SL NEO 3000: Multi-Functional Universal Servers - Channel In A Box

SL NEO 3000: Multi-Functional Universal Servers - Channel In A Box

SL NEO 3000: Multi-Functional Universal Servers - Channel In A Box

SL NEO 3000: Multi-Functional Universal Servers - Channel In A Box

Media Servers SL NEO 3000 Series

Universal UHD/HD/SD Media Servers: Up to 12x Channels In One Box


Universal SD/HD/Ultra HD content ingest, playout and streaming. 24/7 unattended operation, MPEG2, AVC/H.264, HDV, DV, Pro Res compression scalability, large variety of sources supported, hardware Independence. Ideally suited for time-critical live operations. Professional device support through GPI, RS-232, Ethernet is also available. Redundant playout makes it perfect for fail-safe environments.

The main purpose of Channel-In-A-Box technology is reduction of the many parts of traditional playout system and master control (graphics, servers and switches, routing, audio, channel branding) into a single integrated software application that operates on generic IT-based hardware. According to proponents, this integration simplifies installation and maintaining, besides, it is cheaper to buy and operate it.  

Fully integrated SL NEO 3000 Servers have on-board automation control, media storage and media database, graphics engine, file/line/stream/VTR ingest, clip playout, Time Shift, DVB IP/ASI TS Encoding Tools, DVB Subtitling & Closed Captioning.

SL NEO 3000 supports a wide range of codecs and file containers:

  • AVID DNxHD (120, 145, 185, 220 Mbit/s),
  • Panasonic (DVCPRO25, DVCPRO50, DVCProHD),
  • Sony XDCAM IMX (30, 40, 50 Mbit/s), DV25/DVCAM, XDCAM HD 422, HDV, AVCHD,
  • MPEG-2 4:2:0, 4:2:2, IPB GOP or I-frames, 
  • MPEG-4 (H.264),
  • Apple Pro Res (HQ, LT, Proxy),
  • H.265/HEVC (file import & playout),
  • File Containers: AVI, MOV, MP4, MXF D-10/OP1A, RAW DV/DIF, MPEG PS/TS, MPG, BMP, TGA, PNG, PSD.

Multi-Channel Ingest and Frame-Accurate Batch Capture

SL NEO 3000 supports real-time multi-channel ingest to a wide range of codecs and file containers. For ingest from tape, tape players are connected to the servers through RS-422/IEEE1394 server ports. Frame-accurate batch capture mode is used when working with a VTR according to record-lists events.

Multi-Channel Playout with Automated Source Switching

"External" Switching Mode

During the playout process, the servers carry out frame-accurate routing in accordance with the events in the playlists, controlling the external routers through RS-422/232/Ethernet interfaces using Harris/Leitch, Evertz, Network, Snell, Miranda and other protocols. This is an "external" program switching mode.

Using of “external” program switching mode is a classic and popular way of broadcast system creating, but it requires installing of additional hardware modules DSK/LOGO and separate graphic servers. The reason is that when the router switches an "external" line directly to the broadcast, additional modules are the only way to overlay line’s signal with graphics and logos.

External Switching Mode Concept Diagram


"Internal" Switching Mode

As long as the “Channel-in-a-Box” technology’s popularity grows, servers begin to carry out more and more functions, what simplifies the scheme of broadcast system creating. SL NEO server is now not only a source, it is capable to implement internal clean switching of the "not-in-sync" input signals with those ones that are generated during files playback, according to the play-lists. This server also creates graphic design of several channels.

The main advantage of this approach is essential money saving, since there are no requirements about genlock of all external sources with REF: only one server implements the frame synchronizing function by jointless "clean" switching of the input signals with playback files. This scheme requires no sync generators, DSK/LOGO modules or extra graphic design servers.

Internal Switching Mode Concept Diagram

The main and backup servers & routers work simultaneously and synchronously, graphics is also backed up. Routing switchers implement only preliminary switching to server inputs and switching to server rec-channels (automatically or manually).

Automated Local Insertions

The SL NEO 3000 series servers allow to pass signals from its inputs directly to the outputs and perform "internal" program switching. For instance, after playing back an ad-block the server can be configured to automatically switch the output from file content to the input's AV signal. This function allows performing local insertions into the AV signal from a central station. The SL NEO media-server may trigger ad-block playback in manual mode as well as fully automatically by means of decoding DTMF cue tones SCTE-104 commands, GPI in VBI commands and by video sample matching.

