What equipment do you use for webcasting?

Discussions around receiving, originating, and holding Church broadcasts and conferences in meetinghouses including schedules, setup, equipment, and support.
CalS201
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Location: Sunnyvale, CA

What equipment do you use for webcasting?

Postby CalS201 » Wed Aug 26, 2015 2:16 pm

With the recent move by HQ to H.264 encoding we all have to change some of our webcasting equipment. I
thought it might be helpful if we polled everyone to see what we are each "presently" doing, and what we
plan to change for the "future". Feel free to add your configuration/plans to the discussion thread.


Here is what we do.

PRESENT CONFIGURATION
=====================
VIDEO EQUIPMENT
3 EVI-D70 PTZ cameras
Ipad with AV connections to plays church Videos 1 hr before conference.
DataVideo SE-500 video mixer
TeleMetrics PTZ Controller

AUDIO EQUIPMENT
3 audio inputs (chapel PA, choir mic, iPad)
Behringer 1204 mixer
"ORBAN Loudness Meter" pgm (free) to monitor "integrated loudness" levels.

CAPTURE CARD/WEBCAST ENCODER EQUIPMENT
Osprey 230 Capture Card
Dell Dual-Core-AMD Windows7 computer with Church's Webcast pgm.

RECEIVING BLDGS
Dell Dual-Core Laptop in each bldg

COMMENTS
We have a portable system that allows us to rotate the originating webcast through all 4 of our bldgs.
One CAT5 cable carrys power, video, and RS232 PTZ signal to/from each camera.




FUTURE CONFIGURATION
====================
VIDEO, AUDIO, & RECEIVING BLDGS EQUIPMENT
No change

CAPTURE CARD/WEBCAST ENCODER EQUIPMENT
MonoPrice Composite to HDMI Converter
VidiU H.264 Encoder

COMMENTS:
We want to keep using multiple cameras (we're spoiled I guess). New HD PTZ cameras & mixers are presently
quite expensive so we plan to stay with our SD resolution equipment. We are unhappy with HQs 500kbps
receiving bitrate limitation of the new system on dual-core computers so we are looking at using a different CDN.

rolandc
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Re: What equipment do you use for webcasting?

Postby rolandc » Wed Aug 26, 2015 3:41 pm

We use the 79.00$ option

http://www.streamingvideoprovider.com/prices.html

HD looks fantastic too.

No stress great bandwidth, just works. Pay as needed.


TVone makes a much better Scaler than the monoprice unit. If you do get the monoprice, unplug it when not using it as it does get hot.
Roland

CalS201
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Re: What equipment do you use for webcasting?

Postby CalS201 » Wed Aug 26, 2015 6:02 pm

What do you use for cameras, mixers, encoder, etc.

rolandc
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Re: What equipment do you use for webcasting?

Postby rolandc » Thu Aug 27, 2015 4:22 am

PTZ Optics 20x SDI

Teradek Vidiu

With just one camera, we setup and control all of it with a cellphone. I like simple. Both have apps.

All equipment is permanently mounted.

We do use a Shure M367 mixer and 100 snake to control all the mics including the wireless.

I sit in the overflow and control the mics as it give me a better perspective on how they sound.
Roland

weldon
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Re: What equipment do you use for webcasting?

Postby weldon » Sat Nov 14, 2015 8:36 pm

VIDEO
1x Sony SD PTZ Camera mounted in chapel above exit door
1x cruddy fixed security camera mounted in same location (ugh, the picture is so ugly I can't even stand to use it)
1x borrowed SD camera
Blackmagic Design Production Studio 4K video mixer (in the library)
Blackmagic Design Intensity Extreme capture box (my personal unit)
Wirecast Play (streaming to private YouTube channel) - we may swap this out for the Vidiu unit now that we finally received it
video is also routed to the coax distribution system on channel 6 for use in the RS and primary rooms for overflow, and for the meeting house across the parking lot.

