Case Study: Live Event Production

How Angel Ortez maximized efficiency and usability in his custom live production setup

March 29, 2017

How Angel Ortez maximized efficiency and  usability in his custom live production setup image

Portable, reliable, and simple to use— capture cards help achieve quality results for portable broadcast solutions.

Quality live productions for Shelby County Schools

Angel Ortez is a professional AV Technician who works for Shelby County Schools (SCS) Department of Broadcast Services in Memphis, Tennessee. The Department of Broadcast Services serves as “The Voice of Shelby County Schools” to broadcast to audiences in the Shelby County Community regarding important district activities. Delivering content via radio (88.5FM) and TV (C19TV), the Department of Broadcast Services contains cutting-edge AV equipment for producing live streams, event coverage, live interviews, video productions, and more.

Hardware portability and adaptability needed!

In his job as an AV professional, Mr. Ortez often needs to transport his equipment when creating on-location talk shows and in-house productions for schools within the SCS district. Mr. Ortez found that his chosen hardware was too large and complicated for his needs. The unwieldy size of this hardware and the lengthy setup involved resulted in a significantly inefficient preparation process when configuring his equipment to produce a live event.

Enter the SDI portable capture card

Mr. Ortez needed a small, more portable solution that was quick and easy to set up and use. Ideally, he wanted something that could work with his laptop to capture SDI camera signals.

After doing extensive research on similar solutions from BlackMagic, AJA, and Magewell, Mr. Ortez consulted YouTube product reviews and Pro AV forums to identify the perfect solution for his needs— Epiphan’s SDI.

A member of Epiphan’s popular family of driverless capture cards, SDI uses the popular “plug and play” philosophy to convert SDI inputs into USB 3.0 without any configuration required. Mr. Ortez purchased three SDI capture cards as part of his ideal portable live production solution to capture and convert SDI signals from three separate cameras.

“I did much research on capture devices and SDI seemed to be a SOLID product. A small, reliable, portable, plug-and-play solution, powered via USB—it’s a dream come true!” Angel Ortez

An ideal custom portable live production solution

Mr. Ortez uses the following hardware components in his custom live production setup:

  1. 3x SDI camcorders (Sony HXR-NX5U) shooting at 1080p30
  2. 3x SDI portable capture cards
  3. Laptop (HP OMEN Gaming Laptop)
  4. Gaming capture card (AVerMedia Live Gamer Portable)
  5. Display monitor

In this setup, Mr. Ortez connects each SDI camcorder to an SDI capture card, which is then connected via USB 3.0 to the laptop. Mr. Ortez chose to use a gaming laptop to take advantage of the higher RAM and processing power necessary for live production using his preferred production software, Telestream Wirecast.

To further offload processing strain from his laptop, Mr. Ortez outputs his program over HDMI™ to his gaming capture card, which captures and records the program content to an SD card for editing in post-production. Mr. Ortez also uses the card’s HDMI passthrough to monitor his production on a larger display. When his post-production process is complete, Mr. Ortez then uses the resulting MP4 file in Wirecast to stream the production to his audience.


Exceptional results in a portable package

Within this setup framework, Mr. Ortez implements SDI as an essential part of his solution to deliver the best possible broadcast for parents, students, and community partners within the Shelby County School District.

“I highly recommend the SDI to ANYONE looking for a way to use a plug-and-play solution without much clutter or extra cables. It just works!” Angel Ortez

Using SDI helps achieve a professional live production that emphasizes portability and ease of use to help enhance setup efficiency and maximize professional capture quality.

Thank you Angel Ortez and Shelby County Schools for sharing your success story with us!