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Topic Title: HDMI cameras and "live HDMI output"?
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Created On: 1/13/2014 4:24 PM
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 1/13/2014 4:24 PM
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TheCleaner

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Joined: 1/13/2014

First post (could be good or bad on forums these days).

I've read numerous threads in the forums here about camera recommendations, so I hate to start another one, but I need guidance...please.

We are setting up a rig to do 3 cameras via BMDesign Intensity Pro cards to a high-end PC running Wirecast and external audio mixing. I've done about a week's worth of research and am just about ready to pull the trigger except for the cameras.

I've looked at the "Example Setups PDF" here: http://www.telestream.net/pdfs...mple-Setups.pdf#page=5

In that PDF it lists the following recommendations:

Suggested HD Cameras:*
• Canon: Vixia HF M500/M52/G20/G30, XF105
• Sony: HDR-CX260V/380/430V/580V
• Panasonic: HC-V720 (wifi not supported), HC-X920
• JVC: GZ-E505, GZ-EX515/555, GC-PX100
* Not all listed cameras have been officially qualified and tested
by Telestream. However, any SD camera with composite, or
S-video out and any HD camera with HDMI or HD-SDI outputs
should work with a qualified capture card.

I've chatted with the folks at B&H Photo online and they say I need a camera that has a "live HDMI output" which I'm confused on since it isn't a true spec they list but rather just know on some cameras it has it.

So here's my actual questions:

1. Is there such a thing as "live hdmi output" and what is it referring to vs. normal HDMI output? Is there some particular spec I should be looking for?
2. I saw some threads talking about OSD showing up in the HDMI stream to the Intensity Pro cards and Wirecast. Is this what they mean by "live hdmi output" vs. something else? I don't want anything showing on the capture except the video.
3. Are there cameras out there that will provide this live/clean HDMI output from the camera into the capture card that are under $400? I see the GZ-E505 listed above, but I can't tell if it has this "live hdmi output" or not and B&H didn't know.

In the end, I'm just wanting something that can get a clean 720p video without OSD into the Intensity pro cards for under $400 (or even better around $300).
 1/13/2014 4:27 PM
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christr

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Live HDMI Output means that it'll send out HDMI actual video as you're shooting without any junk on it. (like overlays such as you'd see on the LCD screen on your camera).

Some cameras only output via HDMI while they're playing back. Or in the case of many DSLR cameras they always output the shot info overlaid on the video. Both of which are useless for streaming or using the HDMI as anything other than a confidence monitor.

Most camcorders are OK with this, but some aren't. You can usually read in the user guide what it can do but that unfortunately takes times.

--Chris


Edited: 1/13/2014 at 4:44 PM by christr
 1/13/2014 4:34 PM
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TheCleaner

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Chris,

OK, thanks. So is it wrong to assume that those cameras listed in Wirestream's PDF of suggested cameras would all do Live HDMI output? Or will I need to reach out to the OEMs?

Does anyone have HDMI camera suggestions around $300-400 that will do Live HDMI output?
 1/13/2014 4:48 PM
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christr

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I'd assume that if they're on the wirecast supported list they should have a clean HDMI output. But before blowing cash on a particular model I'd just browse the userguide first to make sure.

The other thing that I personally recommend is to find a camera that outputs Progressive video. Every PC, tablet, phone, etc on the planet displays video in progressive format. Therefore 99% of all webcasts are progressive. Broadcast TV is generally interlaced. When you pull an interlaced signal into a PC and into wirecast you waste CPU cycles de-interlacing it to make it not look like garbage on devices. So, try to find a camera that can do 720p or 1080p output. Tho be careful with 1080p and the Blackmagic Intensities. They only support a few frame rates at 1080p that I recall.

I run all my cameras in at 720p60 into Wirecast as a general rule (720p30 if I'm using the Teradeks to send it in). Most of my webcasts are at 720p or 480p (both 30fps). Things get tricky if you're trying to do 1080p, so I just personally avoid it.

--Chris

Edited to add:

Many cameras (especially consumer) will output 1080i by default. But most can be changed to 720p. Hence my standardizing on 720p as my input source.
 1/13/2014 5:10 PM
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TheCleaner

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Understand, thanks!

