All-in-One Live Production System

  • Outline
  • Features
  • Documents

SmartDirect is a complete video production system that allows single operator to easily create an entire show. The system is based around an advanced 3D graphic engine, but adds a myriad of features including event list playback/control, CG Titles, Graphs, camera switching and video distribution IP streaming. In addition you can control outboard equipment such as video switchers and dedicated clip servers. A full sensor-less virtual studio is available as an option.

SmartDirect and content creation


1. Select a sample program

SmartDirect provides many sample programs to facilitate content creation. Select the program that best suits your application including news, sports or presentation.

2. Playlist edit

Make detailed edits to the selected sample program to suit the specific needs of your show. Create the playlist you imagined by adding segments, changing the order or using different templates.

3. Template edit

When your playlist is ready, edit the template content to match the needs or your production. You can finish your own original program by changing the content of the titles, switching data, changing colors and making other detailed revisions.

4. Program a Direct button function

You can program a Direct button with a specific function among the templates or playlists you want to operate directly, independent of the playlist workflow. This feature is perfect for productions without a specific timeline of events or when the unexpected happens during live production.

The Playlist and the Take Buttons

1. Load the program, and click the TAKE button!
It is that easy to start the playlist action for your live production.

All of the necessary operations are implemented automatically, such as switching cameras, turning captions on and off and playing back video. You can choose to automate everything, or leave a few steps for manual operation. Tasks that would normally require several behind-the-scenes staff members can now be performed by a single director.

2. Use Direct buttons for random events!

Occasionally, during an actual show, the action does not follow a playlist that has been finished in advance. When this happens, click the Direct button that you pre-programmed with specific actions like camera switching, titles or video playback. This feature means you can have a flexible production flow including the ability to improvise outside the set playlist that only a live performance can offer.

Hint on using the SmartDirect TAKE and Direct button features

  • Create a playlist for portions of your show that have a fixed flow of content such as the opening and ending, and then press TAKE!
  • Program a Direct button with actions such as switching cameras, turning captions on/off and playing back video for on-the-fly improvisation of content.

Main Features of SmartDirect


Program samples

  • A variety of pre-made Program Samples are provided with complete event lists and templates.
  • These can be modified for the specific needs of your video production, or you can create full programs from scratch.

Program sample selection screen

Playlist/Direct button

  • The Playlist enables a single operator to trigger all the graphics, titles, video playback and camera switching required for your production.
  • Program Samples contain playlists that can be modified for the specific needs of your production.
  • Playlists can also be created from scratch using simple operations to select the necessary items from the provided templates.
  • Templates are specific events in the playlist and cover CG Graphics, internal or external video playback, camera switching and more. Templates can be added to the playlist to be recalled in sequence or can be individually recalled and activated.
  • Direct buttons are used to trigger specific events in playlists. They are very useful when you need to change the order of events in the playlist or trigger specific events on the fly.

Playlist Screen


  • A wide variety of templates are provided for your production needs.
  • Graphic templates can be created using Adobe Photoshop®.
  • Full 3D graphic templates can be created using Brainstorm eStudio.
  • Template example

    Character generator

  • The Character generator easily creates a variety of titles and graphics, with or without animation.
  • It outputs Fill/Key signals for compositions using an external mixer.
  • Clip player

  • The Clip player allows you to play back internal video files.
  • It supports playback of HD resolution video in a variety of file types.
  • Map data

  • The Map data creates still images or animate maps.
  • It adds text or objects to maps.

Playlist 3D graph template 3D title template Weather forecast template
CG wipe template  P-in-P template

Streaming feature

  • SmartDirect features a newly developed internal pipeline that transfers the PGM output of SmartDirect to Internet video distribution software. This means that Smart Direct can also offer streaming to the Internet in a one box solution.
  • * You must sign up separately to the Internet video distribution service.

Optional Features

Virtual studio

  • This feature adds VRCAM-S, virtual studio capability
  • It allows sensor-less virtual camera motion
  • * Chroma-key blue/green cyc or backdrop required

Clip server link

  • The Clip server link controls external clip servers
  • It displays output images of the clip server as an input source
  • * Targeted models:MBP-100PD, MBP-100SX, MBP-110SXA

Video switcher link

  • An elaborate video switcher control provides a full range of switcher functions and effects including CG wipes or multi-screen wipes.
  • It enables playlist template control over the video switcher
  • * Targeted models: HVS-300HS, HVS-350HS

Examples of system configuration

Basic configuration of standalone SmartDirect

  • Enables video signal input to SmartDirect (HD/SD-SDI × 2)
  • Enables video output from SmartDirect (HD/SD-SDI × 4)
  • Provided with streaming video distribution function for uploading live video to the Internet via the Internet video distribution service.*

Basic configuration of SmartDirect connected with external equipment such as video switcher and clip server

  • Enables various types of video signal inputs to the video switcher
  • Sends control signals to all connected equipment (Ethernet, RS-422, etc.)
  • Enables signal input from a video switcher to SmartDirect (HD/SD-SDI)
  • Enables video output from SmartDirect (HD/SD-SDI × 2)
  • Provided with streaming video distribution function for uploading live video to the Internet via the Internet video distribution service.*

* You must sign up separately to the Internet video distribution service. Also separately procure the encoding software provided with support for each service. Be sure to comply with the terms and conditions of each video distribution service regarding distribution of the video content.

Turnkey system configuration equipment

  • PC: HP Z420 or equivalent
  • Graphics card: NVIDIA Quadro 2000 or equivalent
  • CG processor: MBP-1244
  • Production software: SmartDirect
  • CG rendering engine: Brainstorm Easy On Air Graphics
  • Various templates
  • HVS-300HS/HVS-350HS control plug-in software
  • MBP-100PD/MBP-100SX/MBP-110SXA control plug-in software
  • OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 32-bit SP1 or later


High Resolution Photos

Related Products


FOR-A’s HVS-4000 is a 2 M/E, 2.5 M/E, or 3 M/E multi format video switcher.


Announcing a 1.5M/E model in the FOR-A HVS-300 Series of portable video switchers noted for plentiful functions and excellent cost-performance.

HVS-300HS / 300RPS

The HVS-300HS and the HVS-300RPS is the newest addition to FOR-A’s popular Hanabi series and represents one of the most powerful, compact, broadcast level switchers on the market.

MFR-3232RPS / 3216RPS / 1616 / 1616R / 1616A

Multi-format routing switchers that support 3G-SDI, HD-SDI, SD-SDI, ASI, and AES signals.

MBP-100SX / 110SXA / 100PD

This converter is capable of mutual conversion between MXF (XDCAM) files and HD/SD-SDI signals.


The MBP-100MP is a 1RU size multi-format player offering HD-SDI output of miscellaneous files.


VRCAM, FOR-A's sensor-less virtual studio system enabling a virtual studio using a one-man-operated, no-cameraman environment, has been updated to the VRCAM2 with even more advanced features.


'digiStorm' is the state-of -the art on-air graphics solution created by the joint development efforts of FOR-A and Brainstorm Multimedia.


10 practical virtual CG sets in 1 package. CG resource collection for Brainstorm eStudio.