AudioTools Server

AudioTools Server is an enterprise–level software platform providing seamless, end–to–end audio processing capabilities for broadcast and post-production facilities.

Use Cases

AudioTools Server provides comprehensive solutions for use-cases such as Loudness Control, Dolby E Automation, Audio Quality Control, Metadata Quality Control, Channel Management, Upmixing, Downmixing, Audio Program Management, Watermarking, and Frame Rate Conversion among others. AudioTools Server may be configured in a simple, single-machine environment or in a multi- node, load-balanced environment.

Server Core

The core module is AudioTools Server. The Server runs as a Windows Service, deployed on a Microsoft Windows PC. Supported versions of Windows include Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows 7. AudioTools Server performs media handling and audio processing according to the processing modules and parameters specified in the Job or Workflow XML. The Server executes Jobs and Workflows, and communicates Job and Workflow Status to any clients polling the Server.

Licensing

AudioTools Server is a fully modular platform. All functionality modules are already being installed with the AudioTools Server installation and are being activated using licenses on a CodeMeter USB dongle. AudioTools Server licenses are available for multiple concurrent instances or limited to one concurrent instance. Multi-instance licenses can be combined with one instance licenses for another module, and licenses can easily be upgraded, if needed. For facilities that need the full power of the AudioTools platform, but do not have demanding throughput requirements, AudioTools Server offers an affordable entry level configuration, scaled to meet any enterprise requirement and budget. 

LicenseServer & LicenseConnector

The optional AudioTools LicenseServer is a flexible licensing option that allows for floating licenses across multiple AudioTools Servers, including VM environments or in the cloud. In order to connect to an AudioTools LicenseServer, the AudioTools Server uses AudioTools LicenseConnector. AudioTools LicenseConnector can connect to an AudioTools LicenseServer and use AudioTools licenses hosted from that server. Available instances of the installed licenses can be shared across all connected AudioTools Server. For pool licensing, add one LicenseConnector license per AudioTools Server machine.

Jobs & Workflows

AudioTools Jobs are specified in XML and define units of work. A job defines one or more assets to work on, as well as one or more processing modules to apply to those assets. The Job XML specifies all processing parameters such as Loudness Control parameters or Dolby E Encoding metadata. AudioTools Workflows are also specified in XML and can execute any number of Jobs against an asset. Workflows enable conditional, exceptional, parallel, and iterative processing of audio content, as well as load balancing across multiple nodes. Workflows provide a simple programming syntax for controlling Jobs, parsing Job results, setting Job parameters, and controlling high-level workflows. See the AudioTools WFC module description for more details.

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Client Applications

Clients submit Jobs or Workflows to the Server and monitor Job/Workflow Status via a well-documented SOAP interface. AudioTools Server ships with the AudioTools Queue Control. Third-party applications may communicate with AudioTools Server via a well- defined SOAP interface. Third-party applications may control all AudioTools Server operations or a subset of operations. Third-party applications may be deployed on any platform supporting SOAP calls, including but not limited to Windows, Linux, and Mac OS. The optional AudioTools Web Services Interface provides easy third-party integration. .NET sample code is provided.

Watch Folders

Watch Folders are supported for all operations. Watch Folders can act on Assets dropped into the Watch Folder, or Job/Workflow XML files dropped into the Watch Folder. The latter approach supports Watch Folder operation without requiring full asset copying to the Watch Folder.

AudioTools WorkFlow Control

The optional AudioTools Workflow Control module enables AudioTools Server to act as a high level business logic automation engine. Workflows can drive any number of AudioTools Jobs in a logical flow of processes and tie together the logic between Jobs. Workflows apply Conditional, Exceptional, Parallel, and Iterative logic to achieve highly complex business processes in an automated environment.

Workflows use a well-defined XML syntax to define Steps, Parameters, Logic Test Cases, Success and Error Conditions, and Utility Functions. Workflow Steps execute Jobs, retrieve Job Results, program Job and Processing Module parameters, test Parameters, modify Workflow State, and call Utility Functions. Workflow Parameters hold values. Values can be Literal, Reference or Calculation values. Examples if a Literal values would be a number representing Target Loudness or a file path. Reference values refer to another parameter’s value or a Processing Results value in Job XML. Calculations values result when a calculation is performed on two parameters to produce a new Parameter Value.

Workflow Tests determine the relationship between two Parameters and define behavior if a certain condition is met. Tests pro- duce a True/False answer based on whether Parameters are “Equal,” “Not Equal,” “Less Than,” “Less Than or Equal,” “Greater Than” or “Greater Than or Equal.” Success Conditions define Workflow behavior if a Step Succeeds. Error Conditions define Workflow behavior if a Step Fails.

