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Review: Matrox Monarch LCS

The Matrox Monarch LCS is an inexpensive dual-input lecture capture solution with two output channels that can be independently set for recording and/or streaming.

Testing the Monarch

Beyond configuration testing with the Monarch, we produced a one-hour video to test stability and sync, recording one stream and sending the other to YouTube Live. While certainly not a torture test by any means, Monarch performed perfectly in these trials, and we find comfort that the hardware has been well proven.

The video tutorial that accompanies this review shows the configurations and options discussed herein. To test the stream variability of the recorded video, we input the video into Bitrate Viewer, revealing the very CBR stream shown in Figure 5 (below). Assuming the streaming output is as consistent as the recorded videos, getting Monarch streams out of the building or over the network should be as efficient as possible.

Figure 5. The Monarch produced very consistent CBR streams. Click the image to see it at full size.

Overall, the Monarch LCS provides all the essential features for dual-input lecture capture with many useful design and ancillary features coming. The hardware has been well-proven, and the software straightforward in operation, notwithstanding the noted rough edges. This plus the price should make the unit interesting for any organizations seeking a lecture capture solution.

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