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Deploy a time and date server with CasparCG

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Deploy a time and date server with CasparCG

Postby AVID_Eng » 28 Mar 2017, 18:49

Hello there,

I want to deploy a time and date server that will feed multiple monitors (in different locations in-house) with information like date, time, weather, scolling news, e.t.c. Just like what BBC is doing, see image below:
Image

I was thinking to setup a CasparCG server running an HTML template showing all required information, and from there send the signal to different monitors. So far all good. I will setup the PC to sync more often to keep accurate timestamp. Actually our TV studio and other facilities are for educational purposes only and we don't broadcast to AIR. So not being 100% accurate is not a big issue.

My question is not 100% related to CasparCG.
Do you see any problem with the above deployment?
I know i can buy an NTP time server and sync clocks, but i can not customize them as the above. Plus it cost a lot to buy the time server and the broadcast clocks.

Is there is a better solution you can sugest?
Also, running CaspsarCG 24 hours 365 days will be OK? did anyone try it?
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Re: Deploy a time and date server with CasparCG

Postby ASmith3006 » 29 Mar 2017, 09:09

We run casparcg 24/7 without issue.

If it's windows just change the w32tm to use NTP.org by running the following from the command line
Code: Select all
w32tm /config /syncfromflags:manual /manualpeerlist:"0.pool.ntp.org 1.pool.ntp.org 2.pool.ntp.org 3.pool.ntp.org"

Then you should be good to go. (restart w32tm to take effect)
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Re: Deploy a time and date server with CasparCG

Postby itod » 30 Mar 2017, 08:12

BTW, what are these clocks (1 & 2, in red and green) showing and why is there 5 seconds difference?

Maybe it's an overkill to use at least $500 computer with CasparCG to show something which can be done exactly the same with $5 Raspberry Pi Zero, although you will enjoy it building it for your station.
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Re: Deploy a time and date server with CasparCG

Postby AVID_Eng » 30 Mar 2017, 21:29

itod wrote:BTW, what are these clocks (1 & 2, in red and green) showing and why is there 5 seconds difference?

Maybe it's an overkill to use at least $500 computer with CasparCG to show something which can be done exactly the same with $5 Raspberry Pi Zero, although you will enjoy it building it for your station.


They use different variations of this clock setup. Check here: http://www.ipe-technologies.com/bbc-news-case-study It must serve a specific needs those red and green clocks.

I don't find it much overkill because its important to output HD SDI so i can distribute the signal to different location with reliability, plus CasparCG is proven to work 24/7.

I used raspberri pi for server applications in the past but it does not have a RTC (real time clock) and on the event of a restart or network fail it will not have accurate timestamp.
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Re: Deploy a time and date server with CasparCG

Postby premultiply » 10 Apr 2017, 11:51

This is overkill. Why don't you use a simple Raspberry Pi and Python script for this clock display?
HDMI can by easily converted to HD-SDI by cheap converters. It has much lower output delay then CasparCG and can also provide you simple GPIO interfacing for clock start/stop/reset, tally signals, OSC and many other studio protocols.
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Re: Deploy a time and date server with CasparCG

Postby AVID_Eng » 11 Apr 2017, 19:15

premultiply wrote:This is overkill. Why don't you use a simple Raspberry Pi and Python script for this clock display?
HDMI can by easily converted to HD-SDI by cheap converters. It has much lower output delay then CasparCG and can also provide you simple GPIO interfacing for clock start/stop/reset, tally signals, OSC and many other studio protocols.

I have explained in my previous post why am not using Raspberry Pi.
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Re: Deploy a time and date server with CasparCG

Postby balte » 13 Apr 2017, 08:05

AVID_Eng wrote:I have explained in my previous post why am not using Raspberry Pi.


Indeed you have. But that does not take away the point that a raspberry pi RTC module is like 15 bucks and that this is only an issue when there is no time server to sync to.
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Re: Deploy a time and date server with CasparCG

Postby peteraellig » 13 Apr 2017, 22:15

hi Avid_Eng
i also cannot finaly understand the need for caspar.
i have here a small example for a timer and a daytime clock for a windows machine.
sourcecode for visual studio express is included.

i added a simple flash template for displaying also the timer and daytime on a caspar machine.

with a cheap HDMI to SDI converter from Aliexpress for 20$ you can have a old 200$ laptop with a HDMI output doing exactly what you want. put a 30$ EDID HDMI Adapter from Lindy inbetween and you can choose your television resolution. http://www.lindy.de/EDID-DDC-Emulator-Adapter-HDMI.htm?websale8=ld0101&pi=32103

unfortunately the latency of the caspar output is also delayed around 1/2 second, due calculation and driver issues.

Visual Studio Express Project Clock
https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B61S9tASL-DmRE13Y1hlb3dCVmc

best
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Re: Deploy a time and date server with CasparCG

Postby didikunz » 14 Apr 2017, 13:24

I don't think it makes sense to argue about using Caspar for this or not. I don't understand it either, but if he want to use Caspar for it, why not let him do it? Probably the SDI must, for whatever reason, be synced to the house sync, or he want to be able to key it on top of another picture, or what ever else...
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Re: Deploy a time and date server with CasparCG

Postby balte » 14 Apr 2017, 19:30

Considering the original post, i think it's fair to recommend a different solution:

AVID_Eng wrote:Is there is a better solution you can sugest?
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Re: Deploy a time and date server with CasparCG

Postby AVID_Eng » 18 Apr 2017, 07:55

Thank you all for your feedback.
SDI output is indeed very important for my case and i want to avoid as much possible signal conversion in my workflow.
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