Functions provide access to enhanced system features or special case behavior. Available Functions include Move File, Delete File, Rename File, Consolidate Job Results, and Execute Process.

In addition to process control, the AudioTools Workflow Control module provides load balancing of multiple AudioTools Server and qualified external processing nodes. AudioTools Workflow Control communicates with other nodes on the network to negotiate resource availability and ensure Nodes are optimized based on performance and license availability. Workflow control failover is also part of the AudioTools Workflow Control module. For enterprise–class environments, this enables processing redundancy which, in the event of a failure, ensure processing continuity and uninterrupted productivity via non–stop operation.

Note that each AudioTools node using Workflow Control based processing and profiles must be licensed for the Workflow Control module.

Processing and Solutions Modules 

  • AudioTools Loudness Measurement
  • AudioTools Channel Assignment Detection
  • AudioTools SurCode for Dolby E 
  • AudioTools SurCode for MPEG Audio
  • AudioTools Audio Quality Analysis
  • AudioTools Program Correlation Check
  • AudioTools Downmix
  • AudioTools Audio Extractor and ReWrap for MXF
  • AudioTools Audio Extractor and ReWrap for LXF
  • AudioTools Audio Extractor and ReWrap for GXF
  • AudioTools Audio Extractor and ReWrap for QuickTime
  • AudioTools SurCode for AAC
  • AudioTools Audio Extractor and ReWrap for Transport Streams
  • AudioTools Cinavia Verification
  • AudioTools Loudness Adjustment
  • AudioTools Channel Manager
  • AudioTools SurCode for Dolby Digital Plus 
  • Dolby Media Meter
  • AudioTools Dolby E Wave File Analyzer
  • AudioTools Frame Rate Toolbox
  • AudioTools Upmix
  • AudioTools Workflow Control
  • AudioTools Metadata Verifier
  • Omnia.9 for AudioTools Server
  • Junger Audio Level Magic™ for AudioTools Server
  • AudioTools DynApt by NUGEN Audio
  • AudioTools Cinavia Verification
  • AudioTools AudioSecter
  • AudioTools Civolution Watermarking 

Solutions Modules

  • AudioTools Advanced Loudness Adaptation
  • AudioTools Channel Assignment Detection Automation
  • AudioTools Quality Control for Dolby E Automation 
  • AudioTools SilenceTrim Automation

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General Specifications:

Number of Programs 1 - 32
Channels per Program 1 - 64
Sample Rate 32 -384 kHz
Bit Depth 8, 16, 24 bit integer, 32 bit float
Bit Packing Interleaved, non-interleave 

AudioTools Server Web Services

The Web Services API provides a SOAP/XML interface to AudioTools Server. The Server provides interfaces to Job and Workflow management. The Web Services Interface adheres to the SOAP 1.1 standard and provides multiple services, including:

Job Web Services API: 

Submit/RemoveJob, ChangeJobPriority/State, GetJobList/XML, Set/GetConcurrentJobs Workflow Web Services API: SubmitWorkflow, ChangeWorkflowState/Priority, RemoveCompletedWorkflow, GetNodeList, GetWorkflowList/XML, Set/GetNodeState

AudioTools Loudness Measurement

The optional AudioTools Loudness Measurement module provides a comprehensive loudness measurement toolkit supporting current and forthcoming international standards and recommended practices.

The Loudness Measurement module provides the following measurement types: 

  • Programme Loudness
  • Maximum Momentary Loudness
  • Maximum Short Term Loudness
  • Loudness Range
  • Maximum True Peak Level
  • Sample Peak Level
  • Programme Loudness (ITU-R BS. 1770-1)
  • Dialogue Intelligence™

The Loudness Measurement module provides a reference implementation of the following standards: 

  • ITU-R BS. 1770-1, 1770-3
  • ATSC RP A/85
  • EBU R 128
  • Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation (CALM) Act
  • ARIB TR-B32
  • OP-59
  • AS-11 UK DPP

Measurement results are provided in two ways:

  • Measurement summaries are available in the Job Status XML returned to any client. This provides overall measurement results for the entire program within an asset.
  • Periodic measurements along with the measurement summaries are provided in a separate log file on a momentary basis. By default, measurements are reported every second throughout an asset. The reporting period can be customized for more granular data to drive dynamic graphing displays, for example.

Measurements can be performed independently on any number of programs within a single asset via specifications in the Job XML. This means that, in a container file which contains 8 x 2 independent audio programs for example, each program is measured and reported independently in one pass. Measurement results can be used by the AudioTools Workflow Control module or 3rd party applications to not only program Loud- ness Adjustment properly, but also conditionally process assets if they are already within specification, or properly categorize assets according to custom loudness specifications.

