Client-server playout solution for the Mac

OnTheAir Node has been designed to be an inexpensive, reliable and customisable video server that has an open client-server architecture. OnTheAir Node can be controlled remotely over the network. One client computer in a control room can control multiple OnTheAir Node playout servers located in the machine room.
With its unequaled openness, OnTheAir Node brings a new era to the world of Mac based playout servers. OnTheAir Node allows third party applications such as Traffic and Media Asset Management solutions to easily take control of a reliable playout server with real-time media cataloging and validation.
OnTheAir Node uses the same playout engine as OnTheAir Video.

Playout multiple channels on one Mac

With OnTheAir Node unequaled efficiency, you can playout 8 streams of HD simultaneously on one Mac. OnTheAir Node's Smart Playout Engine is the same engine as OnTheAir Video. It can play multiple streams on one Mac (without Dynamic Graphics Overlay, and streaming options).

Media Management and Validation

OnTheAir Node will not only output video to any of the available video output on the Mac, and allow it to be controlled remotely, but it will also catalog the available assets in one or more media folder and it will inform any of the client application (OnTheAir Live or OnTheAir Manager) when a new asset arrives or is deleted. It will also check for validity and compatibility. Information on the clips can be retrieved using a RESTful API, making it easy for any other third party application to retrieve the clip's characteristics. (Ex: video codec, audio sample rate, creation date, last modification date, finder label etc.)

Supports NDI® Output

NDI® is an open, low-latency, video-over-IP protocol developed by NewTek, Inc. It uses a simple gigabit ethernet cable to transmit video and audio over a local area network between multiple video systems. Now, thanks to NDI®, you can transfer HD and 4K video over a simple Ethernet cable. There is no need for additional routers or even SDI cables anymore, further demonstrating the ease-of-use and reliability of our products. NDI® opens the world to a different way of doing video production and to an ecosystem of devices supporting the protocol.
NDI® is a registered trademark of NewTek, Inc.

Integrate with third party solutions (Traffic or MAM)

OnTheAir Node’s open architecture will allow any third party application as Traffic or Media Asset Management software to control the playout and see the list of available media. OnTheAir Node uses a HTTP REST API for its communications meaning that the protocol is a proven and open standard that doesn’t need any special requirements.

GPI Control and Viderouter controls

Send GPI triggers from OnTheAir Node to a video mixer or any GPI compatible device to take control of it thanks to our GPICommander box which connects in USB to your Mac and provides 24 inputs and 8 outputs of GPI.

You can also control video routers very easily. Blackmagic-Design Videohub and AJA Kumo routers have a dedicated plugin that connects through the Network to take control of the crosspoints. That is with this type of control that our users handle Live events in their 24/7 playout.

Attributes for secondary events

Thanks to its flexible system of "Attributes", OnTheAir Node can take control of multiple external devices such as video routers (through RS232 or Ethernet), Character Generators, logo inserters (using GPI triggers). Attributes are changed for the whole length of a clip and reverted back to the default value at the end.

The logic of Attributes make it very easy to handle in broadcast operations. Attributes always have a default value (such as logo on, or GPI on), and you decide to modify the default value only on the clips you want (set logo off for commercials for example).

Mix-and-match multiple codecs

Play multiple codecs, file types, formats and frame rates in the same playlist. Support for Apple ProRes®, AVC-Intra, Avid DNxHD®, H.264, HEVC, XDCAM and many more codecs. Multiple file types are supported: movie files (such as .mov, .MXF, .M2T, .M4V), still images or sound. (Check the list in the Tech Specs section.)

Secondary Audio Output

Additionally to the video output on the selected video device, you can now also output to another available audio output on your Mac. Works with CoreAudio, so supports the audio devices that are available for macOS (including Dante or MADI).

Stream on the same Mac

If you are a Web-TV broadcasting only to the web, you will love this feature. With OnTheAir Video and the Softron Streaming Pack in MovieRecorder, you can stream your video directly to YouTube, Facebook, Twitch or your Wowza or RTMP Server. No need to have a video output device.

For Live or 24/7 unattended

If you are producing a live show, control OnTheAir Node with OnTheAir Live (FREE) to have a playlist type of application. If you are running a TV channel, control OnTheAir Node with OnTheAir Manager (paid option), it has a beautiful Calendar type of application where you can create events, playlists, handle redundancy, have attributes hierarchy and categories, add live clips. All that in a very easy-to-use application.

