Mach One.5 Information 

Freeware Mach One.5 Videotape Editor Information

The FREEWARE MACH ONE.5 VIDEOTAPE EDITOR controls 6 VTRs, Ampex Vista or Grass Valley Group model 100, 200, or 300 video switchers, ESAM II audio mixers, and Zaxcom or Ensemble Designs TBC controllers. The parallel port provides 8 TTL-level GPI signals which could be wired to your own relay drivers and relays. The EE mode of the record VTR provides the preview switcher function.

Three levels of operation using this single program are possible:

  1. No special hardware other than a 286 or better IBM PC compatible is needed to start the program. Using the standard PC keyboard, you could read, convert, write, or print EDLs, or do manual EDL entry.
  2. With a serial port that has a 16550 UART (RS-232 with 232/422 converter, or a direct RS-422 port) you could control a VTR that has a standard Sony or Ampex RS-422 9-pin interface. The VTR should have a built-in time code reader. You can do MARKs to create an EDL for logging and export purposes. There are no editing functions (preview, record, assemble) available.
  3. By having an engineer construct a simple circuit to provide timing signals to the parallel port, you can add the editing functions. This timing circuit is very simple (one 8-pin IC), and we provide a schematic diagram in the installation manual to show how it is constructed.

System Requirements:

  •     IBM PC compatible computer, 10 MHz 286 or faster (20 MHz 386 or faster recommended)
  •     640 KB main system RAM memory
  •     MS-DOS version 5.0 or later
  •     Hard disk, 3.5" floppy disk as drive A recommended
  •     Color VGA monitor recommended, but will operate on IBM monochrome.

Optional PC hardware:

  •     2 MB XMS RAM (4 MB recommended when using large EDLs) for UNDO feature (from this line in the CONFIG.SYS file: device=himem.sys /numhandles=45)
  •     LPT parallel port for printing EDLs
  •     LPT parallel port to attach the timing circuit (and optional relay circuitry)
  •     Up to 9 serial communication ports using 16550 high-speed UARTs.

Serial port options:

  1. If your PC already has RS-232 ports with 16550 UARTS you could just purchase adapters to convert the ports to RS-422.
  2. We can recommend a card for your PC that has two RS-422 serial ports. The port connectors have the proper pin-outs so you can use normal 9-pin cables to connect to your equipment. This card is the TV-200S available from Quatech.
  3. You could also purchase a dual RS-232 card at a local computer store for about $40 that has 16550 UARTS, and use converters on the two ports.

Getting a couple of ports working and adding a simple timing circuit will yield a working online editing system that you can use to test with your VTRs, switchers, and other devices before committing to the purchase of additional RS-422 cards. For our normal Mach One.5 editing systems we use the Hostess 550 from Comtrol Corporation that has sixteen RS-232/422 ports on a single card.

The FREEWARE MACH ONE.5 VIDEOTAPE EDITOR is contained in several additional files:

  • The Mach1U.htm file contains the latest manual corrections, software patches, and other upgrade information.
  • The Mach1O.htm file contains the latest information on hardware, software, and support options.
  • The Mach1D.exe file (Size: 85762 Bytes, version 1.14 Rev B) contains the installation/technical (20 page) and tutorial (50 page) manuals in files formatted for the Windows 3.x Write program (the Win9x/NT WordPad program can also be used). The manual reference section is also provided in an online help file (not available in the present freeware version 1.30).
  • The Mach1E.exe file (Size: 161637 Bytes, version 1.30) contains the executable program files, as well as other diagnostic programs and various configuration files.
  • The Mach1V.exe file (Size: 29217 Bytes, version 1.1) contains Turbo Pascal source code for a VTR simulator for the Freeware Mach One.5 Videotape Editor. You could use this as a framework to interface parallel-controlled VTRs. Only download this if you enjoy building circuits and writing software! Turbo Pascal 5.5 is now available free from Borland in their museum.

The three EXE files are self-extracting files, and should be placed into an empty subdirectory on your hard disk and then run.

I have been providing MACH ONE support since 1984. Please contact me with any questions or comments. Limited free support for the Freeware Mach One.5 is available by email. Telephone support for this free product is only available if a support fee is paid.

Thanks for your support and consideration!
Paul Breneman,
Breneman Labs


The MACH ONE.5 VIDEOTAPE EDITOR. Begin with the classic, unmatched versatility of the active edit list, cluster event capability, enhanced switcher control, and dedicated keyboard. Combine it with today's computer technology: crisp, fast, and easy to read edit screens, and enough storage capacity and flexibility to manage real-world EDLs. Then add up-to-date features like two EDLs on-screen (with "Cut & Paste" between them), twenty-level "UNDO", on-line help, and user-defined keyboard macros. The MACH ONE.5 brings all this together in an edit system with capability and features for today and tomorrow. At a value from yesterday with custom and personal response to your equipment changes. The MACH ONE.5 is the cost-conscious solution for today's edit suites.

