How to produce Pro Quality Facebook LIVE Video stream


Some people asked me since the launch of the Facebook LIVE streaming function, how to set up their streams to look more professional compared to the usual boxy format that is cast by a lot of people.

Here's what you can do, a simple step-by-step guide, to help you get on the pro quality broadcast level that you see in some brands and individuals Live Stream. You can use your existing tools to do it too so there's no additional costs involved just to level up your Live Stream. Also, do take note that this is only for FACEBOOK PAGE and not Facebook Profile.

Prerequisites 

Video encoding software or hardware that supports rtmp or rtmps. Some popular encoding solutions include:

  • Livestream 
  • OBS 
  • Wirecast 
  • Xsplit 
  • ffmpeg

Setup and Preview 


1. First, login to your Facebook Page and select Publishing Tools in the top navigation bar.

2. On the left menu, click on the Video Library option under the Videos section.

3. Click on the + