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Requirements for streaming webcast

Posted: Thu May 26, 2011 10:09 am
by anne murray
A local group would like to borrow my laptop to stream a webcast in the PA Library June 1. I'm wondering what the computer requirements are for doing so. My MacBook is 5 1/2 years old, Intel Core 2 Duo Chip, 2 Ghz Processor Speed, Bus speed 667 mhz.

The webcast is being broadcast through a website. I have Quicktime 10.0 installed. Is that germaine to a webcast?

Apple states that the best performance comes from configuring the computer to match the speed of the internet connection. My modem is 1.5 Mbs. Do I need to make an adjustment for the Library's speed?

Thanks for your help.

Re: Requirements for streaming webcast

Posted: Thu May 26, 2011 10:46 am
by Jay Cline
Streaming means you'll be watching a live video on your web browser. It would be wise for you to go to the library and test a streaming video from that website prior to the live viewing. You might need the correct plug-in to your web browser depending on what the streaming website requires.

Re: Requirements for streaming webcast

Posted: Thu May 26, 2011 10:49 am
by anne murray
This is a live webcast of an event at Town Hall in Seattle. The sponsoring organization says no special computer requirements are necessary.

Re: Requirements for streaming webcast

Posted: Thu May 26, 2011 10:53 am
by Jay Cline
Give us a link to the website.

Re: Requirements for streaming webcast

Posted: Thu May 26, 2011 11:51 am
by anne murray

Re: Requirements for streaming webcast

Posted: Thu May 26, 2011 12:32 pm
by Stephen Hart
Anne, I would start by testing any streaming video in the library. Then try one from some site likely to use a smaller server. (That is to say, don't just watch an Apple trailer.)
The first relevant issue is how fast the internet connection is. I think the library's wireless is pretty good.
The second is whether your Mac will need to rebuffer a lot. That can be really annoying, but may be out of your control.

You don't say whether the webcast is live or if you're watching an event that will have already happened. If the latter, you could download or record the whole thing and then avoid any issues with rebuffering.

Re: Requirements for streaming webcast

Posted: Thu May 26, 2011 3:01 pm
by anne murray
Steve,

This is a webcast of a live event at Town Hall. Is the speed of my processor an issue with rebuffering? If so, the group could look for another computer.

Re: Requirements for streaming webcast

Posted: Thu May 26, 2011 3:25 pm
by Richard Serkes
anne murray wrote:Steve,

This is a webcast of a live event at Town Hall. Is the speed of my processor an issue with rebuffering? If so, the group could look for another computer.
The speed of your process is a factor but not a large one even though your Macbook is a few years old. The throughput of your video card is more important, but it should be adequate. The real issue is the speed of the I'Net connection and the library's speed should be more than adequate.

But as already suggested, just go to the library and try watching a live steam and see what happens. There's nothing like an empirical test to see what's to be seen.

Re: Requirements for streaming webcast

Posted: Thu May 26, 2011 4:23 pm
by Stephen Hart
Another factor is the AirPort card in your Mac. We're using a 7.5-year-old PowerBook as a radio server, connected to our stereo. It does fine playing streaming radio, NWPR, for example. But ask it to stream music from a Mac upstairs and it skips. A newer MacBook Pro does not have this problem.

Of course, if you use an ethernet cord, that problem is solved. There are ethernet jacks in the Carver room.

You might want to ask a librarian for help in testing this.

Re: Requirements for streaming webcast

Posted: Thu Jun 02, 2011 9:56 am
by anne murray
Thanks to all who contributed to this discussion. The live streaming worked just fine using my Macbook and an ethernet connection. The lighting on the library's screen was a little poor but they may have been the result of the LCD projector we used. The library's speakers did not project as well as I believe my home speakers would have, but they were adequate.

Hope the meeting was enjoyable.