Walkthrough: Encoder Setup Guide

Video Encoding and Transcoding
You are here:
< Back

While setting up your live stream is easy, the encoder setup page is admittedly the most challenging step. For first-time users of the platform, it is definitely understandable you may encounter some confusion. With this general guide, we provide you with the basic steps from within the platform, to make sure your live streaming experience with Dacast is a pleasant one.

Setting Up an Encoder for Your Live Stream:

This is the first step in the whole process: creating a live channel is the most important step as this is where you will get the information you need to paste in your RTMP settings in your encoder.

1. Auto-Select a Publishing Point

All you need to do is make sure you are logged inside your Dacast account. From the main dashboard, you can click on Live Streams (left side), then press the Create Live Stream button (if you have not created a Live stream yet).  If you have created a Live stream, you can either click on the live channel name or the edit button (pencil icon). Creating a Live stream enables you to get the information to feed into your encoder behind an RTMP firewall and connect to the Dacast server, in order to stream live video:
Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - Create Live Stream Now once inside the live stream, on the General tab, you will find the encoder setup details when clicking on that button:
Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - Encoder setup details You will then see this window. This is where you will get the information you will feed into your encoder. 

By default, the “Generic RTMP Encoder” will be selected, and here is the information you will see:

  • URL
  • Backup URL (in case the Server/Stream URL does not work on the encoder)
  • Username
  • Password
  • Stream Name or Key 

You will also have further options by clicking on the dropdown menu below “RTMP Encoders”. Depending on the encoder you are using, select yours in the following list of encoders: OBS Open Broadcaster Software, Sling Studio, Telestream Wirecast, Teradeks, Vid Blaster, or vMix.
If you are using a different encoder than the ones listed, you can keep the “Generic RTMP Encoder” selected.


Simply copy and paste these pieces of information into your RTMP encoder setup. We have simplified the process by including an icon you can just click to copy the info easily.

 

2. Setting Up the RTMP Encoder for Your Live Stream:

Now that you have the information from your Dacast live stream, we will show you how to put them on the most common software encoders used for live streaming.

OBS Studio

In your Dacast Encoder Setup, select “OBS Open Broadcaster Software”:

Then in OBS, in the main window of the encoder click on Settings under Controls: Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - OBS settings Then, you will be redirected to the Settings page of OBS Studio. Click on Stream on the left side. Then under the first tab, click on  “Service”, and select Custom.  From there this window will appear and this is where you put the stream credentials, which you can copy and paste easily from your Dacast live stream into this part:
Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - OBS authentification Next, click “Apply” so that OBS Studio can save those credentials. Finally, rom the main window, you can now click on the “Start Streaming” button, and your OBS Studio will then be connected to the Dacast server and your Dacast live stream , so you can start the live stream immediately:
Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - OBS start streaming

Wirecast

In your Dacast Encoder Setup, select “Telestream Wirecast”:

Then in Wirecast, from the main window of the encoder, click on Output:  Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - Wirecast settings output
You will then be redirected to this window. Select RTMP Server:
Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - Wirecast settings RTMP Server Then once inside this window, go to the Address and Stream tab on Wirecast and paste the information from your Dacast encoder setup:

After pasting the Address and the Stream key, click on Set Credentials. This is where you will paste the username and password respectively:
Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - Wirecast settings RTMP set credentials Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - Wirecast settings RTMP confirm credentials Next, click OK to save changes.  You have now inputted the stream credentials from your Dacast live stream, into your Wirecast encoder. You can now click on the stream icon (circled in yellow below). The encoder will recognize the stream credentials and connect to the Dacast server, thus enabling you to do your live stream:
Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - Wirecast settings live stream confirmation

vMix

In your Dacast Encoder Setup, select “vMix”:

Then in vMix, from the main window of the encoder, click on the configuration settings icon (cogwheel icon). 
Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - vMix settings Configuration
You will then be redirected to the streaming settings window. Here you can fill the URL and Stream Name or Key tabs. Afterward, please click Advanced. This is where you will paste your username and password respectively:
Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - vMix streaming settings Configuration Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - vMix advanced streaming settings Configuration
Click OK, then you will be redirected to the streaming settings window again. All you need to do is press start. You are now ready to stream.

Dacast Encoder Setup Guide - vMix advanced streaming settings Confirmation 

NOTE: 

We have taught you the basic setup on inputting the stream credentials from your Dacast live stream to these common software encoders our broadcasters use. 

Since you now know the basic setup, we recommend that you always test your upload speed at the location of the stream. Please visit  https://testmy.net/ and do an upload speed test. In general, our recommendation is that your upload speed should be at least double the total bandwidth you require. Checking the upload speed of your Internet connection will help you determine the necessary bitrate adjustments suitable for your live stream.

3. Recommended Encoder Settings

To ensure your Dacast live stream is stable and fully functional, you MUST configure your encoder to use the settings defined on this page. First, ensure you are following everything in the Common Settings section. Then select the most appropriate Resolution & Bitrate (depending on your needs) and configure all settings for that size exactly. Finally, be sure not to use any of the Unsupported Settings because they will very likely break your stream.

Required Settings

The following settings are required for live streaming with Dacast, regardless of your selected resolution and bitrate:

VIDEO CODEC H.264 (x264 may work)
FRAME RATE 25 or 30
KEYFRAME INTERVAL 2 secs (or 2x frame rate)
SCANNING Progressive
ENCODING BITRATE Constant (CBR)
AUDIO CODEC AAC
AUDIO BITRATE 128 kbps
AUDIO CHANNELS 2 (Stereo)
AUDIO SAMPLE RATE 48 kHz (48,000 Hz)

Resolution & Bitrate Settings

Please select one of the following configurations and ensure your encoder is set up with these exact settings to help prevent streaming issues:

  ULD LD SD HD FHD
Name Ultra-Low Definition Low Definition Standard Definition High Definition Full High Definition
Video Bitrate (kbps) 350 350 – 800 800 – 1200 1200 – 1900 1900 – 4500
Resolution Width (px) 426 640 854 1280 1920
Resolution Height (px) 240 360 480 720 1080
H.264 Profile Main Main High High High

Unsupported Settings

Note that the following settings are unsupported and will break your stream:

  • Baseline H.264 Profile
  • Interlaced Scanning

Any questions or need help/access to this feature? Please contact us. Not yet a Dacast user, and interested in trying Dacast risk-free for 30 days? Sign up today to get started.

GET STARTED FOR FREE  

Additional Resources

3 thoughts on “Walkthrough: Encoder Setup Guide

    • Etienne Noualhat says:

      Hey Larry!

      Have you talked to our online chat support? That would be great to give them screenshots of what you’re not able to see!

  1. Kurt Oluwatobi says:

    Hi! Hope you are well!

    I have an hardware encoder that uses XML code and RTMP to stream to Twitch, Youtube and Facebook etc… They all work fine to which I think is because they don’t require authentication.

    Looking at section 4 I can see the information to stream, is there a way to include the authentication in the stream URL or Name?

    Looking forward to hearing from you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *