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Meetinghouse Webcast Video & Cameras

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All content on this page is moving to LDS Help Center under the Meetinghouse Technology topic. This page was supposed to be deleted at the end of October 2012.


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See Also: Get Answers about Video & Cameras


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Video equipment

The camera is a primary component of Meetinghouse Webcast. Additional video equipment can be incorporated into your webcast solution.

Camera

Camera requirements

Meetinghouse webcasts require a high quality video camera. The camera used should include the following functionality:

  • 10X optical zoom lens
  • Auto focus
  • Low light sensitivity
  • Option to disable “auto shutoff” when not recording (allowing video to be streamed without recording)
  • At least one composite video out (RCA) port or one S-video outport
  • Ability to not display timestamp or other camera display information in video output

Several cameras available in the market will meet these requirements. Provided it meets these requirements, an existing camera can be used or a new camera can be purchased in your local area.

Video formats

Video format standards vary around the world. For example, NTSC is the standard video format in the United States, while in Europe PAL is the standard. Determine what video standard is common in your location. Normally, the documentation that comes with your camera will identify what type of video formats your camera supports.

If you are using Meetinghouse Webcast Software, check with the documentation included with your video capture device or card to ensure your video capture device will support the format your camera supports. If you are using the Meetinghouse Webcast Communicator, you can capture or accept video in the following formats:

  • NTSC
  • NTSC-Japan
  • PAL-BDGHI
  • PAL-M
  • PAL-N
  • PAL-NC
  • SECAM

The Webcast Communicator menu interface will give you the option to identify the format your camera uses to send video.

Comparison of camera types

Multiple video cameras (brands and models) will work to capture the video and audio for your webcast. The table below compares two types of cameras available in North America. This comparison is intended to give you some idea of what to look for in a camera for your webcasts.

Brand and Model Sony EVI-D70 (Commercial Grade Camera) Sony
DCR-HC52 (Consumer Grade Camera)
Image Sony EVI-D70.png Sony DCR-HC52.png
Zoom 18x Optical / 12x Digital 40x Optical / 2000x Digital
Autofocus Yes Yes
Low light sensitivity Yes Yes
Disable "Auto Shutoff" Yes Yes
Video output S-Video and Composite S-Video, Composite, and IEEE 1394
Disable time stamp Yes Yes
Resolution 380k pixels 340k pixels
Custom presets Yes Yes
Lens f=1.4 to 73.8mm, F1.4 to 3.0 f=1.9 to 76mm, F1.8 to 4.1
Remote controllable Yes No
Viewfinder No 2.5" touch panel LCD display
Desktop or ceiling mount installation Yes No
Video signal NTSC, PAL NTSC
Approximate retail cost $900 - $1,450 USD $175 - $300 USD


Other video equipment

  • Video cables and adapters
  • Video mixers
  • Video Distribution Amplifier (VDA)

Video set-up

The following instructions explain how to prepare the camera for a webcast.

  1. Place the camera near the back of the room or the chapel in a secure, stable location (a sturdy tripod is recommended).If you are using the building video distribution system, locate the video distribution system outlet (usually located in the first overflow section of the chapel).
  2. Connect the camera to the Webcast Communicator in one of two ways:
    1. Run the appropriate video cable (S-Video or Composite) from the camera’s “video out” to the corresponding “video in” located on the back panel of the Webcast Communicator or to the video capture device with your computer.
    2. Using the appropriate cable (Composite or S-Video), connect the camera “video out” to a building video distribution system outlet. Video in the building video distribution system can be accessed from the satellite cabinet. Connect the video output to the appropriate “video in” port in the back of the Webcast Communicator or to the video capture device with your computer.

More on camera location

Usually, the best location for the camera is towards the back of the chapel or in the overflow area. Place it to the side of the room where the video jack is found. Minimize the impact of the camera, cameraman, and accompanying cables to those in the room as much as is reasonable.

Use gaffer tape (or something similar) to tape down exposed cables. This will reduce the chance of someone tripping on them and getting hurt. It will also reduce the possibility of the camera being damaged or the webcast getting interrupted.

Place the camera high enough so that you have an unimpeded view of the podium and stand. The camera should be in a secure position. When using a tripod, it should be able to elevate the camera to at least six feet in the air. Keep in mind that the audience members may stand at certain points in the meeting (for example, the rest hymn during Stake Conference). People may also walk in front of the camera. If it is tall enough this will not be seen in the receiving locations.

More on the Video Distribution System

Video captured in the chapel can connect to the meetinghouse video system using a video port (usually found on the side of the first chapel overflow area). Once the video has been fed into the meetinghouse video system, it can be accessed from a video out port in the satellite cabinet. The process of getting video out of the satellite equipment rack depends on the version of the satellite system.

Newer systems will have a Video Distribution Amplifier (VDA) in the satellite rack that is already set up for the camera signal. These cases require a cable with matching connectors. The output of the VDA will either be a BNC connector, or an F connector. When you have the correct cable, find an empty or unused output on the VDA and connect it to the Webcast Communicator video input (the easiest option will likely be the RCA composite).

In older systems, the cable from the video port in the chapel will go directly to the video in on the Chapel modulator. These cases require an additional Video Distribution Amplifier (VDA), as well as a short cable that has F connectors on each end. The cable connects one of the outputs on the VDA and the video input of the modulator. This cable is necessary for the modulator to function properly.

Video setup at receiving location

Connect the Webcast Receiver or receiving computer with Windows Media Player to a projector or TV. Note this will normally require you to place the receiving device close to the projector.


Test your video

There are multiple things to look for when testing your webcast video;

  • Evaluate the bandwidth. If the video freezes frequently or is choppy, you may not have sufficient bandwidth. Try broadcasting at a lower streaming speed or check with your Internet provider.
  • Check the lighting.
  • Get familiar with the use of your camera. Know where all the needed buttons are. Get a feel for how fast or slow your camera zoom moves. If your camera supports it, set your preset views for the pulpit and choir.
  • Test the scenarios you expect in your actual event. If you expect that you'll want to film the choir singing or a special musical instrument being played, practice how you will film this.

Manage your event

Be sensitive to the audience viewing the webcast. Realize that the operation of the camera can affect the spirit they feel while participating in the event. Things to be mindful of include:

  • Try to avoid frequent or unnecessary movement of the camera. Make sure the camera is securely placed (such as on a stable tripod)
  • When focused on the speaker, try to have the speaker occupy as much of the screen as is reasonable.
  • When panning or zooming out (for example, when the choir sings), try to do so smoothly. Some cameras allow you to establish preset views that allow you to smoothly transition between tight and wide views.
  • Where possible have someone experienced with the camera, operate the camera.


See Also: Get Answers about Video & Cameras

This page was last modified on 18 July 2012, at 08:35.

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