BILDVERARBEITUNG Lesezeit 6 Min.
With event organizers being forced to explore the potential of virtual and hybrid events, we see that the number of virtual initiatives has surged notably. As a result, an increasing number of forward-thinking parties in the event industry are building permanent virtual studios to support pure virtual as well as hybrid events.
You could compare these virtual studios with TV studios. In fact, hosting a virtual event is in many ways similar to a television production and broadcast. In these studios you’ll find a green screen or video wall backdrop - often Direct View LED, but possibly also LCD or RPC.* There could be additional side screens, confidence monitors for the presenter, laptops with supporting presentations and dynamic background graphics, computers supporting video playback and video feeds from remote presenters, etc.
The real brain of any great virtual studio is a great screen management system. It captures the different sources and content inputs; processes, scales and converts the signal; and then distributes it to the different screens in the studio and the streaming platform. It’s a centralized point of screen management, which makes sure that everything runs synchronously for your live broadcast and at the same time opens the possibilities for creative and interactive content.
*If you’re interested in the pros and cons of these different video wall technologies for television backdrops, we recently published this blog where you can find a complete overview.
One of the biggest challenges associated with running virtual productions in 2021 is to keep your audience engaged. Of course, audience engagement should always be top-of-mind with hosts and organizers, but engaging someone remotely does bring its own challenges. One of them being “Zoom fatigue”, a virtual burnout, reported by many people in 2020. If you want a successful virtual production, you need to step up and be different from the overload of online meetings, webinars and webcasts.
Grab the attention with creativity and keep attendees engaged with dynamic visuals. Content-wise, you can work with transitions, creative image compositions, picture-in-picture (PIP), etc. And to do all these heavy calculations in real-time, without any glitches or disturbing artifacts because those are detrimental to your participants engagement, powerful processing is essential. Alternative software-based tools often have their limitations when it comes to functionality and reliability. A professional event needs a purpose-built, deterministic system. Barco’s screen management portfolio is therefore essential for any television backdrop or virtual studio:
With an impressive number of units in the field at major brands and event venues, Barco’s image processing is known in the live events industry for its uncompromising image quality and proven reliability in the harshest environments. It works with any digital canvas and is scalable and flexible enough to adapt to all event configurations, even virtual ones!
The Event Master E2 and S3 have standard, finished and stocked configurations. But as it’s a scalable and modular system, it’s also available as a BTO “Build To Order” system. From a single chassis with as few as two cards, or up to eight chassis with all 96 cards included, the Event Master is the most scalable and I/O dense screen management system on the market.
In technical terms, the inputs in your system are the same as for the standard live events. The only extra thing you need in a virtual studio is a capture card which directs the main output of the E2 directly to the streaming platform you’re using to broadcast your production.
Worldwide over 1000 Event Master operators have been certified, so when hosting a large production in your virtual studio, it’s easy to bring in highly skilled freelance operators for additional help. Cross renting an extra E2 or S3 is also not an issue with the worldwide fleet of Barco Event Master products in the rental market.
And to complete your virtual studio productions with an extra level of engagement, you could use the Barco weConnect platform. Moving away from the mono-directional passive broadcasts, weConnect is the professional solution for bi-directional live events and energized audiences. Find out more in this leaflet.
Get in touch if you want to know more or check the complete Barco (virtual) Event Master portfolio here.
Header image: courtesy from Rena productions