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Desert Bus for Hope’s Annual Charity Livestream Powered by ATEM 2 M/E Constellation HD

Blackmagic Design today announced that internet fundraiser Desert Bus for Hope relied on an ATEM 2 M/E Constellation HD live production switcher to stream its annual charity event to thousands of viewers on Twitch.

Founded in 2007 by internet sketch comedy group LoadingReadyRun, Desert Bus for Hope combines video games and humor to benefit children's hospitals worldwide. Featuring live auctions, giveaways, celebrity guests and audience interaction all while playing the unreleased video game “Desert Bus,” the charity livestream continues for as long as donations come in, with 2022’s event lasting over 166 hours and raising $1.18M.

The Desert Bus for Hope team turned to the ATEM 2 M/E Constellation HD to support the heart of their broadcast operations, capturing the event with Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro 4.6K digital film camera and Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K. Johnny Blakeborough, Desert Bus for Hope’s broadcast producer, explained, “Having dedicated hardware for camera switching with the ATEM 2 M/E Constellation HD meant that we had virtually no downtime this year. We were able to run the show seamlessly, which is immensely important for a seven day, 24 hour livestream.”

“Because we don’t have a permanent studio space, Desert Bus for Hope has to rebuild the set in a new location every year,” he continued. “This year we were all SDI based, and it was so much easier to run all our cables through a single hub thanks to the ATEM’s SDI inputs and outputs. Also, with the help of our Blackmagic converters, we were able to build our studio faster this year and have a much cleaner setup, as our cables were hidden behind our televisions and powered via USB.”

Andrew Ferguson, Desert Bus for Hope’s communications director, added, “Because we had a rock solid SDI workflow, we were ready to go quicker and earlier. This meant we had that extra time to come up with cool and interesting ways to use the technology, as opposed to just making sure it was working.”

With fun segments including guest call ins and crew reactions, the Desert Bus for Hope team turned to the ATEM 2 M/E Constellation HD’s SuperSource to help keep the livestream dynamic with picture in picture displays. “We have a lot of different games and segments going on simultaneously that all use different video sources,” Blakeborough commented. “Being able to send those videos to wherever we wanted on our screen with the ATEM switcher was huge for us and made the show look way more professional.”

The Desert Bus for Hope team also elevated the look of the livestream by using an URSA Mini Pro 4.6K as the main camera and a Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K for wide angle shots. Blakeborough noted, “We were so impressed with not only the image quality from our Blackmagic cameras but also how seamlessly they connected with the ATEM 2 M/E Constellation HD. We were able to easily adjust the lighting or color of the cameras via the switcher without having to take them offline.”

Ferguson concluded, “Because of the quality and stability of our Blackmagic Design workflow overall, we were able to put on the most complex, stable, and professional show that Desert Bus for Hope has ever seen!”

Press Photography

Product photos of ATEM 2 M/E Constellation HD, Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K, URSA Mini Pro 4.6K and all other Blackmagic Design products are available at

About Blackmagic Design

Blackmagic Design creates the world’s highest quality video editing products, digital film cameras, color correctors, video converters, video monitoring, routers, live production switchers, disk recorders, waveform monitors and real time film scanners for the feature film, post production and television broadcast industries. Blackmagic Design’s DeckLink capture cards launched a revolution in quality and affordability in post production, while the company’s Emmy™ award winning DaVinci color correction products have dominated the television and film industry since 1984. Blackmagic Design continues ground breaking innovations including 6G-SDI and 12G-SDI products and stereoscopic 3D and Ultra HD workflows. Founded by world leading post production editors and engineers, Blackmagic Design has offices in the USA, UK, Japan, Singapore and Australia. For more information, please go to