AUDIO
16 input snake on rostrum routed back to mixer at back of chapel overflow (in front of cultural hall)
audio out goes back to the podium to run into the automixer and 70V overhead speakers
we have 4 choir mics on tall stands and other mics for flute, violin, soloists, etc. typically we have 6-8 mics total. We're doing a Christmas concert that will have 14-16 mics.

I'd like to get 1 or 2 used Sony BRC-300 cameras for around $600 each to replace the fixed security camera and add a third camera on a tripod.

kaaloa
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Re: What equipment do you use for webcasting?

Postby kaaloa » Sat Feb 20, 2016 8:24 pm

I am a new STS, but have been doing live tv production for a few decades now. I primarily do A2 (set up audio at events with the A1 being the one on the board), but have experience with most aspects of the biz. Up until I got here, they have been using webcast with a single consumer camera taking in audio after the potentiometer. That has actually served its purpose. We recently received our vidiu so am in the process of building a system around that which is hdmi. I basically have about $1k per year to build the system so will be using my own gear for many years to come.

So, we started with a Roland v-1hd mainly because is a sub $1k (actually right at $1k so this year's tech budget is gone).
I am using my own cameras (Sony PMW-100 and Canon C100) using the hdmi output routed via 35' powered hdmi cables straight into the switcher. I will probably be using my Gopro mounted high up as a crowd shot for the 3rd input and maybe an iPad or one of my MacBook Pros to run prebroadcast spots or whatevers.

For audio, I am just using podium audio split under the podium into my Sennheiser ew100 G3 cube (the other end goes into the house jack like normal) and received into my Sony (for convenience, but could also go into my Canon) and transported through the hdmi feed into the switcher and controlled through the Roland app.

Coming out of the switcher, preview feed goes into a monitor so I can see each input. The program feed goes into a Blackmagic Ultrastudio Mini Recorder to convert the signal from hdmi to thunderbolt and then fed into my MacBook Pro which is running Wirecast. Wirecast is mainly for lower thirds of speakers and for hymn text. In the future, I plan to have b-roll of different Lds related spot arounds the island that I can use as cut-ins like how general conference has showing outside shots.

Coming out of my MBP via HDMI, it goes into a KanexPro 1x4 HDMI powered splitter. Output 1 goes to a monitor so I can see program. Output 2 goes into the vidiu and out of the building via Cat6e cable run straight to the modem. Output 3 goes to a KanexPro HDMI to composite and into the house jack to be distributed for projection. I gotta work on this as the output image is over scanned and looks terrible. I plan to reterminate the jacks with 75 ohm connectors and run hd-sdi so I can have hd to the projectors rather than crappy sd. I may have to get a few sdi to hdmi converters at the projector end so it can take take the feed.

For projectors, we just have 3 fm Epson projectors which works fine for our needs. I have a lot of hope for upping the production value of the broadcasts for our stake.

Moku

aaronrsmith
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Re: What equipment do you use for webcasting?

Postby aaronrsmith » Tue Mar 22, 2016 10:30 pm

We are a relatively new stake and just purchased 3 brc-300 cameras on ebay, along with a controller, atem studio 4k, and analog to sdi gear to get the svideo from 3 cameras into the atem, sdi to analog to get it out of the atem to the rf modulator/slingbox, and sdi to vga to feed the 2 projectors in the cultural hall over existing coax, and sdi to hdmi + hdmi replicator to feed monitors on the rostrum for the leadership and choir.

We also updated the receiving buolding by implementing hdmi to sdi from the receiving clerk computer at the rostrum, sdi 4:1 distribution, and sdi to hdmi in 4 peripheral rooms for audio+video distribution within the remote building, where there is no church modulator system. This replaced a cheap consumer-grade vga to composite and composite rf modulator distribution system that had very poor picture quality and was difficult to keep working.

We are still using the church rf modulator for peripheral rooms in the stk cntr. We just had a very successful stake conference, but did use a slingbox to send video to the remote building since the church webcasting solution failed miserably at dryrun during the early morning leadership meeting.

Using sdi & vga dramatically improved the clarity of the picture in the cultural hall over the composite signal, even though the resolution is just 480i.

