OB:Elections 2013

YUSU Elections 2013 was produced by Liz Pascoe and Marie Mills. Liz's responsibility was mainly the non-live components, with Marie seeing to the live results night (1 March) and the live OB of the debates (in V/045).

60 Second Manifestos

The non-live component - lit in the studio in front of a black wall, with three attempts per candidate to explain themselves in 60 seconds.

Full-Time Officer (FTO) Debate (V/045)

On 19 February 2013, YSTV broadcast the full-time officers' debate, hosted by James Alexander, Labour leader of City of York Council and former YUSU President, live. This was the first time in living memory of the members that we had done a live OB from within V/045.

The rig was divided into three sections by area. At the back of the theatre, in the two partial rows and first full row from the back, was audio and computing (left side as seen from the stage) and video (right side), with a wide shot camera and audience atmos rifle mic in the centre (because a show like this sounds really weird if you can't hear the audience). The main views of the debate were provided by a camera on each side at the end of the front row of seating, hugging the wall. There was a concern that our umbilicals wouldn't be long enough for the runs but they were fine. String them across the stairs at the top, then along the tops of the wall ledges and drop them vertically to the floor by the camera. Leave the slack at the camera end for movement (especially if ops need to duck out of the way of passers-by). People also have a tendency to sit on those ledges when the room gets full. And open the windows! The room gets hot.

Each participant was lapel mic'd, fitted by YSTV runners, and a handheld mic was placed on a stand for the Chair - we did have a tiny desk stand but it disappeared for the night. YSTV also provided the amplification for the event (at short notice) - a group was taken from our audio mix and fed to four speakers we placed along the wall shelving by the audience. These should be angled back towards the audience to avoid feedback (or just an echo). Sound was recorded with both the Zoom R16 and the ZED 428's USB output into Audacity on the YSTV laptop. The Audacity version clipped horribly - needs more careful setting up - but the Zoom at line level was fine. Just remember to pair the first two channels into stereo and that it cuts out after 3 hours!

Network access was run with a couple and long patch cable from a NAS port under the right side of the lectern at the front. The VT server was used as a gateway with IT Services student credentials to connect to the NAS - see Gateway for OBs. Don't try to run anything off WiFi for this event - so many audience laptops and phones are using it to watch our coverage, blog or tweet that the bandwidth gets choked.

The event peaked at 124 hits at 21:51 (just before the end, during the Presidents' debate). At this point, strm1 was using 27% CPU with 7% RAM occupied by crtmpserver - no problems.

Equipment List

Non-exhaustive list - we ended up running back to the station for plenty of things.

  • 3x Sony HD cameras, with tripods, power supplies/batteries, umbilicals
  • 6 microphones, desk stand, 2 pre-desk 4ch compressors, 1 post-desk 2ch compressor, flight case
  • Zed 428 sound desk, XLR multicore reel, XLR box, general audio box, 4 speakers for room PA, headphones for mix
  • DaVE (console and brain), QuadView (to use trolley monitor for DaVE inputs), mix trolley, net monitor, preview monitor, BNC box, 2 video DAs
  • VT server, OB, strm0, switch, laptop, network coupler, Cat5 reel, Cat5 box, monitor, KVM, leopard, mouse
  • IEC box, power extension box, orange power reel, tape, DC9V PSU (KVM), DC12V 1A PSU (QuadView)

Results Night (RKC & YourSpace)

As usual, the election results were announced from the stage in the Roger Kirk Centre. However, this year, for the first time, YSTV used the new YourSpace extension to the YUSU building for our live show. The modern furniture and stunning view through the glass walls over the lake gave a new vitality to a show that had previously been on beanbags in front of flats in the James Dining Hall. Winning candidates were interviewed by presenters on the sofa in YourSpace, decorated with campaign detritus. Some voting numbers were displayed on a plasma on the other side of the room and commented upon by a third presenter. A roving camera was stationed in the Costa Coffee in the Roger Kirk Centre for interviews with candidates and party attendees, alongside URY's broadcast.

For 2014, see if we can get Picture-in-Picture working - it would be useful to have the feed from the RKC announcements in the corner permanently so it can be seen even if we're a little late on the transition to the results announcements.

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