The most crucial considerations among a wide range of factors to create a high-quality live stream are the upload speed and powerful hardware. Finding hardware may not take much time, but when seeking an acceptable upload speed, things may get trickier as there’s no straightforward way to aim this. For live streaming, a good upload speed depends on the platform, content, and several other factors
To lend you a hand, we have created a quick guide on internet upload speeds to help you understand bitrates, frames per second, resolutions, and other aspects of internet speed.
Let’s get the ball rolling!
Basics for Live-Streaming
Internet Connection Options
There are three internet connection choices for live-streaming
- Cellular Data
Among all these, Ethernet, for its stable and reliable services, is ideal for live streaming. If Ethernet is unavailable, a wireless connection can also get the job done, i.e., Wi-Fi. However, wireless connections are not as reliable as wired connections. Cellular data is the final choice if Ethernet or Wi-Fi is not available.
Once you get a reliable internet connection, the next thing you need is a good internet speed. Internet speed may be measured in two ways:
A broadcaster has to keep an eye on the upload speed of their internet connection. It’s the same as the download rate, except it shows how many data bits you can send per second. Mbps is another way of expressing it. According to the data, download speeds are often faster than upload speeds. We suggest that your upload speed be at least twice as much as the total bandwidth you’ll require when live broadcasting.
How to Determine the Best Internet Speed for Live Streaming?
There is no doubt that live video streaming can consume a significant amount of bandwidth. Generally, 672 kbps to 61.5 Mbps is often considered a good upload speed. Because the range is so extensive, it’s critical to identify your streaming requirements to receive a more detailed response. Let’s look at how this works by breaking out bandwidth and two other variables connected to streaming.
An internet connection’s bandwidth refers to the quantity of data it sends and receives. Broadcasting relies heavily on bandwidth for several reasons. For example, it determines:
- The kind of internet speed you need.
- Affect the live streaming cost based on the amount of bandwidth you consume.
Bitrate and resolution are two of the most critical factors affecting bandwidth consumption. As a result, higher-quality broadcasts with more significant traffic demand more bandwidth.
The quantity of data carried during a specific time is called video bitrate. It is frequently measured in bits per second, abbreviated as bps. Kilobits per second, or kbps, are used for smaller files.
At the encoder level, the bitrate can be changed. This operation is used to modify the video resolution.
The number of pixels that create the video frame to build the image on the screen is defined as video resolution in the simplest terms. Most of the time, the number of pixels determines the quality of the video. A larger number of pixels might result in a crisper image.
Pixels measure the height and width of a video. For example, a film with a 1920 x 1080 aspect ratio would have 1920 pixels at the bottom and 1080 pixels at the top.
Live streaming in higher-resolution means more bandwidth consumption, and higher-resolution videos necessitate faster internet. Your high-resolution video can appear choppy or lag if you try to broadcast it using a slow internet connection.
How to Ensure That You Have Enough Bandwidth for Streaming?
It’s straightforward. You need to ensure that the stream bitrate is always less than the upload bandwidth. For example, if you have an upload bandwidth of 5Mbps, the stream bitrate must be less than 5 Mbps. This is a straightforward calculation. However, how much less than 5Mbps is still a question.
Anyhow, bandwidth constraints are simply one-half of the tale! To ensure the success of your live broadcast, you’ll need to consider the following points.
Keep Some Spare Bandwidth (And Upload Speed) On Hand at All Times
Make sure you always have an adequate bandwidth for streaming your show – and even more than that. As a result, you’ll have more flexibility to deal with network fluctuations. Any user activity (e.g., Internet uploads, VoIP conversation, gaming) on your network can influence bandwidth and upload speed.
Streaming bandwidth may be estimated using the following formula:
Total video bitrate + total audio bitrate X 1.5 = Bandwidth required for upload.
We recommend always keeping roughly 1.5x your stream’s bitrate available to allow for any anticipated network variations. You may not require all of the predicted overhead bandwidth on a solid network, but it’s an excellent option to be on the safe side.
Factors Influencing the Upload Speed Requirements
The maximum upload speed for 720p video at 30 frames per second is 5.7 Mbps. However, it’s easy to stream a 720p live video even with a slower upload speed. I
If you wish to broadcast events with a lot of visual elements, 4,000 kbps would work fine. The greater your bitrate, the quicker the visual’ pace will be. The material you stream also influences what constitutes a decent upload speed for you.
