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Photo Moment - December 16, 2019

The Blackmagic ATEM Mini is here, and it's incredible. This is easily worth much, much more than it costs. I am absolutely blown away by this thing!

  • 00:00 What is the ATEM Mini?
  • 2:54 Tour of inputs & outputs
  • 4:57 This is NOT a live streaming box (on its own)
  • 6:26 Inputs 1-4 and their audio settings, including AFV
  • 7:52 Audio inputs (and why you can't use them)
  • 10:30 Still and Black buttons
  • 12:10 Transitions
  • 14:23 FTB (Fade to black)
  • 14:31 Picture in Picture
  • 15:51 Keyer for green screen and graphics
  • 18:38 Software Switcher
  • 20:05 Software Audio controls (incredible!!)
  • 23:43 Summary
  • 24:04 Output Settings
  • 25:09 Setting the ATEM as a Webcam in Skype
  • 26:15 XML export and import

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"It's kind of remarkable that it does that." You could almost say, it's black magic...
i want come to India with u, where u going? give me details
Awesome! Full info is at — check it out!
Hi, what video recorder are you using in this video? Is it expensive?
I've noticed since Firmware 8.1.1, the audio sync on the ATEM Mini 3.5mm microphone inputs are a whole lot better, you should try testing it again
I’ve heard that and I will definitely test it!
Another Fix for syncing audio to video IF you're using Windows... One fix is (as I think you have noted) just adding delay in OBS IF you are using OBS. Another albeit more complicated but better in other ways, is using either Voicemeeter Banana (donationware) or Potato ($30?) version. They are essentially a replacement for what the windows internal sound mixing and routing system could have been if it were designed specifically for audio engineers. It adds a TON of functionality. One very small bit of that is the ability to add a specific amount of delay to a specific output for anything that's routed through it. The software does add a fair bit of complexity and if you are not really familiar with audio routing and digital audio it can get really frustrating pretty quickly. But the lack of routing/mixing/pathing/inserting capabilities inside widows itself has ever frustrated you... this is an option that has worked really well and consistently for me to solve some other problems. And I think it would work well to solve this one too IF you are on windows and running that audio signal from your switcher through a PC. If you check it out the function is in the MENU under "Monitoring Synchro Delay" once you have your inputs correctly routed to your outputs.
Awesome advice, thanks!
Can you do a video about how to use your phone as a camera with the ATEM mini?
Easy… HDMI adapter (Lightning to HDMI or USB-C to HDMI), then connected to the ATEM. Open the camera app. Done.
We had some serious issue with audio drift with this devise (plus/minus 750 ms). It was so inconsistent that we couldn’t fix with software audio lag or advance. And yes we were running audio through the camera. After pulling out my hair for a week trying to figure it out I switched from OBS on pc to vmix. Problem solved. I wonder if you have had similar issue running on OBS?
I do. But obviously you’d want to test. I’ve done multi-hour events through the big ATEM (not with the mini), encoding in hardware, and never drifted a frame. YouTube itself sometimes goes wonky but that’s out of your control. The X2 is cheap — get it on amazon and if it doesn’t solve the problem, return it.
@PhotoJoseph Sounds like a plan. BTW, this is not for my personal Orange Frog photo channel, it is my Fulltime gig for MetaStock where I am the marketing guy. So, today in my "spare time" I will try some stress testing, bypassing encoding software and streaming directly to YouTube via the webcam method. If that works, or not I guess, I will get the XT. I will make sure to use your link. I will report back. Thanks.
I look forward to hearing the results. I’d forgotten about YouTube’s webcam method. That should totally work.
Interesting for sure. Did you update the mini to 8.1.1 that just came out?
PhotoJoseph Yes. We’ve only had this thing for a few weeks. Before that we used an old Panasonic SDI switcher with a BMD web presenter and some BMD SDI/HDMI converters. It worked great for a few years but only broadcast in 720. The Atem mini allowed me to unplug a box full o stuff and pair down. If I can’t get it to work I will probably go back to the SDI system and I guess use the XT thingy I just ordered since I already have the SDI converters. Will keep you posted.
Can this be used via USB to capture straight into a PC version of Premier or OSX Final Cut Pro X?
I can't speak to Premiere, but in FCPX it does not. The "Camera" choice on the import dialog doesn't show it (and in fact the only thing I've ever seen show up in there is a built-in FaceTime Camera). It will however show up in the Voiceover tool, so you can record audio through it directly into FCPX.
I heard they fixed the audio delay with the firmware update.
I have heard that too. I’ve installed but haven’t tested yet.
I wish it had SDI inputs and outputs.
Yeah… that’s not a consumer device my friend. Those start at $1,000 or so!
Good morning my ask the following, is it possible to use the computer to send the images from the propresenter program? because I see that he uses the ATEM CONTROL, thanks
Hi there. I'm not familiar with ProResenter at all (I just looked it up and see what it is, but I've never used it). Basically anything you can send over HDMI can show up on the ATEM. So if you can use ProPresenter to play images over the HDMI, and you plug that HDMI into one of the ATEM's inputs, then yeah, it should work.
yeah show us that full setup.
What an awesome overview. I ordered mine yesterday and I feel ready to go. Thanks so much!
how did you get the audio to pass through the camera? my audio will not pass through the camera to the item mini and on to the streaming software.
Haha that’s always the way, isn’t it. Yeah the G7 is a great deal for a streaming camera. Clean HDMI, microphone input, decent zoom lens included. Enjoy!
@PhotoJoseph So since my wife wanted the Fuji x-t30.we went ahead and got it. Same audio problem, doesn't pass. Since I'm an audio guy I know there is a button on every device called the 'dummy button' if you don push it (or if it is pushed) nothing happens dummy. Sometimes they are called mute or channel or past fader. Is there one on the camera, like does the camera actually have to be in record mode to pass audio ( I actually tried this) but I get no signal in ATEM Software control nor OBS meters, can you think of why this might be happening.
I can’t but I’m not a Fuji user. If you want some personalized help I’d love to try to help you out, but I can’t do anymore on a camera I don’t know without seeing it. Visit if you want to set something up.
@PhotoJoseph I will do that, thanks. I just visited your 1/1 site. I have a load in today and tomorrow so I can't say for sure what time to book but I will reserve the time in the morning for and afternoon call. I may be working with Cannon products. Rebel 6 and a 7D.
OK. Understand that I'm not intimately familiar with them but we'll figure it out.
stop going back brother.. move forward!
I… don't know what you mean
As I am scratching my head trying to figure out how this musician can set up a live stream, I find this video and your channel. awesome stuff man, you explain in such a way I can understand. thank you for this, and I'll be picking one of these ATEM Minis up.
excellent, I'm glad I could help!
Price point is amazing. I own the little 4 input Roland - which scales.
Wondered about having it to be plugged into bigger BMD switcher mainframe.
I own that little Epiphan streamer.

