• Live stream the secondary school graduation of 50 students
• 100 People will be present with social distancing measures in place
• The school has no hardware or software.
Video Capture Cards
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• This converts the video signal (and in some cases the audio from a camera to a signal your laptop will interpret as coming from a web camera.
• The most reliable signal, and one that provides the best image, is via HDMI.
• HDMI sockets are one way. The HDMI socket on your laptop is almost certainly HDMI out, enabling you to connect to an external monitor. You cannot therefore connect an external camera to that socket.
• Processing real time video is going to be a real test of your computers processor and RAM. Turn off everything running on your laptop except the streaming software.
• I chose a capture card that would also process audio, to give the laptop less to do
Buying a capture card
The most popular cards are
• Elgato Game Capture Card HD60
• Elgato Cam Link 4K
• AVerMedia C875
However, given the millions of people now working and conferencing at home due to Corvid-19 it is next to impossible to find any of the above in stock, unless you wish to pay inflated rates in ebay.
I searched high and low in Amazon for alternatives (to save you having to do this).
• The unit had to listed as compatible with OBS
• Given the sudden demand many new devices have appeared. I ignored all those with 10 review stars or less.
• For processing efficiency I chose only units that had audio in
• FYI: Except for major brands electronics companies use different brand names depending on the country
• the event was that important that we bought two capture cards of differer brands on the assumption now would work on the night!
Video Capture Card - The two we purchased
Free Live Streaming Software
Camera to Laptop Cables
• 100’ - 30m HDMI Cable
• Note that the required cable length is not the straight line distance between camera and laptop
• Ours had to weave between chairs, around stage, and so on
• Magnus VT-350 Video Tripod with Fluid Head
• Provides smooth pans
If I was to do the event again…
• All the above worked, so I would most likely stick with it again
• Difficult to juggle multiple cameras live via OBS. Set could have been easier
• Consider Blackmagic Design ATEM Mini HDMI Live Switcher