The Easiest Way to Broadcast Streaming Video with QuickTime Broadcaster

Want to broadcast videos to anyone, local or distant? You can easily do this with the magic of QuickTime Broadcaster. Broadcast lectures to far away students, live video feeds of a family barbecue to relatives across the world, or use it to broadcast in-house video to local terminals. Whatever you need to broadcast, QuickTime Broadcaster makes it easy. Let me show you how to set it up.

Get QuickTime Broadcaster:

Before you even start broadcasting, you’ll need to get QuickTime Broadcaster. Don’t worry, it’s actually a free application! If you have OS X Server, it’s probably already located in your Applications folder.

Download: QuickTime Broadcaster.

Wait, there’s a catch:

Now, before you get too excited about broadcasting video to the world, there’s a little detail to discuss. QuickTime broadcaster will only allow you to stream video directly to one client. Streaming video, especially high quality video, can be a bit much for your computer and connection so in a way, this may be a good limitation.

If you only want to stream to one specific person / computer, then don’t worry about this and continue on. If you did plan on streaming to larger amounts of people (more than one), read on..

To get around this limitation, you’ll have to use either a multicast enabled network or use QuickTime Streaming Server. Luckily this streaming server is part of OS X Server, which you should be using anyway if you’re planning to broadcast en masse.

Set up your video feed:

Now that you downloaded and installed QuickTime Broadcaster, let’s set up your feed. As soon as you run the program it will grab video from your built in iSight webcam and unless you are using the QuickTime streaming server, it will promptly fail and give you an error when you press the Broadcast button.

This is how to set up the video feed:

1. Click on the “Show Details” button.

2. In the details portion, Click on the “Audio” tab at the top.

QuickTime Broadcaster setup

3. Select your audio source from the “Source” selector:

QuickTime Broadcaster setup

4. If you know what you are doing and want to tweak audio settings, this is where you do it.

Note: You can also disable the audio feed if you’d like to send video only.

5. Click on the “Video” tab at the top.

QuickTime Broadcaster setup

6. Select your video source from the “Source” selector if you aren’t using the built in iSight.

QuickTime Broadcaster setup

7. Notice the “Preset” selector at the top. This sets the appropriate video settings for your connection.

Note: Remember – the higher the quality, the better network you will need.

8. You can also tweak the video settings here if you know what you are doing.

Set up the Network:

1. Click on the “Network” tab at the top.

2. Select “Manual Unicast” from the Transmission selector.

QuickTime Broadcaster setup

3. Important! In the address field, type in the IP of the receiving computer.

4. Once your settings are set, click File on the Menu Bar and “Export”.

5. Choose SDP and save this to your desktop.

6. Copy the SDP file onto the receiving computer.

7. Click Broadcast from QuickTime Broadcaster to start your stream.

8. Double click on the SDP file from the receiving computer.

9. If all goes well, you will see your stream!

Note: There is a few seconds delay between the broadcast and the receiving video. This is normal.

Just remember that if you want to stream to more than one computer / person at a time, you’ll need to use QuickTime Streaming Server which comes with OS X Server. If you don’t have OS X Server and won’t plan on using it, you can also use the open source Darwin Streaming Server.

Note: I only recommend using Darwin Streaming Server if you are a more advanced user.

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