The guys over at the SlingStudio User group on Facebook have put together this excellent FAQ!
SlingStudio Facebook User Group Frequently Asked QuestionsThis is most frequently questions that are asked by users in this group. Thanks to Lance Burns for starting this list. For official SlingStudio FAQ’s and responses, please visit - myslingstudio.com/help. For any feature requests to Slingstudio team, please provide your feedback through this link -https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/featreq
Q1. What is the distance that I can expect from the camera links and my wireless apple or android?
A1. The camera link has a max distance of 300ft from the SS base however this can be reduced based on line of sight and other interference. Mobile devices tend to have less distance. My results are around 100ft depending on the device and again line of sight. Currently, there is no way to connect a repeater to increase this distance.
Q2. Can I use a projector from the Sling studio?
A2. Yes and No. You can connect a projector and display the video out of the Sling however if you are planning on using it in the same room as what you are recording, there is about a 2 second delay which makes it not an option. If you want to display this back stage or out in a lobby - then it's fine.
Q3. Can I create motion graphics lower thirds?
A3. Currently Sling doesn't offer this feature. You can create still graphics and overlay text on top of it but not something with an alpha channel. You can however take an output from the sling and bring it into a computer that has wirecast. Wirecast can add lower third graphics and then transmit for you. You will need additional equipment however this is a solution that does work.
Q4. Can I use my Mac and my iPad to control the sling at the same time.
A4. Currently, sling doesn't offer this feature.
Q5. How do I connect audio into the sling?
A5. There are a couple of ways. 1. You can use the audio from one of your cameras. 2. You can connect a mixing board to the sling via a phono connection.
Q6. After my event is over, how do I safely end the project?
A6. - 1- Press stop record button at the end of your event. 2- Close the project. 3- Eject the drive (DO NOT JUST PULL THE CABLE OUT OF THE SLING BEFORE EJECTING). After it's safely ejected, then pull the cable out and turn off your sling.
Q7. My Sling is running on battery. Can I swap Hot Swap the battery?
A7- Yes and No, if you also have your sling plugged into an outlet, then yes. If it's running completely via battery, then no.
Q8. I'm concerned that the 2 hour limit on my wireless transmitters won't last long enough. What do I do?
A8. You can purchase an USB battery backup and connect it via a USB Cable.
Q9. Should I use an SD card or SSD drive connected via the USB-C.
A9. Always make sure your card or drive is an approved drive. Don't assume any drive or SD card will work and work correctly over a broadcast. Last thing you want is to lose part of your project because of drive failure. SSD drives tend to be large capacity. I normally use my SD card for my still images and import my additional videos that will be played during the event.
Q10. Will my sling work in countries outside of the US?
A10. We have users that all over the world using it however it may not be approved in your country because of frequencies laws.
Q11. Do I need an internet connection to run the sling?
A11. No, Your sling creates it's own network that all of the devices connect to. Your mobile devices / iPad will need to log into it's own Sling network. If you want to broadcast live, then yes you need an internet connection.
Q12. Can I use a mobile device as a hotspot and broadcast my event?
A12. Yes but you need to watch the bandwidth. You need to test to see if you also have a strong enough signal. There are people who use mifi hot spots as well as stronger devices for internet signal as well.
Q13. Should I really elevate my Sling Base or can I leave it on the floor or in a corner?
A13. Nobody puts baby in a corner! The higher the Sling the better. Locating the Sling towards the center of the venue is helpful. The Sling needs room to transmit. Remember that you don't need to be near the Sling itself to switch.
Q14. How many input devices can I have at a time live?
A14. There are 4 available slots for live switching. You can have up to 6 additional in "reserve". This means that you need to disable one device to activate another one. You still have that original device(s) in your "que" but it will not active. Remember also that the Sling will only record the active 4 devices plus the audio line input. So if you deactivate one camera, you will stop recording that camera. ALSO, if you are planning on playing a video during your broadcast, that video takes up one of your active 4 slots. If you have 2 videos, then you will take up 2 of your 4 slots.
Q15. If I want to play a video from my computer instead of loading it into sling, how do I do that.
A15. You can connect an HDMI cable out of your computer and connect it directly to a sling or a wireless transmitter. You will want to check if you need the audio signal from the video. This will allow you to play many videos and only use 1 of your 4 available slots from the sling. There are many Playout systems that are available to make this feature easier to use.
