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Roker Labs Tackles Live Streaming With Blackmagic

NEW YORK—Roker Labs is an industry-leading innovator in the live streaming space founded by Emmy Award-winner and TV personality, Al Roker. The company, which focuses on media and innovation, tests streaming technologies, pioneers new streaming formats and produces next-generation, interactive experiences across leading content platforms. The team produces dozens of live streams, including popular cooking, entertainment, technology and talk shows.

As the Live Streaming Technical Supervisor, I am responsible for making sure that the content gets delivered smoothly on productions with varying technical requirements. We also produce “Roker Labs Live”—a news show that covers new developments in the live streaming industry. Each episode features interviews with experts, celebrities and executives from the streaming, media and technology sectors.

I recently started using the Blackmagic Web Presenter as it allows me to efficiently manage the feeds back and forth for guests on the show. It also allows our show producers to watch in-studio productions remotely, which is very convenient for providing instant feedback.

Without a doubt, the Blackmagic Web Presenter has become a key part of my workflow. The producers love it because it saves them trips to the studio but still allows them to provide real-time input from anywhere in the world. Just recently, we recorded a high-profile interview in New York with former SNL cast member Sasheer Zamata, and our L.A.-based producer was able to keep an eye on the recording and comment in real time from our Blackmagic Web Presenter feed. I particularly like using it because it just works every time I plug it in—even with older computers.

Ratner can operate a production solo with the Blackmagic Web Presenter and ATEM Television Studio HD .

In addition to my work at Roker Labs, I also run audio and video for astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson’s podcast “StarTalk Radio.” I recently used the Blackmagic Web Presenter as well as Blackmagic Design’s ATEM Television Studio HD live production switcher for the first time on a production recorded at YouTube’s New York studio. It was a very exciting and intense production because in addition to being a new user, I was also the only operator for the shoot, which included three ISO cameras. I used the ATEM Television Studio HD, which was connected to the three ISO cameras and to my computer, to do a line cut of the stream, which was recorded via my laptop.

I was basically a one-man band juggling a three-camera shoot with a brand new piece of gear. The ATEM Television Studio HD was easy enough for me to use out of the box without reading the manual. The easy access front panel was a lifesaver. The fact that I could operate all of the switch features right from the hardware and the integrated multiviewer are my favorite features of the new model.

I definitely look forward to incorporating these products into my daily live streaming work and would encourage anyone who hasn’t tried them yet to do so—it can help to simplify your workflow.

As technical director for Roker Labs, Ratner focuses on the hardware, software and technical capabilities for live streaming productions. You can follow him and chat about live broadcasting @BenMakesTVor contact him

For additional information, please visitwww.blackmagicdesign.comor call 408-954-0500.