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Review: for Remote Producers

From a perfect high-quality audio recording of a podcast guest to a remote shoot with a 4K camera hooked into a computer via Riverside, editors can have access to perfect video files in seconds and avoid most of the downsides of other popular video call services.

With remote video setups, there are a few key elements that every kit needs for success: good audio, video, lighting, bandwidth, and transmission. There are a million things you can do about the first three, but bandwidth and transmission often impose limitations that are expensive or impossible to improve. You can’t always have a guest upgrade their internet, and sending them a cell phone card or a bonded cellular setup can take time and increase costs.

If your video or podcast can work with post production and is not required to broadcast live...


How it Works

Riverside uses progressive uploads to reliably record and transmit video from a remote guest to the cloud, in near real-time. Basically, using Google Chrome (or Riverside’s new iPhone app), you send a link to the guest. They connect their webcam and microphone as in most other web apps, and while sending a lower-resolution live feed to other guests and producers, Riverside records a local version of that video on the guest’s device. The app will upload that video in chunks during the live conversation, and if it’s not done in time, it can finish uploading after the conversation ends. Moments later, you can download synced video files from everyone being recorded, and pop them right into your favorite editing software.

This is what the host sees when using Riverside. Guests and producers see a similar view. Click the image to see it at full size.

It’s truly seamless. The guest doesn’t realize anything special is going on, and unless their initial upload doesn’t finish before they close the browser, they will never need to think about dealing with the file transmission. In my experience, the full files are typically uploaded within a minute of the end of the conversation. I’ve found that by the time I’ve stopped the recording and said my thank yous and goodbyes to the guest(s), the upload will be finished.

This is what a guest sees prior to joining a Riverside studio. It is easy to connect to a webcam/microphone.

Riverside makes sure that the guest’s full video is uploaded prior to leaving.

Because the file is being recorded locally, it is significantly less compressed than files recorded in Zoom, Skype, and other WebRTC services. Your editor will never notice if anyone’s internet dropped or fluctuated during the recording, because real-time internet has no effect on the local recordings.

Riverside has a few basic editing features. It can output a split-screen, and it can use what they call “Artificial Intelligence” to show the current speaker full-screen in an export. I prefer to just stack my video tracks in Premiere Pro, use the audio waveforms to see who’s talking, and separate my shots that way.

This is where you can see your recordings, and choose how you’d like to download or edit them.


Price-wise, it’s a low-cost option for the value it provides. Plans range from $7.50-$24 a month with 2-15 hours of recording per month, and an Enterprise plan gives you a few extra nice-to-have features.

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