Building the SkyePod – 2/10/13

We’re currently finishing up the SkyePod studio, from where we’ll be broadcasting “almost live-to-tape”. We’ll be recording the fun with 4 live cameras – 2 on Skye and guest, 1 on Dad and 1 copy stand camera (for books, objects, etc.). Dad will switch cameras live based on what Skye is doing. There will be a separate “direct-to-disk” recording of Skye’s computer, which will be edited into the podcast during post, which is why it’s not quite “live to tape” (aside from no tape;-)

We’re in Cable Hell right now. Our new video switcher – the Blackmagic Designs ATEM TVS – is very sensitive to signal strength on its HDMI inputs; cables longer than 15 feet don’t work at all, and even within that range the quality of the cables is critical. Only 1 of 4 cameras is working reliably at present; for the others we keep upgrading the cables. Fortunately Amazon has a reasonable return policy, but it’s still frustrating. We’re hoping that premium cables arriving this Friday will work correctly.

We’re planning for Skye and guests to wear headsets with built-in microphones, a la Howard Stern – the easiest way to get good audio quality and monitor the mix, hands free. We’ve used all the audio equipment before but never with the video switcher; we’re concerned about “lag” – meaning either the video or audio lags behind the other by a fraction of a second, so we plan to test for that.

We’re using WordPress to organize the podcasts, descriptions, comments, etc. We’re hosting through WordPress directly, using their “WordPress Value Bundle”.

Target length for each podcast is 15-20 minutes, with the goal of producing them in one 3 hour session production session plus one 3 hour post session. We’ve set aside Friday mornings for this process; we can probably produce 1-2 podcasts per month. Skye will use Pinterest to organize images pertaining to each podcast, and Safari to organize links – such as to YouTube clips. Dad may surprise Skye with images and links of his own to which Skye will respond live.

Beyond that, we’ll just have to see what happens;-)

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