Nuendo 5.1.1 - video engine

I hear you, but if you look at other forums as well you will realise it isn’t just a few users here. But I am curious to what do you believe IS the root of the problem?

Of course.

The “problem” is called product management.
The product manager gets x-amount of development time, in x-amount of time, for x-amount of money.
Within these restrictions he needs to prioritize stuff, taking into account that a small bug can take more time than a big one, that there is a considerable risk factor in touching some area’s (that it breaks something else), that an “action” might jeopardize future development and that some “re-designs” are already planned in the future. So anything a product manager decides is per definition the wrong decision for “someone”; just by the sheer fact that it is his job to pake decisions.

So, having to make these choices, taking into account all these parameters makes that there is no “black and white”/“fixed or not fixed”, but a careful weighing of the issues and balancing the resources to get something done within a certain time, budget and priority. Which is the very opposite of a user complaining that “his most important bug” is not fixed with the highest priority.

Anyone who runs his/her own business -with success- has no other choice than agree with the above.
Anyone who presents it as being “black & white” doesn’t has a clue what he/she is talking about.

And for the record, I think it is safe to say that 95% of all bugs and design issues have been found and/or reported by beta. Beta reports and provides repro’s; that’s their job description. What happens with the provided information is subject to a truckload of -let me call it- parameters, which are sometimes not always “in sync” with what the user wants.

Best regards


You can argue this back and forth as much as you want in defense of what the status is, but to the end consumer it looks like this: Steinberg has a premium product and claims it is targeted toward people working in Audio Post production. Key features will undoubtedly then be video playback and OMF/AAF import. As a customer I understand that the initial release of a new version (i.e v5.0) will contain bugs. Manufacturing packaging and media + distribution takes time out of the actual coding so of course there will be a point where the company says “let’s release as it currently is and offer an update later to fix outstanding issues”. And this time Steinberg did so fairly promptly…

… except it still had OMF and video issues. And now we just got 5.1.1 and it still has those issues. And that functionality is key for those working in post.

Further more, and ironically similarly to a previous issue, the release notes document stated that an issue with OMF imports from FCP had been resolved, and Fredo now stated that a “new” issue had been “uncovered” after this older one had been taken care of. The fixed one apparently “masked” the “new” one. That begs the question of how on earth it was tested? And why the release notes document isn’t more specific so that a potential customer (me for example) can know exactly what to expect.

That’s a problem for some end users.

I think some of the concerns could be resolved fairly easily:

  1. more frequent updates
  2. more communication about when those updates can be expected to come out
  3. be more proactive and communicate better what has been fixed and what has not (as the release notes doc is clearly not entirely… illuminating)
  4. give Nuendo customers 1 Cubase license so that they can run either off of one dongle (to deal with leaping frogs)

I’m still waiting for this stuff to be resolved before I delve into N5.x… That’s lost revenue…


All in all though Nuendo is a very good product. I also think Steinbergs approach has improved over the last year.

[/moderate rave]

Fredo let me put this to you…have you looked at external forums and seen the reaction and complaints of SB users and ex-SB users compared to other DAW users and ex other DAW users…
I think I can safely state without contradiction based on the forums that I go on, that with the exception of maybe Logic…I think Steinberg has the second most negative reputation and user impressions…it isn’t a conspiracy…to me it is because Cubendo is such a great project made unfortunately by a ‘not so great’ company, to put it mildly…so there is indeed a problem, not a ‘problem’.


Well I find it somewhat ironic of you to state that one either agrees with your opinion about it or don’t have a clue, then say that if one doesn’t one is guilty of “black/white thinking” essentially.

But be that as it may, I seem to recall other having pointed do different ways of developing products. So it may not be as cut and dry as you portray it.

And be that as it may, you are in effect confirming what many have said regarding the issue of managing resources (i.e not laying all the blame on the beta team). At the end of the day then we’re looking at Steinberg as a whole in order to make sense out of it.

