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Chris Harding January 9th, 2017 12:43 AM

Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
I sorta jumped the gun here on Steve and started a "what gear do I need to do live broadcasts so here goes on my basic setup and setups I have considered.

(1) Bare essentials is of course a mobile phone and I'm sure we have all seen the wobbly footage that people post on Facebook so I didn't even try this out for size.

(2) Basic single camera wireless setup ... assuming you already have a camera all you really need to start broadcasting with a decent image is a "broadcaster" that sits on top of your camera and a wifi hotspot unless you are working where you have a fast internet connection available. However bear in mind that most "normal ADSL2" services cannot provide an upload speed much more than 1 -2 mbps which means your quality will be horrible. You can use the VidiU Broadcaster US$699 which will broadcast to most CDN sites including Facebook Live and You Tube Live which are free but then anyone can see the video. You can also get the Livestream Broadcaster Pro (same machine but locked into Livestream) for just over $500.

It's important to choose a CDN wisely and get all the information before you use them ... Apart from the freebies other CDN's will offer plans and they need to be looked at carefully. Some will appear cheap but they also charge you for "views" so if 10,000 people watch your broadcast you are in for a shock!! I use Livestream as our CDN ..they charge you a flat rate of $499 per year to use their platform BUT you can host unlimited clients (each have their own event page) and have unlimited videos and unlimited views so we chose that one.

(3) Multi-camera setups : If you are going to want multi cameras then you need a software based switcher. I have tried vMix which allows you to broadcast anywhere but you will need capture cards and a camera with SDI outputs which means cables to each camera. We use Livestream's Studio software which is an audio and vision mixer which streams out to CDN's of your choice. If you are just dabbling they offer a free version too but restricted to one wireless camera and 2 wired cameras and you have to use their CDN. We use Studio as I like the fact I can use the Broadcaster unit as a wireless remote camera so no cables are needed. Even on the free version you can run a remote camera (using a broadcaster) and then add in a couple of USB webcams as cutaway cameras (Logitech make a conference Cam (C930) which works pretty well.

I'm sure many will add their setups and rough costs so anyone can see if it's worth the expense and I have obviously added the most viable options cost wise and much better systems exist as all in one switchers/pc's/capture

Lastly Donald has been playing with a really simple DIY setup using HDMI-USB convertors along with TV wireless transmitters/receivers but I'll leave him to describe them in detail!!

Roger Gunkel January 9th, 2017 04:42 AM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
Hi Chris,

I'm sure Steve won't mind you starting the thread:-)

The Livestream Broadcaster in the UK appears to sell at at a dove 500 which makes it a bit expensive just to experiment with. Their basic hosting package @$499 sounds reasonable in view of the unlimited videos and viewings.

You mention a software switcher being necessary for a multi camera shoot, but wouldn't a seperate hardware video mixer do the job, with a single output to say an internet connected PC, then to a CDN or do you need to have the proprietary software to connect to the CDN?


Chris Harding January 9th, 2017 05:02 AM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
Hi Roger

Livestream have free basic software that allows you to stream from your computer and it's free called Livestream Producer ..I used it the other day to grab a mixed output from vMix so I could broadcast to a specific event ...Your mixer is analogue??? (I think you said so) so you would still need to bring that signal into your computer so that would mean a capture card? surely? Is your mixer HD? It's a bit pointless to try and feed SD into the computer instead of HD. It should have HDMI inputs and outputs so if it does you still need to get that HDMI signal into the computer!! If you have a webcam then download LS Studio and sign up for a free account with LS and have a bit of a play.. Studio is an amazing package!!

Roger Gunkel January 9th, 2017 07:09 AM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
I have two 4 channel video mixers at the moment, one old videonics one and one more recent Grassvalley/datavideo SE500, both of which are analogue SVHS and component in and outs. I was intending to sell both and get a 4 channel digital mixer with HDMI for the odd corporate and conference work that we do, but it might be worth looking at the software alternatives instead. My only concern is getting 3 or 4 wired or wireless cameras into a PC for software mixing. I know that Vmix recommend a 4 input PC internal card, but that means taking out a Desktop or tower PC on location and the cost of the card is a lot more than I paid for my complete new PC. I would have also thought that mixing 4 video streams onboard a PC and recording it at the same time would take a lot of processing power, or is it all handled by the card. An external box would seem to be a more practical solution, plugged into a laptop.

Delving into stuff I haven't been into before is going to be interesting, but I will take your advice and download the free software available. I also have four old Panasonic 3xCCD mini DVD cams which can be set up to run as webcams through their USB outs which might be useful.


