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LIVE Business Presentations (Multiple Locations)

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Colin Leiker
LIVE Business Presentations (Multiple Locations)
on Sep 11, 2014 at 9:23:05 pm

Not entirely sure if this is the best place to post this topic, but I really could use some help and just want to start somewhere :)

My business is located in San Francisco and every other week we screenshare with our offices in Salt Lake City & Milan to do presentations. We are looking to alter these presentations to be more "Live" and interactive. We are looking to purchase an audio/video setup that will allow us to do the following:

SF: 1 camera pointed at person speaking, 1 camera pointed at audience (either tripod mounted or hand-held and moveable).
SLC: 1 camera pointed at audience
Milan: 1 camera pointed at audience

Each office will have a television screen. We would like them to do the following:
SF: Display Powerpoint presentation coming from presenter's computer
SLC: Switch between displaying PPT presentation & both SF and Milan audiences
Milan: Switch between displaying PPT presentation & both SF and SLC audiences

In SF we want to be able to control the switching between the live stream of the presenter & the Powerpoint presentation coming from the computer. In addition to this, we want to be able to record from the 2 cameras in SF, the 2 in SLC & Milan, and the screen showing the Powerpoint presentation (we plan on producing short videos each month highlighting the key points of these presentations).

What are all the pieces of equipment we need to make this happen? Our budget is rather large, but we obviously want to save $ anyway we can. Help? Does everything I said make sense? Haha

Also, I work for a startup, and I was hired as a Graphic Designer... Somehow me using a computer as a career translates into me being the best person to figure all of this out, and I have almost no experience with a video setup this complex. I am very familiar with video recording and editing based on using a DSLR, but that is about it. I would LOVE IT if anyone could steer me in the right direction. THANK YOU!!

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Thomas Leong
Re: LIVE Business Presentations (Multiple Locations)
on Sep 11, 2014 at 11:26:11 pm

Suggest you google for Video Conferencing and/or Webinars and/or Webcasts.

Good luck,
Thomas Leong

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Colin Leiker
Re: LIVE Business Presentations (Multiple Locations)
on Sep 11, 2014 at 11:59:03 pm

Hey thanks for replying! I will look into this, but my intention was to maybe have someone recommend some good equipment that is reputable for these purposes. I will do some more research on my own of course, but this is obviously a little tricky for me :)

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Mark Suszko
Re: LIVE Business Presentations (Multiple Locations)
on Sep 16, 2014 at 7:31:03 pm
Last Edited By Mark Suszko on Sep 16, 2014 at 7:39:14 pm

You're going to stream the final mix of the show out of SFO.

In SFO you have a graphics laptop, and two cameras at least, feeding signals to the switcher.

Incoming from your remote locations and feeding into SFO's location, will be two more camera feeds, each from from Milan and Salt lake.

At the SFO location, you need a video switcher for choosing between these sources as needed, delay units and frame synchronizers for making the remote feeds all play nice with the local feeds, and a computer system for encoding the output of that switcher.

An experienced video director and camera crews at each site, collaborating over an intercom system plugged into a phone network, will make sure the right images are chosen at the right time.

The streams from the remote locations will come with a bit of time delay due to the encoding process and the distance. When that remote source is chosen and fed back from SFO to all locations, it will introduce yet more time delay. This is going to make live conversation between the three locations difficult, but not impossible: you will just have to train the people speaking at each location to wait their turn to speak, and not to try to talk over the other person.

It is less like a live phone call, and more like people taking turns on the old Citizens' Band CB radios. or waiting for a foreign language interpreter to finish a live translation.

The audio guy at each place will have his hands full, going between what's called a "mix-minus" audio mix, and the house audio mix for the local audience, to keep bad echoes from happening during the whole thing. One way to make that easier is to have the questions shot from a smaller, sound-isolated room off to the side of each location, instead of in the audience itself.

Really, what you're asking to do is not cheap to do correctly, and the way most pro companies would handle this is to hand it off completely to a live production company with satellite gear and/or high end internet encoders and the rest of that stuff. You hand them a check and they take it from there: your company people don't need to try and re-invent this process, which is outside their area of competency anyhow.

If the plumbing in your corporate HQ went bad today, they would not have you go out to research and purchase plumbing tools and try to DIY the thing. They'd hire an expert who already comes equipped.

You might try a keyword search for "fly-away" satellite video production services and live location production services.

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