Author Topic: Regional Containers in M3U  (Read 7825 times)

Charlie

  • Regular
  • *
  • Posts: 1089
    • View Profile
Regional Containers in M3U
« on: April 04, 2008, 20:42:50 »
I've been having a go at trying Regional Containers - these would solve a few problems if only they'd schedule via an M3U file ;)  You can save it all in MLP and reload with no problems, however, the M3U format creates a container as a sum of both the items (ie: a 30s 2-way split becomes a 60s item).

It would also allow people to schedule all their regional splits from ONE scheduling program (and not have to run multiple copies/licenses) in the following way:

#mAirList BEGINCONTAINER Split Promo
#mAirList REGIONALCONTAINER1
Z:\Promos\Promo - Region 1 Promo.mp3
Z:\Jingles\Jingle - Region 1 Jingle.mp3
#mAirList REGIONALCONTAINER2
Z:\Promos\Promo - Region 2 Promo.mp3
Z:\Jingles\Jingle - Region 2 Jingle.mp3
#mAirList ENDCONTAINER

Something like this would then appear as a Container with each audio track output to the revelant device.  I would also guess that because you wouldn't need an extra Playlist/Player per split - this would save system resources considerably  8)
Charlie

Torben

  • Administrator
  • Doktor mAirList
  • *****
  • Posts: 16863
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2008, 20:49:06 »
This has been reported in the German forums a few days ago. I'll take a look at it.

Technically, a Regional Container is a regular container holding a playlist, with exactly the same number of items as regions defined, each of which is a container again, which in turn contains the region-specific playlist. Rather tricky ;)

I haven't tried to load/save Regional Containers (or any nested containers) from/to M3U files. This might not work yet.

Torben

  • Administrator
  • Doktor mAirList
  • *****
  • Posts: 16863
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2008, 20:59:43 »
Build 494 has been uploaded. Please give it a try. The format ist:

Code: [Select]
#mAirList BEGINREGIONCONTAINER Regional Promo
#mAirList BEGINCONTAINER
Z:\Promos\Promo - Region 1 Promo.mp3
Z:\Jingles\Jingle - Region 1 Jingle.mp3
#mAirList ENDCONTAINER
#mAirList BEGINCONTAINER
Z:\Promos\Promo - Region 2 Promo.mp3
Z:\Jingles\Jingle - Region 2 Jingle.mp3
#mAirList ENDCONTAINER
#mAirList ENDREGIONCONTAINER

Torben

  • Administrator
  • Doktor mAirList
  • *****
  • Posts: 16863
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2008, 21:05:10 »
And now we also have Build 495 which supports saving Regional Containers to M3U.

Charlie

  • Regular
  • *
  • Posts: 1089
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2008, 21:48:56 »
Excellent.. Works brilliantly.

Thank you.
Charlie

Torben

  • Administrator
  • Doktor mAirList
  • *****
  • Posts: 16863
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #5 on: April 04, 2008, 21:54:37 »
:)

Charlie

  • Regular
  • *
  • Posts: 1089
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #6 on: April 04, 2008, 22:22:29 »
Oooh, you've even allowed for "missing" files ;)  ie: a 4 way regional split, but only Regions 1,2 and 4 having audio.  Nice.
Charlie

Torben

  • Administrator
  • Doktor mAirList
  • *****
  • Posts: 16863
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #7 on: April 04, 2008, 22:46:31 »
Yes, all region playlists are padded with silence to meet the duration of the longest among them. Even if one is empty ;)

Charlie

  • Regular
  • *
  • Posts: 1089
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2008, 13:11:32 »
Anybody wishing to try this in StationPlaylist Creator will find that it's quite a long-winded affair!



