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Multi-machine Capture System - TreetWiki

Multi-machine Capture System

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(updated with brief description of a solution that doesn't require Windows XP and a very old NVIDIA driver.)
Bear in mind that if you are participating in the scene being filmed, you will need to get a microphone feed into SL Voice so that the camera sees your lips moving when you speak. You can do this simply or complicatedly: either split the mic feed somehow or, much easier, simply plug some other mic into your PC and set it up as the SL Voice mic. As long as it picks up your voice and nothing else, it'll do the trick - you are not recording it.
Bear in mind that if you are participating in the scene being filmed, you will need to get a microphone feed into SL Voice so that the camera sees your lips moving when you speak. You can do this simply or complicatedly: either split the mic feed somehow or, much easier, simply plug some other mic into your PC and set it up as the SL Voice mic. As long as it picks up your voice and nothing else, it'll do the trick - you are not recording it.
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=== Updating This System ===
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The main issue with this setup is that it requires the Windows machine running the Viewer to be running Windows XP and a very old version of the NVIDIA Control Panel. At some point, the old NVIDIA driver you need for this purpose will become incompatible with the latest Viewer, and no doubt the latest Viewer will be required to be able to see the latest sights in SL - such as Server Side Baking and Materials (actually we are fine so far - July 2013 - but it surely won't be forever). You will need to use a Black Magic (BMD) Intensity card or similar, and Wirecast 4.x or later.
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The problem is that you cannot do a Viewport arrangement (ie a smaller screen that displays the central part of a larger screen) on an NVIDIA card with Windows 7 or later. You can do a cloned display, but in this case the screens must have identical specs (resolution and refresh). Here is the bare bones of a way around the problem - I'll flesh it out later, all being well. In essence, you clone a 1080p display and capture it on the Macintosh with Wirecast, and use Wirecast to crop and zoom the 720p centre of the display and capture it.
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Note that this is a fairly standard setting to achieve on any multi-screen Windows graphics card so the following will work for cards other than NVIDIA, too.
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'''Screen Settings'''. First of all, set up a cloned display profile so that your main 1920x1080 screen is cloned on to your BMD card. If your screen is larger than this you can set its resolution to 1080p - if it's smaller this will not work. The idea is that your BMD card captures ''the entire 1080p screen'' that will be displaying the Viewer, and that you can also see this on your main screen.
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You may want to use a utility such as UltraMon to enable you to save different settings profiles so that you keep your one for normal use as well as this special one for in-world videography.
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It's important to set a frame rate that is common to the BMD card and to your displays, and this will probably be 1080p30, ie 1920x1080 display, 30Hz refresh on the Windows side and 1080p30 in Wirecast. Set this up on the Windows machine and turn to the Mac.
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'''Wirecast Settings''' In Wirecast, choose Sources > Show Source Settings and click on the Intensity Pro card under CaptureCards. This will show you what the BMD card is currently set to and a pop-up menu lets you change it. If you are set up as discussed in the main body of this article, you will be set to "HD 720p60". Change this to "HD 1080p30" and Save. Close the Source Settings window. You should see the entire Windows screen in the Wirecast window at this point.
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In the main Wirecast window, double click on the video capture layer under Master Layers and double-click on the little screen next to it screen that will probably be labelled "Intensity Pro_1". This opens the Shot Editing window for the Intensity Pro card's output. Select the Intensity Pro mini-panel under the main one and then click on the cropping symbol third from the left under the right of the big screen. This will reveal four cropping sliders, Left, Right, Top and Bottom. Set Left and Right to 320 and Top and Bottom to 180. You are cropping a 1920x1080 screen to 1280x720, and this gives you a central window. If the active area you want to capture is not central, you may need to tweak this, but always keep the sum of Left and Right to 640 and the sum of Top and Bottom to 360 to ensure that you are cropped exactly down to 1280 x 720. You should see in the preview window that you are now cropped to 1280x720 but that the image occupies only the centre of the window, with a transparent background (pale grey grid) around it.
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Now click the angled screen button immediately to the left of the crop symbol. This is the Visual Effects tab. All you should need to do here is to click on "Scale To Fit" and at this point you should see the image on the screen zoom in to fill the window. Close the edit window. Choose Save As in Wirecast to save the configuration. You may find when you load it next time that  you need to do the Scale To Fit again.
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And that's it.
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'''Livecast Settings''' Note that you can use this setup in a similar way with Livecast Procaster, should you ever need to: Set the Windows machine up as described and in Procaster edit the settings as follows: Input Source to 1080p30, then in Preferences > Video set output resolution to 1280 x 720 and then click Cropping and once again set left and right to 320 and top and bottom to 180. Note that in my case the preview screen in the Cropping setup lied about how the image was being cropped, but the numbers get it right.

Revision as of 15:24, 10 July 2013

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