I decided to upgrade my live stream in preparation for the The 24 Hour Startup Challenge. Live streaming building Blurt been a total blast.
Live streaming the making process also has three interesting benefits:
- It holds me accountable—when you know others are watching you build, it forces you to focus, which increases my productivity.
- You can get instant feedback on your product. Not everyone watching may be necessarily your target customer, but there's no denying how fast it can be to validate an idea.
- You can get help! I've had incredibly helpful and smarter than I developers suggest frameworks, help solve code issues, etc.
Below are all the software and hardware I've used for setting up my broadcasts and some thoughts on how to do it.
- Ecamm Live ($79 - Demo with watermark)
- Live streaming production tool
- Restream.io (Free)
- Stream to 30+ platform simultaneously.
- I set it up to stream to my YouTube, Twitch and Periscope profiles. (Periscope will appear on your Twitter profile if you have it linked.)
- Headliner (Free)
- Free video editor, for audio wave
- AudioJungle (From $1)
- Royalty free music and audio tracks. Used as bumper music for Corey.live intro and outro created with Headliner.
- Sketch (Free trial)
- Used sketch to create the overlays used in Ecamm Live.
- Silicio (Free)
- Mac app that shows your currently playing Spotify track and can hover on top of all your windows.
- Logitech HD Pro Webcam C920 ($49.99)
- Great wide screen 1080p cam.
- Blue Microphone Spark ($199.99)
- Blue makes great microphones! I had an older model that I bought for recording music. This digital model looks great. They typically come with a pop filter to…prevent popping sounds.
- Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 Second Generation USB Preamp ($159.99)
- Needed for my older Spark model. I also tried the Icicle but found the quality much better with a preamp like this one.
Things to Consider
Some thoughts on streaming the making process.
OBS vs. Ecamm Live
In the past I used Open Broadcast Software (OBS) which is a free and open source tool for producing your live stream. It's incredibly capable, but I found a little too rough around the edges. Ecamm Live simplifies the work required to have a slick broadcast.
Pros: Browser overlays allow for dynamic display. Can also read local files for dynamic text. Scene transitions are fancy. Free! Cons: Lots of setup required for overlays—have to transition scenes to toggle overlays. No emojis in text overlays. 😢
Pros: Scene and overlay switching keyboard shortcuts. Restream.io discussion overlays (slick widgets for when your audience chats with you on a given streaming platform). Saves your livestreams to file. Skype integration makes bringing guests on live a breeze. Cons: No browser overlays. Can't have dynamic overlays by reading files locally or via web. Can't use system audio if not displaying desktop. No fancy scene transition animations. A bit pricey $79.
Intro & Outro
The intro and outro makes things feel much more legit. 😂 Also helps amp things up a little bit and makes a good cover for the video when on various social platforms.
I used Headliner to generate the audio wave. I found bumper tune on Audio Jungle and made the logo in Sketch.
I need to work on the styling a bit but what I think what I've got works. I've got a Sketch file setup with the resolution of the stream to prototype these.
I have one element for the stream logo. Drop shadow helps it standout.
The Topic Bar is just a blank UI element and I put a Text overlay on top. I made an element that's wide that I can slide left and right as necessary to fit the topic text.
Currently, Ecamm Live only has dynamic text for comments that come in from the streaming platforms. It's incredibly awesome, but still kind of a bummer in its limitation.
For any other dynamic UI, you'll have to put it literally on your desktop display. For now I'm using Silicio to show my current Spotify track, but want to consider other similar . Hopefully Ecamm adds more integrations.
Talk. I used to stream without talking, but it's far less engaging. So now when I start a give an overview of what I'm working on, where I last left off and what I'm trying to get done. I also tend to talk out loud as I'm coding to help those that come and go understand where I'm at.
I'm hoping going forward I can develop a more regular schedule during the week to live stream the various parts of the Blurt business (The Write Stuff interviews, design, coding, etc.)
Big thanks to Justin Jackson whose setup helped me get going too.
Will update this post as I go along.
If you have any other questions, please ask away on Twitter!