So if you’ve been following our live streams or watching the replays on Twitch, you may have noticed some struggles with getting our streaming right.
We started out streaming exclusively to Twitch. This wasn’t due to some fervent loyalty. Bernie had been streaming on Twitch and I thought it would be a great platform to broadcast our coding lessons to.
I use OBS, as I talked about in another post, which made it super easy to broadcast to Twitch.
I have my crack QA team downstairs, taking the coding lessons, themselves, so they would often run upstairs and tell me if the stream froze or went blocky or away altogether. As we’re teaching coding live, if you can’t see what I’m doing on the screen it makes it really hard to follow along. And that happened a few times, and my crack QA team was reduced to tears. Not quite what I was looking for from my audience.
I was also struggling, off and on, with the video feed from my iPhone camera.
The Next Stage
My goal was to stream the lessons for a bunch of kids in the area, and some parents weren’t keen on letting their kid loose on Twitch (call it a rough first landing for a few of them).
After a few different apps, including a home rolled one, I gave up on the iPhone camera to just use the built-in FaceTime camera on my laptop for anything needing my face. The quality isn’t quite as high, but at least I’m not way out of sync.
So while I tinkered with OBS settings for the output and numerous camera apps, I also set up a Mobcrush account. This let me start streaming live to YouTube, Facebook, and Twitch, all from the one broadcast… not too shabby!
I could set OBS up to stream to Mobcrush easily enough:
And I was away… but I noticed, during the stream, that I was dropping around half the frames I had intended to broadcast… ouch.
To fix the frame dropping issue I reduced the resolution (to 1280 x 720 from 1920 x 1080) and dropped the frames per second from 60 to 30.
I also plugged into an ethernet jack in the wall, whereas before I was streaming over WiFi…
That seemed to help… until today. For some reason my favorite testers on Twitch weren’t seeing anything on screen. There were no dropped frames, everything looked okay. But no Twitch. YouTube was streaming fine.
So I’ve decided to switch it up a little. Instead of streaming to Twitch, YouTube, Facebook, and more, I’ll just be posting to YouTube from now on.
Maybe our next step will be to add back in the iPhone camera feed. But for now, I think we’re happy with this setup. Just anything that lets folks follow along better at home.
Time will tell how that works out, but the saga continues!