We will soon be installing an inexpensive ubiquity wifi link between buildings which will eliminate the 2Mbps uplink bandwidth limit at the stk center. Finally, the next upgrade hopefully will be a blackmagic design sync generator to feed the cameras and atem to significantly reduce the lip sync issues caused by frame alignment delay at the atem.

harddrive
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Re: What equipment do you use for webcasting?

Postby harddrive » Wed Mar 23, 2016 6:28 am

aaronrsmith, all I can say is WOW on your set up. It's interesting that you were able to get 3 BRC-300 cameras and use them all. My FM director has told us that we are not to make stake conference into production, so we have been limited to one camera.

When you say that you "will soon be installing an inexpensive ubiquity wifi link between buildings which will eliminate the 2 Mbps uplink bandwidth limit" are your building that close to allow you to do wireless?

Are you going to be doing the encoding at the stake center and then have everyone connect to it?

If it was me, this sounds like you are making something very complicated that no one will be able to come in behind you to run the system. I know that I'm working to make our system a turn key system so that my replacement will be able to pick up and keep moving forward without having to kick in a huge learning curve.

Look forward to hearing back on this.
Terry

aaronrsmith
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Re: What equipment do you use for webcasting?

Postby aaronrsmith » Sat Mar 26, 2016 11:13 am

Our two buildings are less than two miles apart, so the ubiquity wifi/microwave link should work very well. To be fair, we intended to purchase two cameras, but between the two STS's buying stuff we accidentally got 3. The presidency was ok with keeping the extra one. This last conference we used tripods, but intend to permanently mount at least two of them. One camera has a slight issue with rotation, so it could be a 2.5 camera situation soon.

The SDI sounds complex, but the beauty of it is that it uses simple coax, it's really pretty plug and play, and it just works perfectly and reliably. Having last-minute problems from marginal tech is not fun.

My description sounded complicated when re-reading it, but it's really just sdi adapters on the ends of the same coax cables - easy to understand and use when you see it.

The receiving building had cheap consumer-grade vga to composite, followed by composite to RF which was distributed throughout the building, and the quality was terrible. The new SDI solution just changed out the rf distribution amp in the attic for SDI, and put new boxes at the sending and receiving ends of the same coax cables. It is still simple to setup, and is fully digital and hd-capable. The complication we had this time was getting audio to both the TVs and the chapel sound system. The receiving computer would do hdmi audio or analog audio, but not both. We ended up using a mixer owned by the other STS as a quick solution.

The slingbox could be used over the ubiquity link, or we might repurpose an old clerk machine (if an athlon II will work...) as a media server for the vidiu and have the remote building connect to it. It just needs to shuffle packets, not transcode, so maybe it will work.

Once we get everything permanently installed, it should be pretty turn-key. The ATEM can be used simply for basic cuts and transitions from the software interface, or in a more complex way with xkey and so forth for those that want to do that.

aaronrsmith
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Re: What equipment do you use for webcasting?

Postby aaronrsmith » Sat Mar 26, 2016 4:27 pm

I just wanted to add or clarify that our first priority isn't the tech, but to present conference in a way that helps the viewers to feel part of the meeting, without drawing attention to itself. For us, that includes proper lip sync (even within the stake center), a clean picture, good audio quality & volume, and some variety in camera angles without jarring video transitions or live panning (and the ability to avoid the choir members dozing or chatting behind the speaker!). It might be gravy, but our stake members really appreciate on-screen hymn lyrics.

We had a one-time opportunity this year to put in place infrastructure to support many years of future broadcasts, and chose to go with SDI for its robustness/quality, ability to handle HD in the future, use of existing coax, and ATEM compatibility. It was reasonably cost-competitive with other low-latency (lip sync friendly) hd-capable video distribution technologies available.

We are blessed with leadership that understands and values the contribution that tech can make to the work in the stake. The STSs do stay quite busy supporting conferences, stake and ward activities, and the various youth camps and activities where speakers & audio are required.


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