Creating CasparCG templates in Adobe CC

Those of you who know me will know I’m quite up for doing seemingly mad things if someone throws them at me and they involve some challenges of a technical nature. Back sometime in April, already planning to go along to BUCK – Europe’s largest brony convention, held in The Bridgewater Hall, Manchester, UK – I asked their staff if they needed any technical people to help out on the day. “No, but we need a technical manager” was the response. How could I say no?

Two weeks from the gig, and things are now settling down to the nitty-gritty of producing content for the live stream. The stream itself is fairly complex – four Sony PMW-200 cameras, two of them with Wevi HD-SDI senders, a Roland V-1600HD vision mixer and a boatload of computers feeding in video. Any decent multicam production needs a little bit of glamour in the form of lower thirds (the things that pop up to say who people are) and some title cards. Of course, this being a quite low-budget production we wanted to do this on a budget. Enter CasparCG, a superb open source playout system designed and developed by our friends at SVT, Sweden’s BBC equivalent. This is a bit of a rushed walkthrough of how I put some of the stuff together. Continue reading Creating CasparCG templates in Adobe CC

TV on a budget – rolling your own RTMP

So, having moved on from my work at Insanity Radio attempting to build a professional-quality radio station, I’m now going into building a professional quality TV station from the ground up.

Trouble is, there is literally no budget (yet, at least), but we wanted to cover events during the Fresher’s Week here at Royal Holloway. So, I spent a week putting together our own YouTube+UStream. This turned out to be surprisingly complex purely in terms of lack of good contiguous information and documentation. Once the parts are all together, it’s actually remarkably simple.

First, let’s examine the goals of the station. From there, we can work out what we need to have in order to achieve this. Continue reading TV on a budget – rolling your own RTMP

MythTV and Freesat

Or- how to make TV worthwhile if you happen to have a leftover Sky dish on your house.

So when I moved in to my current university digs, the previous tenants had left a few things behind. Notably, they’d had Sky. So we had a Sky box in the living room and a dish on the wall. In the UK, if you want fast internet these days, you need Virgin Media. VM gives you cable TV in the bundle, so I didn’t want to pay for Sky. But Freesat’s got some nice stuff on it, including BBC HD and that sort of thing. So how about we get ourselves some free TV? Continue reading MythTV and Freesat