Let’s stick with video games for now. If you’re broadcasting a fast-paced shooter game, make sure your viewers can see all that’s going on. You may want to stream at a rate faster than 30 frames per second.
A Greater Bitrate Is Required for Higher Frame Rates
To use Twitch’s 720p video service, the bandwidth range is between 3,000 and 5,500kbps. For YouTube Live, 2,200 to 6,000 Kbps is recommended. If you want to broadcast 720p video at 60 frames per second on Twitch or YouTube Live, you’ll need an upload speed of 6.2 Mbps and 7.4 Mbps, respectively. Also, keep in mind that these are only the best possible values.
A Suitable Upload Speed for Live Broadcasting Will Differ From Platform to Platform
- Beginner-level streamers on Facebook can only broadcast up to 720p video, thus, having more than 5 Mbps. To live stream Full HD videos, you must join the Level Up affiliate program they offer their users.
- Video resolutions of 1080p at 60 frames per second are what Twitch supports. An upload speed of up to 7.4 Mbps is more than enough to support it.
- YouTube Live can stream 4K videos at 60 frames per second. It suggests a bit rate of between 20,000 and 51,000 kbps. 68.8 Mbps of an upload speed is more than sufficient.
As a Last Consideration, Rivals May Impact Your Upload Speed Needs
YouTube and Twitch are clogged with broadcasters striving hard to monetize their services. If you’re streaming as well, you can’t afford to lag in video quality. More incredible upload speeds are required for higher quality; therefore, the competition will ultimately pressure you to boost your upload rate.
What Upload Rates Should You Strive For?
With all of these factors insight, t’s pointless to inquire about what constitutes a “good” upload speed. Instead, you should ask yourself what pace you should strive for in your situation.
Bitrates and associated upload rates are recommended by the three primary streaming services. We’ll break down our data by resolution, platform, and frame rate before you.
- A maximum bitrate of 4,000 kbps is recommended for video.
- Audio bitrates of up to 128 kbps are recommended.
- The maximum resolution is 1080p, with 60 frames per second reproduction. Ideally, it would be helpful to opt for an internet plan that offers an upload speed of up to 7 Mbps (although Facebook offers a limitation to 720p resolution for most accounts).
- Try to strike an upload speed of 3 to 4 Mbps for 720p video at 30 or 60 frames per second.
- For a video with 720p at 30 frames per second, the bitrate recommended falls in the range of 2,500 to 4,000 kbps. It requires upload rates ranging from 3.2 to 5 Mbps.
- The bitrate for 720p video at 60 frames per second should be between 3,500 and 5,000 kbps. Upload rates of 4.4 to 6.2 Mbps are required.
- The bitrate for 1080p video at 30 frames per second should be 3,500 to 5,000 kbps. The upload speed requirements are still the same, between 4.4 and 6.2 Mbps.
- 1080p video at 60 frames per second requires a bitrate between 4500 and 6000 kbps. Upload rates of 5.6 Mbps to 7.4 Mbps are necessary.
- 1,500 to 4,000 kbps is recommended for 720p video at 30 frames per second. That equates to an upload speed between 2 and 5 Mbps.
- The range for 720p video at 60 frames per second is 2,250 to 6,000 kbps. It means upload rates of 2.9 to 7.4 Mbps are required.
- The bitrate range for 1080p video at 30 frames per second is 3,000 to 6,000 kbps. That’s equal to upload rates of 3.8 to 7.4 Mbps.
- The bitrate range for 1080p video at 60 frames per second is 4,500 to 9,000 kbps. This equates to between 5.6 Mbps and 11 Mbps in terms of upload speeds.
Wrapping It Up
So, the proven fact is that the quality of your broadcast determines the quality of your content as a live video streamer. Whether you are the best gamer, the best prankster, or have the most refined sense of humor, if viewers can’t see or hear you well, they won’t stick to watching your stream.
That’s why always choose a connection with sufficient upload speed for the sort of content you intend to broadcast. AT&T, Spectrum, Mediacom, COX, and Xfinity offers the best high-speed internet service to satisfy your streaming needs!