Manage Video Signals With “Slots”

Slots are a flexible and transparent way to manage and route live and playback video signals to various destinations.

Each slot is a container for either a signal input, video playback, video output or a composite of other slots. You can connect slots to each other to create internal video routing setups from simple to complex structure.

Slots are represented in the user interface as individual slot cards in the slot overview on the left of the main window. Slots are grouped in the slot overview by type. Slots of the “Input Slot” type can have further modes. Slot types and slot modes are explained in more detail below.

  • Slot types are input slots, output slots, library slots, composite slots
  • Input slots allow you to:
    • Associate your input slots with the video inputs installed on your system (such as SDI input ports) in order to monitor, record and distribute all your incoming signals
    • Play back the clips that were recorded in the associated source input slots
    • Consequently, input slots have three different slot modes:
      • the Live mode – for monitoring and recording the live signal from a camera
      • the Playback mode – for playing back the recorded clips from the associated source camera (recorded clips are loaded into their source input slot by default)
      • the Reference mode – for comparing live and playback signal with various layout options:
        • Side-by-Side: For creating a side-by-side view of the slot’s live and playback signal
        • Swipe: For comparing the content of the slot’s live and playback signal with a horizontal or vertical swipe
        • Overlay: For creating an instant mix and overlay composite of the slot’s live and playback signal, (e.g., to match the framing)

Input Slot in “Live” slot mode during recording

  • There are dedicated buttons in the toolbar for switching all input slots to live/playback slot mode, (e.g., switch all input slots to live lets you quickly resume to the live signal if shooting continues)

Toolbar buttons for switching all inputs slot to “Live”/”Playback” slot mode

  • Output slots allow you to:
    • Associate your output slots with the video outputs installed on your system (such as SDI output ports) in order to distribute the signals from input slots, library slots, and composite slots to various destinations
    • Create a filtered, composited view tailored for the associated watcher or specific use case with individual filters and appearance settings and flexible routing options (e.g., the director wants to see a cropped image from camera A, while Script Continuity wants to see an un-cropped side-by-side view of camera A and B)
    • Additionally, the output routing options allow you to temporarily switch an output slot’s source signal:
        • Force Slot to Follow Live Video – for forcing an output slot to always show the live signal of its configured input source (= the input slot’s live slot mode)
        • Set Slot to Follow Selection – for automatically setting the input/library/composite slot that is selected in the slot overview UI as the source for the output slot (“what you select is what you get”)

Output slot viewer and settings

  • You can add or remove input and output slots and associate them with your connected devices in the Slot Manager window (e.g., via the button from the main window’s toolbar)

Toolbar button for opening slot manager

  • Within the slot manager, you can associate input sources (e.g., SDI input ports) from any compatible device that is connected to your machine with an input slot and, in the same way, destinations (e.g., SDI output ports) with output slots
    • The video format of the incoming video signal sets the video format of your device automatically.
    • The video format of outgoing signals usually derives from the input and my not be editable. However, with some devices, the output’s video format can be set manually.

Slot manager with SDI device configuration for an input slot

 

  • Library slots allow you to:
    • Find a specific clip by browsing the library – library slots auto-load the selected clip in the library for instant review and playback
    • Compare shots or compare different play positions with
      • an independent library selection per library slot, (e.g., different folder/bin/smart group levels) and/or
      • an independent playhead position per library slot, (e.g., two different ranges within the same recording)

Tip: To play back multiple library slots from their current playhead position simultaneously, you can use the “Toggle Playback in All Library Slots” menu item or the associated Stream Deck controller action. There is also a dedicated “Play All Library Slots” toolbar button that you can add to your toolbar layout when customising the toolbar (right-click or option-click on the toolbar).

  • Composite slots allow you to:
    • Compose a view from multiple input and/or library slots with live and/or playback signals:
    • Choose from a range of layout options for your compositing (similarly like in the reference mode of the input slots):
      • Side-by-Side: Create a side-by-side view of 2 slots
      • 2×2 Grid: Create a grid view of up to 4 slots
      • Swipe: Compare the content of two slots with a horizontal or vertical swipe
      • Overlay: Mix and overlay the content of two slots, (e.g., to match the framing of two shots)

Composite slot layouts

    • Combine a composite slot’s source selection with the input slot modes “Live/Playback/Reference”, “Switch All Inputs Slots to Live Video/ to Playback”, and the output routing option “Force Slot to Follow Live Video”, (e.g., you can let the composite slot always show the signal of the active input slot mode, or force it to show always the live signal of the configured input slots)
    • Auto-configure the input source for a composite slot using the Auto mode in the composite slot settings by letting you configure the source with (option-click) on the desired input slots

Composite slot viewer and settings with side-by-side layout configured

  • Filters: The application provides the following filters for input slots, library slots, or output slots:
    • Crop with offset and rotation parameters and an auto-detection to crop out the black-bordered status info from a camera HUD
    • Flip for flipping the image horizontally/vertically
    • Image Overlay with offset, scale, and opacity parameters, (e.g., for adding a logo or watermark)
    • Metadata Overlay with parameters for the metadata fields Camera, Slate Info, Slot Mode (Playback/Live), Clip Name, and Timecode
    • LUT for loading a 3D LUT in a .cube format (e.g., for applying a look if you receive an ungraded signal)

Tip: Consider if it makes sense to apply a filter to an input slot or to an output slot. For example, if you want to make sure that everyone sees a look from a LUT filter you can apply the filter to the input slot. However, if only some watchers want to see metadata overlays, apply the metadata overlay filter individually per output slots.

  • Filter Settings:
    • You can inspect and edit filter settings in the settings tab of each slot
    • There are consistent layout options in composite slots and the reference mode of input slots (Side-by-Side, Swipe, Overlay)
    • Filter settings of all currently connected slots are accumulated (for example, an output slot shows filter settings for itself, but also for the connected input slot(s) under “Related Filter Settings”).

Filter settings with crop appearance and image overlay