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Stream Settings: Network

Network settings and connection is the most important component of your stream. Without a solid network connection, your stream will have a hard time getting to us (Mixer!) and then also getting to your viewers.

This is especially important for FTL (Faster-Than-Light) since it’s all about the lowest possible latency. Remember, a solid connection does not mean more bandwidth - it means that the difference between maximum and minimum latency are small (also referred to as jitter) and that there is zero to near zero packet loss.

Additionally, it means setting your bitrate to one that your network can support and using a wired connection whenever possible.

We recommend running a speed test at a site like https://testmy.net/upload to see what your Download, Upload, and Latency are. If you are streaming using RTMP (Real Time Messaging Protocol), then you will want to use this info to determine your bitrate. Take your upload speed and multiply by 0.75, this is the maximum bitrate you should choose.

For example, if you have an upload speed of 6 Mb/s you would want to only go up to 4.5 Mb/s (4500 kbps) for your video bitrate. Your maximum upload speed is valid for both RTMP and FTL.

If you want to stream in FTL, there are a couple sites you can visit to run additional tests to ensure that your network is stable enough for it. Since FTL is ultra-low latency, network stability is the key to success.

These sites are only meant to guide you, not dictate. They do not connect directly to our servers so they will only give you a rough idea of your network stability, not an absolute answer. You will want to run these tests in a Google Chrome or a Chromium based browser and keep the browser tab in focus for the duration of the test. They will ask for microphone and camera access, so be sure to allow that.

The first site is https://test.webrtc.org/?test_filter=Video%20bandwidth. This test will show you what your video bitrate maximum is (Send bandwidth estimate max), as well as measuring NACK’s (Negative Acknowledgements), perceived picture loss, RTT (Round Trip Time) average and max, and the number of packets lost. If the test results in a green checkmark you are ready for the next test.

The next test will take about 5 minutes and will see test your network latency to see if it’s stable enough for FTL. The test site is https://test.webrtc.org/?test_filter=Network%20latency. If the test returns with a green checkmark you are ready to begin streaming. If this test returns with a red X, you will either want to consider using RTMP (instead of FTL), or lowering your video bitrate to try to compensate for the instability in the network. Remember, this test was made for WebRTC (real time communications) which is not as resilient as FTL. If you don’t pass the latency test, it doesn’t mean it is not possible, just that you will need to do some testing to find the right bitrate for your connection.

For more on stream settings, please see the following articles:

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