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Live Stream hardware 2021 - what's current?


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I'd like to do a live stream for the VIR 24 hour, but I'm not well versed on how all of the parts work, nor familiar enough with it to know what I'm looking for.  There is surprisingly little information about live streaming from your car that doesn't include doing it through a direct app on your phone (which requires something like 1000 followers).

 

The Yi4K seemed to be the 'cheap but good' option but it is now NLA so the cheap part goes away.  Is there a new "good but cheap" option out there?

 

I found a write up of how to do it with a Rasperry Pi, one of my kids has  couple on his desk that he plays with, but he's not 100% sure he can make it work reliably.

 

The other bits about renting a hot spot seem pretty straight forward, but the camera to broadcast interface seems like you need a $400 Go-pro brand camera.

 

Any advice?

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  • Technical Advisory Committee

@MMiskoeyou can still find yi4k cameras online. At least you could in February. I bought one for about $130 and followed Paulie’s instructions. 
weve played with it creating livestreams to my YT channel but have not used it in a race yet. Others are still using this method successfully. 
iirc you need at least a hero 4 or later to be able to livestream with a go pro, so the pricing of the yi4k, and its livestream connection simplicity were always pluses that are still there. 

Edited by mcoppola
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  • 4 months later...

I have been falling down the car live streaming rabbit hole for a couple years now, and can tell you that finding a reliable solution on a cheap budget is wishful thinking.  I have jacked around with 2nd hand Yi4k's, GoPro's and hot spot rentals, power issues, charging issues, name a problem and I have probably experienced it.  I have wasted several hundred on crap that I probably should have just bit the bullet the first time.  That said, a very nice solution for the encoding your video source and transmitting it to YT (without that 1K subscription bs) is the Magewell Ultrastream.  Operates off 5v, has held up to Texas heat, encoded video quality is much nicer than the Yi4K, supports addtional audio feeds and most importantly has been rock solid reliable for me.  This is a standalone encoder, so you will need a camera that can output to an HDMI (or SDI which is a different model). 

https://www.amazon.com/Magewell-53010-Ultra-Stream-Encoder/dp/B07HQZ7VB6

 

For me, the last hurdle, down the rabbit hole, that I will be jumping over is the "hot spot rental".  We have had pretty good luck with DayPassWireless, but then our last H2R race had awful internet connections which resulted in annoying laggy video feed and interuptions.  The odd thing is we had a fantastic connection at the same race a year earlier.  Nevertheless, for us the the last piece of the puzzle is the upgrade to a cellular modem.  We are picking up a Peplink BR2 Max Min, but you can get older CradlePoint unit pulled from service vehicle for around $100.  Then all you need is a PrePaid Sim data plan from ATT or VZN which is the same price I was paying for my DayPassWireless 4-day rental with shipping.

 

As for my camera I went with a barebones professional POV camera called the AIDA HD-100.  The main driver for me is it has a larger video processor chip, so it will produce a better image than your typical consumer grade POV camera (ie. GoPro, Yi4K, etc).  It camera body also supports standard CS-Mount lens, so I can OPTICALLY get the field of view I want in the car and not just some "digital zoom" that your consumer grade cameras do.  Being a pro-grade camera it has been reliable, as long as it has been fed probably power.  It operates of 12v, and you cannot screw up the polarity, ask me how I know.  :(  Thankfully, AIDA has been fantastic in supporting us, as they warrantied the camera after killing it in a car that had the voltage polarity reversed.

   

 

  

Edited by BryanPendleton
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  • 2 weeks later...

The setup going into our car is a Peplink UBR dual sim with VZW and ATT sims and paying the annual subscription to use their WAN bonding technology. In car encoder pulling from a GoPro8. With the encoder the camera feature set itself becomes less important, and I will limit my stream to 720p to conserve bandwidth (unless I have strong enough signal for 1080 to be reliable).

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  • 1 month later...

@BryanPendleton, how difficult/easy was setting up the Magewell encoder?  My teammate and I are brand new to this and watched Paulie's very helpful video  about setting up Yi 4K action cam, but they're no longer available and the idea of better quality encoding is attractive if we can get it to work. 

 

We already have a GoPro 4 Black and a GoPro 5 Black, both of which have HDMI outputs, so we're likely to try running a GoPro to an encoder via HDMI, and connect the encoder to a Wifi hotspot in the car.  

 

Also, the idea of using cellular bonding sounds good but I have no idea how to make that happen.  Anybody know of an online how-to that explains how to achieve bonding of multiple networks with a wifi hotspot?  Thanks!

 

Marc

#981 Cranky Dingo Racing

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  • 1 month later...

I would agree with the above there is not an inexpensive way to get a hands- off, reliable, high quality stream. We have iterated through many different combinations of encoders, antennas, etc and have settled on the attached. We also took the bonus of having an onboard internet connection to be able to VNC into a Pi and run TunerStudio to monitor the data coming from the ECU. Can use the same connection to remote into the encoder.

