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Old June 12th, 2016, 08:32 AM   #1
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A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

I just received an email from Gary Fong who has done some video tutorials on using the Sony A7ii which I own. So, I'm on his mailing list which I don't mind at all. Just received an email that says ...

Quote:
SUBJECT: Gary Is On Facebook LIVE In 30 Minutes

BODY: Gary Is At Photo + Adventure in Germany Shooting Live On Facebook
Gary Fong is currently at the Photo + Adventure Duisburg Photo shooting a live demonstration. Watch the demonstration, live on HapaTeam's Facebook page at 7:00am PST / 10:00am EST.

Watch as Gary shares how to take your on-camera fill-flash to a dramatic two off-camera lighting setup quickly, and affordably.

For those wishing to follow along, Gary will be using the Phottix Mitros+ flashes along with his Dramatic Lighting Kit and Lightsphere Collapsible.
So I headed over to the linked Facebook page and can't see any Facebook Live video widow or post. Then again, it is in German. The current post is:

Quote:
Leider sind die WLAN und mobile Datenverbindung zu schwach für die Liveübertragung! Gary filmt seinen Vortrag und wir können euch den Beitrag bald nachreichen! Entschuldigt bitte!
Thought I'd hit the translate button for the heck of it, and it came out as being:

"Unfortunately, the wi-fi and mobile data connection too weak for the live stream! Gary is filming his lecture and we can you answer the post soon! Excuse me please!"

There must be quite a bit of high-volume embarrassment happening there right very now.

Andrew
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Old June 12th, 2016, 09:12 AM   #2
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

It doesn't work until it does.
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Old June 12th, 2016, 01:30 PM   #3
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

I just finished a 8 day job working for a TV station. An interesting
piece of equipment that most TV stations now have, is a little
unit, about as big as a camera battery (think Anton Bauer size)
which is known in TV news circles as a 'Dejero' (which is the name
of the company that makes this tool.). Basically what this
little unit does, is hooks to a camera via SDI, and allows you to 'go
live' from anywhere (subject to cell service though.) It has six
bonded cell links and the idea is, if one or more drops, there is
always at least one functioning so your stream doesnt drop.
Well, my first night using it, during the middle of the reporter's
live shot.....the unit displayed an 'error 17' and the station lost
signal. The next live hit (we did 2 or 3 live hits per day) worked,
but mere seconds after we finished the live, again up pops
'error 17'. I called the station engineer and he told me that error 17
means the unit was 'starved' for Internet bandwidth...which was strange
because we were not anywhere remote and my cell phone worked fine.
We shipped the unit back to Dejero and they Fed Ex'd us another unit.
They claim there was some sort of problem with the unit we had.
And to their credit, the new unit they sent us, went through more than
20 live shots without so much as a dropped frame. So the tech IS gettin
better here.....but I suspect these units are also quite expensive. Many
TV stations have them now and lots of the 'live TV' you see around the
country these days, is transmitted using these units.
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Old June 12th, 2016, 07:15 PM   #4
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

What happens when you are away from a connection ..lets say a wedding in a park ..yes, in the city but still no chance of any sort of connection ?

In our lovely sunny country everything is great EXCEPT our ADSL connection ...I have ADSL2 at the office and I get a download speed under 10mbps but what really sucks it that my upload is less than 1mbps (no that's not a typo ...it averages around 0.75mpbs ..I would suspect that most 3rd world countries have a faster upload than that!!! With 4G I get an easy 10mbps upload and 25 mbps download (and we are in a very poor reception area) It get way better in other normal areas ... so 4G or even 3G is much better than landline based connections here.
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Old June 13th, 2016, 05:05 AM   #5
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

Chris, if that question was for me (which I'm not sure it was), the Dejero
uses six cell links to provide the Internet, so no landline needed and
you have 4G upload speeds anywhere you can get a cell signal....
the six links are supposed to guarantee you that you won't drop service....
If you remember, it's kind of like the old wireless mics with two antennas
which constantly monitored the signal and selected the stronger one to
eliminate drop outs in audio. That's the idea anyways....
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Old June 13th, 2016, 05:38 AM   #6
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

Hey Gabe

Absolutely not ..it was just a BIG moan about our ADSL2 over here and why we HAVE to use 4G ...The best bitrate I can ever expect to use if I connect to a fixed network is about 350kbps and with that I might as well use a phone and Skype it!! Our little wifi hotspots do almost the same but not as good ..They can be set for Dual Band and if the signal drops on 2.4GHz it switches to 5GHz which is some sort of security I guess ... if my 4G signal is a bummer it will also drop to 3G so it is quite useful!

I take my tablet with me which has a little speed test on it and do a physical check on the upload rate cos on our encoders you have to stop the stream to change the quality which might annoy viewers a bit.

Wish I had the market to get really pro stuff !!!

Chris
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Old June 13th, 2016, 01:17 PM   #7
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

That's the thing about live programming - you only get one chance at it.

Back in the early days of streaming (1996?), we were once taken out by a lightning strike on a telco station... The telco system recovered in a few minutes, but, being pioneers and all, we hadn't figured out some of the lessons, like robust backchannel communications - our live speakerphone connection to the hosting service's NOC went dead at the same time, but none of us KNEW it was dead - and the NOC was monitoring the return stream. So, we didn't know we were down, for minutes and minutes of corporate executive presentations. Of course from that point forward we *always* had a local monitor of the return stream.