Accelerated TruPeak™ provides optimized True Peak Measurement. AudioTools Server features Accelerated TruPeak measurement which results in a 50-90% decrease in processing time when compared to a non–accelerated computation.

Module Output:

  • Measurement Summary within the Job XML returned via web services
  • Detailed Results Log File including momentary measurements and summary

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AudioTools Loudness Adjustment

The optional AudioTools Loudness Adjustment module provides a comprehensive loudness adjustment toolkit supporting current and forthcoming international standards and recommended practices. 

The Loudness Adjustment module provides a reference implementation of the following standards: 

  • ITU-R BS. 1770-1, 1770-3
  • ATSC RP A/85
  • Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation (CALM) Act
  • EBU R 128
  • ARIB TR-B32
  • OP-59
  • AS-11 UK DP

For Maximum Momentary and Maximum Short Term Loudness adjustment, the AudioTools Loudness Adjustment module employs TruCorrect™ smart loudness processing, which eliminates perceived loudness changes and degraded intelligibility associated with traditional methods of correcting content containing extreme dynamic range.

Loudness Adjustment, together with Loudness Measurement, modules can be chained together in Jobs or Workflows to provide any combination of adjustment types. For example, a typical Loudness Adjustment Job consists of Loudness Measurement, Programme Loudness, True Peak Limiting, and a final Loudness Measurement in a single Job.

Adjustment can be performed independently on any number of programs within a single asset via Program Configuration specifications in the Job XML. This means that in a container file which contains 8 x 2 independent audio programs, for example, each program is adjusted independently in one pass.

Dialog Intelligence™ provides the option to perform Programme Loudness Adjustments based on the overall Programme Loudness levels or the Dialog levels throughout a program. Control of such functionality requires the AudioTools Server Workflow Control module or a third party application implementing logic supporting this feature.

Accelerated TruPeak™ provides optimized True Peak Adjustment, with a 50-90% decrease in processing time relative to standard adjustment methods.

Module Input:

  • Parameters specifying Target Loudness for each of the Loudness Adjustment types; For Programme Loudness and
  • Loudness Range Adjustments, the Targets are calculated based on Measurements from a previous processing step.
  • For True Peak, Maximum Momentary, and Maximum Short Term, the Targets can simply be specified without a preceding Measurement step.
  • Parameters controlling any limiting functions such as Attack, Release, Sustain, and LookAhead
  • Program Configuration specifying the number of programs within an asset and the number of channels within each program
  • Optional Channel Offset parameters enabling adjustment of only specific channels within a multi-channel asset

Loudness control is an especially significant use case that employs Minnetonka Audio’s proprietary digital signal processing. While AudioTools Loudness Normalization processes are designed to fully preserve the existing audio and only apply a gain change combined with optional peak limiting, there are other use cases that require changing the dynamic range and other more complex parameters of the audio content. Examples include AudioTools Advanced Loudness Adaptation, adapting a theatrical audio mix for broadcast, and creating the best possible audio experience for modern platforms such as OTT/web, mobile/handheld and VOD/SVOD.

AudioTools Advanced Loudness Adaptation

Advanced Loudness Adaptation is a Solutions Module for AudioTools Server that can adapt content for various platforms and use cases. The available profile templates include Movie Adaptation, Broadcast Adaptation, Radio Adaptation, Streaming/ Mobile Adaptation and News Adaptation. Advanced Loudness Adaptation uses an adaptive decision matrix to determine the level and type of processing required. The audio is carefully controlled, in a way that preserves the transients, image and artistic intent of the source, while increasing dialog intelligibility, when needed. A dynamic and balanced mix can be produced, without resulting in subjectively compressed sound. Audio that is deemed already compliant for the intended use case will pass through the workflow untouched. Requires and uses AudioTools Loudness Measurement (ALMA) and AudioTools Loudness Adjustment (ALAA).

Movie Adaptation as accomplished by the AudioTools Advanced Loudness Adaptation profile:

  • Reduces dynamics and/or Loudness Range
  • Preserves transients & artistic intent of original while preventing subjectively compressed sound quality
  • Maintains dialog intelligibility Program Configuration
  • Provides a compliant, automated process for all program genres & all target requirements

Linear Acoustic APTO™

Linear Acoustic APTO™ provides loudness adaptation based on psychoacoustic models that analyze all main aspects involved in human hearing: frequency, intensity, duration, and sound source direction. It extracts the loudness components of the audio asset and intelligently adapts them in order to produce a comfortable listening experience with consistent AudioTools Server | Module Descriptions average levels. Unlike other solutions, APTO™ architecture relies on sophisticated, optimized processing that, is capable of properly defining the ideal amount of required adaptation. This no‑compromised approach results in artifact‑free audio.

