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Setup of NewTek/Wowza MediaDS

November 13, 2017 by Chuck Baker

MediaDS is a 4-channel real-time media encoding and live streaming video delivery platform, combining NewTek's live production technologies and platform with Wowza's streaming technologies. With this integrated production system, content creators are able to directly distribute to their desired audiences, in-house on the local network or around the world on the internet. They can also direct their content live to many social media platforms or to many major content delivery networks for even larger scale distribution, all with easy presets built into the software.
This tutorial assumes that you are adding the MediaDS to an existing studio where there are existing SDI sources to attach to the MediaDS, and NDI® video sources on the network for MediaDS to see and acquire.


Monitors, mouse, keyboard, power, network and external audio and video sources are connected to the appropriate connectors and I/O ports on MDS1’s backplate.

backplate for MediaDS, hardware connections

1. DVI – monitor port
2. HDMI – monitor port
3. Ethernet – network connection
4. USB – connect keyboard, mouse and other peripheral devices
5. Motherboard audio connectors
6. Video In (SDI)
7. Audio In – 6x ¼” jacks in pairs, inputs 2-4 (input 1, at right, uses balanced line level XLR connectors)
8. Unused
9. Power

Setup First Steps:

  1. Connect an external computer monitor to either the DVI or HDMI port on the backplate (see diagram above).
  2. Connect mouse and keyboard to backplate USB ports.
  3. Connect the power cord to the MediaDS backplate.
  4. Turn on the computer monitor.
  5. Press the Power switch on MediaDS’s faceplate (located behind the drop-down door).
At this point, the blue Power LED will illuminate, as the device boots up. (If this does not happen, check your connections and retry).
Though not a requirement, we do strongly recommend that you connect MediaDS using a pure-sine-wave, power-conditioning Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS), as for any ‘mission critical’ system. Power conditioners can reduce wear on MediaDS’s power supply and other electronics, and provide a further measure of protection from surges, spikes, lightning and high voltage.


On first launch, you will be asked to accept end user license agreements for MediaDS software components from both NewTek and Wowza, and to supply relevant registration information. The software will step you through the process.


Generally, simply connecting a suitable cable from an Ethernet port on MediaDS’s backplate to your local network is all that is required to add it to a local area network (LAN). In some settings, additional steps may be required. You can access the system Network and Sharing control panel to accomplish more extensive configuration tasks. If further help connecting is required, please consult your system administrator.

Attach Video and Audio Sources

Attach any 3G-SDI/HD-SDI/SDI video/audio or video sources and any separate audio sources to the appropriate inputs on the MediaDS.


With the connections in place and first startup and registration out of the way, let's take a look at the UI and select some sources on our channels.

MediaDS UI screenshot guide

In the screenshot above, we are looking at the MediaDS UI configured for four viewports, one for each channel. In the top and bottom bars of the UI are controls for MediaDS overall, and below each channel viewport are controls specific to the channel.

MediaDS UI System Configuration Panel

The first thing you should do is configure MediaDS to the correct Video Standard for the type of video sources you might typically connect in your part of the world, PAL or NTSC. To do so, click the configuration gear beside the clock in the titlebar of the MediaDS Desktop, labeled "5" in our screenshot above. This will open the System Configuration panel shown above.
Having chosen either PAL or NTSC, close the System Configuration panel.

MediaDS UI with Channel Configuration Panel open, video source menu pulldown open

When you mouse over the Channel label a configuration gear button will appear (Item 1 circled in the image above). Clicking the gear opens the Channel's Configuration panel. You can also double-click the viewport to quickly access the Configuration panel for a channel. You can select from various audio and video sources for each of the four channels via the Configure Channel panel.
To select the video source for the channel, go to the Video Source entry and click the arrow to get the pulldown menu (Item 2 circled in the image above). On the menu you can see the video sources available to the MediaDS. These may be:
  • IP cameras on the network
  • The internal black source or the video sources attached to the four SDI inputs of the MediaDS under the Local section of the menu
  • Inputs and outputs being provided as NDI sources by NewTek production systems on the network, each system showing as a separate, labeled section on the menu.
Select a source for the channel, and close the menu and the panel. You can repeat the process for each viewport.
That's it for initial setup. Now you are ready to set up streaming. We will have two tutorials on that, one for local streaming and one for streaming to a social network or CDN.
Learn more about MediaDS™
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