Recommended Hardware For Automation

Created by Jason Carr, Modified on Thu, 14 Mar at 9:22 AM by Jason Carr

Deployment & Recommended Hardware For PlayoutONE Pro

Deployment

We recommend that, where possible, PlayoutONE Pro be deployed in a client-server setup. We strongly recommend this setup due to the fact that PlayoutONE Pro has several applications that sit within the suite that also need to be running. It's, therefore, best to have these run out of sight, leaving the studio playback computers to concentrate on the most critical task - playing audio and letting the server machine focus on all administration tasks.

All audio imported into PlayoutONE Pro resides within the main designated audio folder. At the time of import, PlayoutONE will copy the audio file and rename it to UID.Extension. This folder is then shared with all clients. Within the audio folder are copies of each audio file used within WebVT®. These files are encoded in the .opus format.

The server houses the SQL Server, and, as mentioned, all of the administration applications (FileCopy, Auto Importer, Monitor etc). WebVT® is provided through Windows IIS Service. A port forward through the firewall is required for users to gain access to the service; alternatively, users may opt to use a self-configured VPN if port forwarding is an issue.

PlayoutONE Pro follows a strict installation procedure and can only be installed by one of our support engineers. They will, in turn, work with you regarding the software installation. Because of this installation procedure, we must insist that all server and studio playout machines be installed with a fresh copy of Windows and have no traces of other automation or database software.

Computer Specficitions 

Server / Control Room for 1-2 radio stations in a cluster.

The minimum hardware specification we support for running PlayoutONE Pro, where the total station count is less than three.

  • Operating System: Windows 10/11 Pro
  • Server Processor: Intel i7 8th Generation / AMD Ryzen 7 3rd Generation
  • Control Room Processor: Intel i5 8th Generation / AMD Ryzen 5 3rd Generation
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Hard Drive: SSD for OS. HDD for Data.
  • Network: 1GB wired.

Server / Control Room for 3+ radio stations in a cluster.

The minimum hardware specification we support for running PlayoutONE Pro, where the total station count is three or more.
  • Server Operating System: Windows Server 2016 , 2019 or 2022.
  • Server Processor: Intel Xeon, 8 Cores (within last three years)
  • Server Memory: 32GB
  • Server Hard Drive: SSD for OS. HDD for Data (ideally in a RAID configuration)
  • Server Network: 1GB wired

  • Control Room Operating System: Windows 10/11 Pro
  • Control Room Processor: Intel i5 8th Generation / AMD Ryzen 5 3rd Generation
  • Control Room Memory: 16GB
  • Control Room Hard Drive: SSD
  • Network: 1GB wired.

Production Computer Specifications

The minimum hardware specification we support for running PlayoutONE Pro. Running other resource-hungry applications simultaneously will affect the performance of PlayoutONE.

  • Operating System: Windows 10/11
  • Processor: Intel i5 6th Generation / AMD Ryzen 3 3rd Generation
  • Memory: 8GB
  • Hard Drive: SSD or HDD
  • Network: 1GB wired

SQL Server

PlayoutONE runs on Microsoft SQL Server. If you plan to host more than seven stations on one server, we recommend you purchase SQL Server Standard rather than using the free edition of SQL Server (Express), which comes as part of the PlayoutONE Installation. 

Please let us know if you think you need to do this so we can discuss your options. 

Soundcards

PlayoutONE Pro & Standard can utilise any soundcard compatible with Windows 10. For best quality vs cost, we recommend any of the Focusrite Scarlett USB range. Focusrite offers many models within the Scarlett range, these range between 2 and 4 stereo outputs and 2 and 4 stereo inputs. Whilst PlayoutONE does support ASIO we do not recommend it because ASIO requires exclusive access to the Soundcard. 

Windows Updates

We recommend that all Windows Updates are disabled on Servers and Studio computers. We have a guide for disabling Windows updates here. We recommend users schedule maintenance windows at least two times a year to enable Windows Updates and apply any updates that are needed. Windows Updates should be disabled again afterwards.

Antivirus

We recommend users not install third-party antivirus on their Server and Studio Machines and instead rely on Windows Defender with the following exclusions.

  • C:\PlayoutONE
  • C:\MsSQL
  • D:\PlayoutONE (if users have additional hard drives)

Firewall

We recommend that Windows Firewall remain switched on at all times.

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