Best Hardware setting to remotely stream a Soccer Match

So, after reading this forum and watching video-tests on youtube, my last chance is to ask your help:

I have this idea from years, but I never did it, now I am determined to try…
My goal is to put a Theta on the Top Center of a Soccer field and remotely stream players during the match under it (there will be full white light during night, so darkness shouldn’t be a problem).
From what I have understood, the best way to do this, would be to buy a Theta Z1 or a Ricoh R… But they are out of the budget (maybe if the experiment will be a success, we will upgrade to a R), so we will buy a used Theta V or S for few hundreds $$…

Next to the soccer field there is a room with a Computer connected to internet with a 60-100mbps ethernet/wifi. My idea was to

  • connect the Pc and the Theta with a 50 meters USB cable (yes, I have read about the problem about signal loss after X meters, and that with the specific 50M cable it shouldn’t be a problem),
  • then turn on the camera and start streaming both through USB cable (is it possible to do?) // or if it wasn’t possible, I was thinking to use a Esp8266 with wifi
  • stream with OBS from pc to facebook/youtube/instagram pages

What do you think? Would this be possible? Can I control all this from pc from a USB cable connection? Am I missing anything?
It is a 5vs5 soccer field (like 25 meters long) and the Theta will be (with a protection against the rain) up about 10 meters, will both sides and players be visible without being too small?

Thanks you for your time

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@Francesco - The S video resolution is 2K. The V is 4K. The Z1 is also 4K. I like the concept a lot, and I don’t want to discourage you from building what sounds like a really fun project. But I think you will not be happy with the resolution. Since it sounds like you do not have a THETA to test with, do you have any regular photos or video of what you might consider “normal conditions” and acceptable resolution? This might give me a better feel for what you are aiming for.

The resolution of the THETA V live stream is 4K, so I’m not sure if you’ll be able to see the players in detail. The image will be upside down and you will not have a full immersive view. Imagine a sphere around the camera. You’d only be getting the top portion of the sphere from a top-down view.

You likely want the immersive view where the person looking at the stream feels like they are in the game. For this to happen, the camera needs to be upright and at the head level of the players. Basically, it would be in the way of the game.

You can place the camera in the perspective of the audience or on the side of the field. The audience can then move the live stream view from one goal to another inside the browser.

To broadcast a football game you need a minimum of 9 cameras, which are remotely controllable and configurable while broadcasting, impossible by cable, since you are limited to Active USB cables, which have a maximum performance of 28 meters. So you need a modem systems and routers, a very powerful computer to be able to process everything at once, such as a minimum125gb, 2 or 3 graphics cards, ssd disks, icore9, … in addition to other elements such as Encoders, ect … minimum material budget 50,000 € … And above all a sensor larger than 1 "in each camera.

The z1, serves for small rooms, external rooms where you do not need to be focused more than 10 meters.

I am trying to use the Z1 for an event to put it on the lectern, to be able to focus on the speaker, but behind it I have a system of 6 larger 360 cameras, 4 fixed in strategic places, one on a robot and one on a cablecam.

By the way in OBS the Image is turned around.

I am professional and for the moment I do not dare with a football game, since the distances are 8 times longer, and above you have the motion blur when the players are running, at the moment I do not believe that cameras capable of broadcast a football game with a minimally dignified image quality.

And I say, that I am trying to use the Z1, since I can’t connect it, it is very unstable, I need it to emit a minimum of 6 hours. Sometimes it doesn’t connect, sometimes it only connects for 5 minutes, the maximum I have achieved is 25 minutes.

I also tell you, that I have already ruled out the Q8k, the OneR and the OneX, after trying them. If I don’t get the Z1 stable, I’ll try the Max, but it limits me a lot since the broadcast is at 1080p.

Greetings.

Juan

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There’s a lot of great details here. I agree with @Mattern points about motion blur and distances. These are important. For this type of sport, the Z1 might only be usable as a novelty view in addition to other cameras. I don’t think you can rely on it for the main view.

The Z1 might also be useful for some type of surveillance or monitoring of changes for later analysis.

BTW, sorry to hear about the problems with Z1 stability during live stream. I think other people are streaming with the Z1. Did you post your problem details on this forum in another topic?

There’s been so much activity that I haven’t been able to keep up with all the discussions.

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In the Z1 in streaming, you cannot control motion blur, since there is no possibility of retransmitting in a manual configuration.

In Wi-Fi I have achieved 10 hours of stability, but at a maximum of 1080p resolution, and not being able to control the bpm during the transmission, it is not enough. Very limited, even with an RTm server.

With cable is the best image quality option, but for now I have transmission cuts. I don’t know if the heat, the camera, or the computer. The computer does not seem to have problems never goes beyond 5% CPu use.

I will comment, with the final analysis. The Z1 can be a great solution for streaming professionals, at times when we need an approach to an object, where you cannot put a Pro.

Even better, than other cameras of consumption of 8k and 5.7k. For the sharpness and focus it provides. Since the network does not support more than 4k streaming

Greetings.

