features and Contents
3. Test Bed and Procedures
4. System Setup
5. Capture
6. Editing
7. Outputting Your Project
8. Technical Support
9. Summary
10. Conclusions

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  Product Ratings 
Matrox RT 2000 Mega Pack 3.0
Performance: 9/10
Stability: 7/10
Quality: 8/10
Features: 8/10
Layout: 8/10
Documentation: 9/10
Price: 9/10
Overall Rating: 8/10

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