How to Stream User Group Meetings to YouTube

Would you like to learn how User Groups in Springfield Missouri are LIVE streaming our meetings to YouTube? You’ve come to the right place! Several similar streaming configurations are being used locally…

Springfield Web Devs (YouTube), Springfield .NET, Springfield Python, Springfield Women in Technology

Myke Bates (The Alchemedia Project, Eagle Speak) pioneered this original setup that is used by multiple groups. Jason Arend designed the original template for Web Devs and adapted the graphics for each group.

Springfield Amazon Web Services (YouTube)

Jason Klein (Logic Forte) adapted Myke’s setup above to broadcast SGF AWS meetings.


Initial Setup

I will describe my experience setting up OSB for use with live streaming of the SGF AWS meetings. This should be similar to Myke’s experience. My MacBook Pro (Quad i7 2.2Ghz) uses about 9% CPU while streaming with the following settings.

  1. Connect your devices (webcam, microphone, and HDMI capture) to your computer. Install device drivers if necessary.
  2. Create a YouTube Channel
    1. Tip: Be sure to create your channel under a “Brand” account so you can assign multiple people access to manage and stream to the channel. You create a “Brand” account while logged into your existing Google account. A “Brand” account does NOT have a separate username/password.
    2. Configure Live Streaming and setup your Live Streaming keys
    3. Tip: If you are streaming 720p, you can usually enable the low delay option in YouTube live stream buffer settings. This allows remote viewers to see audio/video of the presentation and submit questions in near real time (e.g. 15-30 second delay). If you are streaming 1080p or 4k, you need to make sure you have fast and consistent upstream bandwidth to support this option. The standard buffer setting seems to delay audio/video around 40-60 seconds.
  3. Install and Configure OSB
    1. General Configuration
      1. Automatically Record When Streaming (YES)
      2. Keep Recording when Streaming Stops (NO)
    2. Configure Streaming
      1. Type: Streaming Services
      2. Service: YouTube / YouTube Gaming
      3. Server: Primary YouTube Ingest Server
      4. Stream Key: (configure in YouTube)
    3. Configure Output
      1. Mode: Simple
      2. Video Bitrate: 2500
      3. Encoder: Software x264
      4. Audo Bitrate: 160
      5. Recording Quality: Same as Stream — Recommended on laptops and other low power computers. You can choose higher option if your computer has enough CPU to handle it.
      6. Recording Format: FLV
    4. Video Output
      1. Base Canvas Resolution: 1920×1080
      2. Output Scaled Resolution: 1280×720
      3. Downscale Filter: Bicubic
      4. Common FPS Values: 30
  4. Setup Scenes in OSB — You switch to different scenes during your meeting to control how inputs are used/streamed. Contact Jason Arend or Jason Klein for current templates.
    1. Opening Scene — Usually a backdrop with User Group logo, NO audio, NO video
      1. Color Source: Solid Background Color
      2. Image: User Group Logo
      3. Text: User Group Name, Meeting Title, Meeting Date, Other Info
    2. Large Webcam with Small Capture — Great for beginning/end of presentation. Resize the HDMI Capture so that it appears in the lower righthand corner of the screen.
      1. Audio: Blue Snowball
      2. Video Capture Device: Logitech Webcam
      3. Video Capture Device: Elgato or Magwell HDMI
      4. Color Source: Solid Background Color
      5. Image: User Group Logo
      6. Text: User Group Name, Meeting Title, Meeting Date, Other Info
    3. Large Capture with Small Webcam — Great for majority of presentation. Resize the Webcam so that it appears in the lower righthand corner of the screen.
      1. Audio: Blue Snowball
      2. Video Capture Device: Logitech Webcam
      3. Video Capture Device: Elgato or Magwell HDMI
      4. Color Source: Solid Background Color
      5. Image: User Group Logo
      6. Text: User Group Name, Meeting Title, Meeting Date, Other Info
    4. Closing Scene
      1. Color Source: Solid Background Color
      2. Image: User Group Logo
      3. Text: User Group Name, Meeting Title, Meeting Date, Other Info

Streaming During Meeting

  1. Anytime prior to meeting:
    1. Update text in any scenes that display Meeting Title, Meeting Date, or other meeting specifics.
  2. After setup at meeting, but before you start your live stream:
    1. Confirm Webcam and HDMI captures are appearing correctly. Click on each stream and verify webcam or HDMI capture video is present. If OSB shows a black/blank area for either device, double-click on the source and make sure the correct USB device is chosen from dropdown menu. This is a common issue if you plug a USB device into a different port and the OS configures the device as a new device (e.g. Logitech Webcam #2)
    2. Perform a live streaming sound check. Start on your opening scene, begin broadcast, and talk while switching to your other scenes and finally switch to closing scene. Watch/listen to your very short (10-15 second) test stream on YouTube and make sure there is NO audio during opening/closing scenes. Make sure audio level is reasonable during your presentation scenes. If audio sounds strange or has an echo, make sure you are not capturing audio from Blue Snowball microphone AND internal laptop microphone at the same time. If no audio, double click on the source and make sure correct USB device is selected in the dropdown list. Delete sound check recording.
  3. Several minutes before meeting begins:
    1. Select your Opening Scene (e.g. background w/ logo, meeting details, start time, no audio)
    2. Start Streaming
    3. Go to YouTube and confirm:
      1. Stream appears in correct channel
      2. Stream is public
      3. Stream details are correct (e.g. title, description)
    4. Copy YouTube live stream URL and announce live stream with URL on Slack, Meetup, Facebook, etc.
  4. During meeting:
    1. If you only use one scene, change to that scene. No other interaction required during meeting.
    2. If you use multiple scenes, have someone who can switch between scenes as appropriate during meeting (e.g. large video of webcam w/ small video of presentation, large video of presentation, small video of webcam). They can use up/down arrow keys to switch between two scenes or they can use mouse/trackpad to click on different scenes.
  5. Immediately after meeting:
    1. Change to Closing Scene (e.g. background w/ logo, meeting details, speaker contact info, where to find more details, no audio)
    2. Wait 30 seconds or so
    3. Click Stop Streaming (and Stop Recording)
  6. Anytime after meeting:
    1. Go to YouTube and edit recording
      1. Review meeting details. Add meeting outline to description if available.
      2. Trim opening scene and closing scene so that only a few second appear before/after actual presentation.
      3. Save changes.
      4. (This final step can be done anytime after meeting. Sooner is better than later though.)

Background

Our local User Groups have been working to find an inexpensive way to live stream meetings for several years. We have experimented with a variety of video configurations (Mevo, Mevo Plus, Periscope on iPad, Facebook Live on iPad, etc) coupled with a variety of audio configurations (built-in, venue sound systems w/ XLR adapters, iRig microphones, etc). We considered several different screen capture software packages that we could use to capture each presentation.

Myke found the Elgato Capture device and OSB combination allowed them to capture any presentation in real time. Be aware that the Elgato is listed as macOS compatible, but is NOT compatible with OSB on macOS, so you MUST use OSB on Windows with this device. I went with the Magwell device (for $200 more) instead of buying a Windows laptop. Both capture devices are completely passthrough and transparent to the presenter’s computer. When they connect their HDMI cable to the capture device, their computer believes it is connecting directly to the projector. Myke and I had great luck using both the Elgato and Magwell devices to capture HDMI from various laptops and forward the HDMI signal to various projectors.

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