Setup AnyDesk unattended Access for Remote Support

AnyDesk is a free Remote Destop Software, which we use to login to remote systems. The unique quality of AnyDesk is, that it does not interfere with the GPU List on the Remote system.

1. To get started, download and start AnyDesk from the publishers website:
https://anydesk.com/en/downloads

2. Now activate unattended access and enter any passeword you like:

3. All we need to connect to you is your Anydesk adress as shown and the password you picked:

Setup Multichannel Audio

Multichannel Audio is supported in PLAYDECK for all Inputs/Outputs, that being: Device, NDI, Internal. To activate Multichannel Audio, you only have to increase the Audio Channels in Playlist Output:

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Setting Multichannel Audio 7.1

After that you may select how many Audio Channel you want to display in the VU Meter by Right-clicking it. Now add any Multichannel Clip into the Playlist. We prepared a 7.1 Clip SAMPLE (right-click and “Save as..”) for you:

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Setting Multichannel Audio for 7.1 Audio

Audio Channel Routing

In PLAYDECK, all Audio Channels are enumerated from 1 upwards, within the current selected Audio Track. If you have multiple Audio Tracks, you first have to select the Track you want to output. Then you can mix the Audio channels in any way possible:

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Setting Multichannel Audio Routing

Now you can reference your Audio channels (source) and route them to the NEW channels seperated by comma (target). There are several examples listed with the Routing Popup:

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Setting Multichannel Audio Routing

Send to OBS via NDI

If you want to use 8 Channel in OBS, activate NDI in PLAYDECK Playlist Output, then insert PLAYDECK as NDI Source and you are ready to go:

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Sending Multiple Audio Channels from PLAYDECK to OBS

Send any Trigger to external Systems/APIs

For cases, where NDI tally flag trigger or ATEM/vMix remote connections cant be used, you can setup a custom trigger at any given point.

Send trigger via TCP command

If your receiving side is able to understand any custom TCP command, you would setup the remote connection like this:

  1. Setup and activate the Connection in the settings via “Remote Control > Outgoing > TCP Custom”.
  2. You would then create a new Overlay of type “Remote Control” and insert your custom TCP command there.
  3. (Optional) You would then add the Overlay to any point in the Playlist, e.g. on Clip 1 of a new Block via “Right Click Clip > Overlays”.

As a result the TCP command will be send at the given time in the playlist or when you press the overlay button.

Send trigger via JavaScript

If your receiving side is a custom API or needs special formatting, you would need to setup your own script for this:

  1. Create a new Overlay of type “Webpage / HTML File”.
  2. Use JavaScript in your HTML File to embed any custom command. A good examle would be a NodeJS server sending customized TCP commands.

Send trigger via API (WebSockets)

If you want the current PLAYDECK status in your script, you can use our API:

  1. Create a new Overlay of type “HTML Templates”.
  2. For an Introduction on how to use the API, click on “Main Menu > Settings > Scripting > How to create Scripts”
  3. Modify any Sample (duplicate it) or create your own Script

vMix: Send/Receive Video

The best way to connect vMix with PLAYDECK (both ways) is NDI. Multichannel Audio is supported.

Send Video from vMix to PLAYDECK

You only need to activate NDI as External Output like this:

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Send and Receive Video to and from vMix
PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Send and Receive Video to and from vMix

Send Video from PLAYDECK to vMix

Activate NDI Output in PLAYDECK and add the NDI as new Source in vMix like this:

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Send and Receive Video to and from vMix
PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Send and Receive Video to and from vMix

OBS Studio: Send/Receive Video

The best way to connect OBS with PLAYDECK (both ways) is NDI. Multichannel Audio is supported.

OBS doesn’t deliver NDI out of the box. You need to install an additional PlugIn, which is a quick and easy process:

  1. Download PlugIn HERE (Select “obs-ndi…..Windows-Installer.exe”)
  2. Close OBS and install the PlugIn like any other Windows App

Send Video from OBS to PLAYDECK

The NDI PlugIn inserts a new Option into the Tools Menu. Pick NDI Output and activate it:

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Send and Receive Video to and from OBS
PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Send and Receive Video to and from OBS

Send Video from PLAYDECK to OBS

Activate NDI Output in PLAYDECK. The OBS NDI PlugIn inserts a new NDI Source, which you can add to your OBS Scene like this:

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Send and Receive Video to and from OBS
PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Send and Receive Video to and from OBS

Troubleshooting Guide

for stuttering Playout, Dropped Frames, Glitches


Check these steps first !


