Last week I received the Matrox MXO 2. As you may or may not know, I am a huge fan of the original Matrox MXO as a low cost/high quality HD monitoring option for those who capture footage via firewire or work with tapeless cameras. The NEW MXO is great as it allows for input as well as output.

Now, I haven’t run it through it’s paces yet, as I am working on a show using Avid, but I have played with it a little. I can get a decent looking image from it to one of my Dell 2405 monitors via Component. Nothing I would ever use to color correct to, but it is a decent client monitor to SEE what you have.

But I wanted to use both of my Dells as computer monitors, and use the Apple Cinema Display as the client monitor. But the MXO 2 doesn’t have DVI out…only the MXO 1 does. So I tried to get tricky and get an image on that ACD via an HDMI to DVI converter. Since the signal is essentially the same. So I ran to Fry’s Electronics to get the cables, needing instant gratification…and I paid for it. Ugh, order online when you can. Cables at the store are EXPENSIVE. SO I hooked everything up and…nothing. The ACD wouldn’t even turn on. Like it didn’t detect a signal or anything. SO I tried one of the Dells. That one got a signal, but not what I was expecting. It was an upside down waterfall of color…like a crazy WHIP PAN of light…like the kind we saw in that old BATMAN TV series…only down to up instead of side to side.

So I asked Matrox (and posed the question on LAFCPUG…thread jacking in the process) why this was. Andy Mees (on LAFCPUG) suggested that it was because the ACD and Dell are 1920×1200 monitors, and the MXO 2 is sending out a 1920×1080 signal…and they don’t know what the heck to do with a 1920×1080 signal. Then I got an e-mail from Matrox today confirming that. If you want to use the ACD, you need the MXO. The MXO 2 requires an HD LCD production monitor, or an HDTV. BUT, not to fret too much. I can get a decent HDTV with HDMI in for $300 from NewEgg.

BUT…on an interesting side note. I did get the MXO working with Avid. Full screen presentation mode. Easily done on a secondary computer monitor, but I was able to get it onto my HD CRT. With the aid of the Matrox TripleHead2Go. I’ll post about that soon.