Millumin Media Server for Multiscreen 1920x1080 output

I need recommendations for a millumin set up capable of running 6 1920x1080 screens at 60fps.  Currently we are barely getting 30 fps and our Sdi output rig is at 20fps in millumin 1, and 10 fps in millumin 2.  We are going to abandon the SDI output, possibly in favor of a 3rd party GPU card.  Ideally we would have DVI options and Display port and HDMI options as we are running into Spyder X20 or E2/S3.  We have a Sonnet Mac Pro Rack, some external cards and enclosures, and a 2013 Mac pro's to experiment with.  Basically, I am looking for the most bad ass millumin set up possible.  If this disscussion already exists, please link me to is.  Thank you!


  • Hello @Marc,

    We rather recommand to use a Datapath X4 card, to run multiple outputs : it accepts 4K signal in input, then can dispatch 4 feeds @ 1080p30.
    The new Datapath FX4 would be able to run @ 1080p60, but it's not released yet (we should receive one for testing).

    If you want to go without multiple-display card, the best setup seems to use only DVI-D (which require dual-link adaptors). More info on this thread, especially pictures here.
    Also, be sure to have read the Apple documentation regarding how Thunderbolt busses are built-in.

    Best. Philippe
  • Been down that route.  Still not gaining the FPS we need.  Best FPS situation so far seems to be a Titain x card in an external enclosure with x4's.  In our industry, the fewer points of failure, the better.  The last show I did we used a 6 core, 64gb ram, d700 mac pro and were outputting 5760 @ 29.97.  We tried x4's and Direct.  We still could not get over 25fps and we had some tearing.  When we tested with Millumin V1 we got twice the FPS, but still not the 59.94 we are ultimately looking for.  Now, i will admit that we are pushing these systems pretty far with pixel for pixel content, and some of these shows include lots of masks and motion.  We are controlling Millumin and delivering content on the same machine.  Should we be running a control machine and a content machine?  Also, why does the use of Millumin 2 drop my FPS by half as opposed to millumin 1?
  • Hello @Marc,

    Regarding your performance drop on Millumin V2 : we're currently working on a fix for certain graphic cards, in some situations. Thank you for your patience.

    On a general manner, we're working on a few performance improvements, but it's too soon to say it'd be validated for sure.
    What's taking a lot of ressources, is often outputting (taking the video data into the cables) : so a control machine wouldn't help.

    Best. Philippe
  • edited June 2016
    @Marc what codec, frame size are your media and what do you use to create them? I have had great results with both PrroRes 4444 and Hap codecs, both of which support alpha channel for layering. I have had worst results with H264 and similar older codecs. Especially if you use Nvidia GPUs HAP will benefit you greatly, as well as using a PCIe flash drive(.m2) for show media.
  • edited June 2016
    Hi Marc, 

    i use the Datapath X4 with a MacPro 2013 Quad Xeon E5 3,4GHz D700.
    I drive usually a triple Softedge projector-screen with a resolution of 5232 x 1080 pixels and the fourth output  with 1920 x 1080 pixels to a preview monitor. In my opinion, the MacPro yawns here.
    Millumin2 shows me here 30fps and running without any losses in the fps.
    The Datapath input frame rate is 30Hz, sets the refresh rate on the outputs to 60Hz and runs without any stuttering.

    A trick in my eyes, however, would be to use three Datapath X4. Set a resolution of 1920 x 2160 pixels and use only two outputs of each Datapath. With this resolution you could be able to operate 60 fps and six outputs simultaneously.

    I'm waiting on the new Datapath FX4 to push up my system with one Datatpath to 60fps.

    kind regards

  • edited June 2016

  • Alanmecan, we were using Pro Res 422 and Photo Jpg with similar results.  The content spanned 2 16:9 screens and one 5:1 widescreen for a total of about 9240 pixels. 
    The media server should be back from the Bahamas by now.  This Friday I plan to start rebuilding the system.  Since the new system test will be with a Titan X, I will try the HAP codec. 

    Just got my hands on a few FX4's.  We are looking at producing the content at 3840x2160, in 4 1920x1080 quadrants since we are stitching the image back together in the Spyder x20 anyway.   Our ideal system right now would service 6-8 1920x1080 outputs.  I will update you all next week and if we like it I will post our solution and review of the external GPU solution. 
  • Hi Marc. Any news about the external GPU solution?

    Im looking at the Bizon external GPU box, and would like to house a Titan X inside.

  • Did a show last week using Millumin V2, playing videos made at 7680x1080 on a mid spec Mac Pro. 3 outputs:

    3 outputs of 1920x1080 / 3840x1080 / 1920x1080 and a local monitor at 2560x1080

    Found HAPQ seemed to play the best, solid 50FPS the whole time. Large files though.

    Quick clip before show.
  • Thanks for posting this, andrew - it looks great. Did you use an outboard device like the Datapath FX4 for the multiple outputs, or did you run those directly from the Mac Pro via DVI?

  • Straight from mac, we used the hdmi output for the centre (3840x1080) and 2 thunderbolt to dvi output for the sides (1920x1080). These went into an Ascender 32.
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