The MACH ONE.5 has already proven itself, having been in full-time use since April 1992. The powerful features that we have added to the MACH ONE since 1984 are still saving our customers time, and helping their editing process to be the most efficient. Fast personal computers have allowed us to vastly improve the MACH ONE operation. The active edit list approach of the MACH ONE has had some limitations, which have been eliminated with features like undo, multiple EDLs, and multiple screen windows.

ACTIVE EDIT LIST: Most on-line editors require you to move an edit from the EDL to a current event window, and put it back in the list when you're finished tweaking. With the ACTIVE EDIT LIST, you just highlight the desired edit and modify it, preview it, and execute it, right in the list. Without extra keystrokes, and without wasted time. With an Undo function that can backtrack twenty steps, you'll keep pace with the quickest of sessions.

CLUSTER EVENTS: Although digital technology makes it possible to build complex effects, it seems most edit systems demand that you build an effect one segment at a time because they don't make it easy to control multiple sources with multiple transitions in a single edit. The ACTIVE EDIT LIST of the MACH ONE.5 allows CLUSTER EVENTS to be easily created and used. The CLUSTER EVENT function of the MACH ONE.5 brings you the power to control up to twelve simultaneous sources (VTRs, disk recorders, etc.) with independently adjustable timing, allowing you to preview the total edit, modify it as required, and then record it all.

ENHANCED SWITCHER CONTROL: Controlling multiple sources is only half the battle. True efficiency comes from direct control of the video switcher with ENHANCED SWITCHER CONTROL. You can store, reload, and trigger EMEM registers with special notes, and trigger EMEM registers and auto transitions with special wipes. All through serial control which means that the switcher data from every edit event is part of the EDL. You can recall it later to re-edit.


  • Automatic VTR type detection. User assigned crosspoints.
  • Up to 16 VTR ports, control of up to 12 of 16 VTRs simultaneously. Includes multiple record VTRs.
  • Support for digital VTR "read before write" (PREREAD) and 4 channel audio.
  • Video/4 channel Audio preview switcher.
  • 16 contact GPI. Have preset advance value to compensate for device delay.
  • Zaxcom or Ensemble Designs TBC data storage in the EDL.
  • ESAM II audio mixer control with data storage in the EDL.
  • Optional control of CGs, DVEs (GVG Kscope), and disk recorders.


  • Multiple-level undo (and redo), with up to 20 levels for each EDL (depends on amount of XMS memory and size of EDLs)
  • Programmable keyboard macros (learn keys)
  • Pop-up notepad (clipboard)
  • On-line help and reference manual
  • High-speed text mode VGA display with user-definable colors and screen blanker
  • Internal hard disk and 3.5" floppy for EDL and other file storage. Directory sorted by date & time. Multiple files per EDL disk. Industry standard or Mach One binary EDL files supported.


  • Can instantly switch VTRs between timecode and user bits (or user defined timecode source).
  • Can force timecode standard (NDF, DF, 24, 25) for a VTR to use incorrectly coded tapes.
  • NTSC mixed timecode editing.
  • Sophisticated PAL phase display and correction modes.
  • Adjustable tolerance to timecode errors.


  • Match menu to find locations of the same reel in the EDL, and match from an occurrence.
  • EDL search to find where in the EDL a VTR's timecode is contained.
  • Automatic copy of cluster events with match points maintained.


  • Real time lookahead assembly (A & B mode)
  • Real time dub mode (repeated A mode)
  • Real time edit mode: "on the fly" editing with synchronized roll of sources.
  • Adjustable preroll and postroll.


  • Customization of software is available
  • Hardware diagnostics
  • Optional software updates and system diagnosis by computer modem


Some of the users that we have been supporting since 1984 have become very attached to their MACH ONE editors:

'We've grown the system over the years from 3/4" to D2, and if I was even to suggest to our key editor that we might replace the Mach, I think he'd have a fit.' Jim Dellon, Gallaudet University

'We stay with the Mach One because we like the speed and efficient nature of cluster events and working in the list rather than in an event window. We also like the repeatability that we get with all switcher, TBC, and audio setups stored in the list in very flexible ways. It has been nice to see things like two lists in memory at once, cut and paste list functions, multiple undo on both lists, and match features added to the Mach as they have been requested by us and others. We look forward to using our system for years to come.' Tom Cooper, Amway Corporation

We have been providing computer and engineering solutions to the video industry for more than sixteen years. We have worked with a variety of clients to solve many different equipment problems. Please request our project and client list for further reference information.

Paul Breneman, owner of Breneman Labs, has extensive experience in electronics and computers. This includes over 31 years in broadcast and production engineering, and equipment hardware/software design. He is the author of several technical articles, a conference speaker, and obtained a BSEE from The Ohio State University.

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