Cant use Highest Quality Setting on Meeting Webcast Software

Conversations around originating a webcast for conference, including cameras and mixers.
heyring
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Cant use Highest Quality Setting on Meeting Webcast Software

Postby heyring » Sun Apr 21, 2013 12:27 pm

We have cable internet in our Stake Center that is plenty fast.

The speedtest utility in the Meetinghouse Webcast software shows 24mb download and 20mb upload speeds.

However, when we use the highest possible quality setting in the application, only a black screen comes down on the receiving end.

In order to get a non-choppy webcast, we have to go three more settings down the list to the option that states it requires about 850 upload. (sorry, don't have screenshots in front of me)

Does anyone have any success with using the highest possible setting?

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Re: Cant use Highest Quality Setting on Meeting Webcast Soft

Postby michaelfish » Sun Apr 21, 2013 1:54 pm

I've tried all the settings and found that the highest setting would cause the communicator software to lock-up, but even when it was working the receiving end's picture did not look as good as it should be. Our bandwidth was 25 down and 10 up. The resolution was indeed better but the contrast seemed off and dark, and the picture had a very slight stuttering. Since the webcast software could not deliver a stable stream at the highest setting, and after many tries we decided the medium setting we could use (but ended up using a Slingbox Solo - btw, it's picture was better and it was 100% reliable).

heyring
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Re: Cant use Highest Quality Setting on Meeting Webcast Soft

Postby heyring » Sun Apr 21, 2013 2:43 pm

Thanks Michael - Since I have the pleasure of seeing the 1st class operation you all run down there - your suggestions always hold weight with me.

Any other experiences anyone can share with using the max quality settings with the church's software broadcast solution would be much appreciated.

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Mikerowaved
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Re: Cant use Highest Quality Setting on Meeting Webcast Soft

Postby Mikerowaved » Sun Apr 21, 2013 3:26 pm

I've been running tests off and on all week at the highest (HD) setting from my house with Comcast and (so far) I've have little or no problems at all. Granted, my Ivy Bridge 3.8GHz i5 was doing some heavy lifting at around 85-90% the entire time, but aside from that, all was well.

For me, bandwidth wasn't as much an issue as processor load and rising internal temps. It's not easy encoding on-the-fly at that video rate. If your CPU pegs 100%, even momentarily, you're going to have problems and probably start dropping frames. Closely monitor your CPU, GPU and internal temps. With that kind of work load over an extended period, they WILL go up. Also, make sure all nonessential running threads are closed. I would even disable your AV's real-time scanning function during the upload.
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heyring
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Re: Cant use Highest Quality Setting on Meeting Webcast Soft

Postby heyring » Mon Apr 22, 2013 4:59 am

PC power is definitely not the issue in our case. We have the best possible PC that far exceeds anything the church recommends. We're cruising the Intel Core i7-3770 with massive gigawhops of RAM and our processor seems to barely skip a beat. We are encoding with a high end Osprey card in the PC. In the meetinghouse webcast application, we see perfectly smooth video being rendered in the output monitor window. And when we connect via media player is buffers for a long time as if it was setting up for a nice stream, then at 100% buffer - we get only a black image on the receiving end.

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johnshaw
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Re: Cant use Highest Quality Setting on Meeting Webcast Soft

Postby johnshaw » Mon Apr 22, 2013 6:24 am

Have you tried, for the sake of comparison, bypassing the Firewall to see if that might be impacting the performance?
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Re: Cant use Highest Quality Setting on Meeting Webcast Soft

Postby ksolsen » Mon Apr 22, 2013 11:42 am

One important thing to be aware of - you may have massive amounts of upload speed at your stake center / broadcast site, but if the receiving site doesn't have a matching download speed, the receiving site will exhaust its buffer and either freeze the video or you'll get nothing at all.

In other words, you should only broadcast out at bitrates/speeds that your receiving sites can also handle. That may not be your problem, because typically download speeds are quite a bit higher than upload speeds, but it's worth checking. Run a speed test to the LDS HQ data center (http://speedtest.lds.org) from your receiving site(s) to see what they are getting.

Be aware that advertised speeds (what your ISP is telling you) frequently aren't that close to reality. For example, I recently watched a Meetinghouse Webcast stream from my co-worker's stake. They have 50GB fiber throughout their stake, so they had no problem selecting the highest bandwidth. They used a 720p Sony camera with a desktop PC with the Blackmagic Design Intensity Pro card. He told me that the whole thing went off without a hitch. I watched it from home - I have cable Internet, with 16Mbps advertised download speed, which should have been way more than adequate to see their stream.

However, on Sunday morning (unfortunately, typically one of the busiest times of the week for residential Internet use, which is what most of our meetinghouses are on), I wasn't getting anywhere close to that. I watched the stream mostly successfully, but the feed did exhaust the buffer a few times and the stream froze.

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johnshaw
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Re: Cant use Highest Quality Setting on Meeting Webcast Soft

Postby johnshaw » Mon Apr 22, 2013 12:23 pm

50 GB Fiber throughout their stake....

John <-- hangs head and weeps, and weeps, and weeps
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Re: Cant use Highest Quality Setting on Meeting Webcast Soft

Postby ksolsen » Mon Apr 22, 2013 12:25 pm

Oops - typo on my part. 50Mbps, not 50GB. But still...

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Re: Cant use Highest Quality Setting on Meeting Webcast Soft

Postby russellhltn » Mon Apr 22, 2013 12:38 pm

ksolsen wrote:One important thing to be aware of - you may have massive amounts of upload speed at your stake center / broadcast site, but if the receiving site doesn't have a matching download speed, the receiving site will exhaust its buffer and either freeze the video or you'll get nothing at all.


What limits are there at the server end? I seem to recall speedtest.lds.org results much less then normal speed tests suggesting that the connection is throttled.
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