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Author Topic: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room  (Read 1438 times)

Corey Scogin

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Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« on: January 29, 2019, 12:43:11 am »

Greetings all.

Currently we have an overflow room that gets a direct single camera feed from our main sanctuary. We typically set the camera where it has the stage and lyrics screen in view. We leave it fixed in that view. The lyrics often aren't readable in the overflow room depending on how much natural light is in the room and how the camera is adjusting its exposure to compensate. My goal is to make the lyrics more readable in that overflow room while still showing the same stage view we currently do.

My experience with live video is fairly limited so bear with me. The first idea I've had is to overlay the lyrics on top of the live video with a semi-transparent background or simply do a picture-in-picture arrangement with an opaque background. See the images for examples of what I'm thinking might work (not a picture of my church but that room looks cool).

Our current hardware is:
Sony camera > SDI > TV in overflow room (via SDI/HDMI converter at the end)
Macbook using ProPresenter > Projector in main sanctuary that's only showing lyrics, no live video.

Is overlaying the lyrics possible with some additional hardware? We'd need to keep the lyrics-only feed going to the projector but have the 2nd video/lyrics combo feed going out SDI.

Is there an easier/better way to accomplish the goal of better lyrics readability on the overflow room screen?

I'd like to keep the setup as operator-friendly as possible by relying more on fixed function hardware than software/hardware options (like multiple displays out from ProPresenter). But if that's what it takes and it's easiest, I'm open to that.

Thanks for any advice pointing me in the right direction here. I'll have some followup questions I'm sure.
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Erik Jerde

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2019, 01:04:52 am »

Greetings all.

Currently we have an overflow room that gets a direct single camera feed from our main sanctuary. We typically set the camera where it has the stage and lyrics screen in view. We leave it fixed in that view. The lyrics often aren't readable in the overflow room depending on how much natural light is in the room and how the camera is adjusting its exposure to compensate. My goal is to make the lyrics more readable in that overflow room while still showing the same stage view we currently do.

My experience with live video is fairly limited so bear with me. The first idea I've had is to overlay the lyrics on top of the live video with a semi-transparent background or simply do a picture-in-picture arrangement with an opaque background. See the images for examples of what I'm thinking might work (not a picture of my church but that room looks cool).

Our current hardware is:
Sony camera > SDI > TV in overflow room (via SDI/HDMI converter at the end)
Macbook using ProPresenter > Projector in main sanctuary that's only showing lyrics, no live video.

Is overlaying the lyrics possible with some additional hardware? We'd need to keep the lyrics-only feed going to the projector but have the 2nd video/lyrics combo feed going out SDI.

Is there an easier/better way to accomplish the goal of better lyrics readability on the overflow room screen?

I'd like to keep the setup as operator-friendly as possible by relying more on fixed function hardware than software/hardware options (like multiple displays out from ProPresenter). But if that's what it takes and it's easiest, I'm open to that.

Thanks for any advice pointing me in the right direction here. I'll have some followup questions I'm sure.

Overlaying a graphic on video (or video on video) is called keying.  The best results are achieved when a second video signal showing exactly what is and is not transparent is also sent (alpha keying).  That may not be necessary in your case since you could just use a downstream keyer to overlay on your video.  Using pro-presenter and a blackmagic interface you can take the video in, set it as the background source, and then overlay lyrics on top of it.  Then you send the output to your display.

You can have a second computer running propres be controlled by your main propres system using the master control module.  That way things stay in sync and you only need one operator.  Total cost is around 2K + labor - assuming you have a propres site license.  You will have additional weekly labor to make sure the overflow pro-pres playlist is setup properly and the lyrics are correct there.
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Corey Scogin

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2019, 02:10:39 am »

Using pro-presenter and a blackmagic interface you can take the video in, set it as the background source, and then overlay lyrics on top of it.  Then you send the output to your display.

You can have a second computer running propres be controlled by your main propres system using the master control module.  That way things stay in sync and you only need one operator.  Total cost is around 2K + labor - assuming you have a propres site license.  You will have additional weekly labor to make sure the overflow pro-pres playlist is setup properly and the lyrics are correct there.

That sounds like a workable solution, however I was hoping to avoid that extra ProPresenter syncing step as well as the purchase and management of a second Macbook. I was hoping to do what you describe but without the computer. Something like main ProPresenter computer output and camera output into some device that overlays the lyrics on top of the video.

I left out one important detail that might make things easier. We always use solid black background with white lyrics. No images or moving backgrounds except the announcement slides that run pre-service. They are white background with various text on them.