Amen on hdmi audio. Epiphan Thursday videos suffer with that.
Learned in the early days of streaming about transitions getting pixelated.
Excellent show this week!
I don't see why you couldn't combine switchers to get more inputs, sure. Could be interesting. The epiphan X2 works great — I did the video on that too, if you hadn't seen it:
The scaler will be 'missing' from the 'more serious' unit for a reason... People casually throw around the term 'broadcast quality'... Scaling is another layer of processing (which you want to minimise) - and should be unnecessary in a disciplined setup using real broadcast equipment. Implementing it to real broadcast standards is complex and expensive. - In this case it's cheap and handy and compromised; that's not a criticism of the unit, which is what it is for the price...
Fair statement, but I think an unrealistic expectation in a world of so many devices that output different resolutions. For example iOS devices ONLY output 1080p59.94. Mac computers (don’t know about PC) can output 1920x1080 at 60Hz, 30Hz and 24Hz… and which of those resolutions match NTSC? Not a one. I own the ATEM 2 M/E and standardized my broadcast there on 1080p24, because that matches 24Hz off a computer. 29.97fps is not 30Hz, and 59.94fps is not 60Hz (the computer screen quality was the priority when I originally set this up, so that became the baseline). This meant that I could only use cameras that shoot true 24p, which isn’t many. Most higher end prosumer cameras will shoot 23.98, but again that’s not 24. It was a real challenge to set up. And independent scalers are expensive!

My point is simply that having the scalers is a massively welcome feature. It lets me plug just about anything into the system without having to add an external scaler to it. This is a great step forward.

You called this scaler “cheap and compromised”… how so? Do you mean that the quality of this scaler isn’t as good as an external one? I haven’t done a side-by-side but I can say that this scaler looks extremely good to my eyes.

