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Thread: Best way to bring in inputs remotely (Tricaster Mini)

  1. #1
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    Best way to bring in inputs remotely (Tricaster Mini)

    Hey guys,

    Planning a complex stream where I'll need to bring in sources that will not be in studio. (Along with a studio panel)

    What is the best way to do this on a Tricaster mini?

    I know one option could be to get my other sources on a laptop and run them via HDMI or perhaps over NDi but what is the best way to bring in remote sources?

    Any advice would be appreciated. I've only ever ran streams with all in house cast and crew so having to figure out what the best way will be to bring in different sources remotely.

    Cheers!

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    How remote are your remote sources? Out of the studio, but in the building... or out of the building (and network) completely?

    Kris
    TriCasters: Mini, 410, 460, 850, 850 Extreme, 855 & 8000
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by kltv View Post
    How remote are your remote sources? Out of the studio, but in the building... or out of the building (and network) completely?

    Kris
    Hey Kris,

    Apologies, I should have specified - We will have an in studio host that will be on camera live with some guest but others will be very far away, ie in a different city/ country possibly.

    I was thinking about possibly running a laptop via HDMI into Tricaster but pulling up different sources on that Laptop before switching to it (ie. pre switching on the laptop) < I know not an ideal situation but could work possibly?

    Context: We will need to bring in different guests on screen to talk about different topics but due to this Corona virus scare we're having to get people to dial in remotely but still want to run a broadcast. Originally the plan was to have everyone in house...

    Let me know what you think.

  4. #4
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    Your best bet in this scenario is probably Skype. You don't even need to use HDMI cables for this thanks to NDI. It starts to get a little more tricky if you need to have multiple guests remotely on the air at the same time, but it can be done. You might start to run out of AUX audio mixes on the Mini. The audio setup will vary a bit depending on if you are mixing all the audio in the TriCaster or if you are also using an outboard mixer. It can work either way.

    Here's what I've helped people do in the past.

    - Get yourself a laptop that is connected to the internet and on the same network as your TriCaster. I would use hard-wire ethernet, not WiFi.

    - On that laptop, install the Skype desktop app. Not the one that you get in the Windows App Store. Last I checked, that doesn't work with this. https://www.skype.com/en/get-skype/d...e-for-desktop/

    - On that laptop, install NewTek's NDI tools from here: https://ndi.tv/tools/

    - The only tool we really need there is NDI Virtual Input, but having the other ones around doesn't hurt for troubleshooting. NDI Virtual Input allows you to use a NDI source on the network as a "webcam" or video source for Skype. This will be the return feed for your Skype guests.

    - On the TriCaster, pick an input that you want to be the Skype video input. It is probably best to keep that consistent to make things easier for you. For this example, lets assume you want to be able to use your 4 physical inputs for on-site cameras, so we will assume input 5.

    - Depending on if you are using an external audio board, this might change, but we need to set up what is called a "mix-minus" feed for your Skype guests. If the Skype guest hears their own audio back at them with a delay, it will throw them off. It's why you sometimes see news reporters rip out their ear-pieces in a live shot. So they need to hear your program mix, minus themselves. We can use an AUX audio bus to do this. Go to the audio mixer and open up the gear for our Skype input, number 5. In the routing tab, go to the AUX1 set of checkboxes and hit clear. This will take the Skype audio out of that mix. Close that configuration menu.

    - Now we need to associate that audio with your program video in its own MIX. Assuming you aren't using them for anything else, lets use MIX2. Go to your program output window and click on the little gear. Then go to the output tab. Where it says MIX 2, change the audio source in that row to AUX1. I like to change the name of the MIX 2 to MIX- as well. That helps me remember what it is for.

    - Now go back to your Skype laptop. The NDI tools should have installed the NDI Virtual Input application with a yellow icon. Open that up. You should get a little tray icon. If you right click on that you should be able to choose your TriCaster as the source. When you select that TriCaster, make sure and choose the MIX2 or MIX- feed as your selection.

