Thursday, 24 December 2015

Live on TV via Skype!

I am not a Skype fan. We have used "proper VoIP" for a long time, but it works.

But I am also not a fan of spending 90 minutes or so on train and taxi in to London to Millbank studios, being on-air for 4 minutes, and then spending as long getting home. So when Russia Today (RT, Sky channel 512) wanted me on TV and said maybe Skype, I tried it.


It works OK. But it is not that good quality and the sound even broke up.

So I am wondering if I should set up a studio. I have been on RT twice, Sky News several times, BBC a few times, so it may be worth tinkering. I should be able to set up a decent camera and some lights and a decent mic. The idea is that I could provide a web page with streaming live audio/video in HD and use a telephone call in earpiece as talkback.

I wonder if TV studios can handle that - I would think so if they can manage Skype.

I may have to put one of those big "ON-AIR" red lights outside the man-cave though :-)

12 comments:

  1. .. and a suitably lit green screen so you can change the background to whatever you want e.g. https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/188253/star-wars-painting-29378-1920x1080.jpg

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  2. I remember Skype pushing their "Broadcast" package a while ago... Do they use that/is there anything special here or do they just use regular Skype?

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  3. I believe this, ipDTL was developed by or with the BBC to aid in remote contribution.
    https://ipdtl.com/
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IpDTL

    Sadly doesn't look like it is free any more these days.

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    1. Our comms and marketing office at work have a small 'studio' that uses ipDTL for contributions to broadcasters.

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  4. Hi Adrian,
    I've been streaming a lot of local events for years, this sort of thing is quick and easy to set up and the quality would blow Skype out of the water. Let me know if you want any info.

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  5. Some TV channels will accept Skype and/or Facetime contributions, but others are unhappy with the quality. Check out liveu.tv for a more professional level solution.

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  6. No idea about anywhere else, but BBC 5 Live use plain vanilla Skype, FaceTime Audio, or the phone. TV tend to use SkypeTx, WMT and LiveU.

    SkypeTx differs from the normal app in that it's actually a hardware product (read PC in a custom box) that generates a clean genlockable SDI signal which doesn't rely on screenscraping the desktop through a scan converter.

    To be honest, rolling your own solution is unlikely to be popular. Skype is pretty much the lingua franca of public contribution methods for TV.

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  7. Well done in tbe interview. Short succinct answers.

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  8. I see you finally accepted the laws of physics and put some side bracing on the floating shelves.

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  9. You can have different pulldown backgrounds behind you

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  10. Skype is usually awful (even audio can be bad) - p2p means you can both have excellent comms but you go via some random PC in who knows where which slugs it down to bad ADSL. Facetime is always better.

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    1. I believe they have abandoned the node / supernode p2p structure when Microsoft got hold of it. Or at a minimum Microsoft moved all the supernodes onto machines in their DCs.

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