1. PLAYDECK does not start / PLAYDECK does not load videos

In this case please refer to this guide:
https://playdeck.tv/troubleshooting/unable-to-start-playdeck/

2. Check Output and System Load
If you see glitches in the PREVIEW, that doesnt mean that there are glitches in the OUTPUT (device or NDI). Also check, if your system is overloaded by opening the Task Manager (ESC + SHIFT + CTRL).

3. Update all drivers
Some output cards are very sensitive on older driver. Make sure you install the latest GPU driver (e.g. NVidia) and the latest Output card driver (e.g. Blackmagic).

4. GPU Selection
Got to Settings > Workflow > GPU & Quality and try different settings.

5. Settings
Change these settings in PLAYDECK. Got to Settings > Workflow > Advanced Settings:
– Deactivate: Automatic file check and reloading
– Activate: Disable Device output frame rate control
– Activate: Use seperate process for every file in the playlist
– Deactivate: Anti HDD Sleep Mechanics

6. Clips
Move your Clips to a local SDD, should they be loaded from network.

7. NDI Access Manager
Close NDI Access Manager and other Apps like OBS Studio and vMix and try again.

Further Throubleshooting


PLAYDECK starts fine, but no Clip is playing, or playback is superslow

If nothing plays, the GPU is not utilized as it should be. Or GPU and/or output hardware is compsomised. Try setting your GPU as primary GPU (see below). Try using CPU rendering (Workflow > GPU) and deactivate all output hardware, restart PLAYDECK. Update all drivers or try different hardware.

Constant Stuttering in Audio Output

If video seems to play fine, but the audio is stuttering alot, this indicates a system overload. Since the GPU % display in PLAYDECK shows only NVidia usage, you should open the task manager and check CPU/GPU for the whole system.

To reduce overall system load:
– Use common video codecs (e.g. H.264 instead of ProRes)
– Avoid transcoding (clips have same resolution as playlist)
– Avoid HTML overlays
– Disable channel name in Previews
– Reduce resolution
– Use a dedicated SDI output card (e.g. Decklink)

You may find urself in a situation, where you have to upgrade your hardware. We recommend going for a decent GPU (e.g. NVidia RTX 3060+), since CPU and RAM are not of much relevance to PLAYDECK.

Frame Drops on start playing a new Clip, otherwise ok

This indicates a bottleneck from HDD or GPU or CPU. Use SDD. Disable any form of HDD/SDD sleep. Set energy settings to maxium performance. Use lates NVIDIA driver. Play files locally instead of network or NAS. Check for possible overheating problem of GPU. Disable CPU sleep/parking (pref. on Notebooks)


Detailed troubleshooting


Clip as Bottleneck (DNxHD 185x, HAP or ProRes Codec + MXF files)

ProRes unfortunately is not well suited for playback on Windows-based systems. This is because Apple does not provide Windows-optimized codecs. DNxHD 185x, HAP Codecs or MXF files cant be decoded via GPU and are forced to be decoded on the CPU.

In both cases, we recommend switching to H.264 or H.265 instead. For Alpha we recommend HAP. We also recommend to use clips with the same resolution and framerate as the PLAYDECK playlist setting to avoid transcoding.

Harddisk/Network as Bottleneck

Please make sure, that the data rate of your clips can be transferred flawlessly through your system. if your clips run over the network, test them on your local harddisk.

In PLAYDECK under Workflow -> Advanced Settings, disable “Anti HDD Sleep Mechanics” and “Automatic file check and clip reloading”.

Edit your Windows Power Options and disable any HDD sleep mechanics.

