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Topic Title: Tutorial: Linking CamTwist and Wirecast
Topic Summary: How to use both Wirecast and CamTwist at the same time
Created On: 1/23/2011 3:22 AM
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 1/23/2011 3:22 AM
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benjaminhigginbotham

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Television studios split their on-air production in to two switchers. One is the master control switcher which selects what source will be on-air such as commercials, show playback or the live studio itself. The other is the production switcher which is the larger and more complex system that is used to produce live TV but is only used for live show production and it not on-air 24x7 (usually only on-air for a couple hours out of the day). These systems work together to provide a seamless playback system to you the viewer.

By using CamTwist and Wirecast you can achieve much the same effect. We use Wirecast as the master control switcher and live broadcasting system that takes whatever source is selected and streams it live out to the web. One of those sources is CamTwist where we switch our show live, add effects, lower thirds and produce the actual live show itself. This tutorial will show you how to link the two together to get that broadcast feel of seamless switching between live sources.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lA0QS7wQmPE

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Benjamin Higginbotham
benjamin@spacevidcast.com
http://www.spacevidcast.com
 1/24/2011 12:26 PM
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CraigS

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In many senses CamTwist can be seen as something that adds to Wirecast's extensibility. Thanks for that.

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CraigS
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 1/24/2011 4:58 PM
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benjaminhigginbotham

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I completely agree. The suites complement each other very nicely and create a unique television studio like environment that other systems like the Tricaster can't emulate. Each is powerful on their own, but combined they shall RULE THE WORLD!

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Benjamin Higginbotham
benjamin@spacevidcast.com
http://www.spacevidcast.com
 1/24/2011 5:16 PM
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CraigS

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In effect CamTwist is operating as switcher bank feeding a Mix Effect bus (I reveal my Grass Valley switcher origins).

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CraigS
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 1/24/2011 5:23 PM
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benjaminhigginbotham

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Sorta, although I'm not sure the M/E (or MLE if you're a Sony geek) analogy is right. I think it is closer to Wirecast being the Master Control switcher with CamTwist being the production switcher. Wirecast controls the actual broadcast of video and audio and selects the primary sources that will be streamed and ensures audio/video are in sync (pro). CamTwist acts as a production switcher that itself doesn't broadcast but does add the layering, effects, etc. in to the live stream. Combined you emulate an actual TV studio workflow. Generally a TV studio will have both a production and master control switcher, and there's a good reason for that! You don't want to stage your shots on a production switcher that may already be on-air.

I say M/E is the wrong analogy because in a M/E bus you have a complete replication of all inputs across the system and can manipulate them in different ways per M/E. In this scenario you can't use the same inputs in both CamTwist and Wirecast, so the ability to stage an advanced shot in one and switch to another really falls down.

Or maybe I'm just being too picky

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Benjamin Higginbotham
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http://www.spacevidcast.com
 1/24/2011 5:45 PM
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CraigS

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But you are using CamTwist and Wirecast on the same computer.
I've never seen "one box" independent Production and Broadcast switchers. They're often in different rooms. Also in that world you can have a source feeding both with the magic of DAs and routing of course.

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CraigS
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 1/24/2011 5:50 PM
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benjaminhigginbotham

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Touché

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Benjamin Higginbotham
benjamin@spacevidcast.com
http://www.spacevidcast.com
 1/24/2011 6:39 PM
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CraigS

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It's amazing how the mind can extrapolate in different directions and color our thinking. I saw two programs on one computer and saw one computer whereas you saw two independent programs as independent devices.

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CraigS
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 10/17/2011 10:26 AM
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Starwatcher

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This topic is really interesting, thank you for the clear explanation and the fascinating analogy!
I have been testing Wirecast in order to launch a little web tv project and reading your conversation I came across CamTwist, so I decided to have a look. At a first glance CamTwist seems richer than Wirecast in useful effects (I appreciated RSS feeds crowling title so much), but much more complicated in the switching part, especially if you are rushing. CT allows you to easily create a little playlist of video elements, but it crashes down if videos are compressed with certain codecs. I spent just a few hours testing, but using Wirecast as a Master control swither and CamTwist as a Production switcher, the final image quality is very poor and text becomes a cluster of pixels. Maybe I set something wrong...

Is there a way to optimize Wirecast and CamTwist together? What's the difference between the two programs? Is it possible, for example, to add useful functions as crowing titles and RSS into Wirecast within the next releases?

Thank you in advance,
Dario
 10/17/2011 12:36 PM
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CraigS

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I'm not sure how you're setting things up. Wirecast sees CamTwist as a camera source much like it sees Desktop Presenter. I often use CamTwist for an additional screengrab or to take advantage of its unique features like crawls with RSS feeds. If you place it over a green background in CamTwist you can key in Wirecast or otherwise crop it.

I'm not sure why you're having quality issues but you haven't explained your setup or settings. Obviously Benjamin is getting good results as am I although I may be using it differently.

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CraigS
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 10/17/2011 1:15 PM
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benjaminhigginbotham

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So a couple of things to check:
1 - CamTwist defaults to 320x240 so if you're using a HD canvas in Wirecast that will look terrible. Open your CT prefs and change it to 1280x720, restart CT and then restart Wirecast. From here on out you should be in HD
2 - Make sure you're using CamTwist Studio and not just the basic CamTwist interface for switching. They are bundled together, but to get to Studio simply hit COMMAND-S or Tools->Studio in the CamTwist interface. This will open a switcher interface where you simply create buttons that you switch between. A button can be a single item like a camera, RSS ticker, etc. or it can be a composite of everything all at once.
3 - Make sure that in Wirecast the CamTwist source is set to 'native' and not 'reduced'

Thanks,

Benjamin

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Benjamin Higginbotham
benjamin@spacevidcast.com
http://www.spacevidcast.com
 10/17/2011 3:17 PM
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CraigS

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Thanks for that.

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CraigS
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 10/17/2011 5:20 PM
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Starwatcher

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I understood my mistake: in Wirecast I didn't set the CamTwist source to native... I knew it could be something stupid...
Now they work perfectly!

The next time I'll be more accurate in explaining my settings. Thank you both!

Dario
 10/17/2011 5:50 PM
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CraigS

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There's lots of little things along the way that can impact what you as, as you're discovering. Good that you caught it.

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CraigS
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 10/23/2013 11:28 AM
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MrBluePlaydoh

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Why is the OP video private? that dont help at all im trying to use camtwist with wire cast and this is the only place i have found on the web to help and the video is useless being private!
 10/23/2013 1:51 PM
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CraigS

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That video is closing in on three years old. Perhaps there've been changes. You may want to send him a forum private message and see if he has an update he can share.

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CraigS
Telestream Desktop Forum Moderator

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