[3G Part 4] Reduce the bandwidth to get robust streaming

So your first test with streaming are working after you finished Part 3, ey?
Or do you face buffering issues already?

Let’s look at the last missing piece for a good setup!

All your music needs to travel back trough the internet from your Squeezebox-Server to your mobile or tablet.

First hurdle is your Internet Service Provider: Did you ever notice that sending a mail with a lot of pictures takes MUCH more time than to download the same amount of data?
For instance if I buy “DSL 6.000” from one of our German providers, I get ‘up to’ 6.000kBit/s downstream (i.e inbound) traffic, but they guarantee only ‘up to’ (haha) 576kBit/s upstream (outbound) traffic.

And that’s where your music wants to pass. Good enough for mp3, but a 44/16 FLAC is having much more bits.

Second hurdle: your mobile carrier. With different technologies (GPRS, EDGE, 3G, HSDPA) you get different speed – from as bad as 56kBit/s up to 56MBit/s.

How to cope with this?
Fortunately Squeezebox-Server is an awesome beast and can help us with it’s option ‘bitrate limiting’. If you activate that, the Server will transcode your music on the fly to your desired bitrate – doesn’t matter if it’s FLAC or high quality mp3s => you music gets crunched to whatever can go through your wires.
This can be activated only for SqueezePlayer, so the streaming to your other Squeezeboxes is unaffected.

To find this option, enter the web-interface of the Squeezebox-Server, open the settings page and move to the players audio settings:

For this to work you need to install the LAME encoder on your server.

Now the bad news: if you are running the Squeezebox server on lower CPU device (e.g. a NAS or SheevaPlug), the LAME plugin will not be fast enough to convert your files to the desired bitrate.

On the Squeezebox-Wiki you can instructions about how to install a much faster transcoder: Shine for Transcoding.

2 Responses to “[3G Part 4] Reduce the bandwidth to get robust streaming”

  1. Roger Says:

    Congratulations on the SqueezePlayer package. I have used SqueezeTunnel and the Shine transcoding package. Followed your instructions and everything worked well.
    I have upgraded from Squeezebox Server to Logitech Media Server. Should I modify the ‘Shine for Transcoding’ instructions by replacing every occurence of squeezeboxserver by logitechmediaserver?



  2. stefan Says:

    Hi Roger,

    Logitech didn’t change the name “squeezeboxserver” in their code, it’s just the marketing and some branding that changed 😉
    So I don’t think that you need to change anything to make it work.