This document provides hardware recommendations and software instructions for simultaneous live scoring and live streaming from the same laptop. The document refers to information detailed in other documents, whose titles are italicised, so please also read those referred to at certain points.
Laptop Hardware Specs
As live streaming is much more intensive on hardware than live scoring, it should only be considered on a high quality, reasonably new, and respected brand laptop. The recommended specifications are:
- Quality brand, enterprise/corporate product line to ensure solid internals
- No more than 3 years old
- Windows 10 operating system
- Intel i7 CPU, 8th Generation or newer, with 16Gb RAM
- Intel HD Integrated Graphics
- SSD Drive, 500Gb minimum preferred
- Full HD screen (1920 x 1080) preferred
While these minimum specs give the absolute minimum specifications needed to run NV Play Cricket, ideally users will get the most powerful laptop they can afford to exceed these specifications. Despite this, even powerful computers need good care and can experience CPU issues while live scoring/streaming and capturing video, depending on the operating environment and usage. So, here are some other recommendations to maintain a healthy laptop and reduce CPU load during live scoring/streaming:
- Regularly do all Windows Updates, especially before match day, so that these are always up-to-date
- Regularly check the manufacturers website for any Device Driver updates, as Windows Updates may not include these immediately
- Always use a hardwire internet connection where possible, as a WiFi connection can be unreliable
- A minimum network upload speed of 10mbps is recommended, but hopefully this can be faster
- Always have the laptop plugged into mains power while scoring and streaming
- Do not have the live stream open in a web-browser (i.e., YouTube or Match Centre) on the laptop
- Do not run other applications on the laptop while scoring and streaming, just NV Play Cricket
- Choose the Windows 10 High Performance plan
- Clean the laptop's fans and vents and ensure these are well ventilated while scoring/streaming
A number of pre-match configurations need to be setup, so open NV Play Cricket, login (if live scoring and live streaming to the Match Centre is required), and with any match open (e.g., a dummy local match for testing purposes) select View -> Live Streaming to set the main interface to this default layout. Note that the Streaming Overlay Control panel, which as explained below is very important, is an expand/hide tab on the right-hand edge of this view:
As usual, this default layout can be customised by resizing and/or relocating each of the panels, as explained in ABC. Use the View -> Save As function to save any changes to this layout, then, with the dummy/testing match still open, close NV Play Cricket.
Plug the video capture device to be used for live streaming into the laptop, open NV Play Cricket and login (the dummy/testing match will be open), go to Tools -> Configuration -> Video Capture tab, and select the appropriate Video Capture Device. If a CamLink or similar device that is not specified on the initial list, select Other Devices and Cameras, click Settings, and select it from the Device Details -> Capture Device dropdown:
Click Save, then OK, and the live video feed will show in the Video Display window, ready for streaming.
The Video Capture Device setting will be saved, so it will only need to be re-selected if a different device is used for subsequent match streams.
Next, go to Tools -> Configuration -> Live Streaming tab and select the required Live Streaming Service from the Streaming Service dropdown list, then enter the required Streaming Server Address (unless this is automatically populated) and Stream Key from the live streaming account:
Unless video problems are encountered, leave the Frame Rate, Resolution, and Target Bitrate settings on their defaults
If the live streaming is to be done using YouTube, please see the Live Streaming Instructions for Creating a YouTube Event document on how to setup a YouTube live streaming event in-advance of the match, noting that this is the recommended process, rather than just using the instantaneous live streaming option.
Please see the Live Streaming Instructions for Remote Video via YouTube document for instructions on setting-up a number of settings and options before starting the stream, including adding Watermarks, 4, 6, & Wicket Activations and Auto-Replays, manual Instant and Slow-Mo Replays, and other Images and Videos.
Create Match and Start Streaming
Once all these pre-match settings have been configured, use File -> New Match or File -> Start Match from Fixture to create the match for live scoring and then, when ready (e.g., the umpires and players take the field), start the live stream by clicking the Start Stream button below the Video Display window.
After the YouTube live stream has been started, it can be added to the Match Centre, so that it appears above the live scoring scorecard. To do this, copy the Embed Code from the account then, in NV Play Cricket, go to Live -> Add Stream to Match Centre and paste it into the free text box at the top of the dialog, and click Save:
The live stream will appear on the Match Centre within a couple of minutes, but if not give the page a hard refresh (Ctrl+F5).
Begin scoring the match as usual, noting that there will be no score overlay on the Video Display or Stream Output windows until the first innings of the match is created. However, from the Streaming Overlay Control panel graphics like Match Title can be displayed before this. If the various score overlays will not be operated manually during the match, ensure that the Streaming Overlay Control is set to Auto with Cards:
This setting means that the main baseline overlay will auto-rotate through appropriate graphics, display wickets, maidens, and breaks etc when they occur, as well as full screen batting, bowling, etc cards in-between overs. All overlay options can still be operated manually in this mode, but Auto with Cards will be the most convenient when simultaneously scoring the match.
If the overlays will be manually operated during play, it is best to use the Auto option, as this will still auto-rotate the live baseline overlay as above, but without the full screen graphics in-between overs. These and other overlays can then be used manually in the live stream when required.
While Scoring and Streaming
Finally, a few tips and tricks while simultaneously live scoring and live streaming:
- Scoring the match will update the Match Centre and the live streaming overlays immediately, both on the Video Display window and in the live stream itself
- Use the Auto with Cards option during play, including short breaks (e.g., Drinks), but during longer breaks (e.g., Lunch), use this in conjunction with manual overlays to highlight key graphics, i.e. Batsman or Bowler slides of key performers, or club/team or sponsor Images or Videos
- During Ground Delay, Bad Light, or Rain breaks, use the Custom Messages feature, at the bottom of the Streaming Overlay Control panel, to update viewers with e.g., “Next Umpire inspection at 3pm”
- Monitor the Live Video Statistics panel, which contains key numbers on laptop performance that may affect the quality of the stream, especially CPU usage (this is also at bottom right of the Status Bar)
- If the live feed in Video Display gets behind or breaks-up, click the Settings cog at top-right and select Restart Video Player from the menu
- At the end of the match, click Save on the Match Result dialog immediately so that the baseline overlay displays this as soon as possible after the last ball
- Allow the Auto with Cards sequence to run one or two more times, or manually display final Batting, Bowling, and other cards, as required
- Once finished, and the players and umpires have left the field, click Stop Stream to ensure it is terminated properly, then exit NV Play Cricket