Broadcasting Your Show

Stellar's Stream Studio

Video Encoders

Troubleshooting Stream Issues

Broadcasting Your Show

With our Essentials plan, there are two ways you can broadcast your event on Stellar:

  • Livestream: Transmit a live event in real-time using a video encoder.

  • Pre-recorded Livestream: Transmit an existing video event at a designated time with an encoder.

Each option has its own benefits offset by different technology requirements. A high-quality, real-time livestream will require live video and audio knowledge, plus experience operating video encoder software. For a pre-recorded livestream, you’ll need a completed video, which you will then transmit through Stellar with video encoder software.

Both livestream options will require a computer with better than average processing power and a very fast upload speed for optimal broadcasting.

  • You must have a consistent upload speed of at least 10 megabits per second (Mbps). While you can probably pull off a viewable stream with slower speed, but we do not recommend anything lower than 7 Mbps. You can check your internet speed here: https://www.speedtest.net/

  • You must have a hardwired ethernet connection. Do not use WiFi.

  • We recommend that you have a 2015 or newer computer (PC or Mac). A solid-state drive (SSD) will help and a fast, high-quality graphics card will also improve your stream performance. Modern gaming computers typically work well for broadcasting live video.

Pre-recorded or live?

Running a fully live online event has marketable benefits. There is the anticipation and excitement of experiencing a truly live show. That can help sell tickets. If you plan to livestream video, you’ll also need a camera with an HDMI output or a high-quality webcam, plus a video capture device. For the audio, you will want an outboard external USB mixer and microphones. While you can stream with older or lower quality gear, your video feed will suffer and your customers will receive a suboptimal show.

With a pre-recorded stream, you’ll want to still use the best equipment available within your means, but you’ll also have the option to work out any kinks while filming and edit your video to remove any rough spots or bloopers.

Consider what is within your budget and ability when deciding which streaming option you will use.

Stellar's Stream Studio

INPUTS

You’ll broadcast your event to viewers through our Stream Studio, available on your Organizer Dashboard.

When you click on Stream Studio you'll need to select the event and the occurrence for your stream.

Once you've loaded the studio for that occurrence you'll find that the system has defaulted to some basic settings for your input and it is referred to as the Main Input.

If those settings work for you, you can leave them as-is and move forward to setting up your channel.

To initiate a stream, click the Start Live Stream button. This will build your channel and generate an RTMP address and a Stream Key. This may take a few minutes to successfully build and you may want to reload the page if you feel that the channel is taking too long to build. Sometimes refreshing your screen will make the updates visible.

Once built, you access the RTMP address and Stream Key to input them into your video encoder (more on this later). You can modify the default settings by clicking on each pull-down menu to adjust the resolution, input codec, and region from the Stream Studio to help optimize your feed.

CHAT

For live streams, organizers have the option to enable Stellar's chat (text) and emoji reaction features. Toggling on Chat and Reactions Enabled allows you to interact with your customers and your customers to interact with each other 1 hour before and during the show. Organizers/Moderators of the chat have the option to customize their usernames to anything they'd like. Four emojis are available for reactions and they are customizable. Reactions can only be enabled when chat is enabled.

PINNED MESSAGES

Organizers also have the option to pin a message (including links and images) to the top of the chat.

To add an image to a pinned message, use: ![alt text](image url goes here)

To add a link to a pinned message, use: [text you want displayed](url you want linked)

To add an image with a link, use: [![image alt text here](image url)(link here)

One message can be pinned at a time. The pinned message is visible when the purple toggle switched on. To edit pinned messages, click the ellipses [...] next to the message.

ANALYTICS

The Analytics tab contains data about the number of customers watching the livestream. If you are looking for information on a customer's individual streaming data, you can find that under Stream Metrics.

Video Encoders

How does your video get from your computer to your Stream Studio on Stellar? Great question and the crux of your streaming operation. You’ll be using video encoder software such as OBS, StreamYard, Wirecast, or other programs. We recommend OBS, which is free, open-source, and easy to learn. Whichever you choose, please familiarize yourself with the software well in advance of your first event.