    - Launch Skype. We need to configure a couple of things in there to work with the TriCaster. Go to the settings menu and then the Calling section. There should be an Advanced section. There's a slider control in there that says Allow NDI. Turn that on.

    - Go to the Audio and Video section of the settings and change the video to something like NewTek NDI video. That should give you program video. Then change the audio to NewTek NDI audio. That will give your Skype caller the audio they need.

    - On the TriCaster, check out the input configuration for Input 5. Once you make a Skype call, you'll need to go in here and pick that as the source.

    - Call somebody you know with Skype and do a test... sometimes it helps if they are in the building or just in another room until you get things settled. Once you've connected, select them as the source for Input 5 in the TriCaster and see what you can see and hear and what they can see and hear. You'll want to talk to them with a microphone or other source hooked into the TriCaster and they should hear everything except themselves.

    That sounds like a lot, but once you have it all setup it is as easy as just calling the remote person on Skype and selecting them as the source in the TriCaster. If you only need one guest at a time, you can just drop the call when you are done with one and then call someone else. I'd start with that. If you get comfortable with one guest, you can try and step it up with more, but you'll start to run out of mix-minus feeds somewhat quickly here.

    One other thing to consider is how you will get that audio into the ears of your in-studio folks. This depends on how you do your audio. If your talent have IFB earpieces already, you can take the audio out of the TriCaster using another AUX bus or your headphone out to get it to them. If they don't use earpieces or headphones, you can try to use a monitor speaker in the room for your talent to listen too, but that can be tricky since you don't really want that picking up on your mics.

    Also... if you really get into this, NewTek's TalkShow product is designed specifically to achieve this in one or four channel configurations. It is a slick system for multiple simultaneous calls and makes some of the audio routing more manageable.

    I hope that helps!
    Kris
    Last edited by kltv; 03-11-2020 at 10:44 PM.
    TriCasters: Mini, 410, 460, 850, 850 Extreme, 855 & 8000
    Replay: 3Play 820
    CG: LiveText3 - With LT[Scoreboards]
    Cameras: Sony NX5
    Macros: YoungMonkey MasterControl, Belkin N52

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by kltv View Post
    Your best bet in this scenario is probably Skype. You don't even need to use HDMI cables for this thanks to NDI. It starts to get a little more tricky if you need to have multiple guests remotely on the air at the same time, but it can be done. You might start to run out of AUX audio mixes on the Mini. The audio setup will vary a bit depending on if you are mixing all the audio in the TriCaster or if you are also using an outboard mixer. It can work either way.

    Here's what I've helped people do in the past.

    - Get yourself a laptop that is connected to the internet and on the same network as your TriCaster. I would use hard-wire ethernet, not WiFi.

    - On that laptop, install the Skype desktop app. Not the one that you get in the Windows App Store. Last I checked, that doesn't work with this. https://www.skype.com/en/get-skype/d...e-for-desktop/

    - On that laptop, install NewTek's NDI tools from here: https://ndi.tv/tools/

    - The only tool we really need there is NDI Virtual Input, but having the other ones around doesn't hurt for troubleshooting. NDI Virtual Input allows you to use a NDI source on the network as a "webcam" or video source for Skype. This will be the return feed for your Skype guests.

    - On the TriCaster, pick an input that you want to be the Skype video input. It is probably best to keep that consistent to make things easier for you. For this example, lets assume you want to be able to use your 4 physical inputs for on-site cameras, so we will assume input 5.

    - Depending on if you are using an external audio board, this might change, but we need to set up what is called a "mix-minus" feed for your Skype guests. If the Skype guest hears their own audio back at them with a delay, it will throw them off. It's why you sometimes see news reporters rip out their ear-pieces in a live shot. So they need to hear your program mix, minus themselves. We can use an AUX audio bus to do this. Go to the audio mixer and open up the gear for our Skype input, number 5. In the routing tab, go to the AUX1 set of checkboxes and hit clear. This will take the Skype audio out of that mix. Close that configuration menu.

