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View Full Version : Cheap Intercom for Tricaster Mini Setup



GThomas
03-23-2016, 08:37 AM
We do sports broadcasts with our Tricaster Mini and are looking for a cheap "intercom" solution. I'm thinking to save money, the best way to go is to feed my camera operators a one way headphone feed from the director telling them what to do. The camera operators wouldn't be able to talk back to the director, but for us that's okay. I was thinking of using the Metasetz TLC-4S and passing a headphone feed through that line to our camera operators and then having them hook their headphones to the intercom output on the tally light. Has anyone ever tried this or does anyone have a different idea of how we could achieve a low-cost intercom or intercom and tally setup?

Radio_TVPat1982
03-23-2016, 10:56 AM
I use an Eartec wired system. They are cheap but you do get what you pay for. A 4 headset system including the box costs around $700. I does not carry tally though. I am happy with the system for the most part, but it is hard to get anything other than an an Eartec headset to pass through it. Meaning if I want to add a program feed from the Tricaster or something like that, it does not work that great. There is also no separate channel to talk to talent. A can however run hours on the internal battery and is very portable so there are so positives to it.

I have heard of some people that were developing a tally/comm solution that works through Ethernet and then a junction box that splits is off the signal at the camera. I have worked for a company that uses something similar but with fiber.

For tally, there is also that Tally Tek free add on & app that can turn you phone in to a wireless Tally light. I tested it and it works good for me.

jcupp
03-23-2016, 01:08 PM
I designed the metaSETZ tally equipment. Your one-way tally plan should work pretty well. The one issue you may have to deal with is that using the intercom pass through in the TLC-4S for straight audio will cause the impedance to go very low because all the headsets are in parallel. Some audio devices will begin to distort when the impedance goes too low. I have successfully used a send on a Mackie mixer but the volume is low so it wouldn't work very well for sports where you need some loudness in the headphones. A better choice is to drive the passthrough port with a Behringer HA-8000 headphone amp. I used this for a couple of years for basketball with six headsets.


We do sports broadcasts with our Tricaster Mini and are looking for a cheap "intercom" solution. I'm thinking to save money, the best way to go is to feed my camera operators a one way headphone feed from the director telling them what to do. The camera operators wouldn't be able to talk back to the director, but for us that's okay. I was thinking of using the Metasetz TLC-4S and passing a headphone feed through that line to our camera operators and then having them hook their headphones to the intercom output on the tally light. Has anyone ever tried this or does anyone have a different idea of how we could achieve a low-cost intercom or intercom and tally setup?

pcre
03-23-2016, 09:22 PM
For tally, there is also that Tally Tek free add on & app that can turn you phone in to a wireless Tally light. I tested it and it works good for me.

The Tally Tek solution sounds interested, but I'm concerned about introducing a handful of wireless devices to the Tricaster's network. I go to great lengths to avoid unnecessary traffic there. Any thoughts from anyone?

kanep
03-23-2016, 09:51 PM
I'm not sure how the Tally Tek exactly is programmed, but I do know that you can setup a remote application to be triggered when changes occur in the TriCaster. Basically, an app wouldn't constantly asking for updates, network traffic would only occur when TriCaster reports it and the amount of network traffic for tally information is quite small (less than 3 kilobytes).

pcre
03-23-2016, 09:53 PM
I'm more concerned about other traffic generated by the device (software updates, rogue apps, etc.). But it's a very interesting solution (subject to Wifi range, of course)

RadioErewan
03-24-2016, 04:51 AM
Cheapest solution could be Zello Push To Talk app. Free. Available for IOS and Android. Use your camera crew phones. Works on Wifi and cellular networks. You can configure many groups to talk to. There is replay function. Its strength is also its weaknes. Not everyone has well performing phone batery. Zello drains it fast.