Any demand for a new webcast receiver?

Using the Church Webcasting System, YouTube, etc. Including cameras and mixers.
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Mikerowaved
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Postby Mikerowaved » Mon Jan 30, 2012 5:39 pm

For us, the receive end was the simplest. Almost any notebook connected to a projector & local sound system, with a separate notebook tied to a TV in the overflow area and we were done. It was especially easy being able to use the test feed from CHQ to set it all up. (Thanks for that!) It was the encode/upload end that took the most time to get working correctly.
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russellhltn
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Postby russellhltn » Mon Jan 30, 2012 6:16 pm

ksolsen wrote:If you have other ideas, let me know.


How does the newer incarnations of the Western Digital box look?
Have you searched the Help Center? Try doing a Google search and adding "site:churchofjesuschrist.org/help" to the search criteria.

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darcy.morrissette
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Postby darcy.morrissette » Mon Jan 30, 2012 8:30 pm

Wow, didn't expect that many responses so quickly.

@RussellHltn:
I'll keep everyone posted once I get the actual devices, right now I'm building everything in a virtual appliance that's the same OS as will be running on the devices.

@aclawson:
I was thinking about making a lower cost Webcast Communicator (~$200) too but the church software runs on Windows. VLC media player will broadcast no problem but I don't know if the church servers would support relaying broadcasts from it. Church units could stream directly from the stake without even using the church headquarters server (less latency). That would require either a firewall rule (stake firewall) or a VPN connection for each unit and enough bandwidth to handle several units at once though.

@sammythesm:
I never thought of VNC, I can add that as well. So far I've installed Webconsole and the HTTP Remote Control for VLC media player (the player I'm using for streaming). You can also always plug in a keyboard and manage it directly. I haven't enabled SSH, I figured with Webconsole you won't need any software to manage it, just a browser. I have a script that simply asks for your Unit ID and Event ID then it automatically loads the broadcast URL on next reboot.

@JohnShaw:
The Roku would be nice if it did MMS streaming. The Revue 2 may work though.
http://forums.roku.com/viewtopic.php?p=309457&sid=d6858f78fd5f510b1a884ccc761c9927

As a side note, these devices are capable of running XBMC (Boxee is based off of XBMC) and decode 1080P, so it could be used for other things as well. I just wanted something that was so simple all you had to do was plug it in, and it would automatically re-connect to interrupted feeds, which is another problem with Windows Media Player (anyone know how to fix that?).

---
Darcy

harddrive
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Postby harddrive » Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:10 am

That could be a good idea. My plan is to use the clerk computers as the receiver and tie the audio/video into the closed circuit TV system so that you can be in any room watching the feed. I also see this as a benefit that if we lose our satellite, we can stream conference and no one knows the difference. I can see this saving the church a lot of money, by getting rid of the satellite system.

Just a thought.

marcporter
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Postby marcporter » Thu Feb 16, 2012 9:35 am

Just adding my +1 for a dedicated receiver.

craiggsmith
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Postby craiggsmith » Thu Feb 23, 2012 5:20 pm

I would be interested in this, if it were cheaper than a basic laptop. I assume you wouldn't need much of a laptop.
Craig
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bshepher
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Postby bshepher » Wed Feb 29, 2012 9:59 pm

Right now we are just using the clerk computers for the receivers. One of the buildings is completely packed, but doesn't have a satellite, so we had facilities run a video input from the Clerk's office into a video distribution amplifier and run outputs to the primary and relief society rooms. We had to get a video card that output to rca video.

We are using the clerk computers to reduce cost and because the clerk computers are replaced every 5 years, so we wouldn't have to budget to replace the device in the future.

@radioactive73
I do like the features being proposed in a new receiving device(just plug and play). What version of linux are you thinking of using? I'd be interested in helping you with this.

-Bryson

harddrive wrote:That could be a good idea. My plan is to use the clerk computers as the receiver and tie the audio/video into the closed circuit TV system so that you can be in any room watching the feed. I also see this as a benefit that if we lose our satellite, we can stream conference and no one knows the difference. I can see this saving the church a lot of money, by getting rid of the satellite system.

Just a thought.

schester
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Postby schester » Thu Mar 08, 2012 8:16 am

I too would be interested in something that could be dedicated to receiving the broadcasts. Computers work, but we do this often enough that something should be dedicated for it.

darcy.morrissette
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Postby darcy.morrissette » Thu Mar 15, 2012 10:22 pm

@bshepher

I was planning on using the ARM port of Debian Linux but I may change that to a Fedora ARM port as it appears to be the default and better supported distro of the device. I have a couple on back-order, I was hoping to have them already but they just came out and are having trouble filling demand. Any help, and or ideas is always welcome, I don't want any trade secrets and will probably release plans on how to make your own. I want to use the RaspberryPi, some of you may have heard of it.

The other mentioned idea may be nice as well, that is, using media software such as Boxee or XBMC and putting in the stream URL manually. Then it could be used with downloaded conferences, playing Mormon messages, etc. I still like the idea of having it dedicated and automatic though, so maybe I'll work on both versions for the same price when I finally get the devices.

--
Darcy

lrmeyer
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Postby lrmeyer » Sun Apr 01, 2012 10:06 am

ksolsen wrote:We've looked into the Roku channel idea as well. I would love it if we could make it work - it's a great, inexpensive device. However, we've run into a couple of issues:
1) Channel management - the Roku uses channels that you subscribe to. In theory, we'd need to create a new channel for every single new stake conference broadcast (definitely not feasible), or combine broadcasts onto a single channel (also probably not a great idea)
2) Lack of live streaming support - from what we've seen, it appears that Roku will only stream a saved file, and does not stream live content. So that really wouldn't work in the webcasting environment.

We certainly didn't do an exhaustive study of Roku, so I'm sure there are people out there with more knowledge and experience, but those factors caused us to stop spending any more time with it. If you have other ideas, let me know.


1. I see only a need for one "LDS Meetinghouse Webcast" channel. When you launch the channel, prompt the user to enter the unit number and webcast session ID, with the option to save the unit number and maybe even the event ID.

2. I watch general conference live on our roku at home. Granted, I'm sure there is a minute or two delay, but that exists with the meetinghouse communicator today.

I don't see this as a reason to not look into this further. The roku would also be able to facilitate as a backup for when there are sattelite issues or primary for units without a sattelite.

-Landon, Sioux Falls, SD - aka - Large stake boundry...


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