Growing Oregon Church Scores Live Streaming Systems Upgrade
Oregon City Christian Church employs two JVC Professional Video KY-PZ100 PTZ network video production cameras, a Blackmagic Design ATEM production switcher, and a JVC DT-N17H ProHD LCD monitor to help further its reach.
Based in Oregon City, Ore., Oregon City Christian Church (OCC) has a growing congregation and attracts about 650 people across three Sunday services each weekend. The church pastors wanted to improve the online presentation with multiple cameras, but did not want the church to feel like a TV studio. Shari Scherschel, director of media and communications, was tasked with finding an affordable solution.Admittedly, Scherschel was initially skeptical about installing PTZ cameras instead of using traditional production cameras and operators. “I didn’t want it to look like security footage,” she says.Scherschel was also wary of PTZ because one of the pastors is a “walker,” so the cameras needed to be able to smoothly follow him as he moved across the platform during his sermons. After a demo in the church, she chose the KY-PZ100s and JVC’s RM-LP100 remote camera controller. “I liked the control, plus I liked the picture quality and the zoom speed,” she says. Then and nowThe cameras are used to produce weekly live streaming coverage of one of its Sunday morning services. Before the new cameras, OCC had been using only a single camera in the back of the church to stream its services.After a week of rehearsal, Scherschel debuted the new system on Christmas Day. OCC now has a four-camera setup, with the KY-PZ100s mounted in the back and on the side of the sanctuary, plus two unmanned cameras locked down to capture shots of the band. The control room is a long desk positioned behind the audio engineer at the back of the church. Scherschel handles switching duties on a Blackmagic Design ATEM production switcher, which was purchased to support the multi-camera production, while another crew member adjusts both KY-PZ100 cameras using the RM-LP100. During worship, the video production uses ProPresenter to include lyrics at the bottom of the screen. The live program is monitored on a new JVC DT-N17H ProHD LCD monitor.OCC’s facility is not large enough to warrant an IMAG system, but there is a large monitor on the platform that displays Bible verses and other supporting images. The video production often keeps the monitor and pastor in frame when the content is referenced, and the image is clear enough for online viewers to read the monitor.Measurable benefitsScherschel says the controller helps the new PTZ cameras mimic the movements of a traditional studio camera for on-screen pans and zooms. “You can do some nice stuff, and the presets are really useful,” she explains. “I really like the color and the clarity. They look really sharp, and they stay in focus while tracking.”Available in black and white housings, the KY-PZ100 features a 1/2.8-inch CMOS sensor and 30x optical zoom lens, and its f/1.6-4.7 maximum aperture delivers professional low-light performance. It streams up to 1080p/60 video at a variety of bit rates, and supports on-board HD recording at up to 50 Mbps to a MicroSDHC/SDXC media card. In January, the Oregon City area closed down because of heavy snow. Knowing bad weather was on the way and services would be canceled for the weekend, Scherschel recorded a service on Friday. It was well received; Scherschel reports that more than 500 people viewed the service online on Sunday, and several members of the congregation shared photos of their families watching the service at home. “We’ve had really great compliments from the congregation,” she concludes.[Editor's note: This piece was originally published in March 2017.]
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