GPU as Bottleneck

Since all rendering and decoding processes of PLAYDECK are executed on the GPU, a powerful graphics card is indispensable. PLAYDECK has been developed for NVIDIA graphic cards. It is very unlikely, that you get a good performance out of the CPU alone.

If you have multiple GPUs in your system, PLAYDECK will try to select your most potent GPU. Please check under “Settings > Workflow > Performance > GPU + Quality”, if PLAYDECK selected your best GPU, otherwise change it manually.

In case your PLAYDECK runs on an older Onboard GPU (Intel), it might be worth testing the CPU mode to check, if you get a better performance out of PLAYDECK.

To further more reduce the overall GPU/CPU load of PLAYDECK you have several options:

  • Reduce Quality Settings to MEDIUM or LOW under “Settings > Workflow > GPU + Quality”. This will NOT reduce your output quality, only the previews and reaction times.
  • Prevent PLAYDECK from needing to transcode video clips during playback: Have videos in the same video format as the playlist
  • Configure Windows Power Management for Maximum Performance or disable Energy Saving completly
  • Set your NVidia card to maximum performance: Go to the NVidia control panel and set the following under “Manage 3D settings” in the “Power Management” section: “Prefer Maximum Performance” (not “Prefer optimum Performance”).

There is one other phenomenon worth mentioning:
If you observe, that the GPU load displayed on the GUI shoots up significantly, even when PLAYDECK is currently idle and not displaying video: When the demands on the GPU are low, the NVidia driver adjusts the clock frequency down significantly to save energy. However, the percentage utilization at this reduced clock frequency then increases sharply. To deactivate the automatic adjustment, simply go to the NVidia control panel and set the following under “Manage 3D settings” in the “Power Management” section: “Prefer Maximum Performance” (not “Prefer optimum Performance”).

CPU as Bottleneck

Lets assume, you have a powerfull GPU and the CPU usage % in PLAYDECK isnt rising above 70%. This still does not mean, that your CPU isnt clipping. Its still possible, that not all CPU cores are used.

Watch your CPU cores carefully in the task manager, while playing the glitching clip. Maybe one CPU core is clipped at 100%, while other cores are barely being used. This phenomenon is called “CPU parking”. Check, if the CPU usage goes UP, if you DONT play any clips. This indicates, that the CPU cores are been parked, because there is less activity. Here is some information on how to proceed:
https://itechviral.com/enable-or-disable-cpu-core-parking-in-windows-10/

Watch out for specific processes in the task manager, which have sudden CPU spikes and disable those processes. One known process is “Antimalware Service Executable”, which is the Windows Defender:
https://blog.emsisoft.com/en/28620/antimalware-service-executable/

Also check the energy settings and make sure, that everything is set to “High performance”.

Decklink (or other) Ouput card as Bottleneck

Since the frame rate control is handed over to the decklink device, once it has been activated, the device itself may cause the glitch and not the system. There are some cases, where customers had installed the decklink to a shared PCI slot, where bandwidth would be reduced. In this case you would see stuttering playout, since the low bandwidth would reduce FPS, which in return will reduce playout speed in PLAYDECK (hardware controle the frame rate).

We recommend switching the production format to PAL for testing purposes and watch, if the glitches still appear. You could even deactivate the decklink completly and do a testrun.

Please also use the latest driver for your hardware. Some hardware even require you to apply firmware updates.

Remote Desktop Software / VPN

Some users report stuttering audio (or any other form of instability), when remotely logging IN or OUT of the target machine. This is due to the fact, that those applications reserve ALOT ressources for themselfs. Even the installation can mess with your system. Most common cause is the RD Software inserting a virtual GPU driver as primary GPU into the system (e.g. TeamSpeak does this). Since PLAYDECK is mainly using the primary GPU for all rendering, this will inevitably lead to stuttering. Stuttering always is the first sign of the GPU/CPU not delivering enough rendering for PLAYDECK.

If you already tried all the things above (esp. setting your NVidia GPU as primary GPU), you could try AnyDesk – we made good experience with this and it doesnt switch GPUs. If this still isnt enough, you would need to upgrade the hardware, since any RD Software is always very ressource hungry. You could also try to manually limit ressources to RD, by watching the GPU usage closely (with 2 man, one local, 1 remote) and change system/app/power settings.

