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In this post i’m going to show you how to use a DSLR/ Camcorder you already have and connect it to your smartphone to broadcast directly to Facebook Live.
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Before we begin, make sure you have the below list:
- Android operated smartphone (sorry iOS, use Mevo)
- Magewell Usb Capture Dongle (or a cheaper model)
- OTG cable
- Camera Fi Live android app
- DSLR/ Camcorder with HDMI output or a simple USB Webcam
- HDMI cable
How to stream to Facebook Live from a pro camera using your mobile?
Once you install the Camera Fi Live app, connect the OTG cable to your mobile phone on one side and to the Magewell Dongle on the other side. Use an HDMI cable to connect your pro camera to the Magewell Dongle, turn on the pro camera and launch the Camera Fi app.
If you connected everything correct, you should see the stream from your pro camera in the Camera Fi app. If not, the app will remind you to connect a camera to your phone.
Next step is to login into the social network you wish to stream to, choose between: Facebook, Youtube, UStream and Wowza. Once you click Facebook you will need to choose whether to stream to your own profile or to one of the business pages you manage. If you with to change the stream output you can click the round logo in the to left corner and change from your profile to your page or group.
Since Camera Fi is a freemium app, the basic version is quite limited. You can choose to stream in 720p as max resolution and add the text to your post, but you will have a watermark on your stream until you pay (7.99$/ month or 69$/ year) and than you can stream in HD, upload a preview photo to your video and enjoy some more premium features.
The basic version will still allow you to choose between your pro camera and each of the smartphone’s cameras, so you actually have 3 different cameras to stream from and you can choose between them anytime and quite easily. You can also choose an audio source, be it the smartphone’s mic or some pro equipment connected to your pro camera.
Once you go live you have the option to share the video directly from the app, because leaving it will cause your video to pause and even end if you don’t open the Camera Fi app again. You will also be able to see the viewer’s comments on you video but you won’t be able to answer them from the app.
One of the coolest features in the app is streaming from both of the smartphone’s cameras (front and rear) as having one of them in the bottom right corner. You will also be able to apply certain filters and draw on the video so your viewers can see.
What if I don’t have a DSLR/ Camcorder?
Not a big deal. If you have a USB webcan you can connect it directly to the OTG cable and save the money and trouble of buying expensive dongles and cables. This will enable you to be more creative with the angles and points of view, otherwise impossible from your smartphone. Unfortunately, the Camera Fi app must remain operating while you are broadcasting, so you will not be able to use your smartphone during the streaming.
YouTube Live Streaming
Using Camera Fi Live for YouTube streaming is a great idea. The app doesn’t require any external camera and uses the built in cameras your smartphone already has. Considering the fact that the native YouTube app doesn’t support streaming live, this is a great solution.1