SDI workflows can be very much dependent upon a number of factors, most notably the variation and quality of source streams being fed to Blackbird and also the formats and variety of encoding types in terms of frame rates, interlace and progressive types and any switching.

Typically Blackbird relies upon a predictable configuration since the end to end workflow is optimized for high volumes of content and publishing requirements from source media requires an understanding of the source formats in use.

Should any issues be experienced in ingesting a stream, this guide serves to assist in troubleshooting from a number of aspects of stream presence and format in the case of a non-ingesting item. Note that Blackbird will continue to try to ingest streams and will start an ingest when valid video is received.

Example Media view within Blackbird Control Centre for non-present/invalid SDI source

In progress item within Blackbird editor for non-present/invalid SDI source

Blackbird Control Centre with "Streaming" status but with no thumbnail for non-present/invalid SDI source

Select the Streaming item to expose the Ingest Log link

Typical log extract to show lack of valid input feed:

[/usr/bin/ftv_sdicapture] [Invalid video frame at 0.000000 - ignoring]
[/usr/bin/ftv_sdicapture] [Invalid video frame at 0.040000 - ignoring]

Typical log extract to show a format that is not matched the the stream configuration within Blackbird (this example had 1080i59.94 on the port but the signal was a 1080p29.97

[/usr/bin/ftv_sdicapture] [Invalid video frame at 0.000000 - ignoring]
[/usr/bin/ftv_sdicapture] VideoInputFormatChanged called with 1 and 0x7fccec005a20 and 1
[/usr/bin/ftv_sdicapture] Display mode is 1080p29.97 (0x48703239)
[/usr/bin/ftv_sdicapture] Size is 1920x1080
[/usr/bin/ftv_sdicapture] Dominance is 0x70726f67
[/usr/bin/ftv_sdicapture] [Invalid video frame at 0.033333333 - ignoring]

Note that an invalid SDI feed can be from a number of factors, most notably:

  • Bad cabling (particularly on high frame rate sources such as 1080p59.94)
  • Mismatch between source format and the ingest format within configuration
  • Missing source (incorrect routing or cabling)

Additional diagnosis can be done within the Blackbird Edge software by using the "Monitor" function of the Blackbird "Tape" pane for the specific port in question.

NOTE: Monitor will disable any remote control jobs running on the server

In addition to this, running the following command will show the SDI processes and any alerts relating to missing source media/timecode data:

ps aux | grep sdi

Typical result for a missing or invalid source would show processes like the example in the screenshot below. Two processes run, one for SDI capture and one for the encode job. The sdicapture process here lists "[NO-SIGNAL NO TIMECODE]" indicating that investigation should be performed on the source feed