Does there exist some type of downstream keyer (preferably a hardware unit) that takes the two inputs (video and lyrics) and simply uses black as the transparent key for the lyrics input? For the slides without a black background, it would be fine if they sat on top of the video until they were cleared.
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Erik Jerde

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2019, 07:59:23 am »

That sounds like a workable solution, however I was hoping to avoid that extra ProPresenter syncing step as well as the purchase and management of a second Macbook. I was hoping to do what you describe but without the computer. Something like main ProPresenter computer output and camera output into some device that overlays the lyrics on top of the video.

I left out one important detail that might make things easier. We always use solid black background with white lyrics. No images or moving backgrounds except the announcement slides that run pre-service. They are white background with various text on them.

Does there exist some type of downstream keyer (preferably a hardware unit) that takes the two inputs (video and lyrics) and simply uses black as the transparent key for the lyrics input? For the slides without a black background, it would be fine if they sat on top of the video until they were cleared.

Pretty much any good live video switch will do this.  Since youíre ok with the lyric feed you have going over the video as-is it gets a lot easier.  Also, since youíre running straight white on black you can use a luma key.  That key type uses luminance to figure out what part of the overlay signal is transparent.  The black would end up transparent and the white not.

It would probably be ideal to find a video switch that can output your overflow signal as well as has an aux output to output just the straight lyrics signal.  That way you donít need a signal splitter along the way.  For this task Iíd probably start by looking at the blackmagic atem video switchers.  They should have the functionality and their price point is good.  I personally prefer Ross Video switches but one of those is going to cost you A LOT more.
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Taylor Hall

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2019, 11:21:08 am »

It basically comes down to how much you want to spend.

Such a standalone device does exist (video keyer), but they cost as much if not more than a video mixer with the same ability baked in. A decent quality product that supports scaling, keying, HD, and the like will run you $1000~ at the minimum. The ATEM is nice, but much more aimed at a true video broadcast environment, not a mixed use/prosumer type of setup. We originally got one for a similar purpose but ended up returning it after testing it for about a week. Really neat device, but it got obvious rather quickly that it's designed for a very specific audience. Something like the Roland V-1HD would be much more user friendly since it has a more familiar control surface.

You could also use CasparCG to accomplish this (free software), though you'd need a capture card of some sort to grab the video feed(s) for the software to overlay them. One of the issues here is there will be a small delay with the live feed being streamed into the PC, being overlayed, and sent back out. It shouldn't be enough to derail people keeping up with lyrics, but it will exist. The other issue is you would need a decently capable computer to run it. Since it's nothing fancy like a ticker overlay or animated backgrounds for PiP and the like I don't think it will be that intensive. Testing it would be easy enough since the software itself is free.

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Corey Scogin

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2019, 11:20:02 pm »

Thanks to both of you for the suggestions and for explaining these things to a video newb. I'm beginning to understand some of the terminology and what to look for. I have some reading to do to better understand exactly how to implement this but I think something like one of the Blackmagic ATEM units that Erik suggested should fit my needs nicely. Rack mount is a bonus.

Off to read some manuals.
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Erik Jerde

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2019, 12:32:32 am »

Thanks to both of you for the suggestions and for explaining these things to a video newb. I'm beginning to understand some of the terminology and what to look for. I have some reading to do to better understand exactly how to implement this but I think something like one of the Blackmagic ATEM units that Erik suggested should fit my needs nicely. Rack mount is a bonus.

Off to read some manuals.

It sounds like you're looking for a set-it-and-forget-it sort of system which is why I think something like an ATEM would be better than V-1HD or other similar video switcher with control surface.  I've actually thought about picking up a used ATEM cheap to do something similar in my home theater where I want to key in data over the top of a video feed.  I would actually use luma keying for it just like I suggested you do.  Only big reason I haven't done anything with it is I haven't had time to write the software for providing the key data yet.
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brian maddox

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #7 on: January 30, 2019, 01:44:58 pm »

Thanks to both of you for the suggestions and for explaining these things to a video newb. I'm beginning to understand some of the terminology and what to look for. I have some reading to do to better understand exactly how to implement this but I think something like one of the Blackmagic ATEM units that Erik suggested should fit my needs nicely. Rack mount is a bonus.

Off to read some manuals.

I would recommend a BMD solution as well.  Maybe the TV Studio [2/3 rack space] or even an older version of the TV studio [although those tend to run hot so maybe not].  I can't think of any more economical solution.

