How To Build A DIT Cart – HTBD Part 14

How To Build a DIT Cart – How To Be A DIT Part 14

how to build a DIT cart

If you want to know how to build a DIT cart from the ground up, then you’re in luck, as the astute Andy Shipsides from the technically savvy Abel Cine, has put together probably the most comprehensive series of videos you can find online on the topic. It’s worth heading over the the Abel Cine blog as well, to check out a few extra details and diagrams, but you can watch all 6 videos in the playlist below, running at about 25 minutes in total.

Speaking of DIT carts you might want to check out Postbox Systems, who made fully customisable ‘Post Boxes’, based on a Mac Pro 2013 lying down inside the main unit.

Understanding Thunderbolt 3

In terms of connectivity, Thunderbolt 1 was a huge leap forward when it emerged back in 2011. Thunderbolt 2 was hot on it’s heels a couple of years later, and now a couple of years after that Thunderbolt 3 is almost here. So what will it do?

Understanding Thunderbolt 3

Well, kind of a lot. It will also come in a different form factor, specifically USB-C, which means that it won’t  It will also double it’s bandwidth to 40 Gigabytes per second and allow you to drive two 4K displays simultaneously.

How fast is Thunderbolt 3

What’s potentially more interesting is finally having the ability to expand your laptop or workstation with external GPU’s connected over Thunderbolt.

While Thunderbolt has in theory always been able of supporting external graphics (it’s just a PCIe bus), the biggest hold-up has always been handling what to do about GPU hot-plugging and the so-called “surprise removal” scenario. Intel tells us that they have since solved that problem, and are now able to move forward with external graphics. The company is initially partnering with AMD on this endeavor – though nothing excludes NVIDIA in the long-run – with concepts being floated for both a full power external Thunderbolt card chassis, and a smaller “graphics dock” which contains a smaller, cooler (but still more powerful than an iGPU) mobile discrete GPU.

External GPU on Mac?


The change of cable also means you’ll need an adaptor for backwards compatibility with Thunderbolt 1 and 2, which they are making. All of this high speed goodness should be available by the end of the year, hopefully in time for a much bigger update to the MacBook Pro, than we’ve just seen. For one of the best write up’s around on the details of Thunderbolt 3 check out this post from

DIT Tools Update

For a quick update on some DIT tools, REDCINE-X Pro now allows your to export ProRes on Windows, grab the download here. Also the ever useful Handbrake app has recently been updated too.

One app that has been discontinued is Red Giant’s Bullet Proof, which Scott Simmons eulogises in this detailed post. It seems largely that what will be missed most are the metadata tagging abilities of the app.

I always thought that BulletProof was a great application that filled a much needed place between production and post to allow the editor to get a better organized set of footage in our spray-and-pray world of shooting many different cameras for hours on end. Yes it required someone to put in some time and effort working with that footage before it went to the editor but that time spent could save hours or even days in post. I have worked several jobs where we made extensive use of BulletProof’s metadata tagging capabilities (it is being used on a job as this article when to press) working around the bugs because there is no other tool like it. I even included BulletProof as a major part of my Moving Metadata from Production to Post class at NAB 2015.

New Stuff for Post Production in next OS X Release

Now that Apple has previewed the next release of it’s operating system – OS X El Capitan, an iterative improvement on Yosemite rather than a revolution, what new things will be helping us out in post production?

Well as an Adobe Creative Cloud user you will apparently benefit from performance enhancements thanks to Apple’s Metal API, which according to No Film School saw After Effects rendering speed increases by up to 8x.

[Metal] allows developers more direct access to GPU hardware. In theory, the new API will enable developers to optimize their GPU-intensive apps for notable boosts in rendering performance.

Uber-Geek-Guru Alex Golner has also sat through Apple’s WWDC (World Wide Developers Conference) presentations and had these astute observations to make in general…

Interestingly for post production people, Apple also said how Metal would speed up ‘high performance apps.’ It does this by replacing OpenGL graphics code and OpenCL distributed processing code (for sharing work between CPUs).

and specifically on AV Foundation changes….

Open QuickTime movie files and perform range-based editing on movies in tracks.

You select a segment of a movie and copy it into some other movie.

Add and remove tracks (tracks in QuickTime can refer to any time-based information, such as subtitles, GPS info, camera metadata)

Associate one track with another – such as saying that this track is the chapter break information for that track.

Add or modify movie and track metadata.

Create movie files and URL sample reference movie files.

This short video from TechnoBuffalo gives you a speedy overview of the general improvements in OS X El Capitan.


  • typo. TB3 is 40 Gbps which is gigabits/sec or 5 Gigabytes/second.

    Metal is not speeding up the GPU.
    It is speeding up the CPU by offloading work from runtime to compile time.
    Driver is simply taking compiled shaders and jitting into the GPU on the fly.
    It is allowing multi-threaded on the CPU side.
    It is also has sharing of data types so same logic can run CPU (simd) and GPU.
    OpenCL is obsoleted by Metal in a way unless you want super optimization or control.

    There is also low latency built-in to several API.
    see WWDC session 233. It is one of the ways apps will feel faster.
    Also look at session 719.

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