In addition, some users reported fixing the problem with connecting a monitor/display on the remote PC, that is running PLAYDECK.

NDI Access Manager

In some cases the NDI Access Manager is running and causes huge playout lags from several seconds to even a full minute. The Output is NDI in PLAYDECK. In those cases multiple NDI Apps had be opened like OBS Studio or vMIX and the NDI signal got interrupted. Closing those Apps helped. Further more a more detailed configuration of the NDI access manager is needed.

Other Apps as bottleneck

Other applications may use the harddisk, or network, or GPU/CPU. This may not be recognized as GPU/CPU peak, because the app produces only a very short burst/bottleneck. This is harder to detect. Especially if your clips run smooth most of the time and sometimes/rarely glitch or drop only few frames.

Disable any other applications, that might interfere with the clips you are playing. This would most likely to be Anti-Virus/Malware software.

Also try to create a new user within Windows and start PLAYDECK with the user, who has no administration rights. This might block other apps from interfering.

Other Hardware related bottlenecks

Sometimes you might not even realize, that even the power unit of a system can bottleneck the playout. This is especially true, even you use a powerfull graphics card and another playout card (e.g. Decklink), but only provide, lets say only 600W power, which most certainly isnt enough and would cause the graphics card to cause stuttering (especially on the start of the clip, when power is drawn).

If using several video adapters, a good airflow is also very important to prevent overheating of components, which most likely result in glitches happening more later than sooner.

You can use this Bottleneck Tester to see, if any of your components is underperforming:
https://pc-builds.com/calculator/

Remote Control Playlist 2 via Playlist 1 events

Sometimes the SYNC feature isn’t enough to have simultaneous playback and the operator wants to setup more complex ways of automation between the playlists. This can be done by setting PLAYDECK to remote control itself.

Sending Commands to anywhere in PLAYDECK via Overlays

To send a Command, you want to create a new “Remote Control” Overlay. You can now add one of the Custom Commands, that will be recognized by PLAYDECK. Basically you can CUE and PLAY clips, start Actions, show Overlays, etc..

Example: <cueandplay|2|1|1>
This will instantly play Playlist 2, Block 1, Clip 1.

A complete list of all commands can be found within PLAYDECK via “Show Commands”
Your overlay will look something like this:

Setup PLAYDECK events for automation

You add events to the playlist by adding the overlay with the commands to the clip. For example, if you want to start Playlist 2 (first clip) as soon as Playlist 1 starts playing, you would add the above Overlay to Clip 1 like this:

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Settings for Internal Remote Control

Install PLAYDECK on Amazon EC2

PLAYDECK supports most Amazon EC2 server instances and the NVidia GPU Power they provide. This allows you to setup a cloud based infrastructure for NDI transport or other purposes.

Quick start instruction

  1. There is a quick start guide by Amazon, where you can also select your instance:
    https://docs.nvidia.com/grid/qvws/latest/qvws-quick-start-guide-amazon-web-services-ec2/index.html
  2. A typical instance would be “Windows 2019 / g4dn.xlarge” – It has a Tesla Virtual NVidia GPU and enough specs to run PLAYDECK: 16 vCPUs (Intel Xeon), 64GB RAM, 1 vGPU (NVidia T4) with 16GB GPU RAM.
  3. Install the Instance, which will conclude in running it within Amazons EC2 instance manager.
  4. To connect to the instance via RDP you first have to open Port 3389 in the Instance Security Settings.
  5. Once connected, you find yourself unable to download anything via the Browser. Therefore enable Downloads like this: START Menu > Server Manager > Local Server > IE Enhanced Security Configuration > Off
  6. Now download and install PLAYDECK as usual:
    https://playdeck.tv/download/
  7. Since NVidia driver are pre-installed, the GPU support in PLAYDECK will be enabled by default

Additional information

PLAYDECK can be installed on any Windows EC2 instance. Allthough GPU support isnt a requirement with PLAYDECK, it still is recommended for best performance. A list of all EC2 instances:
https://aws.amazon.com/ec2/instance-types/

If you decide to go with a clean installation of an instance (without a preselected windows image), you need to install the NVidia driver manually like this:
https://docs.aws.amazon.com/AWSEC2/latest/WindowsGuide/install-nvidia-driver.html

PLAYDECK also supports a multi-user environment and saves licensed for the whole server instance.