I generally don't agree with Andy Grove's maxim: "Only the paranoid survive."

But for live events online, it's important to realize that if your distribution fails at any point you've lost most of your viewers if you're not back in 10 seconds. Even within 10 seconds, if they have to refresh their browsers to see the stream you've lost most of them.

And, there are a *lot* of points of potential failure in live streaming, most of them out of your direct control. Not a business for the faint of heart! Well, that's true of most live production...

(Andy Grove, employee #3, former President, COO, CEO and Board Chairman of Intel)
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Old June 13th, 2016, 01:19 PM   #8
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

Chris,
Ok, I understand what you are saying. Kind of funny but the
Internet here in the U.S., once you are out of the big cities and into rural areas
....tends to suffer as well. The cable companies are the ones that will
give you very fast internet....as part of a 'bundle' with their cable TV
and phone service. Even then they cap the amount you can use in
a month. I personally have 4mb download 1mb upload speed....
but no monthly usage caps as I don't use the cable company.

Just for the record, the Dejero unit was the TV station's and not mine.
Pretty sure I couldn't afford it. When I do live stuff, I am using much
lower budget gear.
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Old June 13th, 2016, 06:11 PM   #9
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

Ooops, Wrong thread.
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Old July 26th, 2016, 03:20 AM   #10
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

With the Dejero does this mean you also have 6 simple cards.
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Old July 27th, 2016, 03:17 AM   #11
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

Hi Gabe

Even in the city we have ADSL2 and I think most of North America has at least VDSL ! Our ADSL has a 1mbps upload limit so if you want decent stream you dare not go above 500kbps which gives a pretty crappy picture. Yes we have cable but it's pricey to use (I only use cable for my payTV) My 4G wifi hotspot is pretty consistent at an upload of 10mbps so even if I'm offered ADSL at an event venue if it's not cable I would simply not use it. We of course do shoots in remote locations too where the only decent method is 4G (We shot a funeral yesterday at a country Church with 4G wifi at it was pretty darn good...I would suspect that the Church wouldn't have had any other connection to offer anyway.

We also do wedding ceremonies and in our sunny state 90% are outdoors anyway in a park so even wedding venues that have their own wifi are usually out of range to connect via wireless when the ceremony is right down in the gardens far away from the venue. I guess if you are in the big city or are streaming from a fixed location on cable then that is an option but what do others do/use when you are streaming from the middle of a huge park .. 4G is really the only option unless you have a handy 500' roll of Ethernet cable in your trunk!

Based on Google I also very much doubt whether The Dejero ENGO unit would be in my budget ..most sites say "call for pricing" which means it costs an arm and a leg!!
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Old July 27th, 2016, 02:13 PM   #12
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
Based on Google I also very much doubt whether The Dejero ENGO unit would be in my budget ..most sites say "call for pricing" which means it costs an arm and a leg!!
EnGo mobile transmitter for live broadcasts | Dejero

Depends on how you look at it. It's a whole lot cheaper than a satellite truck, and that's the market it's aimed at. News crews (if one person is a crew) can use their cars, run out to the wreck on the highway, and livestream back to the studio. That's what these things are really for. And in that context, they are a steal.

They get used around here for sports -- I've seen them at the local soccer park. The guys love them. Local news doesn't look any different, other than the expanded coverage. If you don't have to deal with a truck, you can move a lot faster and cover more events.
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Old July 27th, 2016, 07:03 PM   #13
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

Thanks Bruce

I do understand that it's far cheaper than an OB truck but it probably still way out the price range of the guy that wants to film the local soccer match or a wedding. I realise we are talking broadcast studio quality here but what sort of cost would the solo operator be looking at?

Units like the ones from Vidutek or Livestream's Broadcaster Pro are probably what the solo guy would use, even professionally.
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Old October 20th, 2016, 09:44 AM   #14
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

We use LiveU backpacks to stream press conferences, sports...even weddings. LiveU is similar to Dejero in that it bonds multiple 4g cellular modems. The system is highly portable and can run for many hours straight off easily hot-swappable batteries.

In metropolitan or suburban areas we easily achieve a steady 7+ Mbps with six modems. In more rural areas we may get more modest results in the range of 2-3 Mbps. Still, this is plenty of bandwidth for a decent quality HD stream. One of the keys to the unit's reliability is its ability to allocate bandwidth usage in real-time, such that the overall data rate is not overly dependent on any single modem. Cell conditions and speeds can fluctuate dramatically over the course of an hour-long event - especially if your cameraman is on the move. Verizon may be happily pushing 5 Mbps one second and then crash to mere kilobits the next. LiveU is able to gracefully handle these ebbs and flows to produce a consistent high-quality experience.

The system is a bit pricey, but totally worth it if stream reliability is critical.
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Old October 21st, 2016, 08:30 AM   #15
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Re: A real live lesson on why you don't stream with WiFi or 4G cellular

For lower budgets you may want to look at Teradek Bond. Much less expensive than LiveU and allows for bonding of multiple LTE services. You can use the cell modems that have the best reliability in a given area.
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