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Live Event with multiple video files question

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Travis Kelly
Live Event with multiple video files question
on Nov 16, 2012 at 8:28:39 pm

Ok, I'm having a bit of trouble finding an easy solution (if there is one) My company rents out state of the art LED Display Trailers (jumbo trons) Recently we've gone from just renting them to purchasing a Blackmagic ATEM 2 switcher and performing live event production as well. We did about 25 of the Mitt Romney republican rallies and ran in to something I'm hoping someone here has an answer for. The ATEM will only store 30 frames of media, we would constantly be handed numerous video files for local candidates, Mitt, etc., so what we ended up having to do was have two laptops, and manually que each video run some live footage, then a video, and so on. We are looking for a simple solution so we can drop a bunch of videos and still images in a cue and show them from one laptop. I was recommended to use casperCG, but that seems extremely complicated, I can't even get it off of PAL and on to NTSC. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


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Matt Geiser
Re: Live Event with multiple video files question
on Nov 17, 2012 at 2:45:30 pm

For live events most production companies use Playback Pro by DT Videolabs. Simple to use and since it uses the QuickTime engine to playback media it will play any file that you have the codec for. they also make a small USB controller that gives you the ability to select and roll/kill clips. Easy to set next to the atem desk.

Simple compact solution would be a Mac mini with an external thunderbolt ssd drive to put the media on. (that way it's not on the same drive as osx) I would also get the external optical drive from apple as well since the minis don't have a DVD drive anymore. Download a free copy of Handbrake so when someone hands you a DVD you can rip it to the PBP system so you have reliable cuing and count out.

Rack it up in the Sonnettech Mac mini rack adaptor and you're all set.

My $0.02
Matt


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Thomas Leong
Re: Live Event with multiple video files question
on Nov 18, 2012 at 2:38:29 am

For a pro solution, have a look at the pixelwix software or system (read: with hardware). The interface, etc is quite similar to a tv studio style op, and it can handle live inputs and drag-n-drop playlists.

Cheaper is VideoMill from http://breakthrusoftware.com/html/products/videomill/index.html - at shareware price, but I'm not sure if it will accept live inputs.



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Jim Brown
Re: Live Event with multiple video files question
on Nov 20, 2012 at 10:52:59 am

We use the setup described by Matt with PlaybackPro and it works great. There is an issue with using the ATEN2 and the current software release. The ATEM requires all inputs be the same configurations, so if you are connecting the HDMI output of the Mac you will need to run 1080i or 720p and set the resolution of the Mac accordingly. The latest rev of software (3.3) tightened up the scan rate so that the 60Hz from the Mac doesn't match up with the 59.94 setting in the ATEM. BMD says they are fixing that. In the meantime we use a BMD miniconverter to convert HDMI to SDI. This reclocks the signal and everything works fine.

We use PlaybackPro to roll commercials from our HD trailer. We use Panasonic HPX 370 cameras and ATEM 2 switcher with Newtek instant replay and Chyron graphics.

Jim Brown
M&M ProductionsUSA


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Joel Hufford
Re: Live Event with multiple video files question
on Nov 22, 2012 at 12:23:43 am

Both Jim and Matt are correct,

PlaybackPro is a simple and powerful video playback solution. In addition to what Matt said, the software allows for realtime modification of the geometry of a clip as well as simple proc amp level control. The only thing I would add to Matt's setup would be a way to monitor the audio at the controller's station. Something like a USB audio interface and a small fostex or anchor monitor. Also, if you don't have it installed on your Mac, you should get Quicktime Player 7 Pro. It's much more useful for live events than Quicktime X probably ever will be...

Also, as for the bug in the ATEM software, with the 1ME at least, if you roll back the firmware of the unit to 3.1.2, the 60Hz issue disappears. For some that may not be feasible, but if you don't have an HDMI to SDI converter on hand, this is a viable workaround.


we're up to $0.04!

joel
Corporate and Special Event Staging Services
http://www.pacificstaging.com


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Greg McCafferty
Re: Live Event with multiple video files question
on Jun 19, 2013 at 7:40:00 pm

May I ask the year, type, and graphics card information of the computer you're using with Playback Pro and the HDMI to HD/SDI BM Converter?

I'm having a hell of a time figuring this all out and tech support and I are starting to think that this computer is too old and the graphics card won't push the resolution that I need.

Thanks.


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Jim Brown
Re: Live Event with multiple video files question
on Jun 20, 2013 at 2:09:13 am

We use Macbook Pros (15 inch) that are at least 6 years old. Nothing special about them. I also use a new MB Pro with Retina display and solid state system drive. We also tried it on al old Mac Mini (6yrs old) and it worked just fine.

The only real issue we have faced is the spin up time on hard drives sometimes delays to start of play. Our answer is to play our videos from a USB thumb drive. I am not at the office just now to get real specs for you, but will be glad to do that later this week.

The current versions of ATEM software resolves the 60/59.94 issues. You can connect the video output (DVI with cable converter directly to the HDMI input of the ATEM or you can convert the HDMI to SDI and input that signal.

When I get into the office I will extract the display setups and post them for you.

Hope this helps

Jim Brown
M&M ProductionsUSA


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