Hello,This is the first in a series of tutorials, meant to help you set up and stream your first video station on the net.
In this first tutorial, I will try to take you trough the process of encoding an video so that it can be streamed in a later tutorial.
The first thing you should take note of before starting, is that the NSV streaming format was left in a Beta stage. This doesn’t mean it’s dangerous, or not working. What it means is that the tools wasn’t fully completed, and that they might be a bit advanced to use.
The first thing you would want to do(if you haven’t allready) is to download the tools you need to start encoding and streaming. These tools are packed together for ease of use. If you go to the “official” NSV homepage(Here) You can find the tools. But I will give you an direct link: NSVTools Setup
After you have downloaded the .exe file and started it up, you will have to click “I Agree” at the first page, before you will be given some options on what to install. In most cases you will just leave everything as is(Checked), and you continue by clicking “Next >”
After this, you will be able to choose where to install it, for simplicity we’ll leave it as it is choosen(in my case: D:\Program Files\NSVtools) but it will most likely be C: in your case.
It will now install with all the options choosen. This shouldn’t take long at all, and after it’s complete, you can just press “Close”
We are now going to go to the folder we installed the NSV Tools.
You should find a program named “nsvate.exe”, that is your main encoding tool for all pre-encoded NSV streams.
What we are going encode is a pre-encoded NSV file. After it’s encoded you can’t change the quality or size of that file without encoding it again. Now, go ahead and open up nsvate.exe.
- This is the “new” button, clicking here will give you the option to add new videos to encode selecting from the useable formats of nsvate(As seen when choosing: .avi, .mpg, .mpeg, .mov) We’ll be taking a clooser look at this as we go.
- This is the “delete” button, and wil remove the currently selected queued encoding.
- Pressing this button will start the currently selected queued encoding, or give an error if unsucessfull.
- The stop button will stop the currently selected queued encoding, if it’s running.
- This will open up the profile manager, we will take a closer look at this later.
- This will open up the preferences window, allowing you to choose(In the order they appear)
- Encoding Priority: best left at normal, but can be set to low if the encoding makes you computer hang up. you would be best to NOT set this to high, as it can lock your computer.
- Automatically overwrite, if it should automatically overwrite the output file when starting to encode.
- Automatically create folder, if it should create output folder if it does not exist when starting to encode.
- Promt on exit, if it should give oyu a second chance when leaving, to not quit(Good if you accidentally click quit while encoding)
- Assume Framerate, should be left as is!
Let’s take a closer look at “new” by selecting an video file you have somewhere(Microsoft will sometimes include an example file under “My documents”)
After selecting the file on “new” you will be able to chose encoding profile to use, and to select where to output the encoded file. You can set both filename(automatically set to input filename) and output folder. You also have some buttons to quicken the selection.
You will see that we have no profile, so this would be a good time to look at the profile manager, which is the most advanced part of nsvate.
Profile, Profiles, Profiling?
There are two ways to reach the profile manager, either trough pushing the “Edit profiles” button after selecting a file to encode, or trough the button on the main nsvate window.
To the left you can see the list of all available profiles. to the right you get the buttons to manipulate that list.
as you can see, we should have one (Default) profile right now. I can tell you right now, it won’t encode anything, and is there just to look pretty.
We want to create our own profile, so we click “Add New”. This will add a new profile named “new profile” nice name, right? 🙂
We want to edit how that profile will work, so we click “Edit” while having our new profile selected.
You will get a new window with a lot of buttons, drop down lists and some checkbuttons.
I will not dive into the specifics of the encoding options of each codec on audio and video, and you will have experiment on that yourself. I will however give you a set-up to get you started. i will use the codec MP3 and VP3 as they are included in the package by default. There is other new codecs(Like AACP audio codec, and VP6 and H264 video codec) that you can find by going to the official NSV forums.
First you might want to change the name of the profile in the text box at the top.
If you look at the image, you will see I have allready set it up. You will have to select the codecs from the drop down lists at the second window.
Looking at the left window:
Resizing: This will define how it will resize the output video.
Output framerate: Using this you can set the output framerate.
Remember, setting anny of those two higher, will cause the quality to drop UNLESS you set the video bitrate higher too. Likevise, setting them lover will make it possible to lover the video bitrate without quality loss. Finding the best bitrate and framerate/resolution when you encode is usually something you’ll have to find yourself by testing.
You can leave both Video processing and Audio processing alone unless you know what you’re doing.
Now, go ahead and press the button “NSV Encoder Configuration” and you will get to the nest window.
Right window: This is where most of the audo and video settings are.
NSV format option: If you find you audio and video not being in sync, you’ll have to change the two upper settings. Leaving the min/max sync frame interval at either 0/’framerate’, 0/120 or both at zero will usually work, this too is something you’ll have to test your way to. file header is usually best left ticked, as this will provide an header telling the server and player about the file. TOC size and can just be left at 1024, it defines the searching to specific times inside the stream. Metadata can also be left alone, it just allows you to define custom variables.
Audio: Here you can select what audio codec to use. Depending on what codec you choose, the set-up will be different. For MP3 the bitrate is most likely what you would like to change. Maybe change between stereo and mono if you want really low bitrate audio.
Video: Here, you can select what video codec to use, and like with the audio, the set-up depends on what codec you choose. In our case, we choose VP3 and we get some settings for bitrate, keyframing and encoding speed/quality. In most cases you would only want to change the bitrate. if you have a really good CPU you might want to set quality to 50(high, buyt slow) or to 63(low, but fast) if you have a slow CPU and maybe tick Quick compress.
the rest would be best left alone.
Encode that Shit!
If you now press OK on both windows, you will be taken back to either the main window, or the profile chooser.
Go ahead and add a new file using the newly made profile, and you will see it added on the main window, in the encoding queue. You can add as manny videos as you want, and they will not start encoding untill you select them and start encoding them.
If you have manny videos you might go to the top of the window, into”misc” and press “Encode All”. This will queue all to encode after each other in the order they were added.
If you, when starting to encode, get anny kind of error, you might want to check wether you can play the file you’re trying to encode, in Windows Media player, as the encoder can mostly only encode what WMP can play. There might also be a problem with the Video or audio encoding configurations, double check them.
When encoding you will se a counter behind the file name under “Status”, this is the number of Minutes:Seconds thats been encoded of the video.
When it’s complete, as it will say so in the status field and you will then be able to play the NSV file using either Winamp, VLC player, or any other player that supports NSV.
Thats the end of this tutorial, in the next tutorial we’ll go on to set up Shoutcast before trying to stream our newly encoded file(s) over the net to all who want’s to see.
Anny questions can either be sent to me by e-mail, or asked at the comments field at the bottom of this page. Good Luck 🙂