Public Sector & Education • Business & Enterprise • Home Security
In recent years we have seen the continued growth in live streaming. This is not surprising when you think of the many benefits of live streaming for both marketing and interacting with your audience. While IP cameras are already currently used for streaming in sectors such as hospitality, leisure and tourism, we’re seeing more varied applications becoming more popular – for example, business events, Q&A’s, university lectures and sporting events.
There are a number of camera options available for live streaming, but there is something to be said about using a camera that is built for the job. For starters, you get a camera that has all the right features and is designed to produce the best results. That’s certainly been the thinking behind Axis’ V59 series.
The 2 models in the series (Axis V5915 and V5914) take the versatility of IP cameras and combine them with live production features that help you create high quality video without the broadcast-quality price tag.
By combining HD 1080p/720p video at up to 50 frames per second and P-iris control which optimises image clarity, you are provided with a smooth, high quality video stream. The V5915 and V5914 also feature Wide Dynamic Range technology which will balance high contrast lighting – reducing noise and giving your viewers a clearer picture. This is a real bonus if your event involves projector screens or there are lights or windows behind the presenter.
These V59’s have multiple input and output options for capturing audio. XLR balanced mono input (left/right) can be used to connect external microphones to the camera for recording higher quality audio. A stereo input / output is also provided, allowing you to connect a mixing desk to control the levels on multiple microphones – helpful for Q&A sessions or events that need sound capture in multiple areas.
Axis understood the need for the user to have as much control over the camera as possible when the stream is live, so they included support for pan, tilt and zoom. The powerful 30x optical zoom, with adjustable speeds and autofocus, will allow you to seamlessly zoom in and out to capture important detail from long distances – handy for a head-and-shoulder shot of the presenter or if you need to focus on something they’re holding up to the audience. Pan and tilt functions can be easily controlled remotely, making it possible to smoothly and precisely follow any movements during an event. This can prove very beneficial if your event involves subjects that are moving around, e.g. graduation ceremony or play/live performance.
You can control your V59 via a PC or tablet device (a smartphone is probably too small to be practical for this sort of application) and the live stream can optionally be monitored by connecting an HD monitor directly to the camera’s HDMI line out. The simple addition of headphones can turn this setup into a very functional operator’s control console!
These Axis cameras have 2 options for hosting your stream. A 3rd party program from Camstreamer which is provided through Axis Camera Application Platform (ACAP), enables you to host your stream on a number of different service providers including uStream and YouTube Live. Note that Camstreamer does involve the one-off purchase of a licence.
Alternatively, if you are seeking to use this camera as more of a peer-to-peer application you can use Axis Streaming Assistant (free to download), which is more suited to web conferencing applications such as Skype.
Like any technology, you’ll usually get what you pay for. If you’re serious about live streaming then the Axis V5915 and V5914 represent a sound investment – they’re made for live streaming and they’ll do the job well.