SURPRISE! We had our first surprise guest of 2021 as Martin Blazek, Zetta Product Manager, joined Brian Willard, head of our Field Technician Services Team, and Jeff Zigler, Senior Director of Sales Engineering, to discuss the origin, differences, and the best cases on when to implement Zetta’s Site Replication or Z-Cast features. Martin even teased special features currently being coded for future Zetta releases and we offered more examples of how users can utilize Site Replication or Z-Cast to share audio, metadata or logs across markets.
To better understand which configuration is best for you and your team, let’s first discuss the purpose of each Zetta feature. Z-Cast is the evolution to NexGen’s Wancast, that essentially pushes audio, metadata and/or logs from one site to another. Think of it as, “You need this audio. I am pushing it to you.” Whereas, Site Replication is a very unique Zetta feature in which multiple sites are treated as one site, sharing all audio, metadata, logs, profile settings etc… Think of Site Replication, or Site Rep, as a “we” environment in which a user would want multiple sites to be 100% in sync. Martin pointed out that obviously, some sites need to share audio, but they don’t necessarily need to be 100% in sync. Start to identify your users, station and market requirements and then ask us, the professionals, what would be the best configuration for you. Plus, we have many users that actually utilize both. For example, Market A needs to share audio, like Spots voiced by Market A talent, to Market B, who has their own local talent voicing elements for Market A. In order to share audio back and forth, users can automatically or manually Z-Cast audio and metadata to and from each market. Whereas, in addition to the Z-Cast function, Market A also has an offsite or an additional redundancy machine that is Site Replicated to the Market A Zetta File Server. This way, both are running 100% in sync and per another Martin example, remote talent can pick up that machine and broadcast just like they are part of the in-studio Zetta environment. With Site Replication and Z-Cast, there are tons of possibilities with flexible workflows.
Throughout the video, we offered suggestions and helpful hints on how other users interpret Site Rep and Z-Cast workflows. For another example, Brian presented the concept of broadcasting live from a remote location. Essentially, a morning show that is in another market or physical studio, that requires their studio to be the “content source” for RDS or audio routing. The idea is that when triggered via a GPIO (usually in the Zetta Clocks by a macro), that morning show becomes the primary Zetta, with everything that comes along with being the “main” Zetta. When the morning show is over, we return to the normal Zetta studio and setup. With Site Replication, morning shows have access to all audio, metadata, user profiles, layouts, etc… and are 100% in sync with that of the main studio and Zetta environment. This will allow the morning show to operate on their own, while being still part of the Zetta experience.
Next, we briefly demonstrated how to properly configure some of the Site Replication and Z-Cast settings. Since there are many moving pieces that we don’t expect you and your team to memorize, just know that we’re here to help properly configure any desired workflow. Both features have Zetta services that require enabling via Configuration | System | General, as well as corresponding Managers, both found under the same Configuration dropdown: Configuration | Site Replication Manager and Configuration | ZCast Connections. Both require some type of defined Organizations or Stations within the Zetta database that are isolated to properly configure both settings. In regards to Z-Casting, users can define what type of assets are sent and received automatically or manually by each station. Whereas the Site Replication Manager respects the Organization, such as All Stations.
If you’re looking for a great example of how users implement Site Replication verses Z-Cast for voice tracking, please check out our previous RCS Live: Voice Tracking for Today’s Talent found here. In that video, we actually breakdown the steps on how users can send logs from Market A to Market B, then voice track remotely via Market B’s Zetta2GO, which will save within the Market B Zetta station log, that is then forwarded back to Market A’s log. Or, for users that have Zetta Cloud Based Disaster Recovery, they can bypass the VPN, voice track within Zetta Cloud and via Site Replication, that voice track will land back in your local Zetta for playout.
After answering user driven questions, Martin pulled back the Zetta curtain and discussed a couple behind the scenes tips, tricks and teasers of new features that users can expect in 2021. We also revisited some of the new 5.20.1 new enhancements, including Server Side Search. If you’re looking for all the new 5.20.1 options, check out our RCS Live: Zetta New Features, found here.
You may have noticed a slew of Events on our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/RCSSoundSoftware). Our 2021 goal is to outline upcoming RCS Lives so that users can RSVP, set reminders and add questions on the discussion board that we’ll answer during the RCS Live. Upcoming topics include GSelector Better Rotations and Music Logs and a Conversation with VP of Customer Success Barry Hill.
We’re still looking for GSelector 4.9.0 and Zetta 5.20.1 Beta users! If you’re interested in getting the latest and greatest from RCS, reach out to your local RCS office and let them know you would like to become a Beta power user. RSVP to the Events on our Facebook page www.facebook.com/RCSSoundSoftware and don’t forget to send us your “work from home” photos for some RCS goodies and we’ll see you live next Thursday at 11am ET.