Add dynamic graphics with OnTheAir CG (option)

Combined with OnTheAir CG you can add Dynamic Graphics Overlay using the same video output (does not require an additional card thanks to the direct link between OnTheAir Node and OnTheAir CG). Create stunning dynamic graphics in the free OnTheAir CG Designer application, import it in OnTheAir CG Server to control from OnTheAir Node. You can give a default status to each project, and change variables, so for example if you need to add coming next, you can have just one project and just modify the text and the image used.

World Class Support

Support is included in our permanent licenses. There are no recurring fees
Softron has a worldwide network of highly skilled specialists to help you.
Setting up our software is simple and straight forward. But we are always happy to help you!
Our customers love our products and our support.

Buy or Upgrade

Make sure to test with our free DEMO version available for download before purchasing so you are sure it fits your need. In DEMO mode, the application will burn a blue frame in the recorded file or at output at some intervals. That's the only limitation and difference. After your test, you will keep on using the same application, just with the demo mode unlocked.

You may also need

OnTheAir Node is ideal for News production or Live Shows. Plays most codecs, mix-and-match resize, GPI triggers, Cue mode, seamless playback, multiple outputs on one Mac, clip trimming, clip end behaviours, scrubbing,...

What's new in Version 4 ?
OnTheAir Video
OnTheAir Node
Full Compatibility with macOS Big Sur (or later)
NDI Compatibility with Mac Silicon Computers
Video Preview + Audio Vu-Meters
Secondary Audio Output
Built-in Dynamic Graphics Overlay (Requires DGO option)

Only with OnTheAir CG
New Completely Revamped Scheduler

Scheduling done with OnTheAir Manager
Stream Clips
Improved Actions

Secondary events are done with attributes
Countdown Until next Live Event
Auto-update Modified Clips
Automatic Folder-based Playlist
Audio Countdown Annoucements
New Controls in Inspector Timeline (go to TC in current position field)
Shuffle Playback
Rename Clips
Disable Clips
New Clip End Behaviours ("Cue Next Clip" and "Play Next"")
Auto-cue Next Clip

In OnTheAir Live
Add Comments in playlist
Support for DNxHR and AVC-Intra-200
Validation Report
Support for OP47 Subtiltling (Requires CC option)
Support for .SRT sidecars files with Closed Captioning (CEA608, CEA708) and OP47 (Requires CC option)
Support for .STL sidecars files with OP47 (Not with CEA608, CEA708 - Requires CC option)
Support for SCTE-35 triggers(Requires CC option)
Ability to control a VideoHub or a Ross video router

Supported Devices
OnTheAir Video
OnTheAir Node
Devices from AJA and Blackmagic-Design
External Audio Output
Main Features
OnTheAir Video
OnTheAir Node
Smart Resize and Graphics
Dynamic Graphics Overlay (With OnTheAir CG)
Dynamic Graphics Overlay (with paid DGO option built-in)
Video Preview + Audio Vu-Meters
Secondary Audio Output
Stream Clips
Actions (for Secondary Events)
Other Features
OnTheAir Video
OnTheAir Node
Countdown Until next Live Event
Auto-update Modified Clips
Automatic Folder-based Playlist
Audio Countdown Annoucements
Shuffle Playback
Rename Clips
Disable Clips
Auto-cue Next Clip

In OnTheAir Live
Add Comments in playlist
Validation Report

In OnTheAir Manager
Support for OP47 Subtiltling (Requires CC option)
Support for .SRT sidecars files with Closed Captioning (CEA608, CEA708) and OP47 (Requires CC option)
Support for .STL sidecars files with OP47 (Not with CEA608, CEA708 - Requires CC option)
Integration & Control
OnTheAir Video
OnTheAir Node
Remotely Control other OnTheAir Video (Express)

Not available yet

Not available yet
Remotely Controllable using a REST API
Trigger Actions (Secondary Events)

