What is Engine?
Engine is a flexible and scalable audio server, either used for achieving medium to high levels of processing in an automated environment, or for providing cost effective flexibility in large Post Production facilities.
What does Engine do?
Engine processes the audio tracks within media files, using any combination of the functions listed below.
What options are available in Engine?
When multiple functions are purchased, they can be used individually, or can be ganged into complex sequences for automatic operation.
What file formats does Engine support?
Engine broadly supports all of the above formats when the audio is in PCM format, or the audio is in Dolby E format, in conjunction with Engine’s Dolby E options. Up to 64 channels of audio are supported. Video resolutions including SD, HD, 4K and UHD are all supported.
Who uses Engine?
Engine is primarily designed for cost effective automation of regular audio processing and is therefore ideally suited to Broadcast and Playout applications, or anywhere where there is a demand for a repeated audio workflow.
What Loudness standards are supported?
The loudness module within Engine supports the following standards
Dolby’s Dialog intelligence feature is available as an option.
How is Engine controlled?
Engine includes a comprehensive API so that it may be integrated into third party MAM tools. A number of manufacturers have included Engine integration as an option in their systems. Engine includes a watch folder system providing easy and instant automation. Client seats can be purchased to let individual users send specific files to the main Engine server, and this is particularly useful for larger companies with multiple edit suites.
How fast is Engine?
The speed of processing is highly dependent on individual implementation. Determining factors are largely the speed of your network and storage. Customers typically report that complex, multi-stage workflows run about 30 to 50% faster than real time in each signal processor (ESP). Engine can be scaled to suit your needs, and we have a customer processing 10,000 hours of content every month using Engine.
What platforms are supported by Engine?
Engine is supported on Windows 8 and 10 and Windows server 2008/2012, and OSX 10.7 up to 10.11 (El Capitan). Older versions of Windows and OSX are not supported. Engine is also supported on Linux. It runs on VMs as well as physical hardware, as long as the hardware uses Intel CPUs.
What hardware does Engine need?
Engine is supplied as software for you to install on to your own computer.
The computer must have Intel processors.
The server must have two hard disk drives, with one allocated for Engine temporary file usage.
A minimum quad core processor is required for single or two ESP installations. For three or more ESPs dual quad core processors should be used.
16GB RAM is required for single or two ESP installations. For three or more ESPs, 32GB is the minimum requirement.
Engine is modular product, with a basic, single-function version being extremely cost-effective. Complex workflows can be realised by purchasing multiple modules, and these complex workflows can be applied to your media files using simple watch folders, or by integrating at API level into other tools. Watch folder support is standard with every Engine system, and provides the quickest and easiest way to automate a workflow. Many broadcasters implement a watch folder based system to immediately solve issues, in much less time than it would take for MAM integration.
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Workflows – Single or Conditional
Engine workflows can be defined as a single operation, or a single sequence of operations. It can also be defined to conditionally select from a choice of pre-defined operations or sequences. The following explains more about these sequences of operations. Alternatively, click this link for details on conditional workflows.
One helpful feature of Engine is that users can graphically configure ‘workflows’, and any one workflow can do a multi-step combination of any or all of the available modules. The following diagram illustrates a workflow required by one of our Broadcast customers, although of course you can also define a workflow to simply Loudness correct stereo files.
Engine carries out all of the processing steps shown in the illustration, from a single API command. No complex re-programming of your MAM is required to make changes to your workflow – simply use our easy UI tool to create your new workflow, then off you go! A typical workflow like this can be configured within a couple of minutes, and of course making edits in future takes mere seconds.
This screenshot shows how the above workflow is displayed within our user interface.
Engine consists of two main components, Eflow and multiple ESP processors. Eflow provides a REST API interface to third party tools. There is one Eflow in every Engine deployment, and Eflow is installed as a Windows service or OSX daemon. Eflow passes files to be processed to each ESP processor. Eflow automatically load balances across the available processing resources in order to always maintain the optimum throughput of files.
Engine is a Scalable Solution
A basic Engine system will have a single ESP (Signal Processor), but can be expanded to have up to eight ESPs for very large throughput of media.
An alternative scalability is for companies where a large number of users wish to have files processed, but the amount of content to process is small, such as with some Post facilities. For this cases, it is possible to use Engine in conjunction with Eclient. Every operator has an Eclient, and these all share the same Engine.
Flexible Input and Output choices
Engine offers considerable flexibility for inputs and outputs. Engine can accept one media file that is MXF, MOV, GXF or LXF, together with additional audio in the form of AIFF/WAV files. However, any processes that Engine is able to perform on individual media files, can also be carried out using any mix of audio from the main media file, and from additional AIFF/WAV files. Similarly, the result of processing in Engine can be a media file in the same format as the source file, plus a number of WAV files, and the content for the WAV files can be taken from any channels and points in the workflow. View this PDF for example IO choices
We have a selection of videos showing the basics of Engine, plus some ‘how to’ videos.
This video shows how easy it is to configure a basic Workflow within Engine
This next video provides a more in depth look at some of the configuration possibilities
This video by MC Patel, CEO, is a brief introduction to Engine
Note that the Dolby E options within our Engine product all require that you use Intel based hardware. The specific libraries written by Dolby are optimised around Intel Processors and cannot be used on any other make of processor.
The following manufacturers have integrated Engine into their own products, and additional integrations are planned.
- SAM/Mantrics Momentum
- Telestream Vantage
Contact us for more information.
Download more information by clicking the links below-
This video describes how our ‘Virtual Channels’ technology increases the flexibility of Engine.
The next videos provide technical support with different aspects of configuring an Engine system
This next video is for customers using Engine on Windows, and covers a specific configuration step only necessary on Windows, and is not applicable to customers using Apple Mac OSX installations.
This next video is for customers using Engine on Mac, and covers the basic installation and cloud-based license activation.
This video shows license activation, followed by setting up a test workflow, in CentOS 7
This next Linux video shows Eclient being used to submit a file for processing, using the API, and finally checking the PDF report at the end of processing to verify what has taken place.
Click below to register and download an Engine evaluation.