Last night while watching the boys on cam we noticed an issue in some of the rooms – choppy video and sound. We tested out a few different chat rooms and found some common denominators. The biggest culprit? Wifi.
We have always strongly recommended wires for broadcasters, it’s the best $10 you can spend. An analogy we’ve used before is this: Using a wire is like drinking through a straw, it’s fast, direct and you get every drop. Using Wifi is like throwing your drink in the air and trying to catch as much of it as you can while it falls to the ground.
While Wifi is very convenient, and quite sufficient for the light things that most people use their computers and devices for, we have found that for streaming live video it just doesn’t stack up. Nothing compares to the video quality, speed and stability of streaming through a wire. Wifi speeds are between 10mbps and 150 mbps, depending on the quality and age of your set up. You’d be surprised just how many people are still using the old 10mbps Wifi cards and choking out their device’s higher limits. Cat6 wire, on the other hand, can handle, with minimal packet loss, up to 1000 mbps.
For cam host broadcasters, the demand on their internet connection is far greater than that of the regular user and every additional connection they use simultaneously cuts their connection in half, again. Split casting, streaming music and videos, and downloading on Wifi will drastically affect the quality, speed and smoothness of your broadcast.