Use Playlist 2 as alpha channel over Playlist 1

This can be achieved via any supported output card, which supports internal keying.
For this example we use the “Decklink Duo 2”. In PLAYDECK this sample will look like this:

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Settings for Internal Keying

Configure Decklink for Internal Keying

Open the Decklink setup utility “Desktop Video Setup” and set SDI 1+2 like this. This will be used for internal keying, where SDI 1 will receive the video signal from Playlist 1 and will key Playlist 2 over it and output the combined video via SDI 2.

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Settings for Internal Keying

Now you setup SDI 3 as standalone without keying. This will be used to send the video signal from Playlist 1 to Playlist 2 via SDI Loop.

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Settings for Internal Keying

Decklink SDI connections (Loop Cable and Output)

Use a short SDI cable and connect SDI 3 directly with SDI 1. We use this to feed the Playlist 1 signal via SDI 3 into the keying input SDI 1. Connect your final mixed output to SDI 2.

Setup PLAYDECK für Internal Keying

Channel 1 will send the video signal via SDI 3 to SDI 1 for mixing. Therefore you output Channel 1 like normal:

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Settings for Internal Keying

Channel 2 will receive the video layer on SDI 1. Now let PLAYDECK tell the Decklink to use Internal Keying to mix the Channel 2 signal over the one coming via SDI 1. Your final mixed output will be send to SDI 2.

PLAYDECK Professional Video Playback Playout Software for Windows * Settings for Internal Keying

PLAYDECK does not start

or PLAYDECK does not load videos

If you cannot start PLAYDECK for any other reason, or if PLAYDECK starts but doesnt work at all (not loading any videos), please try one of the solutions below.

Do a clean install

If PLAYDECK indeed DID run ok before, and suddenly stopped working or cannot start, please reinstall PLAYDECK and select “Reset all settings” during the installation.

Missing user rights or missing files

Please perform a new installation of PLAYDECK under the Windows user account under which PLAYDECK will be used later. If this is not possible, please install PLAYDECK as Windows Administrator. You can then start PLAYDECK from any admin and user account. PLAYDECK supports multiple user accounts.

Antivirus software is blocking PLAYDECK

Please check that PLAYDECK is not blocked or blacklisted in your antivirus software. You may need to add PLAYDECK.exe as an exception to your antivirus software:
c:\Program Files (x86)\JoyEventMedia\Playdeck\Playdeck.exe

Unfortunately, our license protection system is sometimes recognized as false positive by some antivirus programs. We are in regular exchange with all major antivirus manufacturers, but we cannot always exclude such a false-positive finding.

Windows Version Vista/7/8

PLAYDECK is not supported on older Windows Versions. Please use Windows 10 and 11 (32 or 64bit). Windows has ended official support for Windows 8 on Jan 2019.

Video Engine Error after Windows Sleep

This happens on some machines: Windows goes to Sleep (or Hibernation), and once it wakes up, PLAYDECK will not start and displays the Video Engine Error. You can try to install the GPU driver clean. If using NVidia, install the Studio driver and not the Game driver, as its more stable. Should this not work, you have to turn off Sleep/Hibernation.

Firewall is blocking access

PLAYDECK asks for firewall allowance during the first start. This looks like this:

If you accidently skipped this allowance, PLAYDECK may not work. You can later add this to your firewall manually:

Open Start Menu and start typing “firewall” and start “Firewall & network protection”.
Select “Allow an app through the firewall” and select “Change settings”.
Allow “JoyVideoEngine”. If not found, please add with “Allow another app..” and select
c:\Program Files (x86)\JoyEventMedia\Playdeck\engine\Win64\JoyVideoEngine.exe

PLAYDECK uses TCP Ports 15578-15581 to communicate with the above Video Engine.

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