This document describes the basics for streaming scenes with Character Animator.
For tips, tricks and workarounds related to streaming, see Tips and tricks for streaming.
The Stream workspace is used to stream a scene live to an external device or application.
The Stream workspace displays a limited set of controls for focused live streaming. Transport controls (Play, Stop, Go to Start, and Go to Next Frame) are not visible in the Scene panel. The Timeline panel is stacked to the left of the application.
To access the workspace, do either of the following:
Character Animator supports the following major workflows:
For diagrams showing typical one, two, and three machine setups, see Machine setups.
Character Animator uses Mercury Transmit to send live feed to other video devices and applications. Mercury Transmit can send the contents of your scene to an external device, third"party plug-in, and other applications.
The transfer to external monitors is done using plug"ins provided by video device manufacturers such as AJA, Blackmagic Design, Bluefish444, and Matrox. You can use any of the following external monitors:
IP"based technology providers, such as NewTek with NDI technology, also provide plug"ins for transfer. Thes plug-ins direct the video frames from Mercury Transmit to other applications.
Note: Download the NewTek NDI for Adobe Creative Cloud software to use a NewTek NDI"compatible application. To download, visit https://www.newtek.com/software/adobe"creative"cloud/
Character Animator uses Syphon to send live feed of a scene in the Scene panel to any Syphon client. Syphon is an open"source technology for macOS that allows applications to share video frames with one another in real time. No additional configuration in Character Animator is necessary to enable this functionality. A Syphon"compatible client is required to receive the scene being sent via Syphon.
Open the scene in the Scene panel, enable the Stream Live button, run your Syphon client, and choose Character Animator Scene as its frame source.
You can use an alpha channel (per"pixel transparency) to composite multiple characters together or to composite a character over live video.
Alpha channel can be passed to a compatible Mercury Transmit device. The alpha channel is automatically recognized sometimes, such as with NewTek NDI. In other cases, such as with AJA devices, you have to configure your video device to support an alpha channel. If Mercury Transmit device does not support an alpha channel, like a secondary display, the background appears black.
To enable live streaming, click the Stream Live button () at the bottom of the Scene panel. Only the current scene displayed in the Scene panel is streamed. Content outside the Scene panel is not rendered and displayed. To view the list of active devices and applications, hover the cursor over the Stream Live button. A tool tip is displayed, which includes the list of active devices and applications.
You can select the active devices and applications from Live Output preferences. To set live output preferences, follow these steps:
Select Edit > Preferences (Win) or Character > Preferences (Mac). The Preferences dialog box is displayed.
Click Live Output and choose the streaming output option. Available options and their specifications are listed.
Following are the Live Output options and their specifications:
Enable Mercury Transmit (Win) or Enable Mercury Transmit and Syphon (Mac)
To allow streaming output to external video devices when Character Animator is running in the foreground, select this option.
Includes the list of video devices which you can use for video output.
To view the options available for each hardware, click Setup.
Disable Mercury Transmit output when application is in the background
To prevent streaming output to external video devices when Character Animator is not running in the foreground, select this option.
Need help with your live stream? Contact us through the Adobe Character Animator forum.