Monarch LCS lecture capture appliance assists the local SMPTE Section provide localized programs live with an enhanced online experience for members
SMPTE® is a global professional association of technologists and creatives who drive the quality and evolution of motion imaging. Currently, the Society has more than 7,000 members worldwide comprising researchers, motion-imaging executives, engineers, technologists, and students who contribute their time and expertise to the standards development and educational initiatives.
Local SMPTE Sections host more than 200 technical education programs in 27 locales—such as meetings, tutorials, and workshops—annually across the globe. Technical programming is tailor-made for each geographical location and is highly valued by members.
Many SMPTE members, who have been unable to attend these technical presentations in person, communicated their desire to watch the programs live and interact with the presenter during the question period. SMPTE Montréal/Québec Section and the Ottawa Subsection’s earlier setup allowed them to provide only video-on-demand versions of the presentation materials. Deciding to stream presentations live for the benefit of these members, the Montréal/Québec Section and the Ottawa Subsection’s technical committees, on a quest for a dual-channel encoder, chose the Matrox® Monarch LCS lecture capture appliance.
Redefining lecture capture standards
At a recent SMPTE-Montréal/Québec Section meeting highlighting the newly published ST 2110 suite of standards for Professional Media Over Managed IP Networks, and Networked Media Open Specifications (NMOS) registration, all presentations were webcast to Facebook Live using Monarch LCS. The webcast provided a way for online viewers to pose questions in real-time and receive instant feedback from presenters.
The SMPTE Montréal/Québec Section leveraged the Monarch LCS’ HDMI output as a double validation to confirm that the video was being processed correctly.
In cases of unreliable input sources, the Monarch LCS’ frame synchronizer ensured that picture quality was consistent.
The Monarch LCS’ streaming and recording operations are easily controlled via its powerful web-based user interface called the Monarch LCS Command Center, which is used for configuring the unit as well. Matrox Monarch LCS Radar is another application that is of incredible assistance in multi-seat installations. This is a browser-based dashboard that helps administrators to monitor centrally, and update and control all Monarch LCS units deployed on a network, either individually, in groups, or all together.
Soon, the SMPTE Montréal/Québec Section and the Ottawa Subsection will use Monarch LCS to simultaneously record the presentations, to upload to SMPTE’s YouTube channel, www.youtube.com/smpteconnect, for video-on-demand, as well as for archiving purposes.
While Monarch LCS offers several setup options and suggested presets, the SMPTE Montréal/Québec Section and the Ottawa Subsection’s default setting for streaming is RTMP protocol, in 720p60 format, and at a fixed bitrate of 4.5 Gbps. An SDI PTZ camera captures the presenter and sends a SDI feed to the Monarch LCS’ input, while the second available input comes via HDMI directly from the laptop containing the PowerPoint presentation material. The operator can dynamically change the input from camera to laptop, and vice versa, using the Switcher mode in the Monarch LCS. The presenter and questioner’s microphones are sent from a mixer into Monarch LCS.
For the SMPTE Montréal/Québec Section and the Ottawa Subsection, the process of live streaming technical presentations has been simplified by using Monarch LCS. At the same time, viewers can enjoy an immediate, interactive, and enhanced online experience. Those watching remotely are now able to view both the presenter and the supporting presentation materials, in real-time.
Monarch LCS is helping the SMPTE Montréal/Québec Section and the Ottawa Subsection in achieving their mission to shape the next-generation of media standards by furthering the knowledge sharing among their members.
“We have been using Monarch LCS for more than a year now,” said Michel Poirier, ad hoc director at SMPTE Montréal/Québec Section. “The Matrox Monarch LCS appliance is small and I find it easy to set up. We use the Monarch LCS with an external camera to stream our meetings to our online page using Facebook Live functionality. Our members and Facebook followers say that they are impressed with the AV quality, and we like the interactivity that it helps us achieve.”