What You Will Need
You’ll need some extra gear to live stream an event. But don’t worry, the gear and the process are pretty simple and EZWebPlayer makes it even simpler.
Cost and complexity of the gear vary but, bottom line, you’re going to need a camera(s), microphone(s), a program(s) that manages the camera/mic stream linked to the server, and a “Distribution Agent” that packages and broadcasts your live stream for sharing on the web.
EZWebPlayer simplifies live streaming by hosting your videos AND serving as your Distribution Agent. We consolidate these services and more by partnering with Amazon Web Services, the world’s leading content provider, that delivers physical hosting space on their world-wide network of servers, and provides access to the world through their cloud outlets globally.
- Adobe Flash Media Live Encoder
- Optional Programs Used to replace the camera device or act as an intermediary
Where to obtain these devices and programs? It’s as simple as searching the internet. If you’re having trouble finding what you’re looking for, shoot us an email and we’ll point you in the right direction.
Just about any video camera is capable of serving up video for live streaming. Which camera’s best for you? Here are facts we’ve gathered from decades in the video industry to help you decide.
You have hundreds of camera choices but they fall into two basic categories: professional and consumer. Professional cameras can cost $3,000 to $75,000 and normally have some advanced features including higher resolution, multiple shooting modes, and better onboard audio. It can be said about any camera called a “web cam” that it is designed and priced for consumers, when comparing them to the much higher priced professional cameras. Web cams can be had for about $20 to $200, and give you features like auto focus, simulated surround sound, and low light enhancement. A web cam is usually well designed to attach to the top of a computer monitor or lap top, and easily plugs into your USB post.
Should you go pro or consumer? Price is important but so is value — what you get for your dollar. You can expect professional cameras to deliver more convenience, easier handling, and better data quality than consumer cameras. However, recent technical advances in consumer web cams bring their performance to near-pro levels. Even those costing under $100 can output video of far better quality than the web can handle in terms of bandwidth. A good web cam puts out very good audio for close-in work, too.
Let the job determine which tool’s best. Web cams are great for “talking head” videos and situations where the camera’s close to the subject. If you’re more than 3 feet from your subject, a pro video camera with easily adjustable pan, tilt, zoom, focus, and a good, fluid head tripod will give you a better quality video product.
Need more info to help you decide? Ask us. Describe the kind of event you want to live stream and we’ll help you select the best, most appropriate camera. Email email@example.com, or call 877-647-9007.
Adobe Flash Media Encoder (FMLE) and other live streaming interface programs offer a wide range of settings possible for both video and audio programming. But, the Internet, and more specifically, the World Wide Web, is the all important bottle neck to which live programming must conform. Therefore, EZWebPlayer strives to offer suggestions to make your live programming easy to view for the largest number of a general audience. If you have special situations that fall outside of general programming parameters, such as extremely high density video like HD Quality at giant settings such as 1900 pixels wide, viewers with insufficient bandwidth or hardware can suffer severe playing quality issues unless you have planned for these special situations.
- to choose wide or standard screen size within your camera’s settings to match your player shape.
- about choosing the right lighting profile within your camera; such as correct “Scene” settings. This involves color and light automatic presets.
- This is your camera source, if you have multiple devices connected to your computer you will need to select the one you wish to Livestream.
- Options are H.264 or VP6. Results should be comparable using either codec in most cases, if you plan to broadcast to mobile you will need to use H.264 and get the AAC Audio Codec plugin.
- Frame Rate
- This should ideally match the frame rate of the device (in most cases for North American cameras this will be 29.97. Depending on the device you may not be able to manually adjust this, but if you have the option, you can generally improve performance on lower-speed connections and reduce CPU usage by lowering this to 25FPS or 15FPS.
- Input Size
- This is the size at which Flash Media Encoder will capture video from the input device. Depending on the specs of your encoding computer you may want to reduce this below the device input resolution to reduce strain on your CPU. Because most video players on the web are embedded at lower than 720×480 we recommend setting the input size no higher than this. Maintain Aspect Ratio This should be checked – it will ensure that the output ratio stays the same as the input ratio to ensure the image isn’t squeezed or stretched.