Video encoding is the process of converting digital video files from one format to another. Encoding is also known as transcoding or video conversion. At the time of recording, the device gives the video file a particular format and other specifications. You’ll run that video file through your encoder and transmit the data which is then received by your customers and decoded as they watch on Stellar.

Using OBS with Stellar

First download OBS Studio: Open Broadcast Software and spend some time reviewing the OBS Studio Quickstart Guide for an introduction to the software. If you’re more of a visual learner than a reader, this guide from Awall Digital will help get you up and running.

This streaming calculator is a helpful tool where you can enter different settings and it will tell you what internet upload speed is required to stream with those settings. (Again, we recommend 10 Mbps minimum.)

Now you’re ready to adjust your settings in OBS Studio. Select Settings from the menu in the bottom right corner, then go to Video.

Select these settings for optimal streaming to Stellar:

Base (Canvas) Resolution: 1920x1080

Output (Scaled) Resolution: 1920x1080

Common FPS Values: 30 (Stellar doesn’t support any other values)

Downscale Filter: Lanczos (Sharpened scaling, 36 samples)

Your video settings should look like this:

video

Next, go to Output. The output settings will control what is broadcasted to viewers and captured if you are recording. You want the recording quality to match the stream, so choose Advanced for the Output Mode. You’ll only need to adjust settings in the Streaming tab.

Encoder: If you see NVIDIA NVENC H.264 as an option, choose it. If you don’t see that as an option, it’s not supported by your graphics hardware and you can choose x264.

Bitrate: The bitrate will determine how fast your video can broadcast. The higher your bitrate and resolution, the sharper and smoother your video will look to viewers. Your maximum bitrate is determined by your internet speed. A general rule of thumb is that you want your bitrate to be no more than 80% of your upload speed. So, if your maximum upload speed is 7 Mbps, you want your total bitrate to be no more than 5,600 Kbps. You want to be able to stream at 5,000-10,000 Kbps, the faster the better

Keyframe Interval: 2

CPU Usage Preset (x264 only): This determines how much processing power is devoted to your stream. This choice will depend on your computer. The slower options use more processing power and your video will look better. The faster options are much easier on your computer, but you’ll lose video quality. Since this option depends on your computer, you may have to experiment to find the setting that’s right for you, or you can consult with us and we’ll help you choose the right setting. Start with the default setting of veryfast.

Your output settings should look like this:

output

You can leave the default audio settings as-is. They should look like this:

audio

OBS is now ready to connect to Stellar which you will manage under Stream. Select Custom, then enter your RTMP address and your Stream Key.

Click OK to save the stream settings and then click Start Streaming to transmit video to Stellar.

In Stellar

  1. Click Preview Stream to see a live preview of your stream.

  2. When you’re ready to stream on Stellar, click Start Live Stream in the top right of your screen.

  3. Your stream is now live on Stellar!

  4. When your stream is over, click End Event to stop streaming on Stellar.

  5. Click the Stop Live Stream button.


Using StreamYard with Stellar

StreamYard is a live video production tool that works in your internet browser, with no need to download software. You'll need a computer, microphone, camera and a Basic StreamYard subscription to broadcast with StreamYard. If you're using StreamYard, here's how to connect and stream to Stellar.

Start in Stellar.

  1. Log into your Organizer Dashboard on Stellar.

  2. If you haven't done so already, create your event and add at least one performance (show date) with ticket inventory and a price point. If you are just testing, you can make a demo event that's not published for this purpose.

  3. Go to the Stream Studio and choose the performance you want to stream. Choose the region you will broadcast from and wait for your stream channel to be created. It typically takes 15 minutes to build the channel.

  4. After the channel is created, a RTMP Server and a Stream Key will populate. Now you can head over to StreamYard.

    (For step-by-step instructions on how to use the Stream Studio click here.)