Using Actions

Using Attributes
Send SCTE-35 triggers (in SDI - Requires CC option)
Control VideoHub or Ross video router
Control by GPI triggers (Requires GPICommander box)
Send GPI triggers (Requires GPICommander)
Control from Elgato's Stream Deck
Controllable via AppleScript
macOS compatibility
Big Sur
High Sierra
El Capitan
M. Lion
3.6 to 3.7  
3.2 to 3.5     
3.0 to 3.1     
Specs and Requirements
Required Version by some macOS Version macOS 10.13 to macOS 10.15: Version 3.6 or later (For dongle compatibility)
macOS 11 or later: Version 4.0 or later (Because of UI glitches in the playlist playback controls)
Recommended macOS (for latest version) macOS 10.15.5 or later*
Supported Mac computers
Intel Processors:
  • Version 3.0 until 3.8:  Warning there is an issue with the graphics cards of the latest Intel MacBook Pros and Intel iMacs (not on Apple Silicon and only with version 3 of OnTheAir Video, OnTheAir Node or OnTheAir CG, there is no issue with version 4 of these applications). Except for this limitation, all other computers should work provided the required macOS version above can be installed, and you have the appropriate resources for what you need to achieve. Don't do 4K on a 2010 MacBook Air...
  • Version 4.0 and later: A graphics card that supports Metal is required for the SMART Resize and Graphics option (OnTheAir Video and OnTheAir Node).
Apple Silicon Processors: Version 4.0 and later
WARNING: With Apple Silicon processors, some third party libraries may not be able to run natively, so will have lower performances. Other libraries may not run at all. Check the following article to know more
Recommended RAM 4 GB for the first channel. Then add 2GB per additional channel.
Supported Graphics Cards
Version 3.0 until 3.8: A graphics card that supports Metal is recommended. WARNING: the latest Intel MacBook Pros and Intel iMacs (not on Apple Silicon) have a bug with macOS OpenGL, and you won't be able to use the SMART playout engine of OnTheAir Video 3, OnTheAir Node 3 or OnTheAir CG 3 (there is no issue with version 4 of these applications). More info here...
Version 4.0 and later: Requires a graphics card that supports Metal for the SMART Resize and Graphics option (OnTheAir Video and OnTheAir Node)... Check the list of Macs that support Metal.
Supported Outputs AJA, Blackmagic-Design, Deltacast, NDI. Make sure to check the required drivers depending on the macOS and Softron software version
Hardware acceleration to decode Apple ProRes
Supported hardware: MacBook Pro M1 Max, or 2019 Mac Pro with an "Afterburner card"
Required macOS version: macOS 10.15.2 or later
Required software version: OnTheAir Video Express, OnTheAir Video or OnTheAir Node version 3.8 or later.
Hardware acceleration to decode H.264 Intel Processors: With all Mac computers with i5 or i7 processors, running macOS 10.9.5 or later for one channel. macOS 10.13 or later is required for multichannel support.
Apple Silicon Processors: All models support hardware acceleration, but they are more optimised for HEVC, so we recommend using HEVC whenever possible
Hardware acceleration to decode H.265 / HEVC Intel Processors: With all Mac computers with 6th generation of intel processors (2016 and later), running macOS 10.13 or later. Macs with M1 chips or later can support multichannels as well.
Apple Silicon Processors: All models support hardware acceleration, and are optimised for HEVC
Compatible Storage Most storage that can sustain the required constant read speed (depending on the number of channels, the codec and format). If you need to run tests, make sure to do long term tests.
Requires Monitor Connected Yes. Even if it should behave fine in most cases, it is recommended to keep a monitor connected at all times for best performances. Or you should make the macOS think that there is a monitor connected. Beware of some KVM switches that can cause interrupts in the signal.
Number of license required One complete license required per channel (source).
Codecs Support

Video Codecs

Apple ProRes 422 Family (Proxy, 422, LT, HQ)
Apple ProRes 4444 (4444, XQ)
AVC-Intra (50, 100, 200)
Avid DNxHD
Avid DNxHR
DVCPro 50
MPEG IMX (30/40/50)
MPEG-4 Video

Audio Codecs

Apple Lossless
Linear PCM

Video Wrappers

QuickTime (MOV)
Transport Stream (ts)

Still Image Formats

GIF **
JPEG 2000

* HEVC requires macOS 10.13 or later and a computer using a Intel Core processor Skylake or later (available in 2016 on the Mac)

** Only first image.

Important Note: Some of the codecs above such as H.264 or MPEG2 can have a lot of variants. This is why we always recommend to have a procedure on how to create the files you put on air. So you are sure it will always behave well. If you receive files from external sources and you don't know how they were generated, it's always a good idea to test them before putting them on air. You can even test them on a different computer with a demo version of one of our playout application.

