Aveco Introduces Redwood, a New Concept in News Studio-in-a-Box and Channel-in-a-Box Automation Solutions

At IBC 2013, Aveco will introduce Redwood, a family of entry-level and scalable solutions aimed at the news studio (Redwood Studio) and master control (Redwood Play) markets that need all the features to produce news programming and/or put a new channel on-air, but have smaller budgets.
Redwood Studio (News Studio-in-a-Box)
The Redwood Studio system can quickly and cost-effectively put a new news studio on-air. Redwood Studio is specifically designed for the complexity of news and production studios with smaller budgets. By using a client/server architecture, integrating a powerful graphics, playout, and switcher engine in the client, combined with Aveco’s existing ASTRA Studio 2’s easy to use studio control interface, users get functionality traditionally available only in much more expensive and complex products.

“The reason nobody has come up with a ‘box’ solution for news production is that news is much more complex than master control. The workflow is more complex, more people are involved in the workflow, and more devices are required to produce a unique look and feel,” said Pavel Potuzak, Managing Director for Aveco. “Redwood Studio defines a new market segment that can address the complexities of a live studio broadcast by providing broadcasters a way to automate the entire workflow, generate a unique and consistent look and feel with no trade-offs in graphics, and put the show on-air with minimal training, minimal staff, and minimal equipment.”
Redwood lowers the total cost by integrating all the needed functionality that is generally provided by three or more external devices into the client. The Redwood server provides system level functionality including media asset management, file ingest, user interface, system utilities, database management, and a powerful story template engine that simplifies the job of journalists. In addition, the server runs the Aveco MOS interface which offers tight integration with, Octopus, ENPS, Gorilla, iNEWS, OpenMedia, and other NRCS systems for generating the rundown.
“Rather than put everything in one physical Windows-based PC like typical ‘box’ systems, Redwood uses a client/server architecture where Redwood clients provide the graphics, switcher and playout engines to run a production or put a channel on-air, while the server—running a mission-critical real-time operating system—provides a very robust and scalable control system,” said Potuzak. “This IT-based architecture will be very familiar to customers who are generally more IT savvy than broadcast savvy. Traditional ‘box’ systems can get very messy as you expand to more and more channels, whereas Redwood expands easily.”
Redwood Play (Channel-in-a-Box, CiaB)
The Redwood Play CiaB system is designed to quickly add a new master control channel while keeping costs under control and overcoming the limitations of traditional CiaB solutions (limited scalability, reliability, and functionality) by using a client/server architecture. Redwood Play comes complete with everything needed to put a channel on-air including graphics, media player, switcher with effects, and a powerful automation engine. The Redwood client includes clip playout, graphics, switching, and DVE effects, which reduces capital and operational costs.
Redwood Play includes the same proven automation control system that is on-air today at some of the largest broadcasters around the world, with easy integration into existing workflows. Playlists can be imported from any traffic system or generated manually. Redwood Play benefits from Aveco’s 20+ years of automation experience in master control. Small TV channels as well as large broadcasters with a combination of premium and niche channels can enjoy the ease of installation, expansion, and control through the unified ASTRA/Redwood GUI and workflows.
“Redwood Play is specifically designed for those who need to put a new, revenue-generating channel on-air fast with limited resources,” said Potuzak. “And while there are 30 plus CiaB solutions on the market for master control, Redwood Play’s architecture enables it to easily and cost effectively expand to higher channel count systems and can run alongside existing Aveco-controlled channels.
Redwood Studio and Redwood Play can be implemented with minimal staff, minimal rack space, and minimal budget. Because of the client/server architecture, both solutions can be used together to automate a complete newscast—automating the live newscast along with the commercial breaks—further reducing operating costs.
CAPEX & OPEX Savings
Both Redwood solutions reduce costs initially and throughout the product lifecycle. For significant capital expenditure (CAPEX) savings, the Redwood client includes three powerful engines: The 4-channel Clip Playout Engine replaces traditional videoservers, the A/V Switcher Engine replaces an external switcher and DVEs, and the powerful Graphics Engine replaces one or more external graphic devices. They are all integrated into a single client at a fraction of the cost of multiple external devices.
Operational costs (OPEX)—including staff, equipment maintenance, rack space, training, user support, and other day-to-day activities—are also reduced. With less physical boxes, there are fewer products to learn, operate, and maintain. With a common user-interface, operators only have to be trained on one solution. With the simplicity of the Redwood Studio interface and design, news studio channels can often be controlled by one operator rather than a team. Redwood Play can run unattended or with one operator maintaining 2, 5, 10, or more on-air channels.
Social Media Integration
Redwood can also integrate to Social Media channels with Aveco’s Social Media Gateway. Redwood can automatically send out a “tweet” to advise viewers of an important upcoming broadcast. This benefits the broadcaster by increasing their viewership and benefits viewers so they don’t miss an important broadcast.

From a revenue standpoint, advertisers who have integrated Social Media into their operations can automatically be linked to viewers through the Social Media Gateway. Redwood can send out a “tweet” that users can select to directly connect to the advertiser. For example, Redwood can send a “tweet” before a movie starts to order pizza from a local restaurant. Broadcasters can charge advertisers extra for this service and advertisers get more business with minimal effort.
Flexible & Upgradeable
Redwood solutions are also available for much higher channel count systems, in mirrored configurations with no single point of failure, and as a disaster recovery solution. Redwood solutions can also be easily upgraded to full ASTRA Studio 2 and ASTRA Suite of Tools systems. The Redwood server is based on the same QNX real-time operating system as ASTRA for the most reliable system available on the market today.




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