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NAB Product Preview: Automation & Asset Management

Automation used to be mostly about VTRs and “force multiplying” master control staff. Today, in its various forms, automation permeates every aspect of broadcast operations. Even though some long-time players have folded or been assimilated, the category continues morphing and reinventing itself as a must-have master of file-based workflow.


Aveco will feature their Astra Suite of Tools to automate ingest, content management, master control, news and studio workflows. CMS offers auto proxy generation and rules-based content archiving and repurposing. Astra MCR synchronizes with traffic systems to migrate content to the correct playout channel, while its News companion links to popular NRCS systems. Ingest manages content from live feeds, video tape or files based on traffic logs or news rundowns.

With a tradition of pre-NAB mystery, expect Avid to reveal new versions and features for their iNEWS Command, Interplay and FastBreak automation.

Broadway Systems, specialists in advertising management software for cable networks, debuts v7.0 with a newly engineered Deal Management Cockpit, as well as its Broadway IQ, an analytical toolkit to leverage real-time operational data and improve advertising yields.

Cinegy AirBuilding4Media reveals the FORK Production Suite, with automated ingest, content management, editing, and hardware-agnostic central media storage, plus Final Cut Pro integration. Live Assist works with iNews or ENPS; Playout Suite automates master control, including graphics and switcher interfaces. With Mobile2Air, reporters can transmit iPhone video to air via 3G or Wi-Fi connections.

Version 9.0, a significant upgrade to Cinegy’s Air—the company’s broadcast automation and playout server line-up—adds Type, a real-time character generation and branding module.

Crispin debuts a complete multichannel Master Control Automation solution that interfaces with best-of-breed equipment. It features TCP/IP device control, multi-channel hub/spoke operations, BXF functionality, plus integrated asset management and storage. Digital Transfer Agent (DTA) automates file-based content capture and transcoding. NewsPlayX and NewsCat manage news playback and archiving with leading NRCS platforms.

Digital Broadcast will showcase MediaFire, a full-featured master control automation system with built-in interfaces to content delivery services. Also being shown is MediaVault Blu-ray Carousel Archive, a mass storage solution for news, programming and production. There’s also NewsBank, which consolidates servers and editing. With it news can be received, edited and automatically aired per MOS rundown. Content Gateway with AutoPrep migrates file-based media to the air-server.

Reprising their Universal Automation Backup System, DNF Controls offers a 24/7 standby system capable of importing primary automation or traffic playlists to ensure the flow of programming to air.

Etere returns with upgrades to their range of Air Sales, TV Automation, Tapeless Workflow, Media Asset Management and hierarchical Archiving solutions.

Florical reintroduces Acuitas, an IT-based “station-in-a-box” solution with HD playout, graphics, effects, and frame-accurate switching. It’s suitable for spot insertion or cost-effective multi-channel operations and can be remotely managed via the company’s SMART Central technology. Returning is the traditional AirBoss automation system.

Harris returns with current editions of their ADC and D-Series Automation, OSi and Novar Traffic, NewsForce, and Invenio asset management lines.

Miranda Technologies debuts Playout Glass Cockpit, an IT-based solution that combines multichannel content delivery, rich graphics and advanced monitoring and was achieved by integrating the recently acquired OmniBus iTX automated playout technology with Kaleido multi-viewers, iControl Playout Manager. New features include intelligent switching and loudness management.

Pebble Beach DolphinNVerzion’s new NCompass platform helps manage, process and air content from various file-based delivery systems via a common interface with access to program metadata. Features include automatic/manual mode and user-defined rules. The company will also preview its Keep It Simple Scheduler (KISS), a traffic and billing system integrated with NVerzion automation.

Pebble Beach launches Dolphin, an SD/HD channel-in-a-box with integrated switching, transcoding and branding, it operates standalone or within larger Neptune or Marina automation systems. A pathway for launching new channels, Dolphin’s standard user interface and single system-wide database promotes efficient, non-conflicting media management across all channels while avoiding operational silos.

