Episode 4 – What do you need to record a video podcast?
Welcome to this three part series to teach people the basics of video podcasting.
This part focuses on recording your program and the hardware & software needed.
To record a show you will need:
- Webcam recommended, but you can use such things as Digital cameras and cam-corders if you have the know how
- Recommended C920 from Logitech
- You can use your web cam’s microphone but I recommend a blue yeti or similar USB microphone.
- You could also use a professional mic and mixing board system if you feel inclined.
- Mac or PC (pc needs to be minimum of Windows Vista)
I will be talking about 4 solutions today.
Each of these will allow you to use multiple cameras, overlays and screen captures and will record the final to a MP4 file.
Open Broadcaster Software
OBS Project is the only free software we will be talking about today. It is an opensource project meaning anyone can take the software and make their own tweaks and modifications directly to the code.
One benefit of this open source development is the software is remarkably solid when recording. I haven’t had a crash using OBS since one of the early versions.
This is a great piece of software for the hobby vidcaster.
- Open Source (it’s free!)
- Solid scene switching
- Global Sources
- More complex to build scenes
- Lower quality encoding
XSplit Broadcaster from Split Media Labs is perhaps the most popular video broadcaster out there.
For only $99 per year you get access to the full “professional” edition which allows you to use your recordings for commercial purposes.
Also featuring a multitude of plugins and features, XSplit is extremely flexiable for almost any type of show.
XSplit is also the only software on the list that supports native Skype interaction.
- Easy To Use
- Solid platform
- Lots of plugins and advanced features
- Skype Interaction
- Yearly registration fee
- Updates can be slow
I only recently discovered our next two pieces of software. The first being Vidblaster from CombiTech.
To compare Vidblaster to XSplit or OBS is like comparing a high end cell phone camera with a prosumer DSLR. It is extremely flexible and is geared to those running “bigger” shows with multiple camera’s, guests via video conferencing and screen captures.
While the feature list in Vidblaster is impressive, I found a major glitch (besides the price point). My 6 core AMD processor was running at 85% usage across all six cores while only having 2 camera windows and an output to mp4.
- Solid interface
- Professional output
- Cost ($199 for the Home version is really limited)
- High CPU usuage compared to other offerings
My second recent discovery is Wirecast. And just let me say WOW, I would purchase this software in a heart beat… if it wasn’t for the cost.
Starting at $495 for the basic version which will work for most hobby & small single person productions, it is still a bit pricey.
If you want to bring an HDV source (CamCorder, TV input, etc) you need to shell out an extra $99. Finally if you want features like 3d virtual sets, IP Camera’s and advanced audio controls you will need to slap down $995 for the Pro version.
If you are a Mac user Wirecast is the only entry that works on OsX
Wirecast does stand out for those that want a “professional” setting. I’m seriously considering making the switch here at Smoking Man Studios due to the professional video encoding, seemless transitions and other features in Wirecast.
- Best file output in the group
- Seemless transitions
- Professional features
- Mac & PC editions available
OBS is great for those that just want to dip their toes in the waters of creating Video Podcasts/Internet TV shows.
XSplit is perfect for those that want to record shows from their home office using Web cams and Skype. It is also an excellent choice for those that want stream games.
Vidblaster is a cheaper alternative for those that are expanding into more complex setups with multiple guests, overlays and other advanced features.
Wirecast really is the best of the bunch. I love the encoding quality, the features and the interface. I just wish it was cheaper.
That’s it for this week. If you have a question, please leave a comment by coming to our website at webtalkrevolution.com/ep4.
Next week I’m going to be talking about alternatives to Skype video for guests.
Don’t forget to also check out my home studio walkthru by going to webtalkrevolution.com/studio
And while your there, sign up for my mailing list and get more updates from Web Talk Revolution.
I’ll see ya next week.[/toggle] [toggle title=”Ultimate Configuration for Solo Video Producer” state=”close” ]
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