That's just for 3 sets of advert breaks with a 2 way split.  Add to that your usual jingles+music categories and you've got quite a Rotation :)

In mAirList, the final playlist is fairly tidy:


Keen-eyed users of SPL will notice that in this example I am using Adverts as a "Category", not a "Spot Group".  This is so that similar brand adverts are kept away from each other (ie: I don't want ads from 2 competing double-glazing companies playing next to each other).  I also group the ads into length - Obviously this ensures that each Regional Split is the same duration.

I'll post a link on the German thread for this, hopefully it'll help some of our European friends!
Charlie

Charlie

  • Regular
  • *
  • Posts: 1089
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #9 on: April 10, 2008, 11:49:34 »
I've created and written-up the basics of Regional Containers in the Wiki:
http://wiki.mairlist.com/index.php/Regional_Container
Charlie

Libra28

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 37
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #10 on: April 15, 2008, 19:04:41 »
Been playing around with this today, but cant seem to get any audio out of the regional container?? It shows up as playing, but no audio outta the player its coming out of, and no PFL audio either?

Regards
Libra28

Suffolk

Charlie

  • Regular
  • *
  • Posts: 1089
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #11 on: April 15, 2008, 19:26:14 »
So it's not just me, then !  See my other thread for my config - see if it's the same as yours.

Now that Torben has added the #mAirList INCLUDE C:\playlists\playlist.m3u feature (where a whole playlist is added rather than appear as a single item), I have found that creating the Regional Containers as M3Us, then scheduling them in SPL Creator as a Break Note, eg:

SONG (category)
INTO ADS (spot)
INCLUDE Z:\Adverts\Split Break %2h40.m3u
OUT OF ADS (spot)
SONG (category)

(remember that #mAirList %t is set in the "Break Note format" settings box)

This would add the file Z:\Adverts\Split Break 1840.m3u for a 6:40pm ad break

That's just one of the ways of doing it - the other is using my above example of a really nasty Rotation with lots of Break Notes!
Charlie

Libra28

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 37
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #12 on: April 15, 2008, 19:40:13 »
Cool yeah I used your massive config as above!!  ;D

Will take a look at your other thread, basically even if I tell mairlist to play the regional container out of the same device as my extra pfl, it wont, it just loads the container into one of the normal players, eg B, no audio out of fader B nor extra pfl fader!!!
Libra28

Suffolk

Charlie

  • Regular
  • *
  • Posts: 1089
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #13 on: April 15, 2008, 20:13:24 »
I'm still trying to find a way to randomize the insertion of regional M3Us... ie: 20 M3U files that have a 2-way split jingle for playing into a break.  SPL Creator can do that via Spot Groups, but to use the INCLUDE feature, you have to use a Break Note (which means you must define the M3U file rather than allow a random one to be scheduled).  The only solution I can see (other than using the nasty Rotation entries above) is for Torben to reverse the importing of M3U playlists so that an M3U is expanded by default.

This would then allow you to randomize (or define) an M3U, specifically a Regional Container:

SONG (category)
INTO ADS (spot)
REGIONAL AD (spot)
OUT OF ADS (spot)
SONG (category)

The Regional Ad would simply be a direct path/filename and not an #mAirList INCLUDE statement.

Having said all that, it's not a major problem for me - I'm just trying to see how the features can be used (helps when I update the Wiki!) and where potential problems may crop-up.
Charlie

Torben

  • Administrator
  • Doktor mAirList
  • *****
  • Posts: 16863
    • View Profile
Re: Regional Containers in M3U
« Reply #14 on: May 04, 2008, 16:32:18 »
Charlie, can you please try the latest snapshot #504?

You can now also include M3U playlists by placing the M3U filename (without #mAirList INCLUDE) into the outer M3U file. You can choose whether to include them "flat" or as a container by adding one of the following lines to the top of the M3U file:

Code: [Select]
#mAirList MODE FLAT
#mAirList MODE CONTAINER

Of course, even in flat mode, the inner M3U file can still contain "#mAirList CONTAINER" etc. tags to construct containers.

Let me know if this works.