How to Use Wowza ClearCaster With Wowza Streaming EngineJanuary 26, 2021
With Wowza ClearCaster, you can broadcast using both RTMP and SRT between Wowza ClearCaster and Wowza Streaming Engine. Learn how to use Wowza ClearCaster as a video source for a live stream or transcoder to Wowza Streaming Engine. This video tutorial will also dive into all the great remote features that come with Wowza ClearCaster Universal Manager.
Full Video Transcript
Wowza ClearCaster is a live encoding solution complete with a remote management system. It comes in two flavors, Wowza ClearCaster Micro with a form factor for portability and professional inputs capable of 1080p60 frame per second livestreams, and there’s Wowza ClearCaster Enterprise, made for data centers and production teams it can handle up to 4K resolution broadcasts.
For initial hardware setup please consult the getting started insert that comes with the appliance, these do require a wired internet connection. Once you’re up and running with a connected video source, you’ll see a device code from Engineering View. Follow the instructions by going to clearcaster.wowza.com in a browser, sign-in with your Wowza account. By default, you should enter Wowza ClearCaster Universal Manager, it’s from here, you can control, monitor and manage multiple ClearCasters. However, first you must activate your new ClearCaster by going to manage and under the encoder tab enter the ClearCaster activation code. You’ll need to name the ClearCaster, as well as verify you’ve read and agree to the license agreements and privacy policies. Then you can activate your ClearCaster.
At this time, you might also want to update your firmware to the most recent version, if you choose to update your firmware be sure not to shut down the ClearCaster while the update’s in progress. Once the update is complete, the system will reboot. Under the encoder tab, you’ll see all the ClearCasters available for Universal Manager that have been activated and are ready to broadcast. I’ve added both the Micro and the Enterprise here, so you can see the difference.
Now that ClearCasters are ready to go in Universal Manager, we’ll create some live streams to Wowza Streaming Engine. In Wowza Streaming Engine I recommend you go under application and add a new application for these streams. We’ll make the application type live and name the new application appropriately for use in the URL. We’ll also need to go to source security and edit the settings to leave our RTMP sources open. Once it’s saved, don’t forget we’ll need to restart the application for the changes to take effect.
Now we can return to ClearCaster Manager. Go under broadcast. In here we’ll create a broadcast. Name your broadcast appropriately, select which ClearCaster you wished to use. For destination, choose Wowza Streaming Engine. For the encoding template, we’ll stick with Wowza 1080p30. All the stream settings are defined within this template. For server URL, enter our RTMP, colon, slash, slash, your Engine instance IP address, colon, 1935, slash, application name. The stream key is whatever you’d like the name to be for. For now, we won’t make any further changes and just create the broadcast. Once it’s created, you’ll see the broadcast appear with details on inputs, outputs, and targets.
Let’s go live with this broadcast, which you may have noticed is using the RTMP protocol. If everything is working properly, we’ll see so next to health. Let’s create another broadcast, but this time we’ll be using the SRT protocol.
Now to do this, we’ll first need to go back to Wowza Streaming Engine and set up a stream file. Under sources live, I’ll copy the internal IP address of our instance for this. While we can add the stream file for the whole server, I’m going to make this specific to the verify application I’ve created.
Now under stream files, I’ll go and add a stream file. I’ll name it appropriately, and I’ll make the stream U-R-I-S-R-T, colon, slash, slash, that internal IP address, colon, 6790. Once it’s added, we’ll need to go back to stream files and connect it. We’ll need to set the media caster type to SRT and okay the connection.
Now under incoming streams, we’ll see both the active Denver stream and the Boulder stream waiting to connect. Returning to ClearCaster manager, we’ll create our new broadcast, name it appropriately, choose your ClearCaster and for destination, select other. The encoding template will be output SRT. For output URL, we’ll change the info after UDP, colon, slash, slash, to be our Engine instance IP address, colon, 6970.
For this broadcast, we’ll record it and we’ll use the graphic package Verify. Once we create the broadcast, like before, we’ll go live immediately. Back in Wowza Streaming Engine, we can see it working fine after we refresh the active streams. Our Boulder stream is now showing as active. Returning to ClearCaster Manager, we can see our stream is healthy. However, our other stream appears to be having issues. By using our health monitor, we can view multiple aspects of both the broadcast itself and the ClearCaster running the broadcast.
As the warning is related to the appliance, we can look at the appliance details and see the capture card temperature is running warm. However, this doesn’t appear to be affecting the encoding output, which is running near the target bitrate.
If you’re interested in seeing previous broadcast health data, you can find it under archived broadcasts. Let’s go back under broadcast. You’ll notice our new broadcast has graphic options. These are live and available for immediate use. Turn on and off the different slates, lower thirds and logos. You can even shut off audio. Additional changes can be done under manage by using the graphics tab. There are three slots for graphics packages. These allow for simple text and color changes, or even hosted animated give files.
Lower thirds and logos have unique controls. Turn these graphics on and off as needed and change them as necessary for use in your live broadcast. To change stream settings for future broadcasts, go to templates. Here you can make changes to things like frame size, target bitrate and streaming protocols. Change them directly to the encoder template or make a copy. If you go under integrations, you can choose to make a ClearCaster API key, connect your Wowza Streaming Sloud account, or even set up access to LinkedIn Live. Over in recordings is where recorded podcast restored. These can be downloaded later after the broadcast is finished.
Last is adding users to ClearCaster Manager. You can add additional users, limit access to templates and integrations and choose to give full access only to admins. Well, that’s it. Manage multiple live streams, and encoders with Wowza ClearCaster in conjunction with Wowza Streaming Engine. Thanks for watching and happy streaming.