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Knowledge
By Jake Giles-Philips
What is a Teleprompter Autocue?

PYTCH Explains

We often get asked how we do the things we do here at PYTCH - What kit do we use? How did we make that happen? Why do we use this particular equipment? - and we love sharing that knowledge back with you all. PYTCH Explains is our long running video series where we answer common questions, share insights and knowledge, and try and excite and inspire you guys with the stuff that excites us too.

What is a Telemprompter?

With the recent launch of our new studio space here at Skyline Park - Box7, we've been getting a lot more involved with the technical side of film and tv production, and when you think of live broadcast production the equipment that probably comes to mind first are cameras or sound equipment. What you might not realise though, is just how much interesting technology goes on behind the cameras.

Check out this PYTCH Show Tech video on BlackMagic URSA Professional Broadcast cameras

When someone is talking on-stage as a host, as the viewer you might assume they reading from a memorised script or improvising their lines based on talking points, and whilst this can be the case, it is far more common that presenter is reading their lines as they talk from a digital display.

You might now be thinking, "But why do you never see presenters looking away from the camera to read their lines?".

This is where a teleprompter comes in.

Through clever design and by taking advantage of the reflective properties of glass, a camera and screen can be mounted in a such a way that the presenter can look through an angled pane of glass, directly into the camera lens, whilst the glass simulataneously reflects the scrolling text from the display below it back to the presented, without being picked up by the camera lens.

(1) video camera; (2) screen; (3) tablet / monitor; (4) semi-transparent glass; (5) the direction of the speaker ́s view; (6) text reflection towards the speaker
Image source: FOMEI, "teleprompter 14"," Accessed via https://www.fomei.com/ew/ew_images/image?EwImage=82f9f758-83a4-476d-b0cd-8a994f0b2744&Filter=042cdaac-4610-40de-a462-c4d4435cec81

Check out Johnnys video below for a more detailed visual explanation.