michaelfish wrote:There are several ways you can control the Sony EVI-D80. A joystick controller, computer mouse/keyboard, or Infrared Wireless remote.
I have had experience with several joystick controllers including Vaddio, Sony, Kato (a Chinese brand). The prices for these vary depending one features, ease of use, if you purchase it new or used, etc.
My personal preference is either the Vaddio or Sony. Used Sony's start at about $700, and Vaddio's at about $1,000. They offer the best 3-axis joystick control including variable speed servo control (PTZ action - from slowest the camera can do [14 or more incremental steps] to the fastest possible). These controllers are super easy to use and there is almost no learning curve. Sony PTZ cameras have 6 internal presets which memorize every setting of the camera (position, zoom, focus, color, brightness, etc.) and the controllers have buttons reserved for each preset.
One of the best features of these controllers is the ability to override automatic white balance settings and fine-tune brightness and color settings so you can achieve the best possible picture and match cameras if you are using more than one.
Camera control is achieved by RS-232 or RS-422 communication using a set of commands (protocol) developed by Sony called VISCA. RS-422 can go 4,000 feet, and connection is simple with CAT5 cable (only 4 wires are used). Most of us prefer to use RS-422 instead of the RS-232 (requires a special 8-pin DIN connector and the recommended cable length is less than 50 feet - however some have had success with longer lengths). For RS-422, simply strip 4 CAT5 wires and secure them to the correct pins on the 9-pin Phoenix connector (transmit+ goes to receive+ and so on). If you choose to daisy-chain additional cameras, the 4 other pins go to the next camera, with one of the pins reserved for ground.
Sony controllers are used by professional broadcasters (they call PTZ cameras "Robo's") and they're great for worship services. The controllers can connect to and control up to 7 cameras.
The Kato controller is about a third of the price of the Sony and the 3-axis control is just as good, but it's other features are difficult to use. Controlling anything other than the movement is difficult or not even possible. The only features worth using are PTZ control and memorizing presets. Connection is the same as the Sony.
Side note: Sony's broadcast quality line of PTZ cameras are BRC instead of EVI. The baby of their professional line-up is the BRC-300 which has incredible smooth and super-slow PTZ control. Good used cameras start at about $600.
I have 2 BRC Z700 cams and 3 EV1-HD1. I have a RM-BR300 and we will be using vMix to manage our inhouse screen media and the live stream. I have used vMix for several years doing live streaming and we are now getting our church updated
I wanted to put 1 or 2 of the EV1's down at the front of the sanctuary (in front of choir loft) mainly for events like graduation, weddings, etc where that camera view would be very helpful. However, the cable run would be an estimated 300 feet. Is there advise you can share? I don't think the EV1's support RS-422 so would heavier wire work with the long distance for RS-232?
Thanks for any help you or anyone can provide!