Happy 2021 and after a slight break, we’re kicking off the New Year with another weekly RCS Live. This week we broke down all of the ways users can voice track, be it Zetta, Zetta2GO, Zetta Cloud Based Disaster Recovery, Live Event Links or utilizing Z-Cast and the Multi-Site Voice Tracking tool. Plus, we tossed in a couple tips, tricks and teasers for future Zetta releases.
Starting with traditional voice tracking, don’t forget that users can voice track any transition, not only the ones with Empty Voice Tracks positions or Live Event Links. Since Zetta utilizes GUIDs, Global Unique Identifiers, every single asset, voice track, and log transition is defined to avoid any unwanted plays. Simply click on an asset, open the Voice Tracker module and you’ll notice three tracks: that highlighted asset will be the tails/third track, the first track will be the previous asset and finally the middle track will be your voice track.
Start to understand the process of how you voice track and it will help super serve you in the long haul. Work smarter, not harder. For example, we recorded a voice track that included a mistake at the beginning, the middle and at the end of the voice track. If you know the beginning was recorded too early, no need to stop and re-record, simply give yourself a, “3..2..1..” countdown so that without previewing the audio, you can see the “3..2…1..” sinewave and then simply move your cursor to the left side of the voice track to highlight the Trim In function, left click and drag to the right to set the Trim In, which will ignore everything up to the Trim In point of your content break. The same applies for the end of the voice track, highlight the right side of the voice track, left click and drag to the left to set the Trim Out, skipping any audio after the red Trim Out line. If you made a mistake in the middle of the voice track, Zetta is equipped with a Single or Multi-Track Editor to fix any errors. Don’t forget, we made a change to that asset, which means we have a new GUID and we must fix the transition via the Segue Editor because we made a human change to the defined segue points.
Next, we talked about how to maximize your programming / scheduling with voice tracks. The traditional approach would be to schedule Empty Voice Track positions, but there is a really interesting concept with Live Event Links. First, enable the station specific setting via Configuration | Stations | Highlight the station and Playback | Treat Live Events as Voice Tracks (at the bottom). This will allow you to utilize the Live setting in GSelector and remember, this is a non-audio asset, so if you never voice track, then Zetta will simply skip over the Live Event when it’s queued up in the Sequencer. Note, there is a Live checkbox in GSelector to define the Live Event Link properties. Now that you have a Link that can be voice tracked, we can start to apply GSelector scheduling techniques. For example, if we have a song that has a zero second intro, we could create a second “extended intro” version, then using GSelector’s matching on Artist and Title (Setup | Station | Features | Attributes | Song Identification: Artist / Title), GSelector will combine both assets and treat them as one. Same history, scoring, analysis, etc… Then we can create Segue Bans like “Don’t schedule a Song with a zero second intro next to a Voice Track.” Instead, GSelector will know to grab the extended intro version, while maintaining the history of the zero second intro version. Programmers can also utilize a Link’s title to properly let the voice tracker know what they need to talk about during that voice track position. “Promo A” or “Speed Break” or “Talk about the Primary Promotion Here.” Users can also rotate these Links via a GSelector Linker Voice Track category for optimal rotations!
Users can also voice track remotely with Zetta2GO or Zetta Cloud Based Disaster Recovery. Zetta2GO remote users will need access to their local Zetta server, usually by a VPN. Remember, Zetta2GO is just a URL and respects Zetta’s usernames and passwords. For more Zetta2GO or Zetta Cloud Based Disaster Recovery information, please reference older blog posts. In regards to voice tracking, our developers are currently coding enhancements to include volume points and other existing Zetta voice tracking features to Zetta2GO. These features should be available Summer 2021. If you’re looking to maximize your on air talent, don’t forget that you can bookmark and have live access to multiple site’s Zetta2GOs. In this video, we demonstrated how I can voice track to three separate Zetta2GO / sites from my home studio. Think of it as having your Market A voice Market B’s weekend shift and Market B can voice track Market A’s weekend shift. Zetta2GO will respect your local Windows and Internet browser’s playback and recording devices. If you have a user who needs to bypass a VPN and your site is equipped with Zetta Cloud Based Disaster Recovery, then users can record over Empty Voice Track Positions and they’ll land in the corresponding Zetta for playback.
Finally, we reviewed Zetta’s Multi-Site Voice Tracking tool that allows users to voice track a single break to multiple destinations as defined by the Multi-Site Voice Tracking Manager. For this exercise, we followed the voice track. Behind the scenes, WRCS-FM Z-Casts audio and logs from the east coast to its affiliate / sister station KRCS-FM in the West Coast via a Zetta Virtual Station. Nate recorded the initial voice track in KRCS-FM’s Zetta2GO Virtual Station, which lands normally in KRCS-FM’s Zetta. Because they’re Z-Cast connected, once KRCS-FM sees there a new piece of audio in the log, it will send both the audio and the log changes over to WRCS-FM for further playback.
Zetta is extremely powerful and specializes in compound hybrid workflows. Using the Zetta2GO Multi-Site Voice Tracking example above, you can see how Administrators develop compound workflows so that one site can work and another site will inherit these changes or new audio. On top of that, once built within local Zetta, Zetta2GO can continue the workflow remotely, while a user operates Zetta from home, like a non-audio GPO trigger/macro via Zetta2GO Hot Keys.
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 Site Replication vs. Z-Cast, GSelector Enterprise Optimizations, 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. 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.