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Getting Started with TriCaster® TC1 Chapter 8: Using Mix Effects Buses

April 23, 2019 by Richard Evans and Chuck Baker

People can tell when they are seeing video with high production values, when what they are seeing is appealing and compelling to watch. They can't necessarily articulate these factors, though they can sum up a commonly seen type of bad video pretty easily - "static and boring." Video that draws and holds attention is well composed, more complex and more active. TriCaster® TC1 has the most complete set of integrated tools for making multicamera live production with just such professional production values.

The Mix/Effects buses (M/Es) in TriCaster are a key ingredient in creating more appealing content. They allow you to mix your incoming live video in layers and add pre-recorded video, graphics, animation, digital effects and even virtual sets and environments to that mix as well. Full control of the sizing and positioning of the layers allows for creating an appealing visual composition with the video and other elements. This includes the ability to put the elements into motion with respect to one another, such as bringing an element into the frame from offscreen with anything from a simple left-to-right move up to a three dimensional tumble in from a distance, and beyond.

Three inputs and a virtual set being layered in M/E 3 in TriCaster TC1

Portions of one element can be removed through “keying,” removing area of the image based on color or brightness. For example, where a presenter is on-camera standing in front of a green screen, the green color can be keyed out, and the just the image of the presenter keyed over a virtual set. A lower-third graphic element with text, on a black background, can have the background removed, and just the graphic element keyed over the presenter and the virtual set, as shown in one example in the video. A pre-recorded video is also being keyed into a “virtual monitor” screen in the virtual set, for a total of four layers, each independently sized and positioned.

Once M/Es are set up, at showtime a complex set of layering and actions can be triggered with a single key or button press. Shooting with multiple cameras adds another piece to the production value puzzle by giving multiple points of view to the action. TriCaster’s camera preset composition engine builds on this by letting you easily create preset shots with varying angles and zooms that you can switch between. With just a mouse click, your cameras will do a smooth transition from one view to another for a given camera, or cut, fade or transition between cameras.

All of these options and how they can work together to give you the variety and motion in imagery that make a visually engaging show are introduced in this tutorial.

Next: TriCaster TC1 Get Started Training Chapter 9 - Working with Audio
Previous: TriCaster TC1 Get Started Training Chapter 7 - Remote Video Calls
First: Getting Started with TriCaster® TC1 Chapter 1: Hardware and Connections

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