Sonnet and Softron Media Services Team Up to Demonstrate Four-Channel HD-SDI Output on a Mac(R) mini

Sonnet's xMac(TM) mini Server Rackmount for Mac(R) mini, Blackmagic Design's DeckLink Quad Video Card, and Softron's OnTheAir Suite Offer Multichannel Capabilities Previously Only Available Using Mac Pro(R)

IRVINE, Calif. -- April 10, 2012 -- At the 2012 NAB Show in booth SL9007, Softron Media Services will demonstrate four-channel HD-SDI output on a Mac(R) mini desktop computer using Sonnet's xMac(TM) mini Server and Blackmagic Design's DeckLink Quad video card, and running Softron's OnTheAir Node playout software.

"OnTheAir Node is the best way to output multiple channels of video on a Mac, but until now the only way to deliver multiple channels was to use a Mac Pro(R) -- and a major drawback to the Mac Pro is the large amount of space it occupies in a machine room rack," said Pierre Chevalier, technical director for Softron Media Services. "With Sonnet's xMac mini Server, we can now output up to four channels of HD-SDI video using a Mac mini, a space-saving and cost-effective option. The xMac mini Server, coupled with our software, is an ideal solution for any broadcaster looking for two-channel redundancy, A/B roll output, or four different channels of HD-SDI video, depending on the configuration."

Sonnet's xMac mini Server is a 1U rackmount for the Mac mini that adds PCIe expansion via Thunderbolt(TM) technology. The xMac mini Server mounts a Mac mini inside a specially designed enclosure that also contains two x4 mode PCIe 2.0 slots and a 100W power supply. This system enables users to plug two PCIe adapter cards (one half-length and one full-length) into slots connected to the Mac mini through a Thunderbolt cable while also providing a second port for the daisy-chain connection of additional Thunderbolt peripherals.

Together, the OnTheAir Node with OnTheAir Manager comprise the centerpiece of Softron's client/server OnTheAir Suite, enabling users to manage multiple schedules for multiple TV channel outputs from any computer on a network. OnTheAir Node is an output server that runs seamlessly on the Mac using video cards or devices such as the DeckLink Quad from Blackmagic Design. OnTheAir Manager is a unique and powerful scheduling application that allows the user to program single or multiple channels for television broadcast with a calendar-like GUI. For the NAB demonstration, OnTheAir Node provides the server software for each of the four HD-SDI outputs, and OnTheAir Manager is the client software that schedules the video to be output on each channel.

"Until now, multiple video channel output was only possible on an Apple Mac Pro because of the need to install either a single multi-port video card or multiple video cards into a workstation," said Greg LaPorte, vice president of sales and marketing at Sonnet Technologies. "Now, multiple video channel output can be achieved simply by installing a Mac mini into our xMac mini Server, installing a Blackmagic DeckLink Quad card into its internal expansion slot, and activating the required number of OnTheAir Node licenses on the system to deliver up to four HD channel outputs from a single 1U rackmountable server."

More information on Sonnet and its products is available at More information on Softron Media Services is available at

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About Softron Media Services

Softron Media Services is headquartered in Brussels, Belgium. Its U.S. affiliate, Intelligent Broadcasting Solutions, is based in Las Vegas, Nev. Softron has been providing Mac-based video and audio solutions for 30 years. Softron applications are in use at small, mid-sized, and large broadcasters throughout the world and have been used to broadcast everything from the World Cup and Beijing Olympics to single-channel public service stations' regular television programming. What distinguishes Softron Media Services is the company's long dedication to providing the highest professional-quality video support for Apple's Macintosh platform. Softron Media Services' applications offer intelligent and easy-to-use interfaces. Softron Media Services software applications are available online and by Apple ProVideo specialists throughout the world. Resellers are listed on the Softron Media Services' website ( Softron Media Services can be contacted at: 470, avenue Moliere, B-1050 Brussels, Belgium. Phone: +32 2 771 7371. For marketing and sales information about Softron Media Services products, please contact Mike Skibra, Softron Media Services business development manager, at +1 702 275 6353 or

About Sonnet Technologies

Sonnet Technologies Inc. is a leader in providing storage systems, media readers, and Thunderbolt(TM) technology PCIe expansion products for professional users of Macintosh(R), Windows(R), and UNIX(R) systems in the film, video, and broadcast industries. The company's product line features a range of high-performance, cost-effective, and reliable desktop and rackmount RAID storage solutions ranging from two- and four-drive portable units, to eight- and 16-drive desktop-attached storage with advanced RAID controllers, to 16-drive, 16-port, 8Gb Fibre Channel shared storage systems that are expandable to 384TB. Celebrating 25 years in business, Sonnet has pioneered and brought to market numerous innovative solutions that enhance the performance and connectivity of Macintosh, Windows, and other industry-standard computers. More information is available at xMac is a trademark of Sonnet Technologies, Inc.

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