October 31, 2016

October news

October brought some good news for our customers.

First of all, we're honored to see Nimble Streamer as a finalist of Streaming Media Europe Readers Choice Awards in the "Best Streaming Innovation" nomination. We thank everyone who voted for us and hope to get more highlights by the industry press in future.

Speaking of industry  highlights, we are glad to see Radiant Media Player team now considers Nimble Streamer as fully supported media server. You can see us among the partners of this excellent solution.

Live Transcoder

Nimble Streamer Live Transcoder now has full support for NVidia hardware encoding acceleration via NVENC for H.264. It's available for both Windows and Linux platforms.
You can read this article for more details about the setup and capabilities.

Our customers report on huge off-load of their CPU when using GPU via our Transcoder.

Nimble Streamer

Nimble has improvements for both VOD and live scenarios.

When setting up origin-edge delivery configuration with RTMP delayed pull option, you may experience some delay on the viewer side starting the playback from edge. We've added a new option for origin side which you can use for decreasing the buffer. Read this article for more details.

Audio-only and video-only transmuxing for ABR VOD HLS is now supported. You will use SMIL files for that purpose, read this article for more details.

Mobile SDK

Larix mobile SDK was improved for both iOS and Android.

  • iOS SDK now has Larix sample application with Swift 3 support along with improved audio quality.
  • Android has streaming enhancements as well as sound Mute support.

Latest versions of SDK packages will be sent to our customers this week. Subscribe here to get those in case you haven't done it yet.


Our media streams monitoring service has a few updates as well

When you make setup for streams check-overs, you can now select to alert on email and push API when at least one checkpoint reports offline or when all checkpoints report offline.
For your convenience the subject also now contains stream name with checkpoint names, like "Stream offline alert (1/6) - Nimble Promo Video AMS1"

The last but not the least update: check the State of Streaming Protocols for October 2016.

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The State of Streaming Protocols - October 2016

WMSPanel team continues analyzing the state of streaming protocols.

The metrics calculations are based on 3.7+ billion views. The stats are collected from 3000+ media servers (Nimble Streamer and Wowza).

Protocols share remain stable, i.e. HLS share is about 75% with RTMP around 12% and progressive download near 6%. MPEG-DASH is ahead of SmoothStreaming, both having less than 1%.

The State of Streaming Protocols, October 2016

You can compare that to September stats below.

October 25, 2016

RTMP delayed pull buffer improvements

RTMP-related feature set of Nimble Streamer allows creating various streaming scenarios with your infrastructure. One of them is delayed pull, or pull by request. It allows saving bandwidth when some stream is not consumed by viewers.

When a viewer requests an edge server for some stream - e.g. via HLS - this edge will start pulling RTMP stream right at that moment. So the origin will give the stream only when it's needed. You can read more in this article.

Usually it takes some time to start the playback on viewer side so we added an enhancement for this scenario. You can now specify RTMP buffer items count on origin so the edge could get bigger buffer to provide it to the player.

So the player will get several chunks almost immediately and start playback in a second without buffering.

To make this work, follow these steps.

1. Upgrade your edge and origin Nimble instances.

2. On your origin, open nimble.conf and add
rtmp_buffer_items = 4096

3. Restart origin server.

Now, once the edge requests origin it will get 30 seconds buffer immediately and will start the playback.

You may find other fine tuning techniques for live streaming in Performance tuning guide.
Also, take a look at RTMP setup in Nimble Streamer video tutorial to learn more about basic RTMP scenarios.

Streaming Media Europe Readers' Choice Award 2016

As you know, Streaming Media is the leading magazine in the online streaming industry. We've been visiting their conferences - Streaming Media East and Streaming Media West - for several years so far and we're excited to participate in their activities.

Now we're honored to have Nimble Streamer as a finalist of Streaming Media Europe Readers Choice Awards in the "Best Streaming Innovation" nomination!

Thanks to everyone who voted for us!

October 20, 2016

NVidia NVENC settings in Nimble Streamer Live Transcoder

NVidia® Products with the Kepler, Maxwell and Pascal generation GPUs contain a dedicated accelerator for video encoding, called NVENC, on the GPU die.

NVENCODE API enables software developers to configure this dedicated hardware video encoder. This dedicated accelerator encodes video at higher speeds and power efficiency than CUDA-based or CPU-based encoders at equivalent quality. NVENCODE API allows the programmer to control various settings of the encoder to set the desired tradeoff between quality and performance.

Nimble Streamer Live Transcoder has full support for NVidia video encoding and decoding hardware acceleration. Having the hardware capable of the processing and drivers properly installed, our customer can choose NVENC to handle streams' encoding.

You can take a look at the list of NVidia GPUs capable of hardware encoding acceleration. To make HW acceleration work, you need to install the graphic card drivers into the system. Use this link to download and install them.

If you haven't yet installed Nimble Streamer transcoder, use this page to find proper setup instruction.

The transcoding scenarios are created using our excellent web UI. You can check this YouTube playlist to see how various use cases are defined. Takes just couple of minutes to complete.

October 17, 2016

Re-sampling audio with Nimble Streamer Transcoder

Nimble Streamer Live Transcoder gives wide range of capabilities to transform both video and audio. Audio features allow doing various complex actions on sound as well as do some one-step actions like audio re-sampling.

Let's see a sample scenario shown below.

First, you see a passthrough of video just because this demo is for audio.
Then you see audio stream input and audio output with AAC encoder.

In between a custom filter added. Here are the details:

October 13, 2016

Audio-only and video-only transmuxing for HLS and MPEG-DASH via SMIL files

Nimble Streamer handles VOD streaming in various ways, one of them is doing ABR VOD via HLS and MPEG-DASH streaming protocols using SMIL files.

You can use SMIL to specify separate tracks in MP4 files which will be used transmuxed specifically with only audio or video for both HLS and DASH. This allows lowering the bandwidth usage.

To illustrate this approach, let's take a look at audio-only use case. We have "bigbuckbunny_450.mp4" file with audio we want to use and video track. There are bunch of other files with different video renditions, without the audio.

Check the sample SMIL file below.