Thanks for the discussion!
AWESOME class!!! I just purchased this switcher device and was going through some of the on-line tutorials and came across your fabulous introduction to the ATEM Mini ! Your on camera presentation is very engaging and I loved your attention to detail as that is how I am learning to use this. Can't wait to see your other tutorials ! Thank You and I wish I could go to India with your group. I would learn SO much. Maybe in the future.
Thanks Jerry! Glad you found the channel. And India is gonna be awesome! You really should consider it… !!
Can you explane how did you get Atem software panel on your monitor ? I just buy Atem mini, but I can't find solution to get software panel !
I thought I talked about that here… maybe not. Go to and start typing "ATEM Mini" in the "search by model" window, then select it. You are looking to download the "ATEM Switchers 8.1.1 Update" (or whatever version it's at when you see this)
@PhotoJoseph how does it handles the HDCP of the mac ? considering buying one for a non typical job requiring switching of 2 macs HDMI output and so far my project is plagued with HDCP problems
I've connected a couple of different macs and also iOS devices to the ATEM Mini no problem at all.
You don’t even need a sound mixer...remarkable
It's impressive. Check out the live show I just did with it… first "real" live show through it, and I didn't even tweak the Fairlight audio controls!
A great review Joseph. You certainly convinced me to buy this, instead of looking at a few other (even more expensive) competing product. One question: I have a Mac from 2015. I believe its USB 2.0. If I feed it the USB3 out from ATEM, will it still work fine as a webcam input?

Lastly, that still img you showed, looked grand. Where is that in India? Even though I am from India, I don't know where that place is. Looks splendid.
No, you do have to have USB3. But my MacBook Pro is from 2014 and it has USB 3.
Oh and India… that was Varanasi
@PhotoJoseph Thanks! I will check the USB3. One more probably simpler question. Probably the camera I can use, HAS to support webcam functionality. I don't think any camera can do that. Can it? And also, do I have to simultaneously record? Else, my camera times out and shuts the viewfinder in 30secs.
Your camera has to have clean HDMI out — nothing to do with webcams. Typically once a camera sees that its HDMI port is in use, it disables all sleep times. You're feeding the camera via HDMI into the ATEM Mini, and the ATEM Mini via USB into the computer. The ATEM Mini becomes the "webcam", not the camera.
What about de mic input? How can I use an audio switcher ? Can I transform mic in to line in ?
You can set the audio to line or mic level, and inputs 1 and 2 can be set independently. Here's a screenshot:
I have the Boxcast can you help? I can’t stream
I can’t; I’m not familiar with the Boxcast.
excellent work.
Thank you!
Fantastic as always. I notice it doesn’t have a headphone out. How would you monitor the audio volumes without using the laptop to see the levels? Could you do it from the atomos?
Correct. No headphone to monitor from the ATEM, but you could plug in headphones to your monitor / recorder (i.e. the ATOMOS), or in software, which is where you have full audio control, including enhancement.
PhotoJoseph thanks. Really appreciate your fast response and all the hard work you do.
Joseph, For the past few years I've been using BM UltraStudio Mini Recorder for livestreaming along with OBS. I used a two of them along with two video cameras. If you are familiar with the Mini Recorder would you say that this ATEM Mini replaces the Mini Recorder? I'm asking because I stopped livestreaming roughly a year ago and recently attempted to start up again. Now my new Apple laptop says Live Key needs to be updated for it to work on this Apple OS. I loaded the original software from BM that came with the BM Mini Recorder and so far I am not able to see the video from the camera onto OBS. The BM Mini Recorder does have power because I see the light on through the pin hole. When I look for software update for Live Key I don't find any. Any suggestions you can recommend.
Watch this show near the end when I configure OBS. I’m guessing you aren’t configuring it correctly. The mini recorders should still work fine.
I take it the Lumix cameras you're using output audio via HDMI? It seems like there's a lot more cameras that don't output audio via HDMI than there are cameras that do. Maybe I'm missing an easy solution here, but every professional and pro-consumer camera I've used doesn't output audio via HDMI. I'm wishing Blackmagic would have built in an audio delay into the mini-jack inputs so that they'd match the HDMI delay. I'd be willing to bet 99% of the time people are going to want to input a mic's audio to the mini-jack and a camera's video to the HDMI port.
Hm, are you sure about that? All LUMIX cameras output audio with HDMI. I’ve honestly never heard of a camera that didn’t. I’m gonna post this question on twitter; follow this thread to see what people say.
OK check this out… you can check the audio output on nearly every camera model here and you’ll see that most (every one I checked) modern DSLR / DSLM cameras have audio embedded in the HDMI.
Would love to see how well it plays with multiple video game systems, and/or elgato capture cards. This was a GREAT overview of everything BTW.
Thanks! Gaming systems should be fine; just HDMI right into the Mini. The El Gato cards though would be to go into a computer; no need to use them with the ATEM
So dang good. Couldn't be happier with mine.
Nice! How do you use yours?
@PhotoJoseph overkill for my purposes. I just love tech. Mainly for online video conferencing. Switching between 2 cameras and screen sharing.
That's pretty much how I'm ending up using mine, too ;-)
So would this replace the Blackmagic Web Presenter? I use the Web Presenter for my camera web streaming thru WebEx.
Isn't the web presenter just 720p?
Totally new to this type of hardware, we are trying to upgrade our streams. But all our macs are 2015, they dont have USB-C.. we really want to purchase one of these, but a little lost on what to do. we need this exact unit, but if its USB-C, and we only have thunderbolt, would a cheaper current pc laptop work?
You don’t need USB-C, just USB-3, which you do have. The letter is the shape of the plug and the number is the speed.
The Atem mini only has static images. If I want to add a play out device that will do lower thirds and other animated graphics, it looks like the Ultrastudio HD mini or the Hyperdeck Mini are both playout devices.
I’m confused, which device do I need ?
without digging into those I'm unsure of the differences, but regardless, if you're trying to playback animated lower thirds, then you'll have a hard time using the Mini. To do it right, you have to play back video over TWO SDI channels; one with the video and one with the mask. Video does not have transparency without a mask channel! The "poor man's" option is to render your graphics against solid green, play them from another device (a laptop would work, or one of these players you listed) and key that out, which works great if you have no antialiasing, but as soon as you introduce motion blur into your graphics, it gets messy quickly. That said, I have NOT yet played with the green screen keyer in the mini and it's supposed to be very good, so it just might work.
Hi! Nice review. Do you know the best way to connect cameras that only have SDI outputs? would the best way be to use a SDI - HMDI converter?
Yes, exactly. BlackMagic make good and cheap ones —
James were you able to connect your SDI cameras? And does the audio pass through the adapters?
While I don’t send audio through my BlackMagic cameras, SDI does carry audio and this converter will convert the audio with it.
Hi, Awaiting the converters to arrive. I will be getting audio from a mixer. Joseph answers the q below :)
Nice James! Please come back and update us when it’s set up. Will you be delaying audio through the mixer?
Hey Joseph! Great show! Just found you. Does it make sense, if using OBS to send the stream to encode it before it comes into the computer so the computer doesn't have to do any of the processing? If so, what would you recommend?
no, you've got it backwards. OBS encodes for the internet, not for your computer. The computer takes the signal directly from the ATEM. Here, watch my third video on the ATEM and that should clear things up:
Great review
The very best ATEM Mini video I've seen. Thank you so much for your thorough video.

