I am very frustrated after talking to many companies doing live-streaming or selling streaming-products and I hope someone could get me to the right direction.

Here is my problem:

We are broadcasting sportevents live to the internet via flash media encoder. At the event locations we mostly have just 2 mbit upstream. So at the moment we are streaming with about 1mbit rate. But we need also streams for mobile-devices and a stream for users without fast internet. So we want 2 more streams with lower-bitrates, but we can't get this through the 2mbit... I am looking for a solutiuon which can transcode about a 1mbit (and maybe in the future a 1.5mbit) livestream in to two (or more) lower-bitrate streams. The solution should be scalable, because sometimes we have 7 events at one day on different locations, so there could be 7 input-streams. I've searched the net for hardware transcoders, but didn't find a stable solution and I've tested also transcoding with ffmpeg, but it seems to get problems with timing and key-frames for bitrate switching.

Does anyone know a hardware or software solution for this problem? Has anyone done something own like that with ffmpeg or other tools on the cloud (amazon ec2 etc.)? Thanks! Jan


I've had good success with red5 and live streams.

check it out, see if it does the job.



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  • Thanks for the advice. I checked it, but red5 uses xuggle for transcoding and this is on the top of ffmpeg. It may be working to transcode one stream to one output stream, but not for multiple outputs. – funkdoobiest Nov 22 '10 at 1:10
  • ffmpeg is the tool for the job , it can do mutliple outputs, but you have to get a right version, so it does not mess up scaling and recognizes your format... then you pump rtmp in and out to ffmpeg , not stable for 12+ hours though by my experience, but for a sport match can do the job... supposed you have multiple machines at your disposal, my system could work for you ( scans if X streams are running , run transcoding ffmpegs within N encoding computers (you a need some CPU power - but EC2 shoudl do)... - but it is customized a lot) – Qiqi Jan 30 '11 at 3:28

Thanks for your answers.

I've built my own solution based on GStreamer.

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  • 1
    Would be nice if you could describe what your solution was, not just the product being used :) – pauska Jan 27 '12 at 13:23

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