Rushworks introduces A-LIST playlist automation, featuring time-of-day events, DTMF, GPI, GPO, and manual triggers, auto-loop, auto-fill for “padding” short events, a multi-layer graphics compositor, file pre-fetch from NAS, and more. Also, there’s the DIJIT file encoder for manual or scheduled multi-format encoding and simple user interface,. Also, look for DAYSHIFT for simultaneous encoding and playback at intervals of up to 24 hours.

SGT brings next-gen media asset management to their established VEDA Automation workflow, with an easy-to-use, ergonomic user interface with Contextual Navigation and Layout Customization. New iVEDA allows users to check playlists from iPhones.

Snell unveils a major upgrade to their ICE IT-based playout system, incorporating a variety of new capabilities. ICE is offered in a range of simple to install turnkey packages with low deployment costs. Snell will also demonstrate Morpheus Automation.

VSN offers a complete range of automation, MAM and video server products. Look for VSNCREATV v3.0, a traffic and planning system with an optimized user interface that registers aired commercials and generates reports for accounting and financial systems. Its commercial opt-out feature classifies spot airings by channel or geographical area to meet different audience targets.


Alteran Technologies debuts v2.0 of their ViTaDi AutoPack, a 4-channel mobile videotape ingest and content migration system. Updates enhance productivity with multi-clip capture and timecode break modes. It’s scalable, has onboard storage and works with customer or factory-supplied VTRs. A lower-cost mini version is also offered.

AmberFin returns with their iCR software products for ingest, transcode, QC, format, and standards conversion via generic IT hardware under Web services control.

Digital Archive 3.2, a scalable, non-proprietary, multi-tier solution from Atempo, is independent of file and asset management systems or storage types. New Avid Interplay integration lets editors directly search, retrieve and archive assets. With Storage Virtualization, facilities can create a single logical archive from a pool of heterogeneous storage devices with full access, load balancing and failover.

Media Life is Dalet Digital Media Systems’ enterprise solution for the complex production and asset management needs of multi-platform content providers. Designed on open IT standards, it uses flexible metadata and Web Services to manage multi-language content and integrate third-party systems such as QC, subtitling and widgets.

Also returning is Dalet’s News Suite.

Digital Rapids unveils Transcode Manager 2.0 with dynamic, scalable distributed workflow supporting platforms from mobile phones and tablets to game consoles and Web-connected TVs.

Front Porch Digital’s cloud-based DIVApublish mpx platform handles more complex content distribution workflows and automates creation of deeply searchable frame-level metadata. It integrates with new metadata-creation tools in DIVAframe and extends the digital file-based workflow from DIVArchive through to content publication.

The new Netia Workflow Engine from GlobeCast automates complex asset management tasks and processes. It interfaces with the company’s HyperCast Warehouse permitting users to ingest once and playout anywhere, and in any format.

Rhozet’s Carbon Coder workFlow and quality control system returns under the Harmonic banner. It facilitates file-based content creation for Internet, mobile and broadcast applications.

Masstech will launch Emerald, a turnkey system that includes IBM server hardware, a Spectra 5T0e LTO5 library and Emerald v7.5 software. The system offers automatic archiving, restoration, partial file extraction, and low-resolution proxy creation for intuitive operator searching and previewing. The company will also show v7.5 of its scalable TOPAZ hierarchical storage and MAM solution.

Pilat Media management solutionIBMS’ Pilat Media’s end-to-end broadcast management solution, demos the advanced tools, workflow processes, and business information monitoring of Performance Dashboard. At-a-glance visual displays highlight exceptions, alerting executives to inventory, accounts receivable, rights and permissions, and other issues needing attention. Enterprise Traffic Management Console drives business and traffic operations from creation to reconciliation in high channel-count networks.

ProConsultant Informatique rolls out Cindy, a targeted ad scheduling system for non-linear platforms with automated preference matching to optimize audience reach for specified demographic and lifestyle targets. Enhanced MediaBench lets users of Louise—an enterprise-wide business management system—create promos and overlays for non-linear production and repurposing.