It'd be nice to be able to use webcams instead of consumer camcorders, but I keep hearing that webcams simply aren't good enough if you are going to be running 3 cameras at once in a semi-nice setup.
 1/13/2014 5:54 PM
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Robbie

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We're using a Vixia HF-R10 and it works fine but looks miserable (consumer cameras tend to do that).

We're doing an interview on tomorrow's show to talk about using a Nikon DSLR (I bought mine from B&H's used department for $400) as an HDMI source to Wirecast, and the results (the video quality) are WAY better than you'll get from a camera twice that price, or more. See my thread here: http://forum.telestream.net/fo...id=14591&enterthread=y

Webcams, while good as far as quality, can be very unreliable which makes them untrustworthy for live broadcasting.

Robbie

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Category5 Technology TV
http://www.Category5.TV
 1/13/2014 6:33 PM
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christr

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Agreed about the webcams. They can be nice for some stuff, but even just trying to get a multi-cam setup working is a pain. Largely due to cable distance issues. Then when you're working with multiple HD webcams you need to start worrying about USB bus bandwidth.

DSLR's can be great fixed cams if they meet your requirements and you can find one that outputs properly. The only real downside to DSLR's (assuming they play nice in the first place) are the zoom/focus/iris issues you can run into if moving the camera around a bunch. But, if the camera is fixed that doesn't matter. The main reason I don't use DSLR's is because we mount our cams on tripods and use the remote trigger/rocker switches on the tripod handle for zoom mostly (sometimes iris & focus control, sometimes also on camera record stop/start). That's a bit trickier to do with DSLR when you need change subject. but, you can get some killer quality out of a DSLR for a fraction of the price of a regular camcorder.

--Chris
 1/13/2014 7:24 PM
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TheCleaner

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Originally posted by: Robbie
We're using a Vixia HF-R10 and it works fine but looks miserable (consumer cameras tend to do that).

We're doing an interview on tomorrow's show to talk about using a Nikon DSLR (I bought mine from B&H's used department for $400) as an HDMI source to Wirecast, and the results (the video quality) are WAY better than you'll get from a camera twice that price, or more. See my thread here: http://forum.telestream.net/fo...id=14591&enterthread=y

Webcams, while good as far as quality, can be very unreliable which makes them untrustworthy for live broadcasting.

Robbie


Robbie, interesting on the Nikon. As Amazon's gold box deal today is a decent Sony camera but I wasn't sure if the vid quality was worthy or if there's a reason to stick with the "camcorders".

BTW, I actually found your "behind the scenes with Wirecast" youtube video the other day while researching stuff so it's funny to see you posting here...small world.
 1/13/2014 7:37 PM
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Robbie

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Thanks for watching, TheCleaner

Chris, I hear ya re. your setting. In our case, we're two people sitting stationary at a desk, never moving anything more than our lips So all it takes is a good camera operator to zoom in, get a really nice focus, and then zoom wide... because there's not a lot of movement (although I sometimes want to break out in a dance), it would work very, very well, with extremely good quality video.

Yes, TheCleaner, DSLR can produce EXTREMELY good video these days... but it's a very manual process. Interestingly, so are the $40,000 HD cameras used for big-budget productions. So I can't say that's a bad thing

The catch is, DSLRs, USUALLY, out of the box will not work. Plain and simple. That's what we're setting out to change, and that's what tomorrow's interview will allude to.

When you hear the term "Clean HDMI" in the case of a DSLR, it means an HD signal that does not have stuff like battery levels, VU display, ISO/exposure display, etc. A clean output suitable for broadcast. Out of the box, most DSLRs won't provide clean HDMI. They also tend to shutoff if not recording, and if you DO record, the HDMI drops down to something like 480p output.

It's being worked on... don't miss tomorrow's interview.

Robbie

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Robbie Ferguson, Host
Category5 Technology TV
http://www.Category5.TV
 1/13/2014 10:22 PM
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CraigS

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Telestream's camera recommendations are one's that we've tested in office. Some of us, like myself, have used others. The cameras we recommend have clean outputs (otherwise there'd be no reason to recommend them).
"Prosummer" and Professional cameras have clean HDMI and SDI out. Most consumer camcorders can have a clean output but some require more work than others to get there and some may not allow it to be completely clean.
Webcams have many limitations given USB2 data limits and the lack of camera controls.

