Live Streaming: Why Transcoding Is So Critical to Quality

Deployed on the same hardware with Wowza Streaming Engine, Wowza Transcoder allows you to transform incoming live streams from encoders, IP cameras, IPTV headends and other live sources to H.264 for delivery everywhere.

Overview:

View this webinar to learn transcoding best practices, deployment options and Wowza Transcoder product features to enhance live video streaming experiences.

Wowza Training Manager, Ryan Jespersen, presents an in-depth technical overview of the powerful Wowza Transcoder. 

Deployed on the same hardware with Wowza Streaming Engine, Wowza Transcoder allows you to transform incoming live streams from encoders, IP cameras, IPTV headends and other live sources to H.264 for delivery everywhere.

In this video, you will learn:

  • Transmuxing and repackaging
  • Transcoding — converting from one or more codecs, bitrates, or resolutions to others
  • Using Transcoder for live video overlays
  • H.263 video compression

Questions & Answers

Q: Does the player decide which bitrate is used?
A: Yes, the client chooses which bitrate to use out of the ones which are available in the .smil file. It works by detecting a user's bandwidth and CPU capacity in real time and adjusting the quality of a video stream accordingly. The player client switches between streaming the different encodings depending on available resources. The result: very little buffering, fast start time and a good experience for both high-end and low-end connections. Find out how to setup ABR here: https://www.wowza.com/forums/content.php?546-How-to-do-adaptive-bitrate-streaming

 

Q: Can the multibitrate streams be tested in the test players on the manager instead of JW player?
A: Yes, the HTTP based players support adaptive bitrate (ABR) streaming but our RTMP player doesn't.

 

Q: Can one transrate upwards from 720p to 1080p?
A: No, the streams created by the transcoder should always be a lower bitrate and/or resolution than the source stream.

 

Q: How can I control nDVR to control my server resources?
A: If you want to control what streams are recorded, you should reference this guide: https://www.wowza.com/forums/content.php?477-How-to-control-which-streams-get-recorded-by-the-nDVR-Recorder

 

Q: Some documents mention GPUs, which GPU's do you support?
A: We have an article on NVENC and CUDA hardware transcoding options here: https://www.wowza.com/forums/content.php?310-Server-specifications-for-NVIDIA-NVENC-and-NVIDIA-CUDA-acceleration-with-Wowza-Transcoder

 

Q: Can you talk about your cloud option for Wowza?
A: Wowza Streaming Cloud is flexible, professional grade streaming from the Cloud. Find out more at https://www.wowza.com/products/streaming-cloud

 

Q: Could you please give me a rough idea on how to determing how many instances I need for streaming?
A: This is dependent on your server hardware and bandwidth available to you. For more information, read more about deploymen scenarios or check out our 4 common deployment scenarios blog post.

 

Q: Will you be going over SMIL Files to link the transcoded streams together?
A: Yes, and it's also explained in our Transcoder online Transcoder guide: https://www.wowza.com/forums/content.php?304-How-to-set-up-and-run-Wowza-Transcoder-for-live-streaming#ABR. Transcoder supports it's own presentation group, NGRP and you can use smil, for use with players like JW player: https://www.wowza.com/forums/content.php?343-How-to-use-JW-Player-with-adaptive-bitrate-streaming-from-Wowza-Streaming-Engine

 

Q: Do you also provide DRM wrapping with transmuxing?
A: Yes, please refer to this overview: https://www.wowza.com/forums/content.php?315-Wowza-DRM-AddOn-overview

 

Q: Would you be supporting Http\2.0 for HTTP streaming?
A: There is support for MPEG-DASH: https://www.wowza.com/forums/content.php?508-How-to-do-MPEG-DASH-streaming

 

Q: Do you have any recommendations for hardware running Wowza Transcoder? What should I consider when selecting hardware?
A: Here are the benchmark statistics for Wowza Transcoder: https://www.wowza.com/forums/content.php?332-Wowza-Transcoder-performance-benchmark

 

Q: Is it all software transcoding?
A: Software is the default, but hardware transcoding is available for GPU accelerated servers.

 

Q: Can you show more about dynamic overlays?
A: More info is available here: https://www.wowza.com/forums/content.php?432-How-to-add-graphic-overlays-to-live-streams-with-Wowza-Transcoder-AddOn

 

Q: Do you load balance while live transcoding?
A: Load balancing would be handled separately. You should use a load balancer, such as the one provided by Wowza: https://www.wowza.com/forums/content.php?108-How-to-get-Dynamic-Load-Balancing-AddOn

 

Q: Does the transrate resize the video on the streams?
A: Yes, transrating allows you to change the bitrate and frame size. The only difference between transcoding and transrating is that transcoding is when you also change the codec.