The one thing to remember with basically All the BMD ATEM stuff is that all the inputs have to be at the same resolution and frame rate.  If your camera and your PP computer are not set to the same resolution, one or the other will need conversion before it hits the ATEM.  The Decimator converters are the flavor of the week, but the BMD ones work fine too.
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Taylor Hall

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #8 on: January 30, 2019, 02:52:39 pm »

I would recommend a BMD solution as well.  Maybe the TV Studio [2/3 rack space] or even an older version of the TV studio [although those tend to run hot so maybe not].  I can't think of any more economical solution.

The one thing to remember with basically All the BMD ATEM stuff is that all the inputs have to be at the same resolution and frame rate.  If your camera and your PP computer are not set to the same resolution, one or the other will need conversion before it hits the ATEM.  The Decimator converters are the flavor of the week, but the BMD ones work fine too.
The newer ATEM models have scalers on the inputs and outputs, so that's less of a concern. We were able to seamlessly project multiple 4:3 and 16:9 sources without skipping a beat, though the Roland we settled on does that as well. Didn't screw with framerates at all, but we had a few decimators in our inventory already so we weren't worried.
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brian maddox

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #9 on: February 01, 2019, 12:53:23 am »

The newer ATEM models have scalers on the inputs and outputs, so that's less of a concern. We were able to seamlessly project multiple 4:3 and 16:9 sources without skipping a beat, though the Roland we settled on does that as well. Didn't screw with framerates at all, but we had a few decimators in our inventory already so we weren't worried.

This is new news, at least to me. Interesting and VERY useful addition to the feature set.
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TJ (Tom) Cornish

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #10 on: February 01, 2019, 04:35:13 pm »

The newer ATEM models have scalers on the inputs and outputs, so that's less of a concern. We were able to seamlessly project multiple 4:3 and 16:9 sources without skipping a beat, though the Roland we settled on does that as well. Didn't screw with framerates at all, but we had a few decimators in our inventory already so we weren't worried.
Some do, some don't.  The 4K Studio Pro does; the Studio HD and Studio Pro HD don't, I believe.
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brian maddox

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #11 on: February 01, 2019, 04:39:12 pm »

Some do, some don't.  The 4K Studio Pro does; the Studio HD and Studio Pro HD don't, I believe.

Yes.  After a bit of digging that's what i found as well.

I will say that this is the first switcher BMD has marketed that had format conversion, so that's a fairly cool thing...
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Corey Scogin

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #12 on: February 01, 2019, 11:43:10 pm »

Thanks again all for the advice. I'm learning a lot.

I've most likely settled on the BMD ATEM Television Studio HD.

The plan is to use the program output for the lyrics-over-video overflow room feed and the aux out to mirror the computer lyrics input.

I read through that manual and compared it with the BMD ATEM Production Studio 4k. There seem to be a few features missing compared to the cheaper one above such as picture-in-picture ability but with the added 4k compatibility which I do not need. Everything else seems to be on-par.

Do you all have a recommendation between these models or is it a wash for my simple use case?
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brian maddox

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #13 on: February 02, 2019, 12:49:24 am »

Thanks again all for the advice. I'm learning a lot.

I've most likely settled on the BMD ATEM Television Studio HD.

The plan is to use the program output for the lyrics-over-video overflow room feed and the aux out to mirror the computer lyrics input.

I read through that manual and compared it with the BMD ATEM Production Studio 4k. There seem to be a few features missing compared to the cheaper one above such as picture-in-picture ability but with the added 4k compatibility which I do not need. Everything else seems to be on-par.

Do you all have a recommendation between these models or is it a wash for my simple use case?

Well, not to beat a dead horse, but the HD model does not convert formats on its inputs so you may end up needing more hardware even with only two inputs if you go that route.  I have idea what the cost difference is so I do t really know which is the more economical choice.  I have used the 2/3 rack space unit, and found it easy to use and very flexible, so if it meets your needs, I think youíll be happy with that as a choice.
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Erik Jerde

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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
« Reply #14 on: February 02, 2019, 01:06:23 am »

As has been discussed BMD hasnít been so good about dealing with varying frame rates.  I remember reading that they had really crummy 1080i support on cameras or switchers too at one point.

Iíd probably roll with the cheap unit then use decimator MD-HX units with their built in DUC to massage signals to the necessary format.  Hopefully you can set the ATEM signal format to be correct for your projector and then bring the camera in at the same settings.  Then if you need it different at the overflow location you just slap in a decimator there.  Take a look at your signal format needs though and decide off of that.
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Re: Need options for overlaying lyrics on video for overflow room
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