Chris Harding January 9th, 2017 08:16 AM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
Hi Roger

I have a small form factor i72600 that I use for indoor events ..got it on eBay really cheap and it's not that cumbersome to bring along ...cheap laptops tend to be low performance! Yeah Roland made a digital mixer but you still need an HDMI to Digital adaptor for the computer. Donald often adds a post here and he is using a DIY setup that works well. Yes I do prefer the wireless approach rather than running cables so we use the Broadcaster module which has a Livestream Studio mode as our main cam and then just two c930's on USB near our setup for cutaway cams. The free version of LSS allows 1 x remote cam (broadcaster) and then 2 cabled cams without having to buy the software but you are restricted to Livestream's CDN only. You will find the software switcher is feature packed with a nice audio mixer too!!

Shout if you need to know any of the features like the preset and variable framing on each camera which works very well. You can actually play with the switcher without broadcasting too which is useful when you are learning!!

Steven Digges January 9th, 2017 07:16 PM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
Hey Guys,

Of course I don't mind at all. Don't wait for me on anything. I am hammered right now. I jumped the gun with the statement your referring to. I will contribute more as I can.

Kind Regards,


Roger Gunkel January 11th, 2017 04:30 AM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
I downloaded the free versions of Livestream Studio and Vmix yesterday evening and played around with both for a couple of hours. The Vmix software seemed to be much more user friendly and with a lot more control over the input streams. That may be down to the free trial covering the full range of the software which may only be available in the top priced package. I may find it's considerably limited in the lower price range.

I'll have to go through some tutorials on Livestream as I was struggling to make sense of the programme as it stands. In Vmix I was able to control previously recorded video clips, audio, graphics etc, but struggled to import anything live apart from a 320x240 webcam. I tried HDMI from cam to computer, and USB, without any luck apart from the webcam, so It looks like either a capture card or external capture box is going to be needed although prices are very high for multi input boxes and cards.

As most current cameras have a wifi facility, I wondered if there is anyway of inputting a camera to computer wifi into the studio software. Looks like a fair bit of learning and researching is going to go into this.


Chris Harding January 11th, 2017 04:57 AM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
Hi Roger

It's indeed strange how different people find different packages. My experience was totally opposite!! I found vMix to be very "barebones" and hard to configure whilst Studio was easy for me. Bringing in a camera in vMix means a cam input must be configured and then you also have to assign an audio control for that cam. In Studio you go to inputs, select a camera and it adds it's and also adds an audio control automatically to the mixer. Different strokes for different folks I guess. In Studio you have unlimited graphics and you can also assign data (unlimted) to each so you use a lower third caption, say on the left bottom of the video and you can then assign as many titles and names to that caption as you wish, whereas vMix can only have 5 assigned and each must be on it's own.

There is a manual for Studio which also helps as well as one for vMix .... I love Studios's 4 take presets for each camera input too where you can reframe 4 different shots ...you can also do it manually of course with with or without transitions ...I find the manual reframe really useful if the subject moves out of shot and you simply follow them using the software.

For wifi inputs click the Remote Camera tab and it has a whole list of what can be connected via wifi (even GoPros)

Roger Gunkel January 11th, 2017 01:07 PM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
Hi Chris,

I gave Livestream another try today, but was very frustrated that I have to go online to even start playing around with the studio programme. With Vmix, I can work off line with no problem at all and have been quite impressed with what the free software can do, although whether that relates to the lower priced versions remains to be seen.

Frustration continues this week on a number of fronts, with one of the reasons I am looking at streaming being the lack of any equivalent low priced universal hardcopy replacement for the DVD. Today I became annoyed by the fact that up until quite recently it was possible to stream live footage from a dv output on the camera to a dv input in a pc, but such connectors are no longer fitted to cameras or computers. Most new cameras have a wifi connection and I can control and monitor my cameras remotely from everything from a phone to a variety of pads. However to get a live signal into the computer to output via Livestream or Vmix, it appears that I need to invest in yet more expensive hardware to either transmit back to the switching software, or a capture box to inport a live signal. Why can't manufacturers make an effort to standardise as the further down the road we get with technology, the more fragmented it all seems to get. RANT OVER!!

On a positive note, I experimented with the virtual sets in Vmix, what a great idea. I'll take some green screen footage tomorrow to use in some promotion material on our website.