I plan to primarily use mine for live streaming. When you cautioned about doing dissolve transitioned and the artifacts live streaming algorithms to create pixelization, I wanted to ask you for your recommendation for injecting pre-recorded video to have a hybrid Livestream using the ATEM Mini. Is this possible or will the pixelization be too bad to have a good image. I was hoping it would basically be as good as the other video, but your comments make me think not.
Thanks for the compliment. Any potential artifacts from changing too many pixels at once is 100% dependent on the encoder + bitrate. If you are using software encoding at a low bitrate, it's probably going to look like trash. If you're using hardware encoding and a higher bitrate, it'll probably be fine. Of course in the world of live, there are zero guarantees, but the likelihood of success is much higher with hardware.

As to injecting pre-recorded video, the easiest way would be to have a laptop as one of the sources with your videos queued up there to play full screen. If you need a budget solution, in my most recent video on the ATEM I show a tiny player that works pretty well.
@PhotoJoseph Thank you for responding! I'm using as my streaming platform and my PC is the source. I was hoping to use another PC playing the vide and connect its HDMI out as the source going to one of the HDMI inputs on the ATEM Mini as its the "webcam" for the PC. What's the best way to ensure the video looks as good as possible?
I was with you until you said "as its the "webcam" for the PC"… not sure what you mean by that. Are you saying you're using the webcam in a computer, through the HDMI into the ATEM and using that as your camera? If that's the case, then a) that's a pretty crappy camera and I'd highly recommend getting a real camera; even a LUMIX G7 is only $500 w/ lens and will be about 1,000x better than any webcam Other than that, run tests to check quality but if you're not happy with what you're getting from the computer, consider an Epiphan X2 as the streaming encoder. You can configure it to stream to RTSP (I didn't talk about it in this video but you can ) so you can stream to your crowdcast system.
@PhotoJoseph Sorry I wasn't more clear. I have a GH3 and GH4 feeding two inputs. I want to use something to inject b-roll into a third input. The output is via the USB-C which is acting as a webcam for my Crowdcast platform.

