Matrox Guide: Understanding SRT - Secure Reliable Transport Protocol

In the ever-evolving landscape of video streaming, the Secure Reliable Transport (SRT) protocol emerges as a game-changer. Developed as a royalty-free, open-source solution, SRT excels in delivering secure, low-latency streaming performance, particularly over unpredictable networks like the public internet. At its core, SRT leverages an intelligent packet retransmit mechanism called Automatic Repeat reQuest (ARQ) atop a UDP data flow, offering protection against packet loss, bandwidth fluctuations, and ensuring the quality of live video transmissions.

The surge in the use of video across various sectors necessitates a robust solution for streaming. SRT steps in as a protocol uniquely tailored for high-performance video, amalgamating the low latency of User Datagram Protocol (UDP) with error-checking to rival the reliability of Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP). Unlike TCP/IP, SRT is codec agnostic, making it a versatile choice for streaming any type of video content.

Excitement among IT thought leaders is palpable as SRT emerges as a viable replacement for the aging Real-Time Messaging Protocol (RTMP). RTMP, a TCP-based streaming protocol known for its low-latency and minimal buffering, struggles with new applications due to its inability to stream HEVC video content. In contrast, SRT's codec agnosticism allows it to seamlessly handle various video content types.

The benefits of adopting the SRT protocol are multifaceted. SRT not only ensures pristine video quality by safeguarding against jitter, packet loss, and bandwidth fluctuations but also excels in low-latency delivery, combining the reliability of TCP/IP with the speed of UDP. Security is paramount, with SRT employing industry-standard AES 128/256-bit encryption for end-to-end protection and simplified firewall traversal. Leveraging the public internet becomes a reality, opening up new avenues for streaming applications, including cloud-based distribution and streaming to various social media platforms concurrently.

SRT's versatility extends to its interoperability, allowing users to seamlessly integrate it into their video and audio streaming workflows with confidence in multi-vendor compatibility. As a cost-effective, open-source protocol, SRT ensures future-proofed solutions through its commitment to the SRT Alliance, a community founded in 2017 to support the collaborative development and free availability of the SRT protocol. As a member of the SRT Alliance, Matrox Video stands behind the endorsement of SRT, emphasizing its significance in reshaping the landscape of secure, reliable, and low-latency video streaming.

Read the full blog post from Matrox HERE

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