Blackmagic Design has announced that the Rock Star Hotel in Osaka City has built a full 4K broadcast workflow, which is built around three Blackmagic Studio Camera 4Ks and an ATEM Production Studio 4K, to stream live events from the hotel.
Rock Star Hotel offers a unique hospitality concept based on Rock’n’Roll themes and interior design befitting the lifestyle of legendary rockers. They don’t merely provide accommodations, they offer cutting edge culture in the form of food, fashion and music. Each suite has its own concept and displayed artwork inspired by the concept. The hotel takes its involvement with rock culture a step further, collaborating with young up and coming visual artists to commission and release work and compilation albums with IRMA record, an Italian label loved by DJs all over the world.
The hotel famously throws parties promoted by director Takuho Asanuma, who brings in top DJs and crowds. “We organised a big party at the Rock Star Hotel, using whole floors of the hotel. As a challenging way to publicise the hotel, we live streamed the party. We received positive feedback so we decided to install a complete broadcast system enabling us to stream parties regularly, with superb quality,” said Asanuma.
Rock Star Hotel installed three Blackmagic Studio Camera 4Ks, ATEM Production Studio 4K, HyperDeck Studio Pro, ATEM 1M/E Broadcast Panel, SmartView Duo, SmartView HD, UltraStudio Express, HD Link and Mini Converter. “Using Blackmagic gear exclusively, the equipment can be rack mounted beautifully and I don’t have to worry about any compatibility issues, so it is much easier to set up. It is also more cost effective to build a system this way,” said Asanuma.
“The great thing about the Studio Camera is its big monitor on the back,” said Asanuma. “It does not have many buttons to push, so it is simple to use. We think giving the audience the sense of presence at the party is more important than worrying technical aspects like focus and exposure. I thought having a big monitor on the camera is more appropriate to capture such “live” feelings than cameras with conventional view finder, because it is quicker and easier to adjust.
“Also, we needed cameras that anyone could use. The Studio Camera 4K is professional quality yet easy to use for non professionals.”
While live streaming parties, Asanuma controlled the ATEM switcher, real time audio adjustments, and maintains overall quality control of the stream. “The Studio Camera 4Ks allowed me to control focus and gain remotely from the ATEM. It worked exactly as I wanted it to! It was very handy that I could monitor the audio level from ATEM. When audio is sent to ATEM, the analog audio is converted to digital. When the audio is clipped in digital range, it becomes distorted, we cannot let that happen. It was a musical event so there was a variety of music, both quiet and loud, so the volumes varied a lot. To keep the level comfortable for the audience I used Camera Control, adjusting the master fader based on the type of music they played.”
He also uses the ATEM Camera Control’s real time colour correction capabilities with ATEM Camera Control software. “It is not realistic to colour correct hours of footage from scratch. It is great advantage that ATEM allows me to colour correct live. I made a look for one of the cameras, and copied the setting. I brought down saturation and add orange to gamma, and turned lift to more blue. Then I pasted the setting to the rest of the camera with paste to all. When the lighting condition changed during the party, I adjusted the colour while switching. If I make sure the audio sounds fine, the program is almost completed without editing, saving a lot of time and cost to create content,” he said.
“To be honest, there are quite a few artists who have negative feelings about live streaming because they have seen or participated in low quality productions. However if I show my footage of live streaming with colour correction, they totally change their mind, as it looks so much different from what they have seen before. It convinces them to feel good about being on camera and leads me to the next opportunity for live streaming.”
Rock Star Hotel’s live streaming project using Blackmagic Design’s system is not limited to dance parties in the hotel. They recently recorded The Star Festival, an outdoor music festival held in Kyoto in May. They are also planning to create their own new music program. “I see massive potential in this system with Blackmagic.” concluded Asanuma.