ATEM M/E 1 Daisy Chain

Questions about ATEM Switchers, Camera Converter and everything live!
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ryanbooth

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ATEM M/E 1 Daisy Chain

PostThu Aug 30, 2012 8:11 pm

Looking at building a multicam rig. Won't need more than 8 inputs at the beginning, but curious if I can daisy chain 2 ATEM M/E 1 switchers together to essentially function as an ATEM M/E 2?

I'm trying to determine whether or not I'd be able to expand an existing ATEM M/E 1 system or if I would have to ditch it and go with an M/E 2 should more than 8 input requirements arise.

Thanks.
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Benjamin Doyle

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Re: ATEM M/E 1 Daisy Chain

PostThu Aug 30, 2012 8:53 pm

You would need two separate control surfaces to operate each 1 M/E independently. That's the biggest drawback of this approach.

You can achieve this on 1 computer by opening the control software twice and assigning a unique IP to each 1 M/E then pointing the software at the IP in the setup menu. Or you could use any combination of control surfaces and/or computers to control them.

Plus with 2 x 1 M/E's you effectively have a 15 input switcher (not 16) since you'll use 1 input on your downstream switcher to get the feed from your upstream.
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Brian Scheffler

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Re: ATEM M/E 1 Daisy Chain

PostThu Aug 30, 2012 9:17 pm

In our experience, customers seem to run out of inputs much faster than they originally think. For example, we used to use our ATEM 1 for 4-camera sports shoots. Out inputs quickly filled up with 4 cameras, two external graphics inputs, one replay input, and one clock camera input.

So I would suggest to keep exploring your options and suggest the ATEM 2 if you can budget it. You'll have the spare inputs plus other nice features that aren't available on the smaller units.

If financially you need to start with the ATEM 1, that's understandable. We've seen a good market for slightly used ATEM 1s (with owners wanting to upgrade to the ATEM 2) and they seem to hold their price up well in the short time since they were released.

Brian
Brian Scheffler
ScheffTech Productions, LLC
brian[AT]schefftech.com (309) 524-5865
Blackmagic Design Authorized Dealer
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ryanbooth

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Re: ATEM M/E 1 Daisy Chain

PostSat Sep 01, 2012 4:09 pm

Thanks for the input Brian and Benjamin. I'm coming to multicam production via music shoots and interviews and it's a huge learning curve trying to suss out exactly what I'll need to serve our rather unique needs. We're not looking to "broadcast" per se, but rather build a rig that essentially cuts into the postproduction workflow we're having to employ now.

Gregg Bond

Re: ATEM M/E 1 Daisy Chain

PostSat Sep 01, 2012 5:59 pm

Having done exactly that last weekend I can say you do need to think about your workflow. Its very easy to get "lost in the desks".

The upside is you get multiple keying, multiple DVE's and 8 HDMI inputs - important for us as we need more than 4 PC inputs. Where as the 2ME "only" :) has 4 HDMI and 12 HD-SDI.

Also the second switcher happily works from the laptop, I dont need to get much more creative than selecting the next input and hitting take.

I would love a "simple" button box though (similar to the Matrix control panels) that just has say, a preview row and a take button.

Image

Taken during setup and testing at Multiplay's Insomnia46 gaming festival here in the UK. I love my job, I get to play with so many toys :)

Stage 1 and 2 inputs on the left hand screen are actually AUX 1 and 2 from the right hand screens broadcast panel (physically located backstage). This allows me to solo an input on the BOH desk and get it permanently to my FOH desk during the smaller parts of the show so I can "set and forget" and just use the physical control surface.
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Benjamin Doyle

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Re: ATEM M/E 1 Daisy Chain

PostSat Sep 01, 2012 6:15 pm

Nice setup Gregg! Fun to see someone actually put it in production :D

Gregg Bond wrote:I would love a "simple" button box though (similar to the Matrix control panels) that just has say, a preview row and a take button.

We've started using a gaming pad as a simple button box for cuts-only switching. It makes for a compact controller with minimal buttons instead of using a whole keyboard just for 8 keys + transition.
The one we're using is Razer's Nostromo [link]
Gaming pads come with software for button mapping which makes it simple to set up for ATEM control.

Could also use a usb 10-key pad to achieve similar results (though button assigning/mapping may be more difficult).

Of course both these solutions still require a PC to run the ATEM control software. The much sleeker/sexier alternative is the X-Keys and custom control surfaces some users are coming up with.

Gregg Bond

Re: ATEM M/E 1 Daisy Chain

PostSat Sep 01, 2012 6:26 pm

I dont think I would ever get away with shedding the PC altogether, its needed for setting up PIP's and keys, and of course photoshop for overlays.

Currently looking into using an Arduino, there is a couple of people online fiddling with the netcode protocol and coming up with some cracking projects.

is probably my favorite. Thats almost easy enough for talent to use! :D

Many years ago, when I was wearing a different hat, the controller I most wanted was an Ergodex.

http://www.kustompcs.co.uk/acatalog/info_4730.html

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