An IP camera is a camera that is designed to be accessed over a network via an IP address. Since these cameras are already connected to a network, it might appear at first glance they would be an ideal choice for live streaming to a public audience. Unfortunately the protocol most IP cameras use is RTSP, which is different from the RTMP protocol you use to connect to Ustream. These cameras are primarily designed for a limited number of users to connect directly to the camera to pull the stream and it's a different type of scenario to be able to push a stream to a wide variety of users across many different devices, like what you can do through Ustream.
In order to stream from an IP camera to Ustream, you typically need an intermediate step, which converts the RTSP feed to an RTMP feed and then pushes that to Ustream. From there, the Ustream platform ingests the RTMP stream and delivers it to your viewers. Due to the many variables involved of different camera types, network settings and incompatibility of protocols, Ustream does not provide support for connecting your IP camera to Ustream. This guide is intended as a reference to point you in the right direction to determine on your own how to get your IP camera signal to Ustream. Once the stream is being pushed to Ustream via RTMP, we are happy to support the process from there to your viewers.
There are four main approaches people are using to get an IP Camera feed to Ustream:
- Sony Network Camera SNC - RZ50
- Axis 211W
- Axis P1344
- Axis M1104
When using an IP camera of a different protocol, make sure that the encoder you are using to send the signal to Ustream can output RTSP.
Using an IP camera with Ustream Producer
Many broadcasters like to take advantage of cameras that feed to their network as opposed to directly into their encoding computer. These broadcasters should take advantage of the IP camera feature in Ustream Producer.
Streaming from an IP camera is available in Producer 5 at the Pro level.
To enable the use of an IP camera and create a shot using it, you must first add it to Producer. To do this select Live Source from the Shot Tool Bar menu, then select an IP camera.
IP Cameras are usually auto-detected by Producer, but if not detected they can be manually set up. To do this, select New IP Camera from the Sources menu in the Main window. Then, in the Source Settings window, select an IP camera from the list of devices, enter the IP Address of the camera, optionally check Use Audio, and click Apply:
When Use Audio is checked, audio from the camera is used if the camera has a microphone. Some supported IP Cameras also have motion controls (directional arrows) that enable you to move the camera in different directions. Note:When a IP Camera has been auto-detected, the IP Address field is greyed-out.
IP cameras must be set to H264 mode, rather than Motion JPEG mode. This setting is usually performed in a Web console control panel for the IP camera. Refer to the camera's documentation for how to set up the camera.
Streaming from a remote IP source
The new Web Stream option allows RTMP, RTSP, MMS, or HTTP streams to be taken directly into Producer. This is useful for incorporating remote IP Cameras or other network streams into a broadcast.
Select a Web Stream source. Sources are automatically deteced and displayed in the Web Stream list. They are also identified as ONVIF or Bonjour detection. Select also an ONVIF Profile. Set controls as needed, then click Connect when finished.
The Web Stream controls are:
Select the protocol to use with your incoming stream.
Select a set of options based on the protocol you selected (the sub-protocol of the stream). RTSP can be transmitted over UDP, TCP, or HTTP. RTMP can betransmitted non-encrypted, over http, encrypted. If unsure what to use, select Auto Detect.
Select a video format to use for transcoding. If you select Auto Detect (the default) Producer with automatically detect the format to use from the incoming stream.
Ignore Stream Timestamp
When checked, stream timestamps are ignored. Every Audio/Video frame has a Presentation timestamp, a time that tells the player when to show the frame. Checking this box causes the Web Stream to ignore the presentation timestamp set by the video stream and just use the current system clock.
When checked, specifies that the stream is a live stream and video on demand. For Wowza servers, it does not do anything, but for Adobe Media Servers, Live Stream must be checked for live streams.
Enter the address of your input stream. (For example: rtsp://127.0.0.1:8080/my_stream.sdp).
Click to connect to remote devices, like IP cameras, which require login credentials for access. Check the Remember checkbox to save your credentials to cause the device to automatically connect.
Click to save your Web Service control settings.
Wowza is a versatile streaming server software that can ingest RTSP streams and restream them as RTMP to Ustream. Ustream does not provide support for this type of setup, but Ustream users have reported using this method with success.
Axis is one of the more popular IP camera manufacturers. If you are using an Axis IP cam, Axis provides a software which allows you to pull in your Axis IP camera feed and bring it into Flash Media Live Encoder, which is capable of sending an RTMP stream to Ustream.
Many IP cameras offer a direct video output via component, composite or SDI cable. While partially defeating the point of using an IP camera, some users find this a good solution because you can still access the camera via the network to control panning and zooming or other controls, but the actual video output is obtained from the direct hardware video output vs over the network. In this setup, you bring your direct video connection into your capture card or video switcher and use an RTMP encoder to send the feed to Ustream.