Omnia.9® for AudioTools Server

The AudioTools Omnia.9 module combines the sophisticated audio processing of the Omnia Audio Omnia.9 with the filebased AudioTools eco-system. This includes Omnia.9 features such as:

  • Exclusive “Undo” Technology
  • Pyschoacoustically Controlled Distortion-Masking Clipper
  • Omnia® Toolbox
  • Dry Voice Detector
  • Auto Pilot
  • And all other features available in the Omnia.9 processing unit

Jünger Level Magic™ for AudioTools

The AudioTools Junger Level Magic™ module combines the powerful audio processing of Level Magic with the file-based AudioTools eco-system. Level Magic™ utilizes a proprietary multi-loop approach comprising of three essential elements in parallel to measure, and if necessary correct, out of specification audio. Processing includes an AGC section, a fast acting transient processor, and a brick-wall filter.

Nugen DynApt™ for AudioTools

The AudioTools Nugen DynApt™ module combines the powerful audio processing of DynApt™ with the file-based AudioTools eco-system. NUGEN Audio’s award winning technology for loudness-compliant dynamic adaptation, DynApt™ allows the reduction of dynamics in the audio while avoiding the introduction of dialog clarity issues common in repurposed content.

ISOSTEM Upmix for AudioTools Server

The optional ISOSTEM Upmix for AudioTools Server is a software implementation of the ISOSTEM Upmix (Live) device, known for its great sounding upmix. It can be used to upmix stereo material to surround format while ensuring perfect downmix compatibility. The ISOSTEM Upmix algorithm distributes the components of the stereo signal to surround (3.0/3.1/5.0/5.1/7.0/7.1) solely by means of physical properties. The plugin comes with a set of upmix presets that allow a quick start. To adjust and experience the effect of the individual parameters an ISOSTEM Upmix (Expert) device is needed. Together with an Expert device a similar upmix processing for file based and live media can be achieved. Besides only upmixing stereo material, the ISOSTEM Upmix can also downmix, cross mix, encode surround material to LtRt, manage LFE channel and much more.


ISOSTEM Loudness Ranger for AudioTools Server

The optional ISOSTEM Loudness Ranger achieves a reduction in the Loudness Range (LRA according to ITU BS.1770 and EBU R.128) without producing audible artefacts. The algorithm combines multiple measurement layers from various time windows, and applies numerous infinitesimal signal corrections. In this way the LRA can be reduced without affecting the quality of the signal. Furthermore the method either adjusts the programme loudness of the signal to a user-defined value or alternatively preserves the original value. In any case an adjustable maximum True Peak Level is met.

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AudioTools SurCode for Dolby E Encoder

The optional SurCode for Dolby E Encoder module provides comprehensive Dolby E encoding and supports all Dolby E program configurations, parameters, and metadata. Dolby E parameters and metadata can be specified completely via Job XML, or the Encoder can be instructed to retrieve Dolby E metadata from an upstream Dolby E Decoder, if present. Since certain metadata may change between the Decode and Encode operations, some Encoding parameters can be overridden to reflect changes during processing, for example when updating Dolby E Bit Depth, Dialog Normalization or Program Description Text. See the AudioTools Server documentation for a complete description of Dolby E parameters and metadata.

When used in conjunction with SurCode for Dolby E Decoder, Workflow Control, and other processing and analysis modules, AudioTools Server provides a comprehensive, automated system for processing of any Dolby E content. This includes multiple Dolby E streams as well as mixed PCM/Dolby E streams within container formats.

AudioTools SurCode for Dolby E Decoder

The optional SurCode for Dolby E Decoder module decodes Dolby E to PCM Program Audio, Dolby E Metadata, and Program Metadata. Decoded audio and metadata can be accessed by downstream processors within a single Job or Workflow. This allows the Program Configuration, for example, to be used to program a Downmix operation or split programs to multiple PCM files. The Decoder also provides Dolby E Detection for determining whether a stream contains Dolby E. This information can be used by Workflow Control or a third party application for conditionally controlling downstream processing. 

When used in conjunction with SurCode for Dolby E Encoder, AudioTools Workflow Control, and other processing and analysis modules, AudioTools Server provides a comprehensive, automated system for processing of any Dolby E content. This includes multiple Dolby E streams, as well as mixed Dolby E/PCM streams, within container formats.

