The Best PTZ Cameras for Live Streaming

October 31, 2018

This post covers the best PTZ (pan-tilt-zoom) cameras for live streaming. It's part of our series on live streaming equipment.

There's a whole world of video cameras you might want to use for live streaming.

PTZ (pan-tilt-zoom) cameras are cameras that you can attach to a wall or ceiling or other fixed location and operate via remote. These differ from other video cameras that sit on tripods and require a cameraperson to operate.

In the world of live streaming, PTZ cameras are great for capturing a wide shot of a room or a tough angle, while allowing for zoom.

They can be used for anything from an easy one-camera, hands off setup to a highly produced multi-cam setup where the production crew controls the cameras from a studio. They are particularly helpful when you don't have a large team to operate a stream.

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How to Start Live Streaming: Equipment, Platforms, and More

October 19, 2018

This post provides an overview of the various aspects of live streaming for those broadcasting for the first time. It’s the main post in our series on How to Start Live Streaming.

Our team at BoxCast has been helping organizations start streaming since 2013.

In the early days of the company, live streaming options were limited and complex. Since then, live streaming became more approachable for organizations of all kinds.

While live streaming is easier than ever, understanding the right live stream setup is more difficult. The hardware, and software, and platform options available seem endless. Everyday, members of our team consult on the live streaming setups of beginners and experts alike.

This post is aimed to help those who have little to no experience with video or broadcasting.

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The Best Software for Live Streaming (and How to Use Them)

October 12, 2018

This post talks about the best software encoders for live streaming. It also addresses how to create an ideal workflow with these tools. It's part of our series on live streaming equipment.

If you're looking for an encoder for your live streaming setup, we recommend a hardware encoder.

TL;DR (for that link): Computers complicate live streaming. They drastically increase the chance something goes wrong. If you want to make live streaming easy, you should keep them out of your workflow.

That said, there are plenty of situations when you need to bring software into the process. Most likely, you require the advanced production elements that some software encoders offer.

Below, we'll quickly name the top softwares for live stream encoding and then talk about how to set up an ideal workflow with them.

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How Many Viewers (Actually) Watched your Live Stream?

October 05, 2018

This post addresses the different ways that live streaming platforms like Facebook Live, YouTube, Periscope, and BoxCast measure viewership. It's part of our series on How to Start Live Streaming.

Since the beginning of television, the most important metric for broadcasters has been viewership. In the days before the internet, live video audiences were measured, in the form of television ratings, by precise calculations from outside groups.

Fast forward to the digital age and you find a wild world of unregulated measurements. In the internet age, companies can measure viewership however they want.

As a broadcaster, you may find the lack of consistency in reporting frustrating, especially if you simulcast to multiple destinations. What does it mean to have 543 viewers on Facebook Live vs. 245 on YouTube Live? How can you compare across platforms and measure your true reach?

In this post, we breakdown the different platforms and considerations for measuring your live stream viewership.

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The Best Battery Pack for Mobile Live Streaming

September 28, 2018

This post talks about the XTPower XT-20000 External Battery Pack, our favorite power source for mobile broadcasting. It's part of our series on live streaming equipment.

Mobile broadcasting presents a few extra challenges for broadcasters. The biggest obstacle of course is ensuring you maintain an uninterrupted, strong network connection for the broadcast.

The top hurdle beyond your mobile network is your power supply. Your setup (specifically your encoder) needs a source of power that is both compact and long-lasting. This post addresses our favorite battery pack to power your live streaming set up on the go.

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How to Replace Your Archived Broadcast With a Locally Recorded Video

September 21, 2018

This post addresses how to replace a recorded live broadcast with a post-produced copy of the same event. It's part of our series on BoxCast Features.

The outside factors that influence a video produced live differ from those that influence a video recorded live, but produced in post. In a live stream, the video producer takes on extra risks.

The stream is limited by available network connection. Also, if something goes wrong, (a network blip, a bad shot, an off-script comment by the subject), it goes wrong both live and in the recoded version of the live stream. These risks are the big tradeoff for the power of live video.

If you're a video producer for an event, there's a good chance that in addition to your live broadcasts you're recording video for post-production as well. In the long run, you may want the post-produced video to be the video that all non-live viewers see. Here are a few situations where this might be valuable:

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How to Add Simple Live Stream Production Elements Without a Video Switcher

September 14, 2018

In this post we will cover how to add basic production elements like a second camera, a presentation, or graphic overlays without a video switcher. It's part of our series on how to start live streaming.

Some organizations live stream their events from a phone. Some use one camera setups. Others have entire AV production teams with multi-cam setups worth tens of thousands of dollars. There's an entire spectrum of production options.

This graphic obviously is an extreme oversimplification. There are endless levels and variations of live stream set ups.

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How to Bulk Schedule Live Streams in Advance

August 31, 2018

This post outlines how to schedule both recurring and irregular live streams in advance on various platforms. It's part of our series on BoxCast Features.

Many organizations who live stream do so with some kind of regular cadence. Faith-based organizations often stream weekly at the same time. Sports organizations have a season full of events on various days.

As a broadcaster for an organization that streams multiple events, it's important that your workflow is as easy as possible. Thirty minutes of setup and scheduling each time you go live can turn into dozens of hours of your time very quickly.

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How To Monitor and Troubleshoot Your Live Stream

August 28, 2018

This post addresses potential obstacles you might encounter as a broadcaster and a route to avoiding them with active monitoring, stream diagnostics, and a support team behind it all. It's part of our series on BoxCast Features.

As a broadcaster, ensuring your viewers have a positive experience is absolutely critical. A low quality or disrupted stream can be a poor mark on your organization and brand.

High quality live streaming can be easy. However, there are still external obstacles that can prevent a perfect broadcast. The number one offender is your network connection.

In order to troubleshoot issues as quickly as possible, we always recommend choosing a live streaming provider that offers direct customer support.

A customer support team paired with a platform that monitors and diagnoses your stream is the best way to ensure a great broadcast every time.

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Live Streaming Spotlight: Wycliffe Bible Translators

August 24, 2018


Customer: Wycliffe Bible Translators

What they Stream: Internal meetings, weekly chapel sessions, organizational events

The Setup: Three cameras and audio console to a Blackmagic ATEM Switcher to the BoxCaster Pro

Destinations: Internal


We recently had the opportunity to chat with Eli Garrett, Media Systems Engineer at Wycliffe Bible Translators, a global nonprofit based in Orlando, Florida.

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