From the early days of DMX-controlled media servers, something has been missing. Missing, that is, until recently. Two of the more recently launched media servers (the Ai media server from Avolites and the d3 media server from d3 Technologies) take video control into the next generation by adding the missing link: real-time video visualization. Using the media servers’ own Device profiles for projectors, screens and LED fixtures, the entire video and LED “picture” can be created directly on the media server. Once this has been done, cues can be programmed directly on the server and then either triggered via internal timelines or external DMX or timecode triggers. Now, instead of using one server for the media, then feeding the video output of that system into another system for pre-viz programming, everything can all be in one machine. This greatly simplifies the setup, reduces the FOH footprint and has the additional benefit of better performance.
—From “Video Digerati” by Vickie Claiborne, PLSN, Nov. 2012