FlashNet—Software Generations Limited’s archiving solution—demos more efficient workflow using the new LTFS (Linear Tape File System/Long Term File System) format. LTFS treats tapes as a file system, enabling interoperability between different archive formats so users can exchange data created by previously incompatible systems.

Signiant Media Exchange (MX), a secure browser-based application, enables IT and non-IT staffers to exchange media files that exceed typical e-mail limits. Project files move over WAN, DSL, or cable; notification features let users track workflow benchmarks, confirmations, and set alerts. V9.0 of Content Distribution Management streamlines sharing and large file transfers with delivery queuing and bandwidth management.

SSL DV returns with their scalable Gravity Media Asset Management & Broadcast content workflow system.

Tarsys MAM, highly customizable Ficus Business Process Manager, and enterprise-level Media Process Manager (MPM) return at Tedial.

Telestream rolls-out new transcoding and enterprise-class management tools. Vantage 2.0 Workflow Portal enables fast creation and deployment of operator interfaces for browsing, metadata entry, and content distribution. Episode 6 is a cross-platform, next-gen desktop-to-server encoding application with One-click Clustering and integrated file sharing.

Vitec Multimedia offers the Como line of ProxSys media asset management solutions. It’s a modular IT system, with the operating system, hardware and software delivered as a turnkey system.


Associated Press intros Digital Publishing Engine (DPE) for ENPS with tools to combine Web, mobile and broadcast production, including automated transcoding, a dedicated “content collection” grid for Web/mobile output, drag and drop reordering of page content, and real-time usage metrics. ENPS Mobile Suite gives journalists newsroom access from anywhere in the world using their mobile devices’ data connectivity.

Newsroom, an NRCS from Autocue/QTV Group offers multi-user production, administration and management tool functionality, including scripting and rundowns, wire service receipt and distribution, script archiving, assignment and contact lists, user messaging, Internet access, media browsing and integrated prompting. There’s also live playout automation with common device interfaces.

Bitcentral unveils enhanced Precis and Oasis, their news production/platform led by a new browser-based content editor and management system, plus non-linear editing and automation integrations to bolster their “No Barriers” workflow.

Boasting an alternative to iNews and ENPS, EZNews will demo their multi-media/function/user TV newsroom solutions for Windows or Mac, featuring show and rundown templates, interactive scripting commands, automated show and rundown timing, and more.

Updated Grass Valley MediaFUSE FX content repurposing and multi-distribution system expands asset management and automated transcoding capabilities with additional file-based workflows. The Ignite newsroom production system also returns.

Octopus Newsroom unveils Octopus Mobile, assimilating iPhone and Android devices into the newsgathering workflow so journalists can prepare and submit their stories from the field. The company will also show a Final Cut plug-in and NRCS.

Ross Video debuts v10 software for the OverDrive automated production control system. It features automated Web content preparation, and enhanced CG timing controls and GlobalView personality settings.


ProTrack TV, Myers Information Systems’ BXF-enabled flagship adds enhanced broadcast traffic, content, scheduling, and sales management for individual, multi-channel and multi-station operations. It integrates with existing automation, archiving, accounting, PSIP, and Web distribution systems, as well as with Myers’ Media Asset Management and On-Demand Modules.

StorerTV brings their SIMS solution for managing budgeting, ROI reporting, asset management, contract and program rights management, and linear and non-linear scheduling. The company will also show QuantiX—secure Web-based library management to access, manage and track media; and CentriX for customized workflows connecting all aspects of a media factory.

Having absorbed VCI Solutions, traffic experts WideOrbit will unveil WO Automation for TV, with configurations for individual stations, multicasting, duopolies, mobile content delivery, and central hub operations. WO Program Management incorporates the business logic of the entire station or network to make information available for decision making. It connects station and network ad inventories to streamline buying and selling process. WO Traffic for cable networks manages brand advertising and integrates with network proposal and program management solutions.