LIVE Streaming: Queen’s College St. John’s Virtual Convocation 2020

Live streaming can be a challenge. Our experience with event videography has taught us you have to mitigate surprises to get the best results. We have gone live before but this was a very high profile event. What should have been a 30 min check in turned into three hours of trying to connect our LiveStream camera to the iPad and university WiFi. Luckily we were there many hours ahead of the scheduled go LIVE time of 7pm. There are so many variables with video and audio and it gets exponentially more interesting when you are relying on connecting to a WiFi network. We were dead in the water if we could not get the LIVE Stream camera to connect to the WiFi. Three hours on location without any “easy’ connection to the WiFi and having to troubleshoot before an approaching go LIVE is not a comfortable place to be. Facebook has a relatively new “Live Producer” interface but with our MEVO as a webcam it said it is operating in beta which does nothing to instill us with confidence before a high profile LIVE event such as the Queen’s College School of Theology Virtual Convocation 2020. Despite the concern and after three hours of trying to connect the MEVO to the recommended method of Ipad we hooked the camera into the Macbook Pro via USB and voila it worked. It didn’t have all the usual functionality as it was now operating as a webcam but the iPad could still be used to pan and zoom using the two finger pinch. Once the video challenges were resolved and the video feed was up and running with confidence we turned our attention to the audio. In this scenario there was audio coming from the TV on Webex and audio coming from a few in person speakers in the room. This presented the challenge of very different audio levels and a need for two mic channels. We added an M-track audio interface, which after all the trial and error with the video, put us at about 6:15pm for audio setup start. If there were similar issues with the audio as we had with video we had little or no time to figure out what was wrong. The M-Track USB interface allowed us to individually mic the WebEx TV speakers and the in person podium speakers and control levels. Audio setup wasn’t complete till 6:30pm and we went live at 6:50pm, so again if it didn’t work despite being there hours before the event we would not be able to record a quality stream. With the two mics plugged in we tested the LIVE feed and we hit paydirt the sound was excellent! This is an example of being at an event well ahead of time and still getting into a situation where there was precious little time for trial and error. Despite years of experience and all the best equipment variables beyond your control can cause challenges. We are very pleased that the challenges were overcome and the event was LIVE Streamed without a hitch.

Here is the event that we had the pleasure of recording:

Here are some pictures of us on location at MUN:

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