In StreamYard

  1. Once you've signed on to StreamYard, select “Create a Broadcast.”

2. For “Broadcast To” Select “RTMP Server.”

3. Obtain the “RTMP Server URL” and “Stream Key” from your channel in Stellar’s stream studio and enter them in StreamYard. Add a Nickname for your Stellar broadcast in StreamYard. "Stellar" is a good nickname (if we do say so ourselves).

4. Check your camera and mic

Add a Display Name. This will show during your broadcast and is typically the name of the person presenting, or your brand name. If you don't want a name to display, you can turn this off in the Brand menu on StreamYard.

5. Enter the Broadcast Studio and you're ready to stream. You can use Streamyard's features to customize your broadcast. Now head back to Stellar.

In Stellar

  1. Click Preview Stream to see a live preview of your stream.

  2. When you’re ready to stream on Stellar, click Start Live Stream in the top right of your screen.

  3. Your stream is now live on Stellar!

  4. When your stream is over, click End Event to stop streaming on Stellar.

  5. Click the Stop Live Stream button.


Using Zoom with Stellar

Why use Stellar instead of just hosting a Zoom meeting? If you have an interactive show, you may wish to offer a premium ticket for other guests on Zoom, but also broadcast the show through Stellar for other ticket holders to watch the event. To do that, you can feed your Zoom stream directly into OBS, which then will broadcast to Stellar

Zoom is not designed for producing top-notch live performances, but it is a useful tool for broadcasting individuals from multiple locations. If you’ve got a show where individual speakers or performers are broadcasting from separate locations, a Zoom stream could work for you.

To connect Zoom and Stellar, you’ll need to know your Zoom account type: Pro, Business, Education, or Enterprise.

The Prerequisites

Before you start, you’ll need a Zoom license with this Host version: Zoom Client version 4.0.29183.0407 or higher on PC.

Create Your Stream

In the Stream Studio, choose the date and time of your event’s performance, then click Start Live Stream. This may take a few minutes. Once the stream is built, keep it open in a separate tab or window so you can grab the Stream URL and Stream Key when you need them.

Configure Zoom

Sign in to the Zoom web portal [https://zoom.us/signin] and go to Account Management > Account Settings. Find In Meeting (Advanced), and click the toggle next to Allow live streaming the meetings, then check the box next to Custom Live Streaming Service.

Add the Stream URL & Stream Key

After you’ve enabled the custom live streaming service in the Web portal, open the Zoom app and click More in the toolbar. Then click Live on Custom Live Streaming Service, which will open up a new browser window (see the image below).

Enter the RTMP URL from Stellar into the Streaming URL box and the Stream Key from Stellar into the Streaming key. Paste https://stellartickets.com into the Live streaming page URL box. Click Go Live! when you’re ready to start streaming on Zoom.

In Stellar

  1. Click Preview Stream to see a live preview of your stream.

  2. When you’re ready to stream on Stellar, click Start Event in the top right of your screen.

  3. Your stream is now live on Stellar!

  4. When your stream is over, click End Event to stop streaming on Stellar.

  5. Click the Stop Live Stream button.

If you are a Mac user and are encountering issues with using Zoom on Stellar, please see this support article.

Troubleshooting Stream Issues

Most of the basic issues you may encounter during your stream -- choppy audio or video or dropping frames -- can be tied directly to your internet connection or your settings in your encoder.

You will want to double-check your internet upload speed. You want to have a consistent upload rate of at least 10 Mbps, if your rate fluctuates and falls below this rate you may encounter poor quality stream output. Additionally, you will want to confirm that you are connected to your internet connection by a hardwire. Relying upon standard WiFi connections, which fluctuate wildly, will impede your stream quality.

Your frame rate settings can also interfere with your stream quality. Double-check your settings to confirm that you are set at 30 fps.

If you are using OBS you can upload your OBS log to the OBS Log Analyzer to get insight into the issues you're encountering and adjustments you may need to make.

For additional assistance please contact organizersupport@stellartickets.com or click on the chat bubble in the Stellar dashboard.

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