- Bit Rate & Output Size
- Bit Rate
- This should be set based on your level of available upstream bandwidth as well as the expected downstream connection speed of your audience.
- Output Size
- This should match the size of the embedded player you are encoding for and should be the same size or smaller than the input size.For the purposes of encoding to Livestream you should only set one encoding bitrate.
- Bit Rate
- Crop, Deinterlace & Timecode
- This is useful if for any reason the capture area is greater than the input video which can often be the case. By cropping you can remove any black bars around the sides of the picture.
- If capturing from an interlaced source when checked this may improve quality by removing the visible interlacing lines. This option is available only when the input video height is greater than 480 pixels and the input video width is greater than 576 pixels. Deinterlacing can be CPU intensive so this is not recommended lower powered computers.
- Embeds the timecode that is generated by the capture device in the stream. If the selected video device is not capable of generating timecode, this option is not available.
- Make sure that the box is checked so that Adobe FMLE will include the audio in the stream.
- Choose your desired audio device from the drop down menu. If your audio device is not on the list, it means that your computer has not yet recognized your device.
- o AAC is the best under most circumstances. MP3 is the default format for PC. AAC plug-in can be purchased from http://www.mainconcept.com/products/plug-ins/plug-ins-for-adobe/aac-encoder-fmle.html AAC is available using the Mac version of FMLE. AAC works best for mobile devices and is recommended.
- Choose mono or stereo. Since mono and stereo take up the same bandwidth, using stereo is usually preferred for a fuller sound. If you have the MainConcept AAC Encoder plug-in, parametric stereo is also available.
- Sample Rate
- 44100 Hz is the sample rate used in audio CDs and the one we recommend for audio encoding.
- Bit Rate
- This specifies the audio encoding bit rate (Kilobytes per second). For higher quality broadcasts we recommend 96Kbps or 128Kbps, for lower quality broadcasts we recommend 48Kbps or 64Kbps.
- The setting should start at a default position of about 75%, or 3/4 the distance from the left hand side. If you are going to change this setting you need to experiment with the results you get on your typical end viewer device.
The steps for creating a new live stream event start the same as uploading a new video, and must be performed on the computer to which the camera is connected.
Step 1: When adding a new video select the advanced option.
Step 2: Select option 5 “Configure an EZWebPlayer RTMP Live Sream” and select the Get IP button. Press the next button.
Step 3: We then create for you a Flash Media Server (FMS) URL automatically. As well as a Stream Name. You can now press the next button.
Step 4: Depending on your account type, you will be able to have a max number of 50 viewers for a Pro account, 100 viewers at a time for a White Label account and 200 viewers at a time for a White Label Custom account. (It is possible to have more viewers, all the way up to “unlimited”. Contact Customer Service for these options.)
Step 5: Make sure you are on the Video Details tab.
Step 6: Give your stream a name. Example; “Game01″, or “SunAM_2012-06-10″.
Step 7: Press the update button to create this player.
Step 8: You can now select the coding option you would like to place the player onto your web site. Recommended – IFrame.
Step 9: Copy the FMS URL and Stream name some place for later use. Example; copy and paste into a Word Pad file and save to the desktop, or Documents folder.
Step 1: In the Adobe Flash Media Encoder interface (FME), input your video and audio details that best fit your stream. See Recommended Settings for a better understanding.
Step 2: Input the FMS URL and Stream Name copied from Creating The Player/Step 9 then press the connect button.
Step 3: ATTENTION; This is the final step to start the live broadcast streaming from that computer. Press the start button to turn on your stream.
For your viewers to watch your live stream feed you’ll want to embed the player using the above Setp 8; whether its on your website, EZWebPlayer’s custom landing pages, FaceBook or shared using our quick view link they will just need to click play, no extra software required, and they will join your video feed, live in progress.