 

We are moving the rig to the trunk and so we added a Pepware external dome antenna. We also added a charging circuit and switching diode to the system so that the system charges the (small) battery which is used to keep the stream running when power is cut for stops.

 

Next step is to cost reduce so we can replicate in all of our cars. We see the camera and the encoder as the primary places for this. We have found awful reliability with GoPros and think it’s due to overheating. Considering designing an aluminum enclosed with a heat sink on it. At that point, may as well buy the Aida which has been bulletproof. Could also add a remote reset circuit to reset crashed GoPros but that is reactive not proactive. As for the encoder, like many new(ish) technologies that are rapidly rising in popularity, the cost is falling everyday.


 

 

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On 2/8/2022 at 9:00 AM, B-Rad said:

@MBMEngineering  Can you share some footage that this setup produces?

Would also be interested in seeing what this setup's live feed actually looks like and gives you the ability to display. 

 

That is definitely an expensive solution, though. I can say our current hotspot + Yi Action cam gets us most of the way there. The only real deficiency is telemetry data. That's something we'd love to do somehow. 

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  • 1 month later...
  • Technical Advisory Committee

Livestream hardware:  2022 version.

 

At Daytona I was unable to stream using my yi 4k camera.

 

I never was able to get it to "connect to wifi".

 

Until this race, I had been using a iPhone 6 with unlimited data.

Since VIR, I was "upgraded" by work to a iPhone 11.   Google searching tells me that Apple "upgraded" the security on iOS 15 to disallow wpa2 security devices from pairing with the hotspot of the iPhone using iOS15 or newer.  Awesome.

 

This seems to be confirmed because I can't get my ipad running iOS 9 to pair with the iPhone 11, but it will pair with an iPhone 6s

 

This all is very frustrating...  I guess I could buy a hotspot or maybe just swap my SIM card back into an older iPhone?  I have a 6s on an older iOS that may work for awhile?

 

Is there a better solution that doesnt cost $2k?

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Posted (edited)

@Chris HugginsI had a hard time getting my yi4k to connect to an iphone, too. Verizon is my carrier. Their jetpack hotspot seems to work quite well - it connects instantly to the yi every time. The price is/was $200 over 2 years (8.33/month) plus $10 access fee/month.

I'm not sure if other wireless carriers offer their own hotspots or if the jetpack is exclusive to Verizon....

 

edit: I actually just found new jetpacks are available on Amazon for $104 new.

https://www.amazon.com/Verizon-Jetpack-Hotspot-WiFi-Device/dp/B09LYMZ49Q/ref=asc_df_B09LYMZ49Q/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=563548498710&hvpos=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=16639222102611728450&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9016902&hvtargid=pla-1568738367115&psc=1

Edited by mcoppola
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I live streamed at Daytona for the first time.  I used a Yi4k to a hot spot from daypasswireless to YouTube, following Paulie's tutorial.  Worked flawlessly.

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I also used my YI 4k in Ed's infiniti and a Verizon MiFi, however, they are not able to withstand a chemical attack...  lost the mic on my camera completely after an hour of racing...   luckily, I have 3 more of those cameras.

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On 4/4/2022 at 2:39 PM, Chris Huggins said:

Livestream hardware:  2022 version.

 

At Daytona I was unable to stream using my yi 4k camera.

 

I never was able to get it to "connect to wifi".

 

Until this race, I had been using a iPhone 6 with unlimited data.

Since VIR, I was "upgraded" by work to a iPhone 11.   Google searching tells me that Apple "upgraded" the security on iOS 15 to disallow wpa2 security devices from pairing with the hotspot of the iPhone using iOS15 or newer.  Awesome.

 

This seems to be confirmed because I can't get my ipad running iOS 9 to pair with the iPhone 11, but it will pair with an iPhone 6s

 

This all is very frustrating...  I guess I could buy a hotspot or maybe just swap my SIM card back into an older iPhone?  I have a 6s on an older iOS that may work for awhile?

 

Is there a better solution that doesnt cost $2k?

I have a Solis hotspot and purchase day passes. Daypass costs $9. They use the Verizon network. Using the Yi4k Camera.

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26 minutes ago, Hillar K said:

I have a Solis hotspot and purchase day passes. Daypass costs $9. They use the Verizon network. Using the Yi4k Camera.

Who do you buy the passes through? This seems totally reasonable

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1 hour ago, Chris Huggins said:

Who do you buy the passes through? This seems totally reasonable

Hotspot:

https://soliswifi.co/products/solis-lite

Plans:

https://soliswifi.co/collections/wifi-plans/products/global-daypass

 

Camera and hotspot are powered from a 10000Mah battery pack. 

Edited by Hillar K
added battery pack
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Daypasswireless is also $10 per day - 4 day minimum.  I used 3 battery packs as well, 1 to power the Yi4k, 1 for the hot spot and 1 for 2 GoPro cameras.  Overkill to give the hotspot and Yi4k separate power, but I wanted to make sure they didn't have any issues.

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