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Webcasting

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Presentation from Sm East2007
source - www.StreamingMedia.com

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Webcasting Webcasting Presentation Transcript

  • Hands on Guide to Webcasting May 14, 2007 Streaming Media East
  • The Goal
    • Live at noon
    • Audience participation
      • yes, that means you
  • What We Have To Do
    • Planning
      • programming
      • production
      • network infrastructure
      • web presence
    • Execution
      • a/v production
      • authoring
      • encoding
    • Testing
      • everything – twice.
  • Rough Schedule
    • Initial discussion (10 mins)
    • Planning (1 hour)
      • basics (who/what/where/why)
    • Execution (1 hour)
      • a/v production setup
      • a/v testing
      • encoding setup
      • encoding testing
  • Why Webcasts are Tricky
    • They’re live
      • No second chance
    • Additional hardware requirements
    • Additional personnel requirements
    • They test the limits of your streaming infrastructure
      • Bandwidth
      • Server architecture (web & streaming)
    • They’re expensive and therefore can be hard to justify
  • Are you ready?
  • First: Make the Business Case
    • Who
      • is the audience?
    • What
      • are we webcasting?
    • Where
      • is the location suitable
    • When
      • is there enough time to do it right?
    • Why
      • is this the best way to address the need?
  • We need a crew.
    • Executive Producer
    • Audio engineer
    • Videographer (camera op)
    • Encoding engineer
    • Host
    • Guest(s)
  • Planning
    • Location
      • Size, power, access, union fees
    • Signal Acquisition
      • On site connectivity, satellite
    • Equipment
      • Usually best to work with a partner
    • Crew
      • May come with equipment
    • Presentation
      • Talent, Pre/post show, technical difficulties
    • Network Infrastructure
      • host, bandwidth usage, encoding specs
    • Production area
    • Stage
    • Audio
    • Video
    • Encoding
    Setup
    • Avoid ground hum
      • Placement or extra equipment
    • Ambient mics
      • Absolutely for musical events
    • Tape down loose cables
    • Use compression
    • Test!
    Audio Setup
  • Setting Up A Gain Structure
    • Make sure each piece of equipment operates in its optimal range
    • Start with first piece of equipment and work through the signal chain
    • set the input and output gain for each
    • Peaks at -3dB for analog, -10dB for digital
  • Audio Production Tips
    • Compression “evens out” audio levels
      • Protects your equipment from “spikes” in level
      • Attenuating loud sections enables overall signal gain
      • “Fattens” audio
      • Hardware compressor is essential for webcasts
  • Compression Illustrated
    • Tripods (heavy duty)
    • Risers if available
    • Lights
      • 3-point?
      • Flat wash?
    • White balancing (shading)
    • Test!
    Video Setup
  • How Video Codecs Work
    • Intra-frame compression
      • Just like a .jpg or .png file
    • Inter-frame compression
      • Differences between frames are encoded
    • Key frames
      • Entire frame is encoded
      • Uses a lot of bandwidth
    • Difference frames
      • Only differences are encoded
      • Use relatively little bandwidth on low motion content
  • Video Production Tips
    • Avoid unnecessary motion/changes
      • Use a tripod, use a tripod, use a tripod
      • Avoid moving objects in the background
      • Avoid special effects
      • Simple edits are best
      • Keep the number of cuts to a minimum
    • Framing
      • Smaller screen, so frame tighter
  • Video Production Tips
    • G-I-G-O
    • Use good video engineering practice
      • If you don’t know, hire someone
    • Good equipment, proper technique
      • If you don’t own it, rent it
    • Lighting is essential
      • Nearly impossible to correct using software
      • Low-light = no light
  • Video Processing Techniques
    • VGA vs. Television displays
      • VGA screens are far more detailed
      • Traditional video tends to look dark & washed out
    • Adjust Brightness
      • Add gain to match screen to a TV monitor
      • Be careful if you’re going back out to the broadcast world!
    • Adjust Contrast
      • Adding a small amount is good; be careful though
      • Too much contrast adds grain (bad for codecs)
    • Color
      • Increasing saturation a bit can be helpful
  • Encoding Setup
    • Bit rate
    • Resolution
    • Capture card?
    • Encoding software?
    • Local Archive?
    • Push vs. pull encoding
    • Redundancy is key
      • Ideally redundant connectivity
      • Extra equipment
    • Multiple stream solutions
  • Authoring
    • Link to webcast page from home page
    • Always offer a metafile link
    • If embedding, keep it simple
    • Test!
  • Authoring
    • Problem: browsers don’t stream
      • Browsers don’t understand RTSP or MMS protocols
      • Browsers download entire file
    • Solution: metafiles
      • Small file delivered via HTTP
      • Contains information about streaming file
    4 Web Server Streaming Server 1 2 3 5
  • Authoring - Metafiles
    • QuickTime .qtl files
    • RealSystem .ram files
    • Windows Media .asx files
    <?xml version=&quot;1.0“ ?> <?quicktime type=&quot;application/x-quicktime-media-link“ ?> <embed src=“rtsp://your.qtserver.com/YourStream.mov&quot; /> rtsp://your.realserver.com/YourStream.rm <asx version=&quot;3.0&quot;> <entry> <ref href=&quot;mms://your.wmserver.com/YourStream.wmv&quot; /> </entry> </asx>
  • Distribution Techniques
    • Redundancy is key
    • Robust load balancing required
    • Use multicast where appropriate
    • Usually best to work with a partner
    • TEST!
  • Distribution Methods
    • Unicast/multicast to servers
    • Unicast/multicast to local clients
  • Countdown
    • Test the audio
    • Test the video
    • Test the encoder(s)
    • Test the link(s)
    • Go live at least 10 minutes before event begins, preferably 30 minutes
  • Liftoff?
  • Q & A Thank You Steve Mack [email_address]