Stream in 4K with Wowza Video

The Wowza Video™ service supports ultra high definition (UHD) streaming. UHD refers to any stream, video, or display that's capable of a horizontal resolution of approximately 4,000 pixels. As a result, UHD is often called 4K resolution. Because it contains about four times the pixels, 4K resolution offers a much sharper, clearer picture than 1080p.

To stream in 4K with Wowza Video, you need a camera or encoder that's capable of producing source video that's 3840 x 2160 pixels, the 4K UHD standard for television and video games. Then in Wowza Video, create a live stream at 3840x2160 resolution.

To learn about other live stream or transcoder settings you might see in the user interface, see Live Stream Setup page in Wowza Video or Transcoder Setup page in Wowza Video.

You'll need to choose which workflow you'll use, live stream or transcoder, before you begin this task. See Decide between a live stream or transcoder workflow for more information about these workflows.

Live Stream Workflow

1. Create a live stream

In the live stream workflow, we'll automatically configure the transcoder, output renditions, and stream targets to get you started quickly. This is the preferred workflow for most of our customers. 

  1. In Wowza Video, click Add Live Stream.
     
  2. On the Live Stream Setup page, enter a Live Stream Name.
     
  3. Choose a Broadcast Location that supports 4K streaming and is as close as possible to where your stream will originate.

4K streaming isn't available in locations that support 24x7 billing or passthrough streaming.

  1. On the Video Source and Transcoder Settings page, select the encoder or camera you want to use to connect to Wowza Video.
     
  2. For Aspect Ratio, choose 3840 x 2160.

  1. Specify other video source settings, click Next, and complete the steps to finish creating the live stream.

Wowza Video creates the live stream and displays the Overview tab of the live stream detail page.

2. Test the live stream connection


When your live stream is complete, configure your source encoder or camera and test the entire setup.

Note: For information about how to encode your source video for 4K, see Encoding best practices for Wowza Video.
  1. Select your live stream.
     
  2. Click Start Live Stream at the top of the live stream detail page.
     
  3. Click Start to confirm that you want to start the stream.

Wowza Video opens the stream and connects with the source.

  1. Start your video source.
     
  2. In the Wowza Video web manager, confirm that the live stream is playing by looking at the Video Preview in the Overview tab of the Live Stream Details page.

    The video preview displays a frame from the live stream every 5 seconds. The started date and time appear under the preview. Source stream, transcoder, and delivery metrics begin to update.

  1. Check playback on various devices, browsers, and platforms to confirm the 4K stream is playing as expected.
     
  2. Click Stop Live Stream at the top of the live stream detail page to end your test stream, and then stop the video source.

Transcoder Workflow

1. Create a transcoder

In the transcoder workflow, you'll manually configure the transcoder, output renditions, and stream targets to fit your specific streaming solution.

Note: The Transcoder Type and Billing Mode can't be changed after the transcoder is created.
  1. Sign in to Wowza Video.
     
  2. Under Advanced on the left navigation bar, click Transcoders, and then click Add Transcoder.
  3. On the Transcoder Setup page, enter a descriptive Transcoder Name.
  4. For Transcoder Type, choose Adaptive bitrate.

    4K streaming isn't available in locations that support 24x7 billing or passthrough streaming.

     
  5. For Closed Captions, choose None, CEA-608, onTextData, or CEA-608 and onTextData.
  6. For Source Protocol, select UDP.
  7. For Source Delivery Method, select Push to Wowza Video to send the stream to the transcoder at its Broadcast Location
  8. Specify other transcoder setup options. 
  9. Click Add.

    Wowza Video creates the transcoder and displays the Outputs & Targets tab of the transcoder detail page.
  10. Complete the transcoder by adding output renditions and stream targets. For instructions, see one of the following articles, depending on whether you're creating an adaptive bitrate or passthrough transcoder:
     

2. Test the transcoder connection


  1. In Wowza Video, select your transcoder.
     
  2. Click Start Transcoder at the top of the transcoder detail page.
     
  3. Click Start to confirm that you want to start the stream.
  4. Start your video source.
  5. In the Wowza Video web manager, confirm that the live stream is playing by looking at the Video Preview in the Overview tab of the Transcoder Details page.

    The video preview displays a frame from the live stream every 5 seconds. The started date and time appear under the preview. Source stream, transcoder, and delivery metrics begin to update.



     
  1. Click Stop Transcoder at the top of the transcoder detail page to end your test stream, and then stop the encoder.

    Note: If you configure a camera or encoder to push video to the Wowza Video service, it may take up to 10 seconds once the live stream or transcoder has started for the encoder to connect. This is due to DNS lookup of the host server's IP address. For a more immediate connection, in the encoder settings, use the IP address that's visible in Wowza Video after the live stream or transcoder has started. See Speed up the connection to a transcoder in Wowza Video for more information.