AudioTools SurCode for Dolby Digital Plus Encoder

The optional AudioTools SurCode for Dolby Digital Plus Encoder module provides comprehensive Dolby Digital and Dolby Digital Plus encoding for up to 5.1 streams. Dolby Digital and Dolby Digital Plus parameters and metadata can be specified completely via Job XML, or the Encoder can be instructed to retrieve Dolby Digital Plus metadata from an upstream Dolby Digital Plus Decoder or Dolby E Decoder if present. Since certain metadata may change between the Decode and Encode operations, all Encoding parameters can be overridden to reflect changes during processing, including Dialog Normalization. See AudioTools Server documentation for a complete description of Dolby Digital and Dolby Digital Plus parameters and metadata. When used in conjunction with SurCode for Dolby Digital Plus or SurCode for Dolby E Decoder, AudioTools Workflow Control, and other processing and analysis modules, AudioTools Server provides a comprehensive, automated system for processing of any Dolby Digital or Dolby Digital Plus content.

AudioTools SurCode for Dolby Digital Plus Decoder

The optional AudioTools SurCode for Dolby Digital Plus Decoder module decodes Dolby Digital and Dolby Digital Plus to PCM Program Audio and Program Metadata. Decoded audio and metadata can be accessed by downstream processors within a single Job or Workflow. The Decoder also provides Dolby Digital Plus Detection for determining whether a stream contains Dolby Digital or Dolby Digital Plus. This information can be used by Workflow Control or a third party application for conditionally controlling downstream processing. When used in conjunction with SurCode for Dolby Digital Plus Encoder, Workflow Control, and other processing and analysis modules, AudioTools Server provides a comprehensive, automated system for processing of any Dolby Digital or Dolby Digital Plus content.

AudioTools SurCode for MPEG Audio

The optional AudioTools SurCode for MPEG Audio module encodes and decodes MPEG-2 Audio Layer II (mp2) and MPEG-2 Audio Layer III (mp3). Decoded audio and metadata can be accessed by downstream processors within a single Job or Workflow. The Decoder also provides MPEG Audio Detection for determining whether a stream contains mp2 or mp3–encoded material. This information can be used by AudioTools Workflow Control or a third party application for conditionally controlling downstream processing. When used in conjunction with AudioTools Workflow Control and other processing and analysis modules, AudioTools Server provides a comprehensive, automated system for processing of any MPEG Audio content. MP2/MP3: Layer: II & III– supported (Layer I not supported)

Audio Object Types:  LC, LTP, HEAAC, ER LC, ER LTP, ER SCAL, PS, MP2 LC, MP2 SBR, SBR DS, ER SCAL SBR, ER SCAL SBR PS, MPS

AudioTools SurCode for AAC Encoder

The optional AudioTools SurCode for AAC Encoder Audio module encodes Advanced Audio Codec (AAC) and AAC variants such as Low Complexity AAC (AAC-LC), Low Delay AAC (AAC-LD), and High Efficiency AAC (HE-AAC). When used in conjunction with AudioTools Workflow Control and other processing and analysis modules, AudioTools Server provides a comprehensive, auto- mated system for processing of any AAC Audio content.

AudioTools SurCode for AAC Decoder

The optional AudioTools SurCode for AAC Decoder decodes Advanced Audio Codec (AAC) and AAC variants such as Low Complexity AAC (AAC-LC), Low Delay AAC (AAC-LD), and High Efficiency AAC (HE-AAC). Decoded audio and metadata can be accessed by downstream processors within a single Job or Workflow. The Decoder also provides AAC Audio Detection for determining whether or not a stream contains AAC–encoded material. This information can be used by AudioTools Workflow Control or a third party application for conditionally controlling downstream processing. When used in conjunction with AudioTools Workflow Control and other processing and analysis modules, AudioTools Server provides a comprehensive, automated system for processing of any AAC Audio content.

AudioTools Dolby E WavFileAnalyzer

The optional AudioTools Dolby E WavFileAnalyzer module performs QC analysis and correction of Dolby E files. The results of the processing are formatted as an XML element within the job file, which can be retrieved from the system. Those results include a summary section as well as details classified as Errors, Warnings, and Information.

The module may be optionally configured to correct Dolby E guard band and preamble alignment throughout the Dolby E stream as specified by SMPTE 337M. Source files for non–SMPTE 337M analyses can also be linear PCM, in either WAV or Broadcast WAV format, without Dolby E essence. You may specify analyze or align. If you are analyzing, no output file is generated. If you specify alignment, the source asset is analyzed and aligned, and a new output file is generated. If the Operation element is missing, the operation defaults to analyze.

