Live streaming, in the simplest definition, is broadcasting your media “live” to either one person or an audience. It can be an game streaming software or a normal video game stream. It’s easier than ever to stream audio and video content online, whether you’re playing a game or just want to talk with friends online. Websites like TwitchTV allow anyone to broadcast their own live streams for free ; you just need to learn how to stream on Twitch.
The benefit of live streaming includes being able to share your experiences in real-time, interact with viewers through instant messaging and chat, and promote yourself as an online personality. Viewers also have the opportunity to watch archived videos at any time after they’ve been broadcast. Many gamers use this service to build up their fan base by interacting with fans during gameplay- all from the comfort of their own homes!
The section below will explain the basics of live streaming and show you how to get started.
What You’ll Need:
To begin broadcasting your games, you’ll need a few items:
- A computer with Windows XP or above and one of the following internet browsers: Firefox 3.5+, Google Chrome 4+, Internet Explorer 7+ (excluding IE on Xbox 360), or Safari 4+
- Flash 10 or above installed on your browser
- Connection speed recommended by Adobe: 512 kbps minimum (1.5 Mbps recommended) for standard definition video (640×480/30fps); 2 Mbps minimum (6 Mbps recommended) for high definition video (1280×720/30fps)
- A device used to capture video output, such as a DVD Recorder, camcorder, or digital camera
- A free Adobe Flash Media Live Encoder installation
- Optional: Mic with voice recording software
Steps for Recording/Broadcasting Video
1. If the computer you’re using doesn’t have any kind of media capturing device already attached to it, you’ll need to get one yourself. This can be accomplished by hooking up a DVD recorder with analog audio and video outputs (Red, White, Yellow) to your computer’s corresponding port (usually Green). Don’t forget to set your DVD recorder’s mode settings appropriately! If necessary, consult the owner’s manual for additional guidance.
2. Open up Adobe Flash Media Live Encoder by double-clicking the shortcut provided on your desktop or start menu.
3. In the Broadcast Settings window that pops up, click Edit next to Streaming Service and select the streaming provider as “FMS 3”. Then under FMS URL, input your server’s web address (found on your account page). If you’d like, you can also change Video Bitrate from 500 kbps to a higher value for better image quality. At this time, it is also recommended that you turn on Override Audio Input Gain if you plan to use an external microphone with voice recording software.
4. Under Destination Folder, specify where you would like Adobe Flash Media Live Encoder to save your video after it has been broadcasted.
5. In the same window, click OK to exit and save these settings.
6. Once you have all the necessary components hooked up to your computer’s corresponding ports, start up your game of choice on PC or console systems (make sure to capture any audio you might want to stream as well!) Then check Adobe Flash Media Live Encoder for available A/V devices under “Broadcast” → “Manage Cameras”. Make sure that the right device is selected by pressing on each one individually if multiple A/V devices are attached. If you’re using an external microphone with voice recording software, select that mic under Broadcast → “Manage Microphones”.
7. Now head over to the section titled “Live Streaming” in Adobe Flash Media Live Encoder. Clicking “Start Recording” will start broadcasting your game, while pressing “Stop Broadcast” will end it. If you want to go back and edit a previous broadcast, click on “Edit Recording”.
8. When you’re all done broadcasting, your video will be saved as an MP4 file onto the directory specified under Destination Folder in Step 5 of this process.
Now that your live stream is being captured from Adobe Flash Media Live Encoder, it’s time to get it ready for the world to watch! To do this, there are a few extra steps that need completing before uploading:
1. Export to Adobe Media Encoder:
On the main Adobe Flash Media Live Encoder page, click Export.
Select an available preset from the Preset dropdown menu. If you’ve set up custom settings as suggested in the process above, those will appear here as well for your convenience.
Click Browse and navigate to a destination on your computer where you would like to save your exported video file (make sure you remember this location!). Then click Save.
2. Compressing video:
You can apply additional compression to reduce the file size by dragging and dropping your exported .mp4 file onto Adobe Media Encoder’s application icon if necessary (found under “My Computer” → “Programs”). When prompted, click “OK” to start the process.
To apply any additional compression techniques, double-click on the file you just dragged and dropped onto Adobe Media Encoder’s window. This will open a second monitor with a different video player pre-loaded with all of your exported .mp4 files in a queue. Alternatively, you can drag and drop multiple .mp4 files back onto Adobe Media Encoder’s application icon at once if more than one file needs compressing at a time.
In order for people to actually watch your broadcasted video, it has to be uploaded from Adobe Media Encoder where it was saved in Step 1 above back up to your streaming service account (YouTube, Twitch, etc.).
Now that your streaming channel is fully configured and your video has been uploaded, you can start to promote the big debut! Share the link across all of your social media profiles to build an audience. Make sure that before going live, you change your status to “Offline” on all older past broadcasts so as not to create any gaps in between videos. Also consider making a blog post about it beforehand with links to watch the big reveal along with any other useful information such as equipment used, time zones, etc. If people want a reminder about when you plan on going live, don’t hesitate to schedule posts doing just that ahead of time. You never know who might show up to watch!