So the question is: what's the best way to inject b-roll with the ATEM Mini. I'm concerned the video won't look good once it gets minimized by the streaming algorithms.
No Multiview :( ???
nope. You gotta pay $$ for that.
Great mixer but I can not understand how they forget the multiview, much more important to see your clean feed from all your sources to know when to change camera as the picture in picture. Of cours this is my personal opinion, regarding my need.
I’m sure they didn’t forget… they have a lot of products that cost more that include it.
If I had told something about Croma Key, it would have been easier to work.
Why didn't you tell about Croma's users?
Sir did not tell about Chroma Key in such a big video.???
It's literally timestamped and bookmarked in the description… 15:51
Remarkable piece of gear. Thanks for the tour.
Thanks for watching!
Thanks for the great video. I haven't played with the Mini, but am familiar with the ATEM Pro. But I have read a bit about the Mini, and am very excited about it. So, I have two comments/questions as a result of this video.
1) You mentioned that each input has a scaler, and you mention that many other switchers, including the ATEM and ATEM Pro, don't have input scalers. I suspect that the main reason for this is because the 'pro' level switchers are designed for live use where we would want as little latency as possible. I would suggest that this ATEM Mini would introduce higher latency due to additional processing because of the input scalers. I saw somewhere that there is a mode on the Mini that can be chosen on the Mini for low latency (Game mode, I think), and I would suspect that this would disable the input scalers. Could you comment on this? It would be awesome if you could do a side-by-side comparison on the latency between the ATEM Pro and ATEM Mini.
2) You note that the USB output of the Mini can be used as a source for streaming (using a PC with OBS/VMix etc). So, can the Mini be used as a direct replacement for the Web Presenter? I know it won't have the SDI in and the little monitor etc, but can the Mini be used in place of the Web Presenter for its basic functionality? Realising of course, that the Web Presenter only works at 720p, not 1080p like the Mini, so assume we want to stream in 1080p.
Really looking forward to your response.
Cheers, Sean
... and yup, would love to see more on the Web Caster! Cheers.
Thanks for watching. There shouldn’t be any latency introduced by scaling. I use independent scalers that are, AFAIK, real-time. Honestly I haven’t measured but if there’s a delay it’s unnoticeable. The primary latency that I’m aware of is at the camera’s HDMI conversion, not in the ATEM. This is why the bigger ones are SDI or at least mostly SDI.

I own the ATEM 2M/E which only had one HDMI input. I suppose I could compare the latency but honestly it’sa lot of setup to measure something that at most will be milliseconds difference.

Interesting question about game mode dialing scalers. I don’t think so but that makes sense. Remind me next week and I’ll check it when I’m back. in the meantime, download the manual and see what it says

And to #2, yes,
Great video, i have two 10 year olds who want to record them selfs gaming, but the want to have 2 picture in picture with out editing and be able to switch the main screens while leaving the picture in pictures on top any ideas how I can do this any one ? Thanks
Sorry for the delay, I needed to test this and was out of town. I had an idea but unfortunately it won't do what you want, at least not the way you'd want it. The way the PiP (picture in picture) works is through something called an Upstream Key. You only get one Upstream Key on the ATEM mini, so I knew you couldn't do it through there. You do however also have a DSK (Downstream Key), and while you can technically get three images on screen at once (the main image, the USK and the DSK), you can't scale the DSK (it's designed for titles where scaling isn't part of the workflow). You can crop it, so technically you could have the two boys on screen on the left and right side, filling the screen, and put the game in the PiP window, which you can even scale and put where you want, BUT… the USK (the PiP window) sits between the background and the DSK, so you would only see half of it. Nope, you're gonna need bigger hardware. And dang… I actually just checked an ATEM with two Upstream Keys but you can't have them both on at once. I think the only way to do this in an ATEM is to have one that supports something called "SuperSource", which allows you to position multiple inputs wherever you want. But that, I'm afraid, gets VERY expensive (like, $4,000 or $6,000 to start).
Am yala from cape coast Ghana am interested
Welcome to the channel!
what is the recorder you are using?
That’s an Atomos recorder.
I'll keep those transitions on obs with a stream deck
Whatever works best!
Which Lumix camera are you using?
I was using no fewer than FIVE cameras in this video… you'll have to be a little more specific ;-) Which angle are you asking about?
PhotoJoseph The one over your left shoulder, think camera 3.
@T Shawn Mathis That's the S1
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