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Z1 heat may be a problem. I did some tests using a Windows laptop with 4K streaming using OBS and a USB-C cable connected to the USB 3 port of the laptop.

A thermometer and exclamation point icon appeared, but I continued to stream for hours after that. In my test, air temperature was 72F, which is fairly cool. If you stream under lights, heat may be a problem. Z1 was charging while streaming. The battery charge went up.

I did not test streaming to a cloud service like YouTube for a long period due to bandwidth restrictions at my home office. If you’re streaming to YouTube, the Internet connection may be a problem for 4K video streaming.

As the Z1 has a larger body than the V, it may have better heat dissipation.

image

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Thanks everyone for your answers

So, about video quality, distances etc… The field is about 40m x 20m, so each side is 20-10 meters from the center point, the Theta would be at a height of about 8 meters.

As I said this is just an experiment, I don’t need professional quality (I know that for this I would need a lot more money and higher hardware), it is just to give a new feature and see what do people think…
The players don’t need to be seen in high details, it is just important to distinguish Teams actions during the match, so a general view like on Ps4 soccer games.

As examples I watched a lot of 360°videos recorded from Drones, to understand what the quality would be like:

  • At 0:08 I think that would be the same Height, also there are 2 stairs in opposite directions, I think that the soccer field extreme points would be roughly at the same distance
  • Or here at 0:40
    It isn’t great quality, but I can distinguish what people are doing…

Also, I know that using a 360° video (on the top or at the side) means that normal viewers would need to constantly rotate stream’s shot every 15 seconds to follow actions from a side to another, for 90 minutes, it would be boring…
That’s why I think this system would be good only for 2 purposes (other than casual users who would watch just few actions/minutes before leaving the stream) :

  1. After the match, players will be able to extrapolate and share their best actions on their Socials, for fun (and trust me, this is 100% sure, they go crazy for this kind of things).
  2. When a Mister analyzes and studies his team’s actions to enanch their level, he usually go to the highest tribune’s point to have a better view from the top. So be able to re-watch a training/match from Theta’s point of views, would means to see the whole field from above… And that’s a good thing.

I thought about placing the camera at the side of the field, but at this point wouldn’t it be better a 180° camera?

About using normal cameras over a 360° camera, since it is a small 5vs5 field, it doen’t need 9 normal cameras, but just 2-3 average cameras to get the best shots, and a normal Pc to manage them. It mustn’t be professional like in TV, it is a free feature after all… (28 meters USB cables shouldn’t be a problem, I think the room is far less than 28m from the field’s top-center)

You know better than me, so I will be happy to know what do you think about this, thanks again!

Sounds like an interesting project. There are several things you need to figure out. Let’s break it down. Feel free to ask more questions and then show your results.

Streaming Connection Options and Cable Length Limitations

USB is the easiest and probably the best, but other people have used Ethernet. Check out this thread by @amoffat

This setup is with a physical connection with Ethernet.
Someone is back stage holding a THETA on the end of a stick. You can see how it looks with moving people.


This is another person using Ethernet.

The same person @Lau, also tested different lengths of USB and Ethernet.

You can see from that thread, that they looked at long USB cables of 20 meters with the THETA S, but ended up using Ethernet.

As the Ethernet system is likely too complex for your project, I would suggest trying a USB cable and posting your results.

If you want to try Ethernet, here is some additional information.

If you are transmitting to YouTube with Ethernet, you can use this plug-in and not use the camera Wi-Fi. The plug-in will automatically switch to Ethernet if you have the Ethernet active on the camera.

With USB 3 this is the longest you can get, putting a power supply every 5 meters.

https://www.amazon.com/Plugable-Extension-Adapter-Back-Voltage-Protection/dp/B076C6PDNH/ref=sr_1_15?keywords=usb+active&qid=1582821961&sr=8-15

With USB 2 you can reach 100 meters. Peno does not help you to transmit data.

Wi-Fi devices that meet the IEEE 802.11g standard reach an average transmission rate of 22 Mbps. Under optimal conditions they can reach up to 24 Mbps. Not enough speed to transmit 4k at a distance of 20 mts.

The USB 3.0 transmission rate has a theoretical transmission rate of up to 4.8 Gbit / s or 600MB / s. Optimum speed for 4K transmission, but you cannot exceed 28 meters away.

To overcome the distance 20-28mts in 4k, you need 5G technology that is capable of exceeding up to 10 Gbits.

Circumstance that I have tried, even with 8k transmission, but with a little lack of fluidity in the video.

The quality you get with a recording with a drone is much higher than the quality you can get in a live broadcast, since a video of a drone is rendered.

regards

Juan

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@ craig

Finally, I have achieved it, I have issued 2 hours of testing. I have turned it off and retransmitted 1 hrs. I’ve turned it off again and again … in total 6 hours … cutting and plugging, no problem as I demanded.

To achieve this, I had to reinstall Intel RealSense SDK, the original full version, since the version that comes with OBS is limited.

With 10m cable. and 3 more cameras. Use cpu 10% lost frames 0

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