Graphics and Channel Branding

Being a part of broadcasting or live-production studio, the SL NEO server may be used as a multi-functional graphics design & playout station, which will tie graphics into the propagating video and format multi-layered compositions consisting of captions, scrolling text, video effects, on-screen graphics, logos, animated banners, live video fragments, Chroma Key, and 2D effects.

Each output (program) channel of SL NEO 3000 contains up to eight simultaneously functioning virtual channels for graphics output. Each channel contains its own playlist, with playing back graphic events.

Each event may contain a multi-layered combination (without limitation on the number of graphics objects) of text/graphic events.

Dynamic Graphics Compositions

Dynamic compositions technology is designed for Branding, Promo, TV News, Weather Forecasts, Economic information, Music Channels, etc. In addition to text and animation, compositions may contain 2D effects, elements of PIP, video, and live sources from server inputs, and audio track mixes.

Functions for the automatic parameterization of text objects contained in compositions have been implemented in SL NEO 3000 server line. A flash video shows an example of the composition using PIP and simple captions. Animation may be played in the form of a file chain or from avi/mov files from alpha-channel.

Logos, captions, scrolling and crawling text are played back on dynamic backgrounds. Number of these objects is unlimited; upon generation of the format, they may be combined free-form with any other graphic objects. In addition to text, images may be used as moving objects. The content of scrolling text may change dynamically due to the reading of RSS information.

Clock visualizes current time in the form of digital and analogue clocks (full or partial screen) of any design with sound. Collages may be created from digital and analogue clocks with animated backgrounds for several time zones, as well as direct and reverse counters. 

RSS, visualization of sensor indications

SL NEO 3000 servers allow using different options for visualization based on the dynamic reading of information from RSS resources or text files: SMS chats, weather and currency exchange panels etc. Visualization of various sensor indications (temperature, humidity, pressure, background radiation, etc.) is implemented through the technology of periodic reading of measurement results from text files at the required intervals. The limitations on sensor type and model are therefore removed. A flash video shows an example of the composition that shows the weather. Recording has been made from the SL NEO server output.

Automated playout of graphic events

SL NEO servers permit the full automation of graphics playout. Associating graphic events with time markers in events in the main playlist is implemented through the secondary events and special marker technology. 

SL NEO 3000: Tool for Live Production

SL NEO 3000 servers move to a brand new level of functionality for venue production with the Air Manager - a software control tool designed to control all of the server channels. Created using feedback from our clients, SL NEO 3000 is a server with ingest & playout application with capabilities that go far beyond other available products.

Onboard media preparation tools allow the operator to define and organize content while recording is still underway. And with configurable shortcut keys, live asset and metadata updates, and built-in tool for instant navigation to key points in long pieces of media, the SL NEO 3000 allows you to get your material on-air in record time.

One SL NEO 3000 server may contain up to 8 SD-HD SDI inputs, to which signals from cameras and simple sources are sent (signals may be asynchronous). Using live inputs as part of a design is an everyday task. SL NEO 3000 lets you apply live input sources to any object and animate the result in real-time, without the use of external scaler equipment.

The integrated real-time chroma keyer completes a very cost-effective set of tools for creating eye-catching virtual studio productions. Using the color-picker, you can simply select the color to be keyed before fine-tuning its parameters. Multiple chroma keyers can be used within a single scene.

Preliminary creation of compositions with the use of Chroma Key, Live Sources, and Captions can be switched by the director using Hot Keys. The incorporated Hot Keys technology allows an additional keyboard to be connected either to the server or the client station, which may be convenient for changes in sources and compositions.

