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nomski  
#1 Posted : Friday, May 22, 2020 11:21:35 PM(UTC)
nomski

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Location: Sheffield

Hi all. We keep having very varied success with NDI. Sometimes it's absolutely reliable and sometimes it really isn't! It seems pretty random and we've done all kinds of testing but to no avail. The issues are hard to repeat and when they are there, they're impossible to resolve. The number one symptom we have I would describe as dropped frames. It stutters and slows down and sometimes as badly as down to 2-3 frames per second.

When it's at it's simplest, we've seen this issue on a gigabit network between to very well specified PC's playing back a video in vMix being viewed on Studio Monitor on a second PC. The only two device on the network were the PC's, it wasn't plugged into the WAN and wifi was off.

So really what I'm wondering, does anyone have a bombproof setup that you use regularly (and intensely, lots of cameras/feeds etc.). If so, could you share some of the hardware and settings information with us so we can try and get something working properly. I'm starting to wonder if it's the Mikrotik switches that we use or the settings but we followed all the Newtek advice but with no success.

Any help is much appreciated!
mjgraves  
#2 Posted : Saturday, May 23, 2020 2:04:39 AM(UTC)
mjgraves

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I've produced conferences using NDI for a few years. No issues at all. Most recently:

2 x BirdDog P200 PTZ cameras connected over NDI
2 x BirdDog Studio capturing presenter laptops
1 x BirdDog Studio Mini capturing a utility laptop (remote presenters and interstitial show)
2 x SFF PC running Studio Monitor to projectors
1 x vMix 4k system, locally record the line cut and stream to YouTube.
1 x Ubiquiti POE+ switch
1 x Ubiquiti Security gateway as router/DHCP server
1 x utility laptop running Studio Monitor for PTZ remote control
1 x Kiloview N2 wireless NDI-HX encoder for a mobile camera over Wi-Fi

Unicast
All devices DHCP with MAC reservations
All production devices on their own subnet
My vMix host (i7-5775C) was not quite happy running at 1080p60...perfectly happy at 1080p30.
It has two NICs, so I have dual gigabit connections to the vMix server
csobsidian  
#3 Posted : Saturday, May 23, 2020 10:42:37 PM(UTC)
csobsidian

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I've created several small NDI productions, mostly without issue. Theres no such thing as bombproof as every setup has it's own requirements. I've gotten NDI to work quite well with just a laptop from 5 years ago using on-board intel graphics.

Tell us what you have and what you want to do with as much specificity as possible and we might be able to help you out.
nomski  
#4 Posted : Tuesday, May 26, 2020 7:36:47 PM(UTC)
nomski

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Location: Sheffield

Thanks guys. I'm going to do some testing this week and see where I get to and then update you. Really we just want the flexibility of using NDI when we need it. A commentary monitor, large LCD screens, camera inputs etc. but almost without fail we get sketchy results. We had a commentary monitor drop down to about 3 frames a second so we've gone back to SDI for now for reliability.
mavik  
#5 Posted : Wednesday, May 27, 2020 12:18:41 AM(UTC)
mavik

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I can tell from my experiences that it's worth to take a look at the switch. Even more carefully when using PoE.
I found that some switches don't provide enough constant power leading to freezes. On one the CPU was exhausted wit hthe amount of data. So it is essential to check if all ports have wirespeed L2 switching and that each port is able to provide the power needed.

You might end up with more costly switches from netgear, cisco, hp that fulfill the specs.

The P200 needs PoE+, even though my switch specs say that it provides it and the power consumption is within specs the cam has interruptions. The Studios need a bit lower power specs. But running all cams and studios on the same switch just draw too much power from it.

Advice #1. Check if issues stay with NDI encoder AC powered
Advice #2. Exchange the switch

What I also noticed is that opening studio monitor at the same time as ingested into vmix (although on the same computer) causes twice the bandwidth. A P200 is about 200mbps, a Studio about 180mbps. Haven 2x P200 and 2x Studio equals to 600mbps. If you then open studio monitor for reference checking and maybe recording with newtek iso recorder you might exhaust your network card very easily.

Hopefully I find some time to do a video with my findings.
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