If you perform enough interviews for live streaming, before long you’ll want to interview someone who’s not at your location. Although the prevalence of these types of interviews on TV makes them appear simple, for a long time they were anything but for live streaming, re- quiring either expensive hardware or Rube Goldberg-ish combinations of Skype or other conferencing programs with funky patch kits and
audio connectors. Meanwhile, with outlets like Facebook Live and Twitter, the demand for a simple and affordable conferencing solution increased exponentially.
NewTek achieved the first part of the equation when it shipped TalkShow VS 100 in February 2015, though the $3,995 price tag was out of
reach of most casual producers. Only recently, conferencing became affordable when the availability of WebRTC (real-time communications) in
browsers and compatible products spawned vMix Call in February 2017
and Wirecast Rendezvous in September 2017.
For this roundup, we tested all three solutions, which involved setting
up and holding multiple conferences between editors and other third
parties. In each mini-review, we cover the two critical steps—initiating
the call, and then assembling the various host and guest inputs into a
shot you can push out to any streaming endpoint.
For the record, we ran vMix and Wirecast on my HP zBook portable
workstation driven by a 2.8GHz Intel Xeon E3-1505M v5 CPU, with 32GB
of RAM running a 64-bit version of Windows 10. For guest logins, we used
Chrome for all tests on both Mac and Windows computers. We tested
TalkShow using a TriCaster Mini.
Simple and Affordable
By Jan Ozer