Q16. I'm new to video production and I don't know how much to charge.
A16. Start with a basic event. A 3 camera shoot and you are recording it but not broadcasting live. This event will be 3 hours long. Let's say your camera operators are working at $ 25 per hour. You have to figure at least 1 additional hour for setup and breakdown. Each camera op will receive $100 x 3. You have to figure around 3% as repair cost of your equipment. Let's say all of your cameras / sling / computer are worth $5,000. A safe number is $150. Depending on how you are giving the files back to the customer, you need to figure another $50 for a drive. This is just raw costs. How much do you want to make above that. Each area will depend on how much you can charge. 1 suggestion would be to take my costs and multiply by 3 as a starting place. If you have more people, you have additional costs. As you add more features, you add more pricing.
Q17. Should I purchase a Mac or an iPad to control my Sling.
A17. Currently, the features on the Mac or the iPad are the same. One advantage for the mac is short cut key commands. The iPad is smaller and more portable. Both are good options for switching. Just remember currently you can not control the sling from both devices at the same.
Q18. Can I connect a GoPro Camera to my Sling.
A18. If your GoPro has an HDMI port, you can connect that to a wireless transmitter which will then send the signal to the sling.
Q19. My camera has Wifi built in. Can I use that without a wireless transmitter.
A19. No, only wireless devices like an iPhone/iPod/Android that has software downloaded from their respective stores can send a signal to the Sling.
Q20. How do I know if my device is compatible with the Sling.
A20. There is a list of compatible devices found at - https://www.myslingstudio.com/compatibility If you device is not listed, this doesn’t mean that it will not work. There are a number of factors that are involved. Not all cameras will produce “Clean Output”. Not all cameras will send the audio signal via the HDMI Port. Some cameras will turn off their screen when you have a device connected to the HDMI Port so test first.
Q21. I’m not sure if I should invest in a new system like Sling. What should I do?
A21. Rent it. There are a few companies that rent the Sling Studio system. Try before you buy. Remember Videoguys.com does offer a 30-day money back guarantee of everything we sell and you can work with our team to see if we can help answer any questions before you make the purchase. Just give us a call at 800-323-2325.
Q22. I wish Sling did xxx. Does sling accept suggestions for new features?
A22. ABSOLUTELY YES! Make your suggestions - They Listen!
Q 23. Why does my LED light above the Power button on my Wireless Transmitter change colors?
A23. That’s a Tally light. It tells the camera operator that you are live on their camera.
Q24. I’m attempting to stream to Youtube the first time but I receiving a message saying it’s “Unable to fetch stream now details Youtube Internal Error. What am I doing wrong?
A24. If it’s your first time going live to that channel, go to youtube, creator studio, live streaming, get started and then verify.
Q25. What is the Mac Address of the Ethernet port of the Sling?
A25. This is found thru the App itself. Click on Settings Menu and then About.
Q 26. I don’t completely understand the quality settings. Can you please explain them?
A26. SlingStudio supports following different 5 Production modes. Each production mode has following resolution and bit rates. Selection of production mode (resolution and bit rate) depends on type of production (Talking head, music, sports, live to tape, live broadcast etc) and also placement/location of your cameras/Cameralinks/phones with respect to Studio hub In general, you would like to have higher resolution and bit rate. For talking head, music events where there is not much motion, either 1080p30 or 720p30 would suffice. For sports production, you want to have higher fps so either 1080p60 or 720p60. For live to tape productions, both input sources and program bit rate are going to be same. Bit rate in this case would be ideally dependent on placement/location of your cameras/CL and what is SS hotspot quality. You would want to be in GREEN zone for SS hotspot quality. For live broadcasting, input sources and program bit could be set to different values. Program bit rate would be governed by upload speed of your internet connection. Ideally you would want to give 20-30% buffer here. So, if you have internet upload speed is 5Mbps, you want to have program bit rate set to < 4Mbps. For input sources, bit rate would be dependent on placement/location of your Cameras/CL and SS hotspot quality indicator. Regardless of what your SS resolution/bitrate is, if you have cameras who support higher resolution (4K), higher quality codecs (ProRes) or higher bit rates (100Mbps for example), you can use Adobe Premiere plugins and Final Cut pro plugins to replace your SS recordings with higher quality native camera recordings allowing you to get significantly higher quality for archival purposes.