QC & Correction Functions:

  • Chunk Analysis for BWF & RF64 files (File Size, Sample Rate, Word Length, and Track Type
  • SMPTE 337M Analysis includes Bit Depth, Metadata Key, Program Configuration, Frame Rate, Video Format, Word Spacing, No. of SMPTE 337M Words Found, Error Listing, No. of Errors, Warnings, Listing, No. of Warnings
  • Peak Detection
  • Preamble Spacing includes Video Alignment, Alignment Correction, and File Duration

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AudioTools Metadata Verifier

The optional AudioTools Metadata Verifier module decodes and checks the consistency of Dolby E metadata.

  • Decoding of metadata is performed for each frame of the Dolby E stream and for each program within the stream.
  • Metadata is checked for consistency across all frames.
  • The results of the processing are formatted as an XML element within the job file. The results include the Dolby E metadata and program metadata of the first frame of the stream and identify any changes to the metadata that occur in subsequent frames of the stream.
  • Results describe which metadata element has changed and the value before and after the change.
  • A Metadata Verifier Log file can be specified which would contain the complete set of Dolby E metadata for every metadata change within the file.

AudioTools Upmix

The optional AudioTools Upmix is useful for converting any stereo content to surround format, particularly back catalog films, television shows, documentaries, deleted scenes, and featurettes. The module is designed to typically position dialog in the center channel and to ensure that all resulting material is fold down–compatible, essential to preserving the intent and quality of the original stereo mix. The module includes ready-to-use setting templates for broadcast and also allows access to process parameters for individual configurations.

AudioTools Downmix

The optional AudioTools Downmix module accepts up to 7.1 multi-channel PCM audio and performs a downmix to a stereo pro- gram. 

  • Accepts up to 7.1 and provides control over input trims and the use of an optional limiter
  • The Downmix module accepts parameters that specify the center and surround downmix levels, and selection of Lo/Ro or Lt/Rt downmix coefficients.
  • The Downmix module can be controlled by Dolby E metadata derived from the AudioTools SurCode for Dolby E Decoder module.
  • The Downmix module includes a Low Pass Filter (LPF), with user adjustable frequency and gain. The LPF can be disabled.
  • The Downmix module takes 6 channels as input, and produces either 2 channels out or 8 channels out, with the original 5.1 + downmixed channels on 7 & 8.
  • The Downmix module also includes SurCode for Dolby Pro Logic II encoder and reference decoder.

AudioTools Channel Manager

The optional AudioTools Channel Manager module provides altering, swapping and replacing of audio programs or audio channels in MXF, QuickTime, Dolby E or multi–channel PCM files. Note that AudioTools for Extractor/ReWrap for MXF, AudioTools Ex- tractor/ReWrap for QuickTime or SurCode for Dolby E Encoder/Decoder are required for processing MXF, QuickTime or Dolby E content.

  • The channel replacement process accepts a Dolby E WAV or PCM file as input, one or more PCM audio files for re- placement (WAV or AIF), and the channel numbers to replace and program description text for the replacement channels.
  • The Dolby E file is decoded to PCM and then re-encoded, replacing the specified channels with the PCM audio from the input files. The PCM audio may be supplied as mono or stereo files.
  • All metadata from the Dolby E input file, including program mode, encode start time and AC3 metadata will be copied from the Dolby E input file to the Dolby E output file. The output file will include a broadcast wave chunk (BEXT) which specifies the encode start time.
  • Program description text, if specified for replacement, will be used to replace the existing text for the replacement channels.
  • The Channel Manager swap function can swap and re-order any audio channel or audio program configuration within MXF or QuickTime container formats, and in Dolby E or multi-channel PCM audio files.
  • The results of the processing are formatted as an XML log file, which can be retrieved from the system.

AudioTools Audio Quality Analysis

The optional AudioTools Quality Analysis module uses a highly flexible algorithm to analyze incoming PCM audio content and detect anomalies such as data corruption and program gaps. Given a specified energy threshold in a specified frequency range, the module reports the results for a given period of time. Using those params, the module can be configured to detect a wide variety of anomalies. Data corruption tends to produce large amplitude bursts at high frequency, whereas program gaps are the absence of energy in critical bands.

This module generates an output log that indicates the occurrences of anomalies found and the time code locations where they occurred. By selectively setting the frequency range and threshold, the absence or presence of energy at particular frequencies can be detected. Prolonged absence of moderate energy in the 0.4 to 4 kHz range usually indicates a gap in the program, while inordinate short term energy at 17 to 20 kHz usually indicates data corruption. Subsonic noise, time code bleed, perf noise and mains buzz and hum are also easily flagged.

For each analysis or reporting period, a value in dB is returned each time the threshold is exceeded. As this is purely numeric data, the AudioTools Workflow Control option is highly recommend so that subsequent processes and modules can take advantage of the data produced and act on those results.

