View Full Version : Pool Rooms with Webcams?

09-22-2002, 05:37 AM
You know how we players love to watch good competition, almost as much as being in it ourselves! IMO, it seems the webcam technology would be ideal for capturing the games on a room's 'action table'. (And since action attracts action, it might even be good for the rooms themselves /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif ) It would be great to be able go on line and check out the action tables at rooms like Chris's in Chicago, Hard Times in Sacremento, etc., etc., and sweat a match or two from out here in the hinterlands!

I know <a target="_blank" href=http://www.caromtv.com/webcam.html>CaromCorner has one</a> (actually, they have two -- one on a billiard table &amp; one on a pool table), but are there any more out there that anyone else could post a link to?

09-22-2002, 06:13 AM
D&amp;D Billiards out of PA has a web cam set up also. You can get there here http://www.thebilliardstour.com/

Chris Cass
09-22-2002, 08:36 AM
It's cool. I like stuff like that too. I guess I could be a a railbird even from home. hahahaha Seriously, I like it.



09-22-2002, 09:43 AM
Chris, when I travel for business -- or pleasure /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif -- I always like to look up the local player oriented pool rooms. It would be great to be able to sneak a glimpse now &amp; then of what I'm missing -- especially since I live so far from any player oriented rooms -- LOL!!!! Seems like a good way to attract skilled players to your room; also seems like a good way for a room owner to monitor their room from a distance.

Can anyone 'out there' provide any specifics about the cost for setting such a thing up? And the cost of maintaining &amp; having it hosted? I realize it would presumably need a broadband or dsl kind of internet access, but does it also cost extra in web hosting fees or software licensing?

09-22-2002, 09:54 AM
Webcams at the tables seems too much like "Animal Farm" for my tastes, next they will have them in the mens room to monitor who is washing thier hands and who isn't. Now that I think about it, that is a good idea!!! Webcams are for college dorm rooms, not for pool halls.

09-22-2002, 10:31 AM
At both rooms mentioned in this thread, the camera is set just on one particular table (although a bit of others can be seen in the background). So if you don't want to be on the camera, just don't play on that table -- or those tables, if you don't want to be seen even in the background. Anyway, the table areas in most pool rooms (unless in a private room) are pretty public -- railbirds will gather if something interesting is happening anyway. It's not quite like cams in the bathrooms.
PS was that Animal Farm, or 1984 -- 'big brother is watching'... /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif

09-22-2002, 01:54 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: NH_Steve:</font><hr> . . .Can anyone 'out there' provide any specifics about the cost for setting such a thing up? And the cost of maintaining &amp; having it hosted? I realize it would presumably need a broadband or dsl kind of internet access, but does it also cost extra in web hosting fees or software licensing?<hr></blockquote>There are several under-$100 webcam setups that you can use, and they usually come packaged with s/w. You would also probably have to setup a dedicated computer, that would stay connected to the i-net, so there would be a cost incurred there. . . . (You can plug <a target="_blank" href=http://www.google.com/search?as_q=&amp;num=10&amp;hl=en&amp;ie=UTF-8&amp;oe=UTF-8&amp;btnG=Google+Search&amp;as_epq=how+to+set+up+a+webcam &amp;as_oq=&amp;as_eq=&amp;lr=lang_en&amp;as_ft=i&amp;as_filetype=&amp;as_ qdr=all&amp;as_occt=any&amp;as_dt=i&amp;as_sitesearch=&amp;safe=im ages>"how to set up a webcam"</a> into Google, and find links to several places with more detailed info.)

Service providers usually have a maximum upload/download bandwith restriction on their account packages, so you would have to check with the individual providers. However, I am not sure if holding a continual stream is under the same umbrella, as I don't think running something like Microsoft's Netmeeting counts against the limit. Again, there's more info on the web.

There is also the possibility of using a mini-camcorder, which of course costs more, and running through USB or Firewire (IEE 1394), plus I think you need to run some more software, or pay for a service. Sony Digital8 Handycams support sharing streaming video, for example, but I you have to get in bed with Real Networks as well (Realplayer/G2).

Sorry, for the 'runaround' answer, but I am familiar with most of the requirements, but have not actually set a webcam up myself.


09-22-2002, 03:08 PM
Thanks, even though naturally I didn't understand half of what you posted /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif

It looks like one of the pool rooms (linked above) uses this, which aparently doesn't even need it's own computer:

Which is apparently available <a target="_blank" href=http://www.pcconnection.com/scripts/productdetail.asp?product_id=134569>for under $300</a>. But my understanding of this kind of technology is slim to none, perhaps there is still a bunch more needed?

Then again, there is the bigger question: If players can virtually visit your poolroom, will they still just drop in to see who is around, or will they scan the webcam first /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif ?

9 Ball Girl
09-22-2002, 05:49 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: OnePocketChamp:</font><hr>Webcams are for college dorm rooms, not for pool halls.<hr></blockquote>

Actually they come in handy when you can't get to a tourney and that particular room has a webcam. For instance, Sang Lee's in Woodside, NY had a week long straight pool tourney and it was seen via webcam on Carom's site. (I was there for that one and every now and then I'd walk by their computer hookup and checked it out). And, it's kind of cool to watch other people play, IMO.