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Field Report: NewTek TriCaster
TriCaster has also begun to give us a broadcast television sensibility, particularly with its LiveSet effects, for our daily "Show Biz Top 5" videos and other segments, we place talent before a simple green screen, but it appears as if they are in a high gloss studio set. This virtual studio is made possible through NewTek's sophisticated computer graphic wizardry and our audience is none the wiser.
Our powerful TriCaster-based video workstation allows us to do these features, as well as countless spontaneous bits, as we think of them. We have become very attuned to weighing the visual aspect and possibilities of anything we do - which adds an element of excitement for our audience and us.
In addition to the success of our Web site and Ustream channel, the viewership of our YouTube videos has doubled since we have made video a priority. We have also been able to parlay our video content into significant revenue streams from advertising and sponsorships.
Behind the scenes
TriCaster requires only a minimal learning curve to produce broadcast quality video. Once set up, it boots to a standard Windows active desktop with choices to launch or configure the system. The launch screen includes video preview monitors, a vectorscope, program and preview monitors, as well as two video playback decks. There are multiple tabs for video setup, audio mixing, titles, video input configuration and record/streaming settings. The record/stream page's on-screen interface offers many Flash encoding presets and a quick means to conduct a stream through existing services.
The TriCaster's keyboard hot keys allow transitions as well as direct camera or source cuts. Transitions can be automated to play video and then return to the camera setup in the preview window. We use each input's status closures to provide a source tally on each live camera at events.
Our TriCaster has six video inputs and four audio inputs - other models from the company have more or less of each. The audio sources can be linked in stereo or run mono and configured for mic or line level through the user interface page. The software mixer has pan and EQ on each channel as well as variable level control. Each video playback deck (DDR) has all the normal playback controls and allows users to vari-speed play and scroll search to a desired point in a video. The system comes with a complete array of titles and dissolve effects, which gives each video production a clean professional look.
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We are extremely happy with what live and on demand video has done for Kidd Kraddick in the Morning. Most importantly, it has enhanced our connection with our incredible audience and very satisfied sponsors. We are also big believers in TriCaster, the video solution we found to make it all possible.
Chickering is VP operations/engineering, Yea Networks, Kidd Kraddick in the Morning.
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