Donald McPherson January 11th, 2017 03:28 PM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
My cheap DIY set up. Not used for paid work.
Sony PXW X70
Canon 600d (with HDMI out) or GOPRO. Just received a HDMI splitter so I can connect my Lilliput monitor to the Canon as when you plug in HDMI you loose the LCD
Different brands of HDMI game capture USB converters. Driver issues if the same make.
Laptop i7 running Xsplit Broadcaster. The free version gives up to 4 cameras at 720p
Experimenting with when I get time. HDMI transmitter / receiver LKV388A Wireless HDMI HDbitT Transmitter & Reciver Kit (200m)
To go completely wire free I am testing out 4.8 volt batteries they use for fire exit lighting. They are the only thing I could find with enough amps. Managed to get 3.5 hours out of them.
I can also stream to Ustream using Sony PXW X70 and Samsung Galaxy 7 (rooted)
Using Screen Stream app and VLC for android I can also stream to YouTube and add a link to Facebook.
The reason I rooted the Galaxy was so I could install Internal audio otherwise the lag was a few seconds apart.
Speaking about lag. Xsplit as I am sure with others can adjust the lag so you can match up the video for two cameras which is great help if one camera is wired and the other wireless.

Roger Gunkel January 11th, 2017 05:13 PM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
HI Donald, that's a very useful post and cheered me up considerably :-)

I was considering one of these to convert from HDMI to USB https://www.box.co.uk/Hauppauge_HD_P...FQ88GwodBccD1w I assume it is the sort of thing you are using and wondered if the cheaper ones I have seen do the job ok, there seem to be quite a few out there.

The range extender looks very interesting, any ideas on price? can't find any on the site.

I'll have a look at Xsplit tomorrow aswell.


Donald McPherson January 12th, 2017 12:32 AM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
I have the Avermedia and Elgato both were under 80 each. The HDMI video sender / receiver 230 and the two sets of batteries 15 each. If you are in the USA I imagine you will find them a lot cheaper. I did have problems with a cheaper HDMI video sender / receiver it kept putting up that signal to stop you copying videos. (Forgot what its called now) Solution was to buy cheap and I mean cheap HDMI splitter after a google for the fix.
Roger just checked see you are in the UK .

Chris Harding January 12th, 2017 05:24 AM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
Hi Roger

My apologies for making you so frustrated!! That's strange? I load up Studio any time I want to and it never asked me to go online (unless of course you are playing with the streaming tab) I stream via 4G wifi hotspot and when that's off it still loads and I can play with it with no issues.. maybe it defaults and finds my wifi network and connects to that, but I have never had an issue.

Yes I totally understand your rant!! Cameras have limited outputs nowdays so you are stuck with HDMI and nothing else ...most pro camcorders (upper range) have SDI outputs and input cards are much the same. Yes I'm fristrated that my FZ's can send an image to a phone but Studio cannot see it, yet it can see a GroPro 4 easily!! Wireless IS the way to go but one should be able to find a simple HDMI to wifi box that sits on the camera and you can connect to the camera. Yes the Broadcaster does it but it's pricey...it's only a 6"x3" plastic box so why is it so expensive?? I'm not sure if Donald's transmitter receiver units and a HDMI to USB converter will cost heaps or not but SURELY someone makes a wifi HDMI box that doesn't cost an arm and a leg.

Just remember the vMix trial is for 60 days and they give you the full blown version ..the free version sadly only supports SD video. Yeah, the Chromakey sets in vMix are awesome I really liked them ...I might play with vMix again but the wifi issue comes up again so how would I get a wireless signal into vMix from my FZ2500 ???? With Studio I use the broadcaster and it's perfect because I have one already that I use for ceremony only shoots on the beach!

Roger Gunkel January 12th, 2017 08:53 AM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
Hi Donald,
Thanks for the info, I'll have a look at the Elgato products, as there are a number of them.

Hi Chris,
I'd probably be looking at the basic HD Vmix which gives 1080 res and 4 inputs including 3 cams. I think it's about US$66. I will also have a look at the Xsplit software that Donald recommended. The problem with Livestream may be that you are locked into it in a way that you aren't with others. Your Broadcaster unit for instance seems to be identical to another model that is not locked to any CDN, although the other one costs a bit more. I'm expecting a call from Livestream, so I will be asking a lot of questions.

The interfacing thing is so frustrating and is probably down to supply and demand. with the manufacturers chasing the mass consumer market.


Donald McPherson January 12th, 2017 10:16 AM

Re: Basic Equipment for Live Streaming
Roger remember you need different makes for different drivers with the USB converters. I had two Elgatos and could only use one. Buying the Avermedia solved the problem for getting two streams in. I also can use my Sony PXW X70 WiFi to stream into VLC player then screen capture that with Xsplit. What surprised me there was VLC would sit under Xsplit and still stream the VLC video. But alas bottlenecked trying the three cameras. I may have to get yet another games capture for three.
The Roland V1 HD would really be the way to go and you would only need one USB convertor.

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