No one attending a live event wants to hear that the main session room has reached maximum occupancy. And let’s face it—live events often get crowded.
As attendees flock to your event venue, whether it’s for a conference, performance, courtroom activity, worship service, or any other form of live event, it pays to have a strategy to accommodate everyone. No live event organizer wants a disgruntled attendee, or worse, have to turn people away and risk a hit to their brand’s reputation and bottom line.
Here’s where overflow rooms and Pearl-2 come into play.
The power of overflow rooms
Imagine the following scenario: the main session for your live event takes place in the largest room in the venue that fits roughly 200 people. However, despite the size of the room, you anticipate that the total headcount will end up well over 200. As attendees file into the room and begin taking their seats, your suspicion is proven correct as the area rapidly fills to capacity.
Luckily, you have a strategy already in place. To accommodate everyone, you’ll deliver your event to additional audience members in smaller overflow rooms using smart TVs and a live production encoder, such as Pearl-2.
Pearl-2 is an “all-in-one” live production mixer, meaning it’s powerful enough to encode, stream, and record your live event program simultaneously. When the event begins, use UPnP built-in to your Smart TVs to connect to the live stream. If desired, you can also use the Pearl-2 HDMI output ports to display your desired sources or layouts (e.g. presentation slides) on additional local monitors within the main session room.
By streaming to overflow rooms with Pearl-2, you can maximize your total audience size and ensure no one misses out on your live production. Additionally, Pearl-2 lets you record high-quality isolated video files (ISOs) of your sources for post-production purposes while your live stream is taking place.
Here’s how it’s done
For illustrative purposes, assume you’re responsible for producing a presentation at a corporate event. You’ll also need to deliver a stream of the presentation to audience members in an overflow room.
In the instruction set below, you’ll need the following equipment to get set up:
- an audio mixer,
- a laptop (a video source that will display your slides),
- a camera (such as Epiphan’s LUMiO 12x™ PTZ camera),
- Smart TV(s) for your overflow room(s), and
- a Pearl-2 live production mixer.
To stream to overflow rooms using Pearl-2:
1. Connect your laptop to the HDMI A port on the back of Pearl-2 and connect LUMiO 12x to the HDMI B or SDI port. Connect audio from your mixing panel to the XLR ports.
2. Add your laptop source to a layout in Pearl-2’s Auto A channel and add your LUMiO 12x source to a layout in the Auto B channel . *Add your audio mixer an audio source to each channel. Configure each channel’s encoding settings as desired for ISO recordings (frame size, frame rate, bit rate, etc).
*Note that Auto channels automatically use audio from your sources, but since you’re using a mixer in this case, you’ll need to add the mixer separately as an audio source.
3. Configure one of Pearl-2’s video output ports to display your laptop slides. Connect your in‑room slide projector to this port.
4. Create a third channel with a custom picture-in-picture (PiP) layout that includes both your video sources (slides and camera) re-sized and arranged on a background image. Make sure to add your audio mixer to the channel too! Turn on UPnP sharing for this channel.
5. Configure your smart TV(s) in the overflow room(s) to show this live stream using UPnP.
6. Configure Pearl-2’s Single Touch control to include the recording of your three channels (your laptop ISO channel, camera ISO channel, and custom PiP layout channel). This way, you can record your three programs at the same time with the simple press of a button on the Pearl-2 touch screen!
Get more from Pearl-2!
Pearl-2 is a versatile live encoding tool. Here’s just a few tips on how Pearl-2 can help customize and tweak your settings to get the most from your live production.
1. Don’t need ISOs of every video feed? Remove your ISO recording channels to free some additional encoding power to encode and stream your PiP channel in 4K Ultra HD!
2. Also need stream to a CDN? (such as Facebook Live or YouTube) No problem! Pearl-2 lets you stream to popular CDNs over RTMP or RTSP. You can even stream to multiple CDNs simultaneously!
3. Need to an additional HDMI, 4K HDMI, or SDI source to your PiP layout? Use an AV.io video grabber to capture another source via Pearl-2’s USB 3.0 input! Learn about how to get more from Pearl-2 with AV.io in our blog post here.
Do you have any experience managing live event attendance using overflow rooms? What do you think of the Pearl-2 solution? Let us know in the comments!