Cost effective NDI Joystick experience

Greetings … we just supported a 500 person conference event with PTZ Optics NDI camera up front facing the audience to capture the audience during Q&A. PTZ presets were not a solution since we had no idea who would be asking the questions. We tried out a solution with decent success that did not require a $1000++ NDI joystick controller like the SKAARHOJ Fly or .

We used a 3Dconnexion 3DX-700059 Spacemouse Compact 3D USB “Mouse” ($121) along with Sienna’ TV’s NDI Monitor software (free). FWIW, it’s not really a mouse - it’s a bit more of a heavy stationary puck with 6 different bi-directional motion paths - we simplified that to three (PTZ). We added movement offsets, configured the movements to be slow, and did some re-assignment of functions to make it more intuitive (for us). The NDI Monitor software had to be running and the camera you wanted to control had to be selected in the software so this is not ideal (yet) for a multi PTZ camera solution yet.

It took a while to get used to the Spacemouse but I did get to the point where I could PTZ while the camera was live with decent results. Much better than dragging on the PTZ control layer inside MimoLive. I’ve never used an expensive NDI joystick controller so I can’t say if really fine/smooth PTZ control is possible with one of those joysticks, or if smooth control is a function/limitation of the camera’s PTZ capabilities.

Since Sinena-TV can integrate the SpaceMouse into their software, I am hoping Boinx might eventually be able to do the same inside MimoLive. And as an added bonus, programming one of the buttons to either select a single camera source to control … or better yet to toggle through a list of cameras to control perhaps on the PTZ control layer … this would be awesome. We only have one PTZ camera right now, but will have more in the future.

We just used our new PTZOptics camera this morning during a livestream. I tried the mobile iOS/Android app “PanTiltZoom” that is recommended at the PTZ Optics site. It was $10 and it worked out great for us.