It seems as though my idea of broadcasting my first AG through streaming video was well received; much more so than I thought it'd be, and thanks again to everyone for watching. Enough people seemed interested, so I thought I'd write a tutorial.
I had a lot of equipment, as my theory is 'the more wires you have, the cooler you are.' A lot of it is optional, and I only used because I had it around from the Halo podcast/video show that I do weekly.
- Computer (no, really?)
- Internet connection (probably wireless, unless you brew inside or have a long length of CAT5/CAT6)
- Webcam or other video camera
- Account with a streaming site such as Mogulus or ustream.tv (I use Mogulus for reasons I'll get into in a minute)
I also had a bunch of optional equipment that you may not need or want:
- Second camera (I had a webcam for my 'sitting in a chair and talking while the mash is going on' segments, and a real video camera for wider shots and pointing at the boil when I was off doing other things)
- Firewire cable (or whatever you need to connect it to your computer)
To stream your music in its full quality:
- Music program of choice (I use iTunes but it really doesn't matter at all; I also switched to Pandora halfway through and used PandoraBoy)
- Soundflower (Mac only; there may be a Windows alternative)
- Audio Hijack Pro (Mac only, not free: I had it already, but you may be able to do things with the System Preferences and/or LineIn)
I didn't have it this time, but I'm going to try playing around with:
- CamTwist (for adding effects and mixing cameras)
I use Mogulus because, as far as I can tell, it has a few features ustream doesn't: support for multiple cameras (not that big of a deal, but imagine a HBT channel where we 'checked in' with various brew days happening simultaneously!), the ability to record and provide the content 'on demand' (for people who missed the show) and the ability to import and play Youtube videos (again, not necessary, but I use it for my Halo feed already, so I'm used to it). You may or may not like Mogulus, so you can use whatever you want. For the purposes of my explanation, though, I'm using Mogulus, which displays sort of small on my Macbook.
Step 1: Get an account. I have
Step 2: Log in to the studio, or create a new station (its url will be http://mogulus.com/yourstationname).
After you create a channel they'll take you to a lot of 'style your channel' pages, but I have no graphic design ability whatsoever and so I ignore it all. You're interested in the 'Broadcast Live' tab.
Step 3: Get the video set up
(sorry for the ginormous image)
1. The Broadcast Live tab, where you'll do most of your stuff
2. Your camera
3. Settings: If your camera isn't showing up, or if you want to change the audio/visual sources (ie to raise/lower your audio, switch between your webcam and video camera, to use an iMic instead of your default system input, or if you're using Soundflower to pipe in your music)
4. Record. Press this before you cue up your camera if you want to record -- and why not?
5. Cue up your camera
6. Transition to cued clip. Once it's ready, and all the viewers are synced (the circle next to the button), press it. Congrats, you're broadcasting!
7. The feed preview. I always set the audio to off or else you're going to hear everything you're saying, and that's distracting as hell. Also, the video here may not be synced up: the last few hours of my broadcast it was giving me a black screen, but everyone else could see it ok.
8. The ticker. I have it set to display 'We're live!' when I'm recording and change it to 'This isn't live,' or something similar, when it's the playback. You don't need to use it, but it's nice. Type what you want and click 'Show' to show it and 'Hide' to, erm, hide it.
Step 4: Brew beer!
I'm assuming you know what to do in this step
Step 5: Post production
Once you're done, press the Record button again to stop it. Then I changed the ticker to say it was a recording and turned on autopilot.
The three bars in the bottom left corner are the storyboards (I didn't want to display any more huge imaged, so I cropped it). The recording you just made will be 'Live Show Sat May 10 2008 11:43:12' or something (you'll be able to recognize it). Drag it into the center area underneat 'My first storyboard' and then click the other's X to remove it. Click 'Restart auto pilot' and you should be golden! (Check first though, sometimes it takes a minute or so to kick in, and you'll be live until then)
Optional fun stuff
A few days before I brewed, nugget suggested in IRC that I play some music to alleviate the boredom that is watching a Rubbermaid cooler for an hour while a guy fumbles around with simple things like 'not starting to heat the sparge water 10 minutes before you need it.'
After a bit of searching, I found how to send audio from iTunes to ustream.tv. I use Mogulus, but the steps are exactly the same. This method requires buying Audio Hijack Pro, which I had already, but I think you can do the same thing with LineIn. I followed that tutorial, switching from iTunes to PandoraBoy when SWMBO was complaining that the computer was running slowly (I was streaming it from my desktop inside, while broadcasting a video feed, so I imagine I was using up a good deal of bandwidth).
The general idea is that you use Audio Hijack to grab the streams from your music player and mic, then send it to Soundflower as an 'input source' that you can specify in Mogulus. CamTwist does something similar for the video source, though I'm not sure my laptop has enough power to do it justice.
Mogulus is far from perfect. There were some server issues the day I recorded, so only 17 minutes out of the few hours I filmed were saved. I also freaked out two days ago when all of the stuff I recorded for my Halo station (five months worth of weekly shows) disappeared... luckily it's back. Other people seem to like ustream.tv better, which is understandable, but if you're working with multiple cameras it makes it very easy to switch and do remote production work. My next filmed brew I'd like to have a wireless mic, and my friend Robert (who I talked about a number of times on the show) has volunteered to do the switching of cameras... from St Louis.
Thanks again to everyone who watched. If other people would like to broadcast as well, we could even potentially have a HBT channel (which someone higher up than me should control, of course)... this way you can tune in and see if anyone is brewing at the moment, or if multiple people are switch back and forth, etc. It doesn't help the brewing at all, of course, but people seem to enjoy it and I had a ton of fun doing it!