Like I said, N4 is a very good product, and it seems that N5 is better still. Yet for a audio-post-centric app certain things must work in order for there to be faith in the product/company. That’s all I’m saying. And you are of course free to argue that this is all individual preferences, but I don’t really see how one can make a compelling argument against video and omf/aaf import being essential in an audio post app.

With all due respect, this is not what I said.
What I said is that the job description of a product manager is “balancing” all above mentioned parameters and prioritizing them. The “black & white” thinking is based on the assumption that there are unlimited resources avaialable and/or that anything should be dropped (no matter what the expense is) to fix an or any issue. Which simply isn’t realistic.

I am not saying that anyone who doesn’t agree is an idiot, I am saying that anyone who runs a business or is self-employed knows for a fact, that choices need to be made all of the time, each and every day. Otherwise everyone would now run an “Abbey Road-like” studio with truckloads of the “right” gear. So this is not about a disagreement, a different view on things, or conflicting opinions, but rather a non-realistic perception of doing business.

I am not providing excuses, I am just trying to put things in context, without any political agenda. To be precise, providing facts and accurate information in answer to the question why all known bugs are not fixed within the first maintenance cycle.



Did some follow up video playback testing here on Mac under OX 10.6.6

Used a 30 minute video file in the following formats


Apple ProRes 422 HQ
Apple ProRes 422 (proxy)
Photo jPG
Photo jpG 2000

SD Versions

Prores 422 Proxy

None played smoothly in the native on screen player.
None worked using Apple Cinema Desktop (black screen)
All worked nicely with the BlackMagic Intensity Pro Card at both native sizes and resized, pulled down on the card.

All work fine In Logic natively, with the Cinema Desktop and with the Intensity Pro Card.

note that I didn’t test with MJPEG (as I have recommended other use in this very forum) since it is now a Legacy CODEC in the Mac world. Users can’t even access it in FCP, Compressor, QuickTime, or QT compatible apps without jumping through some significant system tweaking hoops. So it should not be considered a viable format for use in Nuendo

NOW…here’s the kicker.

While testing I tried on of the PhotoJPG version using the Apple Cinema Desktop output on the Main Monitor. When I played the project the main screen went black ( expected that…) but now there’s no way to switch the full screen output off!!! The usual ‘esc’ key doesn’t work, I’ve tried dozens of other keystrokes, I can get to the Nuendo Main menu but can’t reset the video output mode 'cos the screen is always black, I can’t Quit 'cos I can’t click on the save menu and after Force quitting Nuendo launches in the same Video Mode … ie a Black screen!!


Probably trash the prefs etc … but I have to agree with others that this ‘version’ doesn’t feel like anyone actually played a video in the thing … ever … during testing. And yes, I used to be a Cubase beta tester , I’m pretty sure I know the drill over there. I had the product exactly 35 minutes before I knew it didn’t do the BIG thing it’s meant to … and 24 hours before I got it into an untenable state!

Worst of all, there where 2 other engineers there (who use Logic) to have a look at Nuendo after I’d been raving to them about how good the latest Cubase was. They left snickering, whether at me, or Steinberg I don’t know. Sigh.

Just as frustrating as Version 3/4 … which I bailed on years ago… a Post Prod DAW (with great tools and features) that can’t play video …

This is very, very BAD.


Just a note on my observations…

I ask my clients for H264, best quality multipass

1920x1080 video is terrible
1280x720 (and smaller) isn’t bad at all

All on N5.1.1 64 bit using onscreen window (fullscreen mode on 60in LED monitor)
I saved workspace presets with key commands to quickly move btw views

because of this limitation, I always ask for 1280x720
If the client can’t do it, I resize with QTpro for my work picture.

You’d better say your client to look at keyframes setting… Setting it to auto will not give you smooth video. Good value is every 24 frames. Or lesser (but in this case you will need higher bit-rate)…

Dear Lee, now when ex-beta-tester said a word, I have to admit: yes, beta-testers did not test video at all! All they test is project notepad because it has funny feature that enlarges fonts with control+mouse scroll! And… LOL!