    - Now we need to associate that audio with your program video in its own MIX. Assuming you aren't using them for anything else, lets use MIX2. Go to your program output window and click on the little gear. Then go to the output tab. Where it says MIX 2, change the audio source in that row to AUX1. I like to change the name of the MIX 2 to MIX- as well. That helps me remember what it is for.

    - Now go back to your Skype laptop. The NDI tools should have installed the NDI Virtual Input application with a yellow icon. Open that up. You should get a little tray icon. If you right click on that you should be able to choose your TriCaster as the source. When you select that TriCaster, make sure and choose the MIX2 or MIX- feed as your selection.

    - Launch Skype. We need to configure a couple of things in there to work with the TriCaster. Go to the settings menu and then the Calling section. There should be an Advanced section. There's a slider control in there that says Allow NDI. Turn that on.

    - Go to the Audio and Video section of the settings and change the video to something like NewTek NDI video. That should give you program video. Then change the audio to NewTek NDI audio. That will give your Skype caller the audio they need.

    - On the TriCaster, check out the input configuration for Input 5. Once you make a Skype call, you'll need to go in here and pick that as the source.

    - Call somebody you know with Skype and do a test... sometimes it helps if they are in the building or just in another room until you get things settled. Once you've connected, select them as the source for Input 5 in the TriCaster and see what you can see and hear and what they can see and hear. You'll want to talk to them with a microphone or other source hooked into the TriCaster and they should hear everything except themselves.

    That sounds like a lot, but once you have it all setup it is as easy as just calling the remote person on Skype and selecting them as the source in the TriCaster. If you only need one guest at a time, you can just drop the call when you are done with one and then call someone else. I'd start with that. If you get comfortable with one guest, you can try and step it up with more, but you'll start to run out of mix-minus feeds somewhat quickly here.

    One other thing to consider is how you will get that audio into the ears of your in-studio folks. This depends on how you do your audio. If your talent have IFB earpieces already, you can take the audio out of the TriCaster using another AUX bus or your headphone out to get it to them. If they don't use earpieces or headphones, you can try to use a monitor speaker in the room for your talent to listen too, but that can be tricky since you don't really want that picking up on your mics.

    Also... if you really get into this, NewTek's TalkShow product is designed specifically to achieve this in one or four channel configurations. It is a slick system for multiple simultaneous calls and makes some of the audio routing more manageable.

    I hope that helps!
    Kris
    Hey Kris,

    Really appreciate this breakdown, I will look to test this set up in the coming days. This is all very informative and helpful so I appreciate what you've outlined here.

    Just to clear some things up - we will have a mixer in studio for audio, taking in feeds from various sources.

    It makes sense to me running this set up via Skype, what if we need people on the other end to share their screen? I know that kind of throws a wrench into the plans... How would that work?

    I guess we could always pick it up on our end, that would probably be the easiest solution and run that in via an M/E set up? (Having the screen/ PIP Skype set up) - BUT what if we need that person to demonstrate something live on the stream?

    Context: Some of the people will be walking the audience through various apps being ran on iPads - Would it make more sense to have the people "Streaming" through Twitch (setting up a PIP setup on OBS on their end) and then bring in their "STREAM" into ours? I hope I'm not confusing you guys here but we're having to figure this out on the go after this whole virus thing...

    I'm going to be conducting some tests for this very soon so will answer some of these questions myself but what you've provided me so far has been great.
    Last edited by deezul; 03-12-2020 at 11:05 AM.

  6. #6
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    Also look into Zoom.
    With zoom you can have multiple people on the same monitor and spotlight their video as needed,
    you can also easily screen share.
    Tricaster 460 Advanced Edition 2, Tricaster 40 V1
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stream View Post
    Also look into Zoom.
    With zoom you can have multiple people on the same monitor and spotlight their video as needed,
    you can also easily screen share.
    Yes we use zoom quite a bit and that's something that I have thought of. The only thing is the integration with the Tricaster would be a bit harder since I know Newtek has Skype capabilities.

    But yeah that's definitely crossed my mind !

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