Best solution to stream live HD video to second remote location?

257Roberts
257Roberts used Ask the Experts™
on
I have a client who is trying to implement broadcasting a live HD Video feed from one location to a remote second site.  The originating location has a 10 Mpbs up/down internet connection and the remote site has a dedicated T1 that can be used solely for the stream reception.  They have mentioned a solution called Limelight and one other which I don't recall.  Do you have any experience of a workable solution pay/subscription or free that worked well?  The feed will only be broadcast once or twice a week.
Comment
Watch Question

Do more with

Expert Office
EXPERT OFFICE® is a registered trademark of EXPERTS EXCHANGE®
Aaron TomoskyDirector of Solutions Consulting

Commented:
I've used vlc (videolan.org) and it works great. One side streams and the receiving end can use any media player but vlc works great for that too. A slight (1-2 seconds) lag is normal if you are transcoding but the playback is smooth.

Commented:
I'm currently testing two programs to do the same thing you're wanting to do.

Broadcam: http://www.nchsoftware.com/broadcam/index.html

and

Wirecast: http://www.telestream.net/wire-cast/overview.htm

Wirecast (more expensive) has some nice features if you need a live production solution
Aaron TomoskyDirector of Solutions Consulting

Commented:
I've also use windows media player streaming server (free from Microsoft). Easier to use than vlc and compresses better for 5-10 people on a stream, but for just point to point I use vlc.
My use cases have been remote training and church type remote viewing. The cameras were 720p I think, minidv but used as a USB like an expensive high quality webcam.
CompTIA Security+

Learn the essential functions of CompTIA Security+, which establishes the core knowledge required of any cybersecurity role and leads professionals into intermediate-level cybersecurity jobs.

Author

Commented:
Aaron, how much bandwidth did the VLC solution use both uploading to the remote site and how much down bandwidth?  This is a church that is streaming live to a remote site.

Author

Commented:
Also I see that VLC has a dozen or so packages.  Which one does the streaming?  DVBLAST? MultiCAT?  The application doesn't need to be exactly live a short delay would be okay.  I think the audio and video need to be able to be synced though, so it doesn't look strange.
Aaron TomoskyDirector of Solutions Consulting

Commented:
I just use the stock windows player. The server is built in. You choose the source (camera) and output (I think I used rtp real time streaming). H.264 gave me the best results and that is what really determines the bandwidth. I've done it on a t1 with great results so you should be fine. If other traffic is competing you can give priority using your router.

Author

Commented:
Do you believe that Windows Streaming Media Server is better than VLC for point to point?  We have dedicated (only for streaming) T1 on receiving end and Metro-E (10 Mpbs up and down) of which 5-6 Mpbs up can be dedicated for the streaming.

Author

Commented:
How powerful of a computer does it take to do the encoding on the upstream side?
Aaron TomoskyDirector of Solutions Consulting

Commented:
I had it running on a core solo that was fine as Lon as I didn't do anything else on the pc. Core2duo was fine for h264 and anything newer should e fine.

Windows media server is good for wmv compression. It uses less bandwidth so Its what I use when there are 5+ people streaming the service from home. But it doesn't look as good. For point to point I'd go vlc h264. For wmv go wms.

Author

Commented:
Aaron,  I looked at Windows Media Player that is on my computer and it looks like it just plays files across my LAN and not the WAN?  Maybe I am not looking at the correct software package.  I have Windows Media Player 12.  Thanks for all of you help.
Aaron TomoskyDirector of Solutions Consulting

Commented:
Windows media server is a different app. Free download from Microsoft. Vlc is odd in that the same player is also the server.

I think you need encoder plus the streaming server

And this is how to use a service to restream so you only use ont stream of bandwidth from the source location:
http://www.mediaserve.com/knowledgebase/3/How-do-I-use-Windows-media-encoder-to-broadcast-live.html

And I think this is the streaming server
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/windowsserver/dd448620.aspx

You can also use windows media encoder to encode and vlc to stream. Choices choices.

Author

Commented:
Windows Media Server looks like it will only run on Server 2003 and 2008?  

What about this?
http://www.microsoft.com/expression/products/EncoderPro_Overview.aspx

This package looks like it might work for what we are trying to do?  The requirements for live streaming of H.264 say: " Processor with 6 or more logical cores"  What would that mean?  I have  a box that has a quad core processor, but didn't know any had 6 cores.
Aaron TomoskyDirector of Solutions Consulting

Commented:
I've used the free encoder and done something Microsoft to stream and it wasnt a server os. I think it was just with encoder... Not a seperate streaming server...

Author

Commented:
So you are thinking using VLC as the encoder and then the Microsoft solution to stream across the internet?
Director of Solutions Consulting
Commented:
I personally think or a site to site if use vlc for all I it with h264 transcoding.

If you have to stream directly to multiple people at home, then bandwidth becomes an issue, and switching to the wmv codec can squish stuff even smaller, although you lose quality. If you use wmv, then the Microsoft encoder is the only way to go... But I wouldn't go this way at all with a site to site.
To answer the question, yes I have heard of the service called Limelight... Own their stock... Wish ii didn't tho...  I would go with Akamai... They are extremely reliable if you are looking for. Flash Media Server solution.  They are the industry leaders in my opinion.

rp

Do more with

Expert Office
Submit tech questions to Ask the Experts™ at any time to receive solutions, advice, and new ideas from leading industry professionals.

Start 7-Day Free Trial