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CraigS
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 1/14/2014 1:55 PM
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TheCleaner

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Thank you Craig...I appreciate the "official" response.
 1/14/2014 4:05 PM
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davidlgood

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I've used a lot of different cameras. I wont talk about most of them (as your budget is pretty low), but I can say that the SONY lineup will fit the bill. They have no issues giving you "clean HDMI" output (what B&H is calling "live"). The SONY cameras actually produce some nice quality -- unless you're really zooming in (full optical zoom) and you don't have optimal lighting. In a case like this, you'll see a lot more "grain" or "noise" introduced. The more you zoom, the more light you lose and the more grain you introduce. This will ultimately result in video that an encoder struggles with (so it will be harder to get really good quality compression/encoding at lower bitrates). If you jump up to something like the Canon XA25 (a $2,500 jump) you'll end up with a camera that has brilliant optics. It doesn't have the "zoom" that the smaller camcorders do, but it also handles low-light, noise, and other image quality issues much better. Still -- if you're not eighty feet away from your subject and have moderate lighting, those SONY cameras can really produce some great results.
 1/14/2014 8:30 PM
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CraigS

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The reason why low noise from the source camera is important is that encoders, to be most efficient, toss out data that's constant (unchanging) through a frame and from frame to frame. Noise changes constantly so it's less likely to be tossed out. The result is that while clean constant data is tossed, the noise remains, making the image look even nosier or otherwise making the encoder work harder.

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CraigS
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 1/15/2014 7:54 PM
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mavik

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I recently bought a Panasonic HC-V727 which gives me a clear Full HD HDMI out. A superb zoom and a superb cam for that pricepoint.

-------------------------
Dell E6530, I7-3720QM, 8GB Ram (Mobile)
I7-4790, ASUS Z87 Quad Deluxe, 16GB (Desktop)
Sintrones VDB-310 (mPCIe)
PE4L + AverMedia 727 (ExpressCard)
FFI VC400DE-SDI 4CH 3G-SDI equivilant to Magewell
Intensity Shuttle (USB3.0)
AverMedia LGP (USB 2.0)
 1/15/2014 8:04 PM
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CraigS

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I think the "USA" equivalent is the HC-V720 or maybe the new HD-V750.
720
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/...live_streaming_hd.html
750
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/...full_hd_camcorder.html

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CraigS
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 1/19/2014 9:51 PM
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spetranik

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I work for a church where we have been "live streaming" video from our camera to our iMac through firewire. The camera is very old and we have just gotten a new camera - Sony HDR-CX380 (one of the suggested HD cameras). The new camera has an cable that connects the camera to an HDMI output. We would like to continue to record through screenflow, but screenflow doesn't seem to recognize the camera when we use our new HDMI to Thunderbolt adapter. We can't seem to find a HDMI to firewire, any suggestions? We have a 2011 iMac.
 1/21/2014 1:38 AM
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CraigS

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I need more information. Are you streaming with Wirecast? If this is just about ScreenFlow then you may want to post in that forum.
Otherwise I'd need to know complete system details. Read READ BEFORE POSTING at the top of this forum (or the ScreenFlow forum if it's only about that) and post the information here (for Wirecast) or in the ScreenFlow forum for that.

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CraigS
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 5/3/2014 12:56 AM
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wayneberndz

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Originally posted by: mavik
I recently bought a Panasonic HC-V727 which gives me a clear Full HD HDMI out. A superb zoom and a superb cam for that pricepoint.


Can you give any details about this? Does it output 1080i50 or p50 or both? Maybe p25 or p30 too?

 5/5/2014 4:50 PM
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CraigS

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Tech Info
https://www.panasonic.com/de/c...der/hc-v727.specs.html

Keep in mind that HDMI out may not be the same as recording frame rates and that the video in device you use must be compatible. Some devices may not handle 1080p50.

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CraigS
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 8/6/2014 5:09 AM
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Shaydo

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Originally posted by: Robbie
We're using a Vixia HF-R10 and it works fine but looks miserable (consumer cameras tend to do that).


Robbie


Hey Robbie!

I PMed you, but I'd ask here too.

