Archive for ‘Tips and Tricks’ Category

The Wild West – Using the Public Internet as a Video Backhaul Solution

October 28, 2013, 12:54 pm by Chris Perry

(Chris Perry is TelVue’s Director for Systems Engineering)

Over the past six or so months I’ve spent an increasingly large portion of my day talking about how to backhaul video across the public Internet.  Before diving in let’s clarify what I mean by backhaul.  In situations where you are shooting a game, parade, or other event in the field you have to transmit that video back to the station or whatever demarcation can get you back into your broadcast system.  Traditional methods such as Satellite uplink and Microwave transmission have an extensive amount of testing, research, and development behind them; however there are two main downsides: cost and ease of use.  Sat transmission prices start around $5/minute and require a trained engineer to setup and maintain.  Microwave requires either an FCC license (for reliable transmissions) or unlicensed transmitter/receiver (more susceptible to interference); not to mention that you need line-of-sight or multiple hops in order to establish a connection.

Enter the Internet – prolific, speedy, and cheap.  Sounds great, doesn’t it?  And in many cases the Internet can prove to be an important part of a remote backhaul solution where traditional means are not available or affordable.  However the Internet does not come without its own set of challenges for video transmission.  In this blog post I hope to address some of the issues and strengths with using the Internet as a live video backhaul solution, as well as some of the products that I’ve tested recently and my findings from those tests.

Let’s begin with a bit of information about the Internet itself.

Read more …

Help for your Network

October 15, 2013, 3:39 pm by dliu

One of the best-attended workshops at the recent ACM-NE conference was entitled “My Network’s A Mess…Help!“ – featuring TelVue’s Chris Perry, Director of Systems Engineering.

As we push further and further into truly non-linear, tapeless workflows, networking has become increasingly important. This workshop was about proper network design and construction, products available on the market, and some basic network troubleshooting tools. Chris Perry is pretty well-known among TelVue clientele, having helped a number of stations transition to all-digital, HD, tapeless systems.

Luckily for those who couldn’t make the workshop, we have recorded it. Chris’ handout is also available here.

Track Your Roku Viewers

June 25, 2013, 8:08 am by dliu
Google Analytics - Selecting a secondary dimension

Google Analytics tracks video vews as “Events”

Google Analytics is now capable of tracking views on your Roku Channel as well your CloudCast players.  This is made possible with the advent of a new type of Google Analytics account known as “Universal Analytics”, which allows tracking on many different kinds of platforms, besides websites.

Go to the CloudCast User Manual for more detailed instructions on how to integrate a Universal Analytics account.

In a nutshell: Read more …

Server rooms: some practical advice

June 6, 2013, 9:32 am by dliu

In this Tips & Tricks blogpost this week, TelVue’s Director of Systems Engineering Chris Perry spells out the do’s and don’ts of creating the proper environment for best server performance:

Having visited and worked in countless Data Centers or Master Control Suites across the country, I’ve seen just about everything – the good, bad, and ugly.  Whether you are looking toward a new building, server upgrade path, or just looking to clean things up a bit  - here are a few tips, tricks, and thoughts on Data Centers.
Read more …

Clarifying SDI

May 30, 2013, 10:45 pm by dliu

Chris Perry, TelVue’s Director of Systems Engineering, gets a lot of questions in the course of his work with many stations across the country.  In an attempt to address some of the more frequently-asked questions, here is his Tip of the Day, on understanding SDI:

Although most of my day is spent dealing with IP video, SDI and analog video transport still plays a very important role in both control rooms and airpath distributions at many facilities.  There are however a few misconceptions when it comes to terminology.

SDI is an acronym for “Serial Digital Interface.”  But saying something is “SDI” doesn’t mean much more than that.  There are actually subsets of standards that fall under SDI, that are standardized by SMPTE (Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers).

Misconception #1: All “SDI” means Standard Definition, “HD-SDI” means High Definition.

Read more …

CloudCast Enhancements

May 8, 2013, 11:36 am by dliu

The TelVue® CloudCast™ video streaming service has become even more versatile, with the addition of Closed Captioning, Roku Analytics, and enhanced MRSS.

With captions uploaded, player displays on/off button

With captions uploaded, player displays on/off button

The latest release of CloudCast includes:

  • The ability to upload SRT and DFXP style Closed Captioning to each of your videos.  The CloudCast player will display a button to turn on/off the captions.

  • Roku Analytics – The same Google Analytics event tracking available in the web player is now available to custom Roku channels developed by TelVue. If you have an existing Roku channel with us, please contact TelVue to have this enabled.

  • Enhanced MRSS – The MRSS feed now includes more CloudCast-specific details about the video, as well as the RTMP and HTTP format for each video (if available). See the MRSS details page.

Plus, we’re happy to report that there is a new version of the media_cloudcast Drupal module, with great thanks to Drupal developer Emily Frazier! Frazier has posted about the new version of media_cloudcast Drupal module here: http://drupal.org/node/1982788

Here is Emily’s screencast on how to use it. She says this will soon be included in the Community Media Starter Kit Moderate release.

Media Cloudcast 7-2x from Emily Frazier on Vimeo.

Making the Most of your CloudCast Playlists

April 12, 2013, 10:57 am by dliu

The following CloudCast tip comes from Dan Silvia at ChelmsfordTV.  Thanks, Dan!:

I just wanted to let you know how Chelmsford has started using our CloudCast player. We have been running into an issue of how to help our producers promote their shows without creating a ton of extra work for our staff. The solution, we realized one day, was staring us in the face with the equipment and services we already had!

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Get More out of CloudCast™ with Google Analytics

March 14, 2013, 11:35 am by dliu

We want to make sure our TelVue CloudCast users are taking advantage of the Google Analytics integration we built into CloudCast v4. If you haven’t already set up the integration, it’s easy to implement, and opens up new worlds of audience data for you to crunch. Here’s a quick how-to: Read more …

Preparing Content for the HyperCaster®

March 11, 2013, 9:40 am by dliu

Questions about preparing your video content for playout on the TelVue HyperCaster®?  We’ve just updated the instructions on our site.  Click here for details.

Using Slides to Make Videos

February 22, 2013, 5:10 pm by dliu

When you want to broadcast a message, don’t underestimate the versatility of slide shows, especially for community bulletin boards and announcements. The most recent versions of PowerPoint and Keynote offer two very quick and user-friendly ways to convert a slide deck, with narration or sound, into a video. Export these as .mov or .wmv files, drag them into TelVue Connect for transcoding to proper broadcast specs, and you can easily schedule attractive, custom-made bulletin boards in your channel lineup.

Why convert a slide presentation to video?

Read more …