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Video Monitoring system

Discussion in 'Multimedia, Projection, and Show Control' started by gregpurnell, Oct 24, 2007.

  1. gregpurnell

    gregpurnell Member

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    Hey everyone, I'm new here but it seems like an awesome place. I work at a small theatre with limited funding. I was assigned the project of setting up a video monitoring system so people backstage, in the wings and possibly other locations can watch the show live so actors know when to enter, etc. I would only need one camera positioned in the house that preferably wirelessly broadcasts its video feed to 3 or 4 monitors (they can be either TVs or computers, which ever the system needs)

    If wireless is too much of an issue, I can set up a wired cam but it would still need to go to multiple monitors.

    Does anyone have any ideas of a system I can use? Do you know of a good camera and receivers? How much would a system like this cost? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks a lot!
  2. len

    len Well-Known Member

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    This is the first site that came up when I googled "video splitter"

    Seems they have a lot of choices. From what I hear, VGA is a lot better than RCA. Wired probably would be cheaper than wireless, but I never have checked into a project like this, so I'm just guessing.
  3. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    NJ & NYC
    You want a wireless 2.4GHz system. I'll get the specs on our blackbox system tomorrow, but it was very cheap for the kind of system that we got.
    gregpurnell likes this.
  4. silvrwolf

    silvrwolf Member

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    Downers Grove, IL
    Honestly, I would say stay away from wireless 2.4ghz video equipment. It usuallys only works in a line of sight situation. Plus wired is more reliable and the extra money spent for the cable would be well worth it. You can easily and cheaply pickup the equipment needed to split video to multiple monitors from your local radioshack.
    A simple way of doing a system like this is to use an RF modulator. You connect your cameras output to the RF modulator input. Then the output of the RF modulator is actually in the form of your common cable tv connector (the F connector). You then take the RF modulator output and send that to an RF splitter. THen from there you run a cable to each of the tvs RF input and when you turn to the channel that is set on the tv (either 3 or 4) you will get the image on ther tv. You use standard RG-6 cable to connect between the tvs and splitters.

    List of equipment:
    -RF Modulator $24.99

    -4-way RF Splitter $20.99

    -short RF cable to go between the Modulator and the splitter $4.59

    -100ft RF cable $32.99 x 4

    Total= $182.53

    Of course if you shop around on the internet or other stores you can find this stuff cheaper. But for the most part this can cost only a little more or could be cheaper then wireless. But what you gain is the confidence in the fact the the system will be reliable.

    If you dont have a camera already, you can get one from here:
    It costs $139.95, but you can use a standard home video camera as long as it does not have an auto standby feature where if there is not a tape in the camera and recording the camera will shut off. As long as it will stay on that will work for you.
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2007
    gregpurnell likes this.
  5. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    Project Manager, Stagecraft Industries, Inc.
    Portland, Or.
    I recently added video camera into both of out theatre for our productions of House & Garden I'll look at the cams tomorrow for model numbers. We went with a wired system. It's cat5 cheap as can be. The cams plug right into our network and have built in webservers, you basically point your browser at it, and viola'. the biggest disadvantage would be if your facility is not already wired for network distro, the other draw back being you need a computer to use as the monitor. However if you are only using the pc for a video monitr you can use just about any POS comp you might have lying around, even a boat anchor, opps I mean IMac.

    SHARYNF Well-Known Member

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    Here are a couple of comments

    If you go with digital transmission like 2.4 ghz the issue you will find is that the quality in low light will not be very good, the compression system goes crazy with the grain and low light

    Wiring up a distribution network is fine, if you have the time, budget and access, the simplest is to just encode to rf and use standard tv's for the most flexibility get a frequency agile modulator like Blonder Tongue, then you can select the channel easily

    Another alternative to explore is
    It is a a sender that uses standard channels, basically a low power tv transmitter

  7. PhantomD


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    Brisbane, Australia
    I agree with silvrwolf. I would very much recommend you specify a wired system, for reasons of reliability and quality.

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