We have to omit though that you didn’t care to specify your configuration and how exactly video has been produced.


My system for the test :

MacPro 2.66GHz Quad Core Intel Xeon, 8 Gig RAM, Radeon X1900 515 MB graphics, OS 10.6.6, QT X and QT 7.6 BlackMagic Intensity Pro, Dual Monitors (Eizo, Sony), Mackie MCU Pro USB Controllers, Presonus 2626 Firestation Firewire I/O,

Nuendo 5.1.1 compared to Logic 9.1.3 (plays all video fine)

Video originally shot on RED epic, transferred into Final Cut Pro 7 as Apple ProRes 422 HQ and edited. A master Apple ProRes 422 HQ version was exported as the source for all the subsequent ‘test versions’ for Nuendo. The test versions were made in Compressor 3.5.

Video was played back from a separate drive than the software and audio drives.

I will run playback tests on Cubase 6 soon … have to find a bit of time to install it…



The test versions were made in Compressor 3.5.

Which settings? And when you say they play back fine in Logic, does it apply to smooth ffd and rwd?

Well, I mean the settings that produce Quicktime Movies in the CODECS and resolutions I specified. Alright, if you want to be picky “HD” = 1920 x 1080p @ 23.98 fps. “SD” = 960 x 540, 23.98fps for the ProRes Version and 720 x 480 (with letter boxing) for DV (this introduces Pull down which I would never do for anything but a test).

I also tried 1280 x 720 HD resolutions with no difference in Nuendo’s native performance.

What I mean by “they worked fine in Logic” is that Video playback for all these files was smooth and precise. ffd (forward?) yes … backwards (rwd?) er … I don’t often play things backwards :wink: . But the app locates, jogs, and scrubs fine for my needs.

I’m happy that playback via the Intensity is good … but I want to use the Native playback too … sometimes I do things on my laptop and it’s required.


Thanks! Actually I am asking for this info for developers, not to be that picky.

Fair enough too!!


Just a chime in from me.

I use Apple Prores 422 HQ and proxy in all my Nuendo projects. And it works like a charm with on screen and Intensity pro.
It didn’t in 5.1.0, lots of frames dropped.

I can’t understand why the Prores files shouldn’t work with your setup. The computer should be powerful enough.


Just keep repeating “Flaship” over and over…you’ll start feeling better.
When Nuendo moved its direction to Post, it freaked me and many other audio guys out. Now that i see that its got the Post crowd up in arms, its almost amusing. I am such a huge fan of Nuendo…i’ve followed it since its birth.
Next time there is an upgrade, i am bailing on it and headed to Cubase. It seems the NON flagship product gets the love first.
I hope they HEAR you and fix your issues. I am still blown away that a DAW company released a version without a Mono button (nuendo 2) after it had had it in Version 1. A multi grammy nominated buddy of mine, who also uses nuendo, often asks me if the guys designing this stuff know anything about the audio recording process and if they test this stuff.

I love Nuendo, but never been all that in love with SB as a company. I recall someone from SB posting and about causing a riot at the old forums a few years ago. Fredo and others that post on this foum have been very helpful to me, but those above them often make me wonder. I about got banned from the fourms when i went on a rant about their customer service policies years ago. I just accept it these days. Its not improved and the way they roll out software is unchanged.

I no longer run a commercial facility so i dont need the branding that comes with NUENDO. Cubase will suffice.


Dear forum members,

I’d like to give you a brief update about the current status of the video engine problem
analysis. Our team has spend the past two weeks figuring out why problems occur during
the playback (e.g. stutter video) and what this means in terms of the programming. As a result,
we’ve built a new, reworked video engine. In parallel to the in-house testing, this new version
is currently used in a real-world scenario test that is being conducted together with a couple
of post-production facilities.

As soon as this new version of the video engine has proven reliability and we can see the
respective issues not happening anymore, I’ll come up with further information regarding
the public availability of the official update.


thanks for the update Timo.