TriCaster is a wonderful tool in the IMAG arsenal, but inevitably it is only one (albeit critical) link in a chain of devices.  It is common for each device to contribute a little to the combined total latency for the system.

TriCaster’s portion of the total latency sum is well within acceptable standards for devices of this sort – roughly between 1.5 and 2.5 frames (the actual amount can vary slightly within this range, depending on several factors).

For example, suppose a ‘video frame’ supplied by a camera arrives at TriCaster’s inputs one millisecond after a different frame has been sent to the output. Obviously the new arrival must wait its turn; it can’t be transmitted until the correct duration for its predecessor has elapsed.  Thus the newly arrived frame must ‘wait’ almost one entire frame, until its turn comes.

How can you achieve the lowest possible latency for the TriCaster section of the IMAG chain?  One trick is to ‘Genlock’ your cameras to the TriCaster output (see Sections Section 3.5, Section 3.13 and 8.2.3).  This allows TriCaster to bypass its input time-base correctors, ensuring latency is consistent during switching operations. For genlocked sources, consider disabling TriCaster’s Frame Sync – see Section 8.1.1.

Hint: you can actually assess the latency of your TriCaster installation fairly easily.  Run timecode directly to 1) a monitor and at the same time 2) through the TriCaster to a second (identical) monitor. Take a photograph that encompasses both monitors, and compare the timecode shown!

SECTION B.3.3    

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