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Tutorial: Remote Production with EasyLive

This tutorial will walk you through setting up and producing a simple live event with

Options abound for combining multiple speakers in different locations into a single video. You can use Zoom or similar conferencing tools, desktop mixers like vMix and Wirecast, or go full-REMI with local encoders sending streams back to a central location for producing in a broadcast mixer.

Alternatively, you could send streams to the cloud and mix your presentation there using a service like This schema delivers better audio/video quality than Zoom, is much cheaper than full REMI, and has multiple advantages over desktop mixers including better A/V quality, lower CapEx, much lower outbound bandwidth requirements at the production site, and the ability to deliver your stream to over 30 outlets simultaneously while also recording the program stream. In particular, if your goal is to deliver multiple streams to different outlets, mixing in the cloud is ideal.

This tutorial will walk you through setting up and producing a simple live event with

For the record, the service costs $99/month, plus $29/hour for production time, which I’ll further define below.

Let’s jump in.

Step 1: Creating the Event

After you log in, easylive opens into a calendar-like interface that shows previous and scheduled productions (Figure 1, background, below). You can schedule an event by clicking a future date and time, or start an event right away by clicking the current day and time. Either way, this opens the Create new live stream dialog shown in Figure 1. Note the ability to copy the layout from a previous presentation so you can copy configuration options from previous shows and easily maintain a consistent look for different episodes of the same show.

Figure 1. Creating the event. Click the image to see it full size.

Once you’ve created the event, easylive schedules the event on services that support this feature, like Facebook, that are connected to your account and an output destination for the stream.

Step 2: Set Formats, Qualities, and Publishing Points

For each show, you set the parameters for the production, which currently maxes out at 1080p60. Then you set different output qualities so you can send different quality streams to different outlets. Then you assign different publishing points to the output qualities (Figure 2, below).

Figure 2. Setting formats, qualities, and publishing points. Click the image to see it at full size.

Step 3: Choose a Publishing Point

You select a publishing point by clicking Add or Edit Publishing Points in Figure 2, which opens the screen shown in Figure 3 (below). There you choose a service, log in, and choose the destination. Or, if you’re sending the stream to an RTMP, SRT, or similar connection, you click that output and enter your credentials and stream information.

Figure 3. Choosing service and destination. Click the image to see it at full size.

On the top left of Figure 3, you see one of the service’s key strengths: the ability to support up to 30 outputs for each presentation. While few productions will actually need to support this many outputs, even three or four outputs at 5 Mbps can strain the resources of many home or small business internet connections. Since easylive delivers these from the cloud, outbound bandwidth isn’t an issue.

Step 4: Create Your Presentation

You craft your presentation in easylive’s production interface, which has the three modes shown at the top of Figure 4 (below): Setting Up, Testing, and Publishing. During setup, you can add content and content sources, but can’t take it live so you can’t really see it to debug it. During Testing, all content is live, but you incur the hourly charge, as you do once you take the production live. Note that easylive charges you by the minute, so ten minutes of testing or broadcasting will cost you $2.90, not the full $29.

Figure 4. Configuring the production. Click the image to see it at full size.

You create the production on a blank layered canvas that looks and functions much like the interface in Telestream Wirecast. As with most layered interfaces, the system displays from the top down, so you add the base content first, then the overlays like logos and titles. You can add individual pieces of content like videos, still images, and text, or you can use templates to combine different content types into scenes.

In Figure 4, you see multiple videos and templates on the bottom row and a title and logo above it. During the production, you switch between the scenes by clicking them or using a hotkey, and empty the layer by clicking Blank on the extreme left, again, much like Wirecast.

Click the plus (+) sign on each layer to add content and open the window shown in Figure 5 (below), with all the input types shown on the left, which includes live videos, disk-based videos that you upload into the system, images, text, webpages, social media icons, applications (event scoring and a timer), and a media bin that contains content that you’ve configured into previous productions. If a presenter is connecting from the same computer that’s running the presentation, they can connect directly via a capture card or webcam interface. All remote guests connect via WebRTC, which imposes about a 2.5 Mbps bandwidth limitation on the incoming video.

Figure 5. All the production inputs on the left; choosing and configuring a two-shot template on the right and in the middle. Click the image to see it at full size.

To start, I invited myself and my other speaker, Eleanor, to the production via an invitation function in the program which can send an invite via text or email. Guests receive a link they can open in a browser, choose their audio/video devices, and participate in the event. As producer, I can configure what the remote guests sees and hears, which typically will be the program feed and their own camera input (see Figure 7). Note that the system does not provide any Proc-Amp-type controls for the incoming video, so if you want to adjust incoming brightness or contrast you’ll have to walk the guests through how to do that at their end. This may change by the time you read this tutorial, as such a feature is on the company’s roadmap for 2022.

In Figure 5, I’m choosing a simple side-by-side display template (second row, on the right) for the video participants in the production, myself and Eleanor. Using the input selectors on the left, I’ve configured my video into window 1 and Eleanor’s into Window 2. This is the two-shot I’ll use for the initial discussions and meet and greet.

Then I’ll transition to a different template to discuss the presentation. This template also contains a PowerPoint screen capture that can be from either speaker, plus video windows on the left. All the production elements are configurable so if you don’t like the colors you can change them.

Also during the Setting Up phase, you’ll want to create keyboard shortcuts to simplify adding and removing multiple production elements simultaneously. You enter Hotkey mode by clicking Hotkeys as shown on the lower left in Figure 6 (below). This toolbar is located on the bottom left of the production interface, and it’s how you toggle into different operating windows to control various aspects of the production, like what your guests see and hear and the audio mixer.

Figure 6. Adding a hotkey. Note the toolbar on the lower left that you’ll use to switch between different control screens.

To add a hotkey, you enter the Hotkey interface, click Add, and then perform the action you want the hotkey to perform, like adding some content or blanking a layer. Once you click back into production mode, you can activate the hotkey by clicking it, pressing the corresponding number on your keyboard, or configuring it to a button on the Elgato Stream Deck.

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