AudioTools Channel Assignment Detection

The optional AudioTools Channel Assignment Detection module determines channel locations within multi-channel programs by evaluating relative loudness levels, channel correlations, and frequency range on a representative section of the audio. Based on relative loudness levels, channel correlation and frequency range, the module identifies likely channel pairs, front/rear channels, center and LFE. This module is typically used to process a portion of an audio stream, until the desired level of confidence in channel assignment is reached. The LFE cutoff defines a LPF resonant frequency used to detect the LFE. The Mid Cutoff Low and High define the passband used to evaluate the content for midrange energy.

It is recommended to use the AudioTools Channel Assignment Detection module in combination with the AudioTools Channel Assignment Detection Automation solutions module, a solutions profile for AudioTools Workflow Control to automatically match results from the Detection module against a number of potentially expected channel layouts.

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AudioTools Program Correlation Check

The optional AudioTools Program Correlation module performs a correlation check between two audio programs and is used to determine whether both represent the same content. The number of channels in each program may range from 1 to 8. A common workflow uses the Program Correlation Check module to evaluate eight channel, 3/2 + 2/0 PCM decoded from the SurCode for Dolby E Decoder module to correlate the 5.1 and stereo programs and determine if the stereo program is derived from the surround program.

  • An initial alignment step is performed to account for small differences in the start of each program. The alignment tolerance is a parameter that can be controlled.
  • The log output of the module indicates the level of correlation found during the program comparison, an overall correlation value, and the initial alignment time.

It is recommended to use AudioTools Program Correlation Check in combination with AudioTools Workflow Control or an external workflow automation tool to automatically analyze measurement results.

AudioTools Frame Rate Toolbox

The AudioTools Frame Rate Toolbox option is a signal processing module that provides multichannel, phase–coherent pitch shift, time stretch and sample rate conversion for frame rate and format adjustment and correction. This module is useful for standards conversion, duration modification and other audio time base and time domain–correction tasks.

AudioTools Audio Extractor for MXF

The optional AudioTools MXF Audio Extractor module provides the ability to access the audio and metadata stored in MXF files. Audio tracks within MXF files are extracted efficiently, without unwrapping video tracks. This module also supports functions for reading MXF metadata. MXF OP1 and OP1a profiles are currently supported, and more profiles will be added based on project requirements. The MXF Audio Extractor module can optionally store an MXF Channel map, which can be used for other jobs. This eliminates having to re–read the file to generate a map each time the file essence needs to be accessed. The module can also extract audio from continually growing MXF files during an Ingest operation, for read-only processes such as Loudness Measurement or audio analysis.

AudioTools ReWrap™ for MXF

The optional AudioTools MXF ReWrap module re–wraps audio data back into existing MXF files. Audio is re–wrapped “in place,” meaning the same audio format is used and samples are simply replaced. MXF OP1 and OP1a profiles are currently supported, and more profiles will be added, based on project requirements.

AudioTools Audio Extractor for LXF

The optional AudioTools LXF Audio Extractor module provides the ability to access the audio and metadata stored in LXF files. Audio tracks within LXF files are extracted efficiently, without unwrapping video tracks.

AudioTools ReWrap™ for LXF

The optional AudioTools LXF ReWrap module outputs audio data into existing LXF files. New audio data replaces existing data. Existing video within the LXF file is not modified.

AudioTools Audio Extractor for GXF

The optional AudioTools GXF Audio Extractor module provides the ability to access the audio and metadata stored in GXF files. Audio tracks within GXF files are extracted efficiently, without unwrapping video tracks.

AudioTools ReWrap™ for GXF

The optional AudioTools GXF ReWrap module outputs audio data into existing GXF files. New audio data replaces existing data. Existing video within the GXF file is not modified.

AudioTools Audio Extractor for QuickTime™

The optional AudioTools Audio Extractor for QuickTime module extracts PCM audio streams from QuickTime files of all video formats. The module provides the ability to access the audio and metadata stored in QuickTime files. Audio tracks within Quick- Time files are extracted efficiently, without unwrapping video tracks. This module also supports functions for reading QuickTime metadata.

AudioTools ReWrap™ for QuickTime™

The optional AudioTools ReWrap for QuickTime™ re–wraps audio data back into a copy of an existing QuickTime files or audio–only Quick- Time files can be created from scratch. Audio can re–wrapped “in place,” meaning the same audio format is used and samples are simply replaced. Or, a new Track/Channel configuration can be generated and the QuickTime file is effectively recreated using the untouched video essence.

AudioTools Audio Extractor for Transport Streams

The optional AudioTools Audio Extractor for Transport Streams module extracts the relevant audio streams from transport streams containing H.264 and MPEG-2 video formats. The module can extract PCM, AC-3, E-AC-3, AAC and MPEG audio types. The module can extract arbitrary numbers of audio streams in an arbitrary number of video programs. Existing video within the transport stream will not be modified. Note that Program Streams are not supported.

