The best thing about new technology is how it can free up a leader’s time and headspace, allowing directors to focus more on the mission and less on the tools. One of the most exciting areas of recent tech arts innovation is in the world of video switchers, which continue to pack new features and to promise more value than ever before. As tech directors consider the benefits a new switcher could bring to their ministry, here are some of the features they should be on the lookout for.
At the heart of any video switcher is the promise of convenience and control. One of the most inconvenient aspects of broadcast systems, however, has traditionally been the expensive and proprietary means of connection between cameras, switchers and projectors. “When we think about how video systems have been run in the past, they’ve required coax or SDI cabling to connect the camera to the switcher, and that connection is limited to the reach of that cable,” says Will Waters, director of IP strategy and workflow engineering at NewTek.
“Being able to move into the IT world with cheaper cabling means we can distribute signal around a facility in ways that we haven’t been able to before. Traditionally, lighting, sound and video have needed their own systems that have very rigid requirements. You can now tie all of these systems together and make things easier for volunteers,” Waters notes.
Another area of transformative growth in video switching has also been in the new way operators can take control more easily, and with more freedom, than ever before. “Control integration has been growing,” shares Christian Delfino, director of global strategic product marketing at Roland. “How can you control the switcher or automation from a third-party touch panel? Or, conversely, how can the switcher control the cameras remotely? Automating the operations, allowing a single-button push by a volunteer to control a bunch of different screens, is a big part of where things are going...read more