Digital Video Mixer Review: Videonics MXPro

The MXPro Revisited

Last August, Videomaker reviewed the MXPro Digital Video Mixer from Videonics. Since that time, Videonics has made a couple of improvements to the MXPro, so we decided to take a quick look at the updated model.

The MXPro is a video mixer affordably priced for prosumer use. It takes up to four audio and video sources, and mixes them using a plethora of transitions. It can also perform a variety of effects, including chromakey, strobe, mosaic and negative. In addition, the MXPro includes a Time Base Corrector (TBC) and can perform color correction.

It Looks the Same

At first glance, the upgraded MXPro looks exactly the same as the earlier model. There are no new buttons or switches, but the internal components have changed slightly. The result is that the signal-to-noise ratio of MXPro’s S-video inputs improved from 60dB to 65dB, according to Videonics. One of the earlier complaints of the MXPro was that it couldn’t work with other Videonics products, like the AB-1 Edit Suite and Video ToolKit. Videonics has solved the problem not by upgrading the MXPro, but instead by offering an upgrade to the AB-1 Edit Suite and Video ToolKit that allows this to happen.

How Does it Act?

The MXPro is easy to use, so easy that nearly anyone can pick it up and use it proficiently within an hour. After cabling up the mixer to your camcorders, VCRs and whatever other input sources you want, and then cabling your preview monitor and output VCR, you are ready to go. The MXPro can display up to four input sources simultaneously in a variety of preview window options.

To make transitions occur, you simply select one of the five types of available transitions, use the arrow keys to select the exact transition that you want, and then press either the Play button to automatically make the transition go, or use the T-bar to manually control the transition. (If you know the number of the transition you want, you can simply enter the number on the keypad and hit the Play button.) The T-bar has some slack in it, and it takes the unit a bit of time to prepare a transition, so if you’re using the T-bar, you need to jiggle the handle to get the transition started, then finish sliding the T-bar to complete the transition. Otherwise, you can easily find yourself with the T-bar halfway through a transition before it actually starts, and when it does start, it will immediately jump to the spot in the transition that corresponds to the location of the T-bar. If this happens, it will make it look like your transition started halfway through, so it’s easier to use the Play button (unless you really get a feel for the jiggle-the-T-bar trick).

The Verdict

Videonics has updated the MXPro slightly since our last look at it; the signal-to-noise ratio is better, but the T-bar is still difficult to use. Owners of the MXPro who want to use the AB-1 Edit Suite or Video ToolKit can now upgrade their edit controllers. And, of course, the improvements the MXPro holds over the MX-1 are all still there.

TECH SPECS: Videonics MXPro

Note: we are listing only the specs that changed from the 8/98 review

Performance Specifications

Video S/N ratio: 65dB (Y/C)

STRENGTHS


  • Improved signal-to-noise ratio
  • AB-1 Edit Suite can now work with MXPro (with upgrade to Edit Suite)

WEAKNESSES

  • T-bar not responsive

SUMMARY

Still a great video mixer with excellent transitions.





MXPro Digital Video Mixer

($1799)

Videonics, Inc.

1370 Dell Ave.

Campbell, CA 95008

(408) 866-8300

www.videonics.com

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