AudioTools ReWrap™ for Transport Streams

The optional AudioTools ReWrap for Transport Streams module inserts audio into transport stream files, including H.264 and MPEG-2 video programs. Existing video within the transport stream file will not be modified. The module will only insert the same audio codec type into a stream that previously carried that codec type. Combined use of both the AudioTools Audio Extractor for Transport Streams and the AudioTools ReWrap for Transport Streams modules requires either external automation system or the AudioTools Workflow Control module. Note that Program Streams are not supported.

AudioTools AudioSecter

The optional AudioTools AudioSecter module provides time/region–based insertion, deletion and/or muting. Predefined region definitions are driven via Workflow XML. The AudioTools Quality Analysis module can also be employed, in conjunction with the AudioTools AudioSecter module, to define regions based on frequency and/or amplitude. Detected regions can be removed or muted. Arbitrary region detection is driven by specifying an amplitude threshold and/or a frequency range. Null or silent audio can also be inserted at the start or end of a detected region. In frequency and/or amplitude mode, the AudioTools AudioSecter module requires the AudioTools Quality Analysis and Workflow Control modules. It is recommended to use AudioTools AudioSecter in combination with the AudioTools SilenceTrim Automation solutions module (ASTS).

AudioTools Cinavia Verification Module

The optional AudioTools Cinavia Verification Module performs certified Cinavia watermark verification that detects and re- ports the presence and/or absence of Cinavia watermark payloads in audio essence processed through AudioTools Server. The module, which can be invoked from within ATS jobs or workflows, provides a summary of all valid Cinavia payloads, plus a detailed report in XML format. The module supports sample rates from 44.1 to 192 kHz in up to 16 channels of LPCM, AC-3 or E-AC-3 essence. This enables simple handling of multiple downstream watermarking requirements in a completely automated environment.

AudioTools Civolution Watermarking

The optional AudioTools Watermarking module adds Civolution NexTracker Audience Measurement watermarking for audio essence and/or integration with Civolution’s SyncNow Automatic Content Recognition service that is being used in Secondary Screen ecosystems. SyncNow enables server-side content identification and triggering for real-time recognition of broadcast content. AudioTools Server provides secure integration with SyncNow for watermark detection and validation.

The Civolution Watermarking module works within the AudioTools Server environment to seamlessly watermark content within larger workflows involving many AudioTools Server processes, or as a standalone watermarking solution. The Civolution Watermarking module for AudioTools Server can be applied at any point in the AudioTools Server Workflow, the most common point being post-processing as the audio is re-wrapped to the final container.

AudioTools Server Solutions Modules

AudioTools Solution Modules provide powerful and ready-to-use workflow profiles for AudioTools Server. Solutions Modules are encapsulated workflows for a specific use case. AudioTools Solution Module requires AudioTools Server, AudioTools Workflow Control, and the specific functionality modules for that solution.

AudioTools Channel Assignment Detection Automation

The AudioTools Channel Assignment Detection Solutions Module determines the channel locations within a multi-channel pro- gram based on the audio essence. Requires AudioTools Server and AudioTools Workflow Control. Requires AudioTools Channel Assignment Detection (AQEA) and optional AudioTools Extractor modules for MXF, QuickTime or other container formats.

AudioTools Quality Control for Dolby E Automation

The AudioTools Quality Control for Dolby E Solutions Module leverages the combined power of SurCode for Dolby E, the WaveFile Analyzer Module and AudioTools Metadata Verifier. Includes chunk analysis for BWF and RF64 files, SMPTE 337M analysis, correction for SMPTE alignment, metadata consistency check and more. Requires one or multiple of the following modules: AudioTools Dolby E WavFileAnalyzer (WFAA), AudioTools Metadata Verifier (MDVA), and AudioTools SurCode for Dolby E Decoder (SEDA), AudioTools Loudness Measurement (ALMA) and Dolby Media Meter 2 (DMM2).

AudioTools SilenceTrim Automation

The AudioTools SilenceTrim Solutions Module fully automates silence detection and segment processing to remove or add analog and/or digital silent sections. It is particularly suited to automatically trim content for radio broadcasts. Requires AudioTools Quality Analyses (AQAA) and AudioTools AudioSecter (AASA)

Customer–Defined & 3rd Party Modules

AudioTools Server has been designed to also host customer–defined modules. Other manufacturers are welcome to use the AudioTools Server platform as a vehicle for making their specific functionality available in an enterprise level, file–based environment.

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