During COVID our church ran a livestream online and the best way to speak straight to the camera was to use a teleprompter. Setting up the iPad and camera was the easy part. There were a few tricks to get it to display how we wanted. Here’s how we did it.
In terms of the physical setup, we purchased one of these. A Glidegear TMP 100 adjustable teleprompter. Simple. Connects to a tripod and has a place to mount the camera. It worked well for the most part. The cover over the top did not fit as nicely as in this photo so we had to make sure it wasn’t covering the lens, but apart from that it was good.
The Telepropter has a shelf for your iPad, and you can see the screen of the iPad by looking into the mirror. You are reading the text from the iPad but at the same time you are looking straight thought the mirror into the lens of the camera.
Setting up the iPad and camera was the easy part. Once it’s set up…
- How do you get your talk mirror imaged? (You are looking at a reflection so the iPad image needs to be flipped.)
- How do you change pages on the iPad remotely?
- How do you get your talk from your laptop onto the iPad?
Here’s the workflow that I found was easiest.
- Write your talk using Apple Pages or Microsoft Word. You want a black background white white text and a font size of at least 55. Here’s what my Pages document looked like:
2. Now you need to convert this to a pdf that is mirror image. Choose ‘Print’ to print the document but instead of printing select ‘Save to pdf’ from the bottom left. This will save the document as a pdf. Before you Click ‘Save’ tick the checkbox that says ‘Flip Horizontally. This will make a mirror image of your pages document.
3. I found the best way to transfer the pdf to the iPad was to have both your computer and iPad connected to iCloud and you can just drop it into a shared folder which will appear on the iPad. If you don’t have access to iCloud you could use AirDrop or copy it to your iPad using Dropbox.
This is what the mirrored pdf file looks like:
4. Once the PDF file is on your iPad you need a good application that will allow you to advance the PDF file easily page by page. I tried a number of options but in the end I settled on paying for a program called GoodReader.
iBooks will also do it, but I was familiar with GoodReader as that is what I was using for speaking from without a teleprompter. IT’s was to advance the pages with a simple click.
If you decide to use GoodReader, Open the PDF file in GoodReader and then press the lock button (it has a padlock on it). That will lock the screen and display the PDF file full size, but still allow the clicker to work.
5. Now you need a clicker. I used a “Logitech Spotlight Presentation Remote” It’s fantastic. It has everything I want in a clicker. It has a tactile click when you press it so that you know that you’ve actually press the button. It only has one large button to click forward and one to click back and no superfluous buttons that will exit you from the presentation if you accidentally press them. It charges via USB and has a long battery life and a good range.
6. To plug your clicker into the iPad you can use an Apple lightning to USB camera adapter that looks like this. It works with a clicker and the clicker will advance the pages on your iPad.
Now you can click through your presentation as you read from the screen. Great for a podcast. Great for Zoom. Great for a livestream.