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What does linear broadcast do?

The Linear Broadcast system plays video files, live streams, and live audio/video sources using a schedule created by the account owner. The system plays content with wall-clock accuracy.

What are linear broadcast components?

 A local player box and a web-based account.

The player box may also have an optional USB disk drive connected to it.

What is linear broadcast Player Box?

The player box is a small appliance that performs the actual video playout. It presents a conventional audio/video HDMI output port, an Ethernet network port, and multiple USB ports. Content for playout is automatically added to the box in advance of its need per the schedule by download from the web or copying it from a local USB drive. The player box supports an optional “Razor” USB input device to accept local live video (e.g., a camera or other video source) which can be scheduled for playout. The player also supports live streams to allow broadcast playout from sources that are virtually anywhere.

How the Player Box Works?

The player box periodically communicates with the web account and obtains the schedule. If the schedule requires content that the player does not have, the player box retrieves it in advance of its need. Content from a local USB drive is automatically identified and its name and thumbnail image is uploaded to the server so it can be scheduled. The system has a user-configurable look-ahead period so that content scheduled for playout within this period can be added to the system before it is needed, and content no longer needed can be removed to manage storage space.

How To Install Player box?

Plug your Linear Broadcast box into your network and attached a TV monitor via HDMI (be sure you use a TV monitor that has audio, not a computer monitor without audio). Power on the box and wait for a startup code to appear on the TV. Follow instructions to enter the displayed code on https://account.linearbroadcast.com/link Log in to your account at https://accounts.linearbroadcast.com .

How to manage your account?

Dashboard Your dashboard provides an overview of your account, including cloud storage status, player boxes, and media totals.

How to schedule media?

The schedule is a familiar calendar where you can view year, month, week, or day. Select the desired day to schedule content.

The day’s schedule may be shows in 5-minute major increments or you may use Zoom In to view in 1-minute increments. The Detail view shows the schedule in textual detail.

To schedule content, identify the desired video from the list. You may search for title, or sort by title, date, or category. Drag the desired video to an empty time slot and the Add Show dialog will appear. Enter desired title (if different from the displayed title, which will be shown in a program guide). If the duration of the video is larger than the available time slot, you will be prompted to select trim the start or end of the video (or cancel). If you want this video to start immediately after the prior schedule video, check the box. You may select repeat daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly. For any repeat, you may select an end date for the repeat or the number of repeat plays. For weekly repeat, you may select days for the repeat play. For monthly repeat, you may select the date, and repeat options. You may enter a description which will appear in an online program guide for your channel. Save changes when done. You may double-click on any scheduled program to edit or delete it.

How to do continuity?

Whenever there is no scheduled content, the player default to playing what has been configured for continuity.

Continuity is a playlist of content that plays in the order set in the continuity interface. You may drag content up or down in this list. To add video to the continuity, select if from the available content using the icon in the upper right corner of each video. Please note that live video in continuity has no duration. When live video is encountered in the continuity playlist, it will play continuously until a scheduled video occurs. If a video file is encountered, it will play for the video file duration before playing the next item in the continuity list.

To schedule content, identify the desired video from the list. You may search for title, or sort by title, date, or category. Drag the desired video to an empty time slot and the Add Show dialog will appear. Enter desired title (if different from the displayed title, which will be shown in a program guide). If the duration of the video is larger than the available time slot, you will be prompted to select trim the start or end of the video (or cancel). If you want this video to start immediately after the prior schedule video, check the box. You may select repeat daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly. For any repeat, you may select an end date for the repeat or the number of repeat plays. For weekly repeat, you may select days for the repeat play. For monthly repeat, you may select the date, and repeat options. You may enter a description which will appear in an online program guide for your channel. Save changes when done. You may double-click on any scheduled program to edit or delete it.

What are streaming options?

The player supports live streaming using a built-in encoder and using an external Scorpion encoder.

Built-In Encoder

The built-in encoder supports up to 1280 x 720 (“720p”) HD video streaming. You may stream to any server or service that supports standard RTMP push, including Arcus, Helnix, YouTube, Facebook, Twitch, etc. Set the Streaming Server, Stream Key, and select Low, Medium, or High streaming rate. Set Streaming On to begin streaming.

Scorpion Encoder

Connect the Player HDMI output to the HDMI input of a Scorpion encoder. If you also need local video, for example to feed a cable TV system, use a HDMI splitter to give you multiple outputs.

 

Plug Scorpion into your network and find its IP address by following instructions for the Scorpion encoder. Enter the IP address, a title, and the streaming server address and stream key and select Save. Using the controls you may now start and stop the stream encoder and get status. Note that it may take a minute for the Scorpion to respond, so please be patient.

 

What are the contributors?

You may allow others to upload content to your Cloud account. Each contributor may have their own contributor account. When they log in, they are presented with an upload page where they may enter a title, description, select a category, and upload a video to your account. They cannot schedule or manage your content. To create a contributor account, select Add User and complete the settings for that user. You may remove any contributor at any time.

How to manage your videos?

The Media Video selection shows all content, whether it is on the cloud or on a local USB drive, and give edit and delete access. Editing a video allows you to set the title, category, date/time (for sorting), and allows you to upload a new thumbnail image if desired.

You may upload new video to the cloud using the Upload Video dialog where you may enter a title, optional description, optional thumbnail, and category, then either drag/drop a video or browse to a video for upload. Do not close or navigate away from the page during upload. You may Add External URL to your video library by entering title, optional description, optional thumbnail, and category. An external URL is a https path to a .mp4 video file (not a web page, not a YouTube web page).

How to manage your live streams?

Select Add External URL under Live to add a live external video source. A live external video source is a valid HLS .m3u8 or rtmp stream address that the player box can reach. The address may be a live Scorpion encoder located in the same building on the LAN, for example a live studio feed, or a stream available from the public Internet.

 

How to manage your player box?

Your player box will appear under Media Player Box. You may select Edit to change the configuration. Box Name – Enter a convenient name for the player box. Box Email – Enter an email address for the system to contact about this box. Delete Files After – the number of days that a video file will be retained after it is no longer in the schedule. Download Days – the number of days from “now” that the system will use to download videos in advance of them being needed for playout. For example, if set to 3 days and today is Monday, and there is a video scheduled for Wednesday, the video for Wednesday will be downloaded from the cloud (or copied from USB if that is where it is located).

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