Even before Covid-19, corporate, government, and education production departments were faced with the challenge of having enough staff and equipment to record live multi-camera meetings and events in multiple locations. The need for multiple control rooms for studios, auditoriums, meeting rooms, classrooms, and sports venues around the office, campus, or country would strain the production resources in any organization. In some cases, production vans and flypacks serving as mobile control rooms were an option, but they are also subject to additional procurement and budget restraints.
Now with the impact of Covid-19, the need for adding additional remote shooting locations has increased even more. Many organizations are looking to integrate home offices and other remote sites as part of their productions but want to avoid the limitations of online meeting platforms like Zoom. Online video conferencing software typically lacks the ability for production staff to direct camera shots and insert graphics. With video communications now more critical than ever, it’s time to bring back production control for as many locations as possible using remote production networks.
The combination of NDI (Network Device Interface) and SRT (Secure Reliable Transport) has proven to be a powerful and flexible standard for any remote production environment. With these two protocols, one control room can be connected to cameras and audio mixers at any venue, facility, or room with internet access. Requiring direct SDI cable runs from camera to control room is no longer necessary to produce high quality, low latency productions. Your remote production network can extend to dozens of venues, meeting rooms, or home offices across the country, allowing any production to be produced and directed from one location.
Even the idea of having an on-premise control room is now an option. With cloud virtualization of switchers and graphics systems, production staff can use their laptops from anywhere on the Internet to create live multi-camera productions. It is truly a world of remote production possibilities. The wide use of remote production networks was always in our future, but their adoption has been hastened by new protocols and the challenges of a worldwide pandemic.