Q 27. Went to shut off this cameralink at the end of an event today. It won't shut off, I've tired everything I can think of. What should I do?
A27. There are a couple of things to try: 1. First try holding the power button down for 10 seconds and see if that turns off the lights 2. Make sure you are not connected via USB. 3. If all else fails, use the Pinhole Reset button on the camera link. You will just need to reconnect the camera link to the sling.
Q 28. How do I stop the SlingStudio Hub from muting my line-in audio while playing pre-recorded video?
A28. Open your pre-recorded video clip in the Preview Window and tap the "speaker" icon in the progress bar. In the resulting menu, uncheck "Mute Others." This will allow you to play the video without automatically muting your line-in source.
Q 29. Can I buy one camera link to be able to hook it to more than one camera and two iPhones?
A 29. Yes and No. iPhones / iPods / Android devices do not require a camera link. For all other cameras, they will require a camera link. You can connect 2 cameras with an HDMI A/B Switch. Remember, the distance on mobile devices are not as great as a camera link.
Q 30. I streamed an event today live. After the event was over, I closed the project, ejected the drive, closed the app and shut down the sling. When I inserted the card into my computer, I saw the folder for the project but nothing was recorded. What did I do wrong?
A 30. Even though you streamed your event, you still have to hit the record button on the sling on nothing will be saved to the hard drive.
Q 31. I have 2 camera links and I’m trying to pair them. The sling says it can’t connect. What am I doing wrong?
A 31. You can only link one camera link at a time. Turn off all of the links that are not synced. Turn all of the links off. Set the sling app to pairing mode and then turn on only 1 camera link. Hold the power button down until the light blinks red and then pair. Once you have paired the link, go onto your next link. You can leave the first link powered on.
Q 32. I’m having problems with the iPad console app logging out of a Facebook account and login into a different account. It appears to be attempting to connect but it just logs back out of the same account.
A 32. Log out of the account and then close the console app. Go into the iPad settings and clear browsing history. Once you have done that, just open the console app and log back in.
Q 33. I have my camera plugged into a wireless transmitter but I’m not getting signal. Help.
A 33. Plug the camera directly into a TV and see if you are getting signal. Many times the camera is just set not to output via the HDMI connection if it has both SDI and HDMI. Adjust the camera settings to allow via the HDMI port. Check the resolution settings on the camera and make sure they match your project settings.
Q 34. What format (NTFS, exFAT, HFS, etc) should my external hard drive be?
A 34. exFAT
Q 35. Is it possible to broadcast to both Facebook Live and YouTube Live?
A 35. Sling doesn’t offer this service directly. It’s one or the other, however there is an additional option using an outside service like restream.io
Q 36. I recorded an event that was 2 hours long. When I checked the files, it broke the recording into 1 hour sections. Is this normal?
A 36. Yes, sling breaks it into 1 hour sections. When importing to fcpx or premiere, you can merge them back together without any loss of data.
Q 37. I have a client that wants to livestream their corporate event. They want to be able to have comments but don’t want this on a public platform.
A 37. You can create a private group on Facebook and share the video on that group.
Q 38. I’m located outside of the United States. Can I use the European framerate 25/50fps vs’s the US 30/60fps? Will the sling work overseas?
A 38. No, currently Sling only supports 30/60fps. If your camera supports 30/60fps - doesn’t matter what country you are in.
Q 39. Will my Sling work in Europe?
A 39. Your sling will work in the North America, South American, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, Antarctica, The International Space Station, The Moon, Mars, Pluto (even though it’s not a planet any more) - Your sling works ANYWHERE. The sling creates it’s own network. Your camera links, your smart phone or a hard line HDMI cord all connect to the sling studio.
Q 40. Do I need an SD card in order to go live without saving a project to memory?
A 40. There is a different between saving the project and recording your project. You will need an SD card or an external hard drive to create & save the project. You however don’t need to record the project if you are going to only stream your project. Keep in mind that you won’t have any backup thru the sling system if there is any problems with your broadcast.
Q 41. I am wondering if Facebook live can be set to private for friends and family only?
A 41. Sure, create a private group and only add the people in your private group. This is also good for when you would like to test your stream.
Q 42. Can I connect a MEVO camera to the sling?
A 42. No, the MEVO camera is made by a different company from Sling and can not be connected.
Q 43. How do I use the Sling Studio Premiere Extension?
A 43. Here is a video...