CP Communications has launched two new products for live production, the Virtual Media Center and the secure video management platform FastReturn. Both solutions are built around WebRTC – the cloud-based technology used by Zoom, Microsoft Teams and other popular video conferencing platforms – and have been field-proven at high profile events over the past few years. past years, including the Fall 2021 editions of the TCS New York City Marathon and Bank of America Chicago Marathon.
“People struggle with live video latency in remote production workflows,” says Kurt Heitmann, CEO of CP Communications. “Advertisers can’t be far behind the action with play-by-play or analytics. With FastReturn, we use the power of the cloud to deliver streaming return video with ultra-low latency, so you can view your live production from anywhere on any device in real time.
FastReturn’s base package includes five streams and supports up to 100 users, but can be scaled to accommodate additional sources and larger teams. Users access FastReturn content through a web browser on smartphones, tablets, laptops and desktop computers, as well as through Google Chromecast and Amazon Fire Stick digital media players. Content is accessible through a secure customer portal (optional user pages and custom templates are also available).
The platform can ingest any H.264 base profile RTMP stream, supporting HD resolution and 128 kbit stereo audio with bitrates up to 10 Mbps with less than 400 ms latency. FastReturn can also spin up edge servers around the world that are geographically closer to production to provide even lower latency and better reliability.
Available as an ad-hoc service, the Virtual Media Center is a browser-based multi-viewer designed for monitoring, not retransmitting, live video signals. Designed for use by remote journalists, it offers a variety of multi-viewer designs, ranging from simple 2- and 4-box displays to more extensive layouts based on the number of shared signals. Through a browser-based interface, media personnel can select which video streams to monitor. All models deliver video streams with secure two-step authentication and less than 400ms latency.
Beyond event coverage, the Virtual Media Center can also help with multi-camera remote production. For example, a two-day commercial shoot was recently produced on three sound stages in Atlanta. The on-site team used multiple CamSTREAM Red House Streaming (RHS) systems as well as the Virtual Media Center to provide the California-based producers and directors with real-time behind-the-scenes views of the production. Developed by CP Communications, RHS CamSTREAM systems are all-in-one, cost-effective video production and streaming solutions that are quick to set up and deploy for any live production.
“For members of the media who are unable to travel to an event, or for members of the video production team who cannot be on site, the Virtual Media Center provides an effective and efficient way to monitor live action from multiple cameras,” Heitman says.
FastReturn is available as a monthly service or can be licensed for specific events. CP can also provide RHS CamSTREAM units and RTMP encoders for hire.