I'm planning on purchases Vixia HF-R10s for HDMI capture, do you use them for that purpose too? I want live-feed HDMI from the cam corder to go into my HDMI capture card!
 10/27/2014 1:09 AM
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bkosha97

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Same experience here with a Canon Vixia r500. We got it because is sends a clean HDMI signal to our blackmagic card for wirecast, but the image is pretty crappy. Bummed out. We were recording with a Sony HDR sr12 and then pairing the audio/video post, and it looks a million times better. Any suggestions for an upgrade from the vixia that still has a clean hdmi out?
 10/27/2014 4:00 PM
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CraigS

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Nearly all video cameras have clean HDMI out. Usually requires a menu setting. It's DSLRs that usually have compromised HDMI outs.
As to the quality of the HDMI out, it's generally coming from the relatively unprocessed sensor.... which of course means the quality of the sensor's image gathering will certainly impact the HDMI out.
What to get, depends on your budget and the specifics of your shooting situation. For example, a camera with poor low light performance will simply share that through it's HDMI out.

The Canon XA10 is a step up from the Vixia line and, at about $1500, is popular amongst those who want quality on a budget. I'm not absolutely sure if its low light performance if that's one of the factors you're dealing with. Some of the reviews mention poor low light performance. Many more laud that performance though.
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/...ssional_Camcorder.html


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CraigS
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 12/2/2014 12:26 AM
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crcaillouet

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Two comments on cameras and live HDMI…
1) Some of the Panasonic cameras (e.g. V720) require some trickery to get HDMI output simultaneous with WiFi control. The sequence of turning on WiFi is critical. It is possible to trick the camera into showing HDMI video by switching into WiFi immediately after powering on the camera. Flipping the viewfinder around into the "selfie" position should cause the on-screen data to go away. WiFi can be useful because it is the only remote control available on some cameras. Unfortunately, the V720 only provides zoom control over WiFi, not manual iris or focus; those have to be run in automatic or preset before entering WiFi.
2) Not all cameras send HDMI video out at the 59.94 field vertical rate required by most broadcast video switchers. 60.00 will not work and "almost 59" will not work. This is a bigger problem with laptop computers than cameras, but i have seen it on cheap video cameras. Newer laptops may also have problems with HDCP copy protection handshaking over HDMI, causing video to blank entirely or periodically during a playback. This is a problem with the newer Retina MacBookPro machines.
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crc
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 12/2/2014 7:55 AM
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Cueball TV

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How about the blackmagic pocket cinema camera?
Has anyone tried one in wirecast, i know it can do clean hdmi out

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Windows 7 64bit, Intel i7-4790K, 8 GB ram
wc 6.0.7
Panasonic HDC-HS700,Sony HDRCX700, Sony PXW-X70
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 12/2/2014 4:55 PM
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CraigS

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I have BMPCC so I can give it a try. The input device can be the critical point.
Some cameras send 1080p29.97 and some input devices need either 1080i59.94 or 1080PsF29.97 (which is a progressive frame broken into fields).

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CraigS
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 12/2/2014 7:13 PM
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Cueball TV

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Great.
I am currently importing 1080i50 into BM Intensity pro cards/ Magewell USB and broadcasting at 720, so particularly interested to know if it meets those specs

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---------------------------------------------------------------------
Windows 7 64bit, Intel i7-4790K, 8 GB ram
wc 6.0.7
Panasonic HDC-HS700,Sony HDRCX700, Sony PXW-X70
Canon Legria Minix
Magewell Pro Capture Quad SDI
youtube.com/user/cueballtv
 12/2/2014 7:36 PM
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CraigS

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PAL compatible frame rates should work as well. I believe Magewell devices can handle Progressive.

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CraigS
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 12/2/2014 10:01 PM
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Cueball TV

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My main concern would be the picture quality as the camera is designed to be colour corrected in post. ie. A very flat image output....
So wondering if the wirecast built in colour/saturation settings will do the job?


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---------------------------------------------------------------------
Windows 7 64bit, Intel i7-4790K, 8 GB ram
wc 6.0.7
Panasonic HDC-HS700,Sony HDRCX700, Sony PXW-X70
Canon Legria Minix
Magewell Pro Capture Quad SDI
youtube.com/user/cueballtv
 12/3/2014 3:18 PM
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CraigS

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BMD cameras have a "Video" (Rec709) output setting I believe.

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CraigS
Telestream Desktop Forum Moderator

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