Key Features and Benefits

  • Broadcast quality across 24/7 operation;
  • Simultaneous and independent functioning of several recording channels (1...8 HD ch. or 1...12 for SD); recording to local or networked storage;
  • Automated recording to files of media materials according to the record-lists from AV/SDI/ASI/IPTV/WEB sources;
  • Automated/Manual file ingest from network or local sources, P2, SxS card support. Material is accessible for viewing, editing, and playback 2 seconds after the beginning of the record or import;
  • The creation of several recording profiles and instantaneous profile interchange;
  • Layout, editing, import, and export of record-lists for recording channels;
  • Live streaming for preview, automatic creation low resolution proxy-copies of materials during recording & file import;
  • External Routers control, automated line source change in accordance with the record-list events;
  • VTR device control using RS-422/IEEE1394 server ports, batch capture mode is used when working with a VTR according to record-lists.
  • VITC support for frame-accurate ingest from tapes;
  • Simultaneous and independent 1...8 HD ch. playout (or 1...16 for SD), execution of playlists as a sequence of events;
  • Generation of graphic layers, logos, manual & automated graphics playout use “secondary events" technology;
  • Playback of file media materials with various compression & file containers, various resolution and frame speeds (for example, NTSC, PAL, 720p, 1080i), and on-fly up/down/cross-conversion with a change to the fps parameters;
  • DVB Subtitling, VBI/VANC Data Support (CIA-608/708 Closed Captioning, VITC, WST, SCTE Data and other);
  • SCTE-104 data generation, DTMF generation for automated regional ad insertions;
  • SCTE-104, GPI in VBI commands decoding; 
  • DVB/IPTV/WEB streaming in parallel with the generation of UHD/HD/SD SDI, with regulation of flow speeds and resolution;
  • External Router control for source switching, in accordance with playlist events;
  • Layout and editing of playlists using the built-in editors, import of playlists from Excel and traffic systems;
  • Editing and trimming of clips directly within the playout process; real-time editing of playlist events while they are being executed; trimming of clips in a playlist events, directly within the event implementation process;
  • Time Shift recording and playout after a given amount of time, with automatic tie-in to the program of inter-program and ad blocks being generated, besides, the tie-in of graphics and logos;
  • Export of media files from server to network work stations, NLE, and to the archives;
  • Application of server backup schemes from N+1 to N+N for playout channels with automated on-line synchronization of playlists from all channels, including all graphic layers;
  • Automatic copying of content into the backup server’s storage;

Software modules connection diagram

The types, number, and settings for server program modules and their interaction determine the functionality of servers from a given series (see diagram).


Technical Specifications

  • System Configuration (depends on model): Mainframe - Intel Xeon CPU, PCIe platform, SSD or Dual mirrored SATA boot drives, 1...4 100/1000Base-T Ethernet ports, Internal Media Storage (1…60 Tb) or port for ext. Storage, Windows family operating system;
  • Live/Recording Channels: 1...8 for HD/SD, 1 for UHD;
  • Playout Channels: 1...8 for HD/SD, 1 for UHD;
  • Video Formats (depends on model): SD:   625i, or 525i, HD: 1080i, 25 or 29.97 f/s, 720p, 50 or 59.94 f/s, Ultra HD: 2160p, 25, 29,97, 50 or 59.94 f/s;
  • Inputs/Outputs (depends on model):
  • SD: SDI/CVBS/YUV, Analog/AES/SDI Embedded Audio, MPTS/SPTS over ASI/IP, Unicast/Multicast via RTP/RTSP, FEC (option), HDMI, SXGA/UXGA/UWXGA (output only);
  • HD: HD SDI /AES/SDI Embedded Audio MPTS/SPTS over ASI/IP, Unicast/Multicast via RTP/RTSP, FEC (option), HDMI, SXGA/UXGA/UWXGA (output only);
  • Ultra HD: 3x 4G SDI or 6/12 G SDI, TS over DVB ASI/IP, UDP/RTP Unicast/Multicast, FEC (option), HDMI 2.0;
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9, 4:3;
  • Resolution: 320x240, 360x288, 640x360, 504x480, 720x480, 504x576, 720x576, 960x720, 1280x720, 1280x1080, 1440x1080, 1920x1080, 3840x2160;
  • Audio: 4 AES/EBU pairs per video I/O channel, 8 pairs embedded per video I/O channel 16-, 20- or 24-bit PCM, 48 kHz;
  • SD/HD File Encoding/Decoding: DVCAM, DVCPRO25, DVCPRO50, DVCPROHD100, HDV, IMX (30, 40, 50), XDCAM EX (SP, HQ), XDCAM HD (LP, SP, HQ), XDCAM Hd422, DNxHD (36, 145, 220), AVCHD, MPEG2 GOP, H.264, Apple Pro Res, HEVC (import & decoding);
  • File Containers: AVI, MOV, MXF OP1A/D10, DV/DIF, FLV, VOB, MPG, BMP, TGA, PNG, PSD;
  • Genlock Reference (depends on model): SD: Bi-level sync input, HD: Tri-level sync input;
  • Timecode/NTP Support: NTP client over Ethernet, LTC in (option);
  • GPI I/O: Inputs 4…16 (option), Outputs 4…16 (option);
  • Remote Serial Interface: 4…8 RS-232/422 ports for switchers or VTR control (option);
  • Control: TCP/IP over Ethernet, RS-232/422, IEE1394, GPI (option);
  • Protocols: Sony 9-pin, Switchers: Harris/Leitch, Evertz, Nevion and other;
  • Dimensions (depends on model): 1…4RU, Weight (10…40 kg);
  • Power: Power Supply Dual hot-swappable;
  • Voltage: AC 115 to 120 V, 200 to 240 V, auto select.