Supported Inputs & Outputs
Application Version First Supported Drivers Last Supported Drivers
Version 4.0 and later Intel: 15.0
Apple Silicon: 16.1
Version 3.8 15.0 latest
Version 3.7 12.4.2 latest
Version 3.4.x until 3.6.x 12.4.2 14.3
Version 3.3.x 12.1.2 14.3
Version 3.2.x 10.5.2 12.2.2
Version 3.0 until 3.1 10.5.2 10.6.1


  • Some AJA devices need to use the latest SDK in our applications. Make sure to check which application version support your device in our help center article.
Application Version First Supported Drivers Last Supported Drivers
Version 4.0 and later Intel: 11.0 or later
Apple Silicon: 12.0 or later
latest drivers
Version 3.8 11.0 latest drivers
Version 3.6 and 3.7 10.9.5 latest drivers
Version 3.2 until 3.5 10.3.1 latest drivers
Version 3.0 until 3.1 9.9.3 10.3.7


  • macOS 11 (Big Sur) requires Blackmagic-Design drivers 11.7 or later.
Application Version First Supported Drivers Last Supported Drivers
Version 4.0.1 and later Intel: 6.15.01
Apple Silicon: 6.17 Universal beta 1
Intel: latest version
Apple Silicon: latest version
Version 3.8 until 4.0 5.21 latest version
Version 3.5.4 until 3.7 5.21 latest version
Version 3.4 until 3.5.1 5.21 6.01.01 (but not 6.0 nor 6.01)
Version 3.0 until 3.3.x 5.17 5.18


  • macOS 10.15 (Catalina) requires drivers version 6.13 or later
  • You should only download the Deltacast drivers from our website. Indeed we validate them with our applications before putting them online.
Feature First Version
First version with NDI for Intel 3.5
First version with NDI for Apple Silicon 4.0
About these specifications

We know that some of our users can not upgrade their macOS very often. This is why Softron tries to maintain compatibility with older versions of macOS as much as possible, but it is not always possible to achieve. Because Operating Systems are usually significantly improved over previous versions, Softron must use many of the more capable built-in functionalities inherent in Apple's latest OS releases. Failing to do so would mean that Softron software would essentially be blocked from using the new Frameworks provided in the OS. For this reason, Softron's free support is provided only on the current and previous macOS versions. Also, most of our tests will be done on these macOS versions, and only basic tests will be done on the previous OS. We will always try to help, but in some cases, the best solution is to upgrade your macOS to a more recent version.

Softron does not warrant that these recommended configurations will always meet specific user requirements. They are intended as guidelines and are based on extensive testing that Softron has done, they can be changed without notice. Hardware, drivers, software and operating systems change regularly and we advise users and prospective users to evaluate their requirements in their specific environment/workflow using Softron demo licenses that are available for downloading from Softron's web site.

OnTheAir Video Node 4
Pre-release Version (Universal)
OnTheAir Node 3
Version 3.8.4 - 16 March 2020

Useful Resources

Installation instructions

Once downloaded, unzip the file, and double-click on the installer to start the installation.

Make sure also to download and install the drivers for your video device:

AJA Drivers
Blackmagic-Design Drivers
Deltacast Drivers
For Intel and Silicon

Accessory Software

To analyze as-run-logs, download the LogAnalyzer application.

Analyze As-Run Logs

DEMO Limitations

In DEMO mode, the application will burn a blue frame in the recorded file or at output at some intervals. That's the only limitation and difference. After your test, you will keep on using the same application, just with the demo mode unlocked.

How to unlock the DEMO version ?

Purchase a license through one of our resellers or the Softron online store, then just activate your serial number in the License window or plug your dongle in the computer.

Upgrade/Update instructions

Just download the latest version and replace your previous version. It is always recommended to run extensive tests with your specific workflow and setup before putting a new version in production. You can use a free demo version for that on a separate computer. Previous legacy versions are available from the general downloads page.

You do not need to deactivate and reactivate your serial number when updating your Softron software. Read the following article to know when to deactivate.

This software uses code of FFmpeg, licensed under the LGPLv2.1 and its source can be downloaded here.

Legacy versions
OnTheAir Node 3.7.8
17 June 2019
OnTheAir Node 3.6.5
6 July 2018
OnTheAir Node 3.5.4
26 June 2017
OnTheAir Node 3.4.2
10 February 2017
OnTheAir Node 3.3.10
18 October 2016
OnTheAir Node 3.2.2
6 June 2015
OnTheAir Node 1.2.38
18 June 2014


This software uses code of FFmpeg, licensed under the LGPLv2.1 and its source can be downloaded here.

This software uses the MediaInfo library, Copyright (c) 2002-2022 SARL.