Since Reality Processing Engine is node based, SDI devices, video input and outputs are also represented as nodes. There is not a separate video I/O configuration tool. Each Virtual Set configuration file also has its own video I/O settings for each engine.

Supported SDI Video Boards

Reality Engine currently supports:

AJA Corvid 88, AJA Corvid 44 12G BNC and AJA Corvid 44 family SDI I/O boards.

See complete information on AJA boards:

There are many flavors of the Corvid boards, but only Corvid 44 and Corvid 88 family is supported. Even when selecting from these models, there are some tall, short PCI card, BNC connectors styles and fan options. You can choose anyone of these boards, which fits into your engine chassis. However, choosing fanless Corvid boards will require very efficient cooling environments. So, you should rather to have a fan on the Corvid boards.

AJA Kona 5 board is supported only as experimental.

AJA Device Node

This node represents a physical PCI-e AJA video board to the node graph. It supports to define up to 4 video boards. The device node detects the video boards reference source and video mode along with the input SDI signals.

AJA Device Settings

In order to setup an AJA video device, you should set up DEVICE ID, REFERENCE and RING BUFFER SIZE properties:

  • DEVICE ID: The video board name you want to use. In one system, up to 4 AJA Corvid boards can be listed.

  • REFERENCE: You have to mention what your reference sync source is coming from. It is recommended that you use an “External” sync source. But for some setups, you can lock your AJA output to anyone of your SDI input timing.

  • RING BUFFER SIZE: This property defines how many frames should be buffered when doing video output when using this device. 

Increasing the RING BUFFER SIZE will also increase latency. But if you can afford the latency, your short period performance drops won’t likely drop frames on video output. By default, the ring buffer size is 2 frames, but you can go as low as 1 frame. However, 1 frame means that we are doing synced rendering. So, each and every frame has to be rendered and output under one frame duration.

AJA Device Channel Status

Each AJA DEVICE node monitors all of its channels. Each channel represents one BNC on the board. Each channel of the Corvid board(s) can be configured either as input or output. 

AJA Device Info

AJADEVICE node detects currently installed DEVICE VERSION, DRIVER VERSION, SERIAL NUMBER , and FIRMWARE installed on the card. This information might be useful for technical support purposes. Each AJA card node will be allowed to configure only one device at a time. There are is a chance to select the same device multiple times.

Input Video Bit Depth

AJAINPUT node supports either 8-bit or 10-bit video input modes. You can choose between precision on PIXELFORMAT property. 10-bit video mode gives your better precision but will cost you slightly more performance.

Input Video Delay

Delay works in fields when inputting an interlaced video format, works in frames when inputting progressive video. The delay setting is necessary for syncing track devices with video inputs from the tracked cameras.

Input Video Signal Range

You can choose between “Legal Range” and “Full Range” modes. Here are the ranges for 8-bit luma values:

  • Legal Range:  [16 – 235] 

  • Full Range:  [0 – 255]

Some cameras may send full range video signals. In such cases, you can get extra details in black and white levels when you use “Full Range” video mode.

Color Space

The input color space when converting YCbCr values to RGB. Here are the supported color spaces:

  • Rec 601: SD NTSC/PAL 

  • Rec 709: HDTV 

  • Rec 2020: UHDTV 

Chroma Filtering 4:2:2 Signal Input

4:2:2 YCbCr video signals chroma have only half the resolution of the luminance values. Any computer has to filter the chroma signal before converting it to RGB values. This chroma filtering step is vital for any keyer to achieve good results. 

Reality Video Input nodes use a method called luminance weighted chroma filtering, which helps improving the filtered chroma resolution.

By default, chroma filter samples the left and right samples with 0.5 weight. If we set the balance to 0.0, it will use completely left pixels. If we set it to 1.0, it will use completely right pixels. This setting is in the advanced menu of DEVICE settings. You have to click the advanced button, which is shown with a triangle-shaped icon in order to bring these parameters.

AJA Input Fallback 

AJAINPUT has a FALLBACK input, where you can connect another AJAINPUT node or an image as a fallback. So, in case the signal in the input is lost, the node is going to bypass its fallback input. 

AJA Timecode

The Timecode pin should always be connected to ENGINE CONTROL and TRACKING nodes to send its own timecode data to both tracking and engine to match the frames. You can see the detail of the data sent from AJA to other devices under this node's properties:

AJA Output Node

This node outputs video from the node graph to SDI video boards. Just like the AJAINPUT node, the AJAOUTPUT node needs to know from which pin from AJA Video Card signal is coming from, and this can be edited by OUTPUT MODE. You can set the output VIDEO FORMAT, PIXEL FORMATVIDEO RANGE and COLOR SPACE just like the AJAINPUT node. AJAOUTPUT node also supports RGB to YCbCr 4:2:2 filtering. The same CHROMA FILTER BALANCE as the AJAINPUT node applies also to the output node. 

AJA output node properties are now exposed based on output STANDARDS, FRAMERATE and PIXEL FORMAT selections. This will ensure proper settings are selected for that device and only technically possible hardware combination is available to avoid any glitches and incompatibility.

Setting Interlaced Output Format in Corvid 44 12G BNC

Unlike AJA Corvid 44 and Corvid 88, Corvid 44 12G BNC cards require additional settings to set the video output format to interlaced signal. Follow the instructions below for these settings:

Interlace format must be set on AJA OUT node.

Select the AJA OUT node and expand the advanced properties arrow as shown in the image above. Now set REVERSE FIELDS property to TRUE.

Interlace format will not be achieved while this property is FALSE.