Virtual Device Driver (VDD)

streaming
graphics
playout

#1

Hello Everyone!
I have a short-term problem to solve. I need to be able to demonstrate that I have a fully functional IPTV station for a meeting in 34 days. I need to playout content and interrupt that content with commercial breaks and I need it time-accurate. I did buy UniPlay One and vMix. Neither of these is time accurate, plus they both forced me to do too much work. What I had to do is manually edit in the breaks and then re-encode the media. That’s too much for a one-person crew.
I was just messaging with one of the tech support guys at the CDN I use and he mentioned that I could use a “Virtual Device Driver” to catch the output of playout software and send that output to another encoder such as Adobe FMLE. While I do use a virtual audio cable on the radio broadcast box I have never heard of a virtual device driver that allows the catching of audio and video.
What is he talking about and where can I find one? Google has a gag in its mouth on the issue. At least as far as I can see. I might not know how to ask it for what I’m looking for.


#2

Cinegy solves all your problems.


#3

My CDN is rtmp. Cinegy’s stream protocol isn’t rtmp so I’m trying to find a way around its streamer. I agree that Cinegy solves the problem, but I can’t get the stream out even if I could get it configured right. I’m faced with that too.


#4

That is something that is easily fixed by either moving to a CDN that supports RTP input (most Wowza based etc. do). Or by simply moving protocols with ffmpeg (this takes 1% CPU at the most). Like:

Cinegy RTP output to rtp://127.0.0.1:5000

And then running ffmpeg on the same machine:
ffmpeg -i rtp://:5000 -c:v copy -c:a copy -f flv rtmp://CDNIP/streamstring


#5

Thank you for telling me that. I am learning a lot from you all and I really value your input. There are many of us who have been around this technology for years and only been exposed to how to use it as opposed to how to build it. Thanks @hreinnbeck.
The CDN we have is the most cost effective solution we have found. All the ones we saw started out at 300 dollars per month with very limited options. The one we have now is an excellent company of people that care about their clients because their customer support is so good it makes you understand just how bad many of the other ones really are. For a split millisecond I thought about switching but the good in me said after all they’ve done for us and the quality of the service you’d be wrong to do that. It’d be a bad business move.
Guys. When we’re on the same team I make the other side feel like they’re on the wrong team. It’s gotten me in some tight spots in the past but that goes with it. If I can I will help you and do it smiling. Mean that.
Thanks guys. I’m going to get back at it. Once I get these options working I will pick a horse and ride out with it like the wind (I’m looking at @vimlesh1975 client and PlayoutAutomation by Jurek and company along with Cinegy. Cinegy… Still haven’t heard from support about configuring. You guys have given me more information on this subject than anyone of these companies.


#6

Stay away from Adobe FMLE for starters! It’s too old to be considered worth using (mainly due to old Mainconcept H.264 codecs). For transcoding you can use AWS Elemental MediaLive or do it in house (which in case of a 24/7 channel might be cheaper) with ffmpeg.

Check if OBS fit your encoding and switching needs - for some scenarios it’s worth consideridering it as a Caspar replacement (i.e. when you have inputs that are far from professional, clips with varying frame rate, etc.). You won’t have playlist control out of the box but it’s scriptable (LUA), it’s got partial remote control (websockets), it has good working RTMP output out of the box. I know that it’s able to run for a year without the need to restart if you’re not poking it too much (https://twitter.com/przemyslawpluta/status/962451387144646657).


#7

Oh, and one thing I forgot to mention - OBS and Caspar can talk to each other through NDI. Which makes them a perfect couple :wink: