PTZ Camera Review: IP Video Protocols

In today's fast-moving digital landscape, streaming protocols act as the unspoken conduits connecting our cameras to a worldwide audience. Yet, navigating this vast realm of protocols can seem like a formidable challenge. Welcome to a captivating blog post by Yuto Izumi for ProNews, where we embark on an expedition through the complex tapestry of streaming protocols. From the familiar "RTMP" ideal for YouTube livestreaming to the cutting-edge "SRT," along with the revolutionary "NDI" and SMPTE ST 2110, we will carefully dissect the distinctive features of each protocol. This journey aims to demystify the puzzle of which cameras are the perfect fit for each. For those starting their journey with PTZ cameras, this treasure trove of knowledge will empower you to make informed decisions in your quest for the ideal streaming setup. So, without further ado, let's plunge into the world of streaming protocols, unravel their intricacies, and uncover the perfect PTZ camera companions for your broadcasting aspirations.

“RTMP” for YouTube livestreaming

You've probably heard of RTMP, right? It's short for Real-Time Messaging Protocol, and it's a big deal in the world of online video streaming. Major players like YouTube rely on it to give you that top-notch video and audio quality in both live and on-demand streaming. And hey, there's an even more secure version called "RTMPS" in the works to make your streaming experience even better. Just a heads up, though, YouTube Live currently only plays nice with compatible devices, but they're eyeing RTMPS for the future.

Now, if you're into surveillance PTZ cameras, there's this cousin protocol called RTSP (Real-Time Streaming Protocol) that's your go-to. It's a champ when it comes to super low-latency streaming. But don't sweat it if you're all about YouTube or Facebook live streaming; you don't need to worry too much about RTSP camera compatibility. Stick around as we navigate the world of streaming protocols, making it all crystal clear and giving you the know-how to level up your streaming game.


Now, let's talk about SRT - the acronym stands for "Secure Reliable Transport." It's a bit of a game-changer in the world of video streaming. Back in 2017, Hi-Vision made it open source, and it's been shaking things up ever since. SRT is all about delivering top-quality video from far-off places. That's why it's become a favorite in remote production setups. It's got security features that are pretty solid, keeps those annoying delays to a minimum, and makes sure your images look fantastic, even when they're going the distance.

Setting up SRT on your end is a breeze; it's kind of like dealing with RTMP. But, here's the catch: the folks on the receiving end need to open up a network port, which might need a bit of basic network knowledge. Don't worry, though - Photron has got your back with a cloud gateway service that's super user-friendly. If you're not exactly a tech whiz, these kinds of services can be a lifesaver, helping you make the most of what SRT has to offer.


Now, let's talk about NDI - that's Network Device Interface. It's the big name in IP technology for hooking up your video gear. When it comes to remote cameras, there are two main flavors of NDI: "Full NDI (High Bandwidth NDI)" and "NDI|HX."

Full NDI is the heavyweight champion, but only a select few, like BirdDog and NewTek, play that game because it needs some serious hardware support. On the other side, we've got "NDI|HX," which arrived on the scene in 2017. It uses H.264 compression and is compatible with all sorts of camera manufacturers like Sony, Canon, and Panasonic – they're all jumping on the NDI|HX train.

Back in the day, NDI|HX didn't quite match the image quality of Full NDI, so folks who really cared about how their video looked usually stuck with BirdDog and NewTek gear. But things changed with "NDI|HX 2" and "NDI|HX 3." Suddenly, NDI|HX got a lot better, and the image quality is pretty much on par with Full NDI.

Here's the cool part: NDI needs around 300Mbps of bandwidth, but NDI|HX is super efficient, only using about one-third to one-fourth of that for the same HD video. That makes it perfect if you've got a bunch of cameras going. Lots of camera makers are getting on board with NDI|HX, and even BirdDog just dropped a camera that's all about NDI|HX 3 at NAB 2023. So, if you're in the market for a remote camera that plays nice with NDI, we'd say go for one with NDI|HX 3 for a setup that's ready for whatever the future throws at you.


ST 2110, the innovative video transmission standard, is a game-changer in the world of digital connectivity. It harnesses the potential of IP transmission, ushering in a transformation by replacing traditional baseband methods like SDI with its dynamic IP counterpart. In the realm of PTZ cameras, Panasonic's AW-UE160W/K takes the spotlight as the sole camera to offer complete support for ST 2110.

The adoption of IP conversion through ST 2110 is gaining significant momentum, especially in large-scale core systems, where broadcasting stations are readily embracing this technology. NewTek has taken the lead by introducing a converter that seamlessly bridges the worlds of ST 2110 and NDI protocols. Furthermore, Blackmagic Design has made its entrance with the release of the "2110 IP Converter 3x3G." As this technology continues to mature, it's poised to become a favorite not just in large-scale setups but also in smaller production environments. ST 2110 is solidifying its place in the industry, making it an exciting prospect for a wide range of applications.

Read the full article by Yuto Izumi for ProNews HERE

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