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SRT lets you stream over public networks AND retain quality output

BWS Sapphire codecs now with SRT

When it comes to streaming content over public networks, such as the internet, you can find yourself faced with noisy, congested networks that impact the quality of your stream. The solution is the SRT (Secure Reliable Transport) protocol, and it’s why we’ve ensured that the software for our BWS Sapphire products can now be upgraded to allow SRT streaming directly between encoders and decoders.

So, what is SRT and how will it benefit your broadcasts?

SRT is an open source streaming protocol that lets you send low-latency video over congested networks and combat such problems as jitter and packet loss. SRT has been designed from the ground up to address these problems without compromising latency, which is critical to live broadcasters. 

When trying to stream video content across the internet or get access from congested locations, such as sporting venues, concerts or rallies, SRT gives you:

  • the best-quality video over the worst-quality networks
  • low latency for live content
  • security for valuable content
  • ease of use
  • interoperability between vendors.
How it works (the techie stuff)

SRT adapts in real time to changes in network characteristics. It uses UDP (User Datagram Protocol — widely used for streaming audio and video, voice over IP (VoIP) and videoconferencing) for its underlying transport layer with all its benefits of low latency. On its own, UDP isn’t reliable because it doesn’t check for errors. When transmitting voice and video, erroneous or dropped packets aren’t retransmitted.

However, TCP (Transmission Control Protocol) does ensure that all data arrives accurately and completely in tact at the other end. But all that checking can mean latency issues.

SRT has found a way to marry them both to get the benefits of low latency AND quality output. It supports packet recovery like TCP, but minimises latency by employing recovery timeouts. Error checking for reliable transmission is also included as part of the protocol, as well as security with built in encryption. It’s the combination of these characteristics, adapting to real world network conditions, error checking, packet retransmission, low latency and security that make it ideal for transmission of live video content.

SRT becoming industry standard

It’s a solution that has been proven to work. SRT has already been widely adopted by encoder manufacturers and is fast becoming the industry standard for delivering content over real world networks.

Click here to see an example of how video reacts with and without SRT in real world networks. Then contact us to find out how you can put the benefits of SRT to use for you.