Who isn’t looking to improve their broadcasts?
When you’re looking to boost the quality the quality of your video there are a few different areas to focus on. The first is of course your internet connection. The speed of your network can be the primary reason for not getting the full potential out of your equipment. You can have the most expensive and highest quality gear when it comes to your cameras, capture devices, and computer but if your internet can’t handle the data load it’ll be a failing effort.
So what equipment should I use?
Mac. Mac. Mac.
First and foremost we highly recommend either a Mac Book Pro or a Mac Book Air. These are powerful and efficient computers that can run a very smooth smooth broadcast all while using 4 cameras, instant replay, and social media sharing. There is a Windows version for the PC platform however it does not come with all the bells and whistle that you’ll get with a Mac.
Having the right capture device doesn’t just secure that you’re going to get the best quality video but it also can have a large impact on your mental health. Your capture device is what transfers the video data from your camera into your computer so that it can be used for your broadcast. Working as a bridge between your camera and your computer it can be the central point of connection issues. Having a reliable capture device can save you lots of time and frustration as they are the most prone to difficulties. There are a handful of different capture devices we recommend for HD broadcasting. These include the Black Magic Mini Recorder, Intensity Shuttle, and DeckLink Duo.
Compared to choosing a capture device choosing a camera has a little more leniency. When picking out a camera you need to check off a few basic requirements. First, and the most important, make sure it has an HDMI or SDI output. This of course needs to match up to the inputs on your capture device so a little planning is very important. You’ll first need to decide how far of a reach you’ll need your camera away from you as HDMI and SDI cable have different length restrictions. With HDMI you will start to see signal loss around 40-50ft, however with SDI you’ll be able to reach up to 300ft. If you think you may want cover some greater lengths in the future it’s best to start with the equipment that can work long term.
The second thing to check is to make sure the camera is able to switch between different resolutions. When using Black Magic devices you’ll need to be able to put your cameras recording mode at a specific resolution.
Finally, make sure your camera has the ability to remove the onscreen icons from the video. Almost every camera has this ability but there are still some out there in the world that can’t or are difficult to work with.
Whether you are upgrading your equipment or just getting started it’s important to make sure you are buying for the future. You want to be confident that if you wanted to expand your setup in a couple years that you don’t have to go out and buy a new camera, cables and a new capture device. Purchase items that can be the most versatile, an example of this would be going with an SDI camera and capture device so that you have the option later on to use that 300 feet of reach even if don’t need it now. Usually spending a little more money upfront is a better idea than being confronted with buying a whole new setup a couple years down the line.
If you have any questions on device recommendations please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or check out our PDF document here.