Live Streaming Case Study: Graduation

Live Streaming Case Study: Graduation

A couple of weeks before graduation, the Othello School District decided they wanted to live stream their graduation ceremony.

Client needs:

  1. Live switch four cameras up to 300 feet away
  2. Facebook Live stream two languages simultaneously
  3. Make it happen in two weeks

The challenges:

  1. No video production class
  2. No video production teacher
  3. No video production gear
  4. Two weeks!?!

OK, they did have two older Sony cameras, but that's it.

Joel, my compatriot, worked with Dante the Undauntable™ [he's the IT director tasked with this project] to put together an equipment list that included the following:

  • ATEM 2 M/E Production Studio 4K
  • Mac Pro
  • 2X Sony PXW-X70s
  • Blackmagic Audio Monitor
  • UltraStudio 4K
  • Hyperdeck Studio 12G
  • 2X Benro S7 Tripods
  • 3X Battery Converter HDMI to SDI
  • Decimator MD-HX
  • A bunch of cables to connect it all!

I drove to Othello, with a carload of gear, a few days before the graduation ceremony was to take place. I met up with Dante and we hauled the gear into what would be the control room.

I was able to get a look at the two existing cameras they had, which confirmed my hunch that we would need to run all the cameras at 1080i60. That's the only format the older Sonys are capable of sending out via HDMI. In turn, that means setting the master format of the ATEM to 1080i60.

We set about gathering intel and plotting out the camera positions and cable runs. One camera went up on a Genie lift! The older cameras needed to have the HDMI output converted to SDI to make the run the the control room. Blackmagic's Battery Converters did the trick quite nicely.

While Dante was setting up cameras for testing, I was busy unpacking all the goodies for the rack.

And setting up the new Sony X-70s. No HDMI converters needed here!

We got the signal path worked out for the video. We ran the program out of the ATEM through the Decimator before going into the UltraStudio 4K. That was our conversion point from 1080i60 to 1080p30. This prevented WireCast from having to do any de-interlacing or frame rate conversion.

Now for the audio. We were going to get a feed from the podium on the field where the speakers would be addressing the crowd in English. There would be a translator in the room with his own mic, monitoring the English feed and translating to Español. We determined that we could run two WireCast documents simultaneously, which would give us our two separate Facebook Live streams. Then it was just a matter of routing the English into the left channel of the ATEM and the Spanish into the right channel. In the English Wirecast document, we panned the audio all the way left to exclude the right channel, then summed the audio to mono. Doing the reverse in the Spanish Wirecast document gave us our two separate Facebook Live streams, each with it's own language!

The school district was thrilled with the social media engagement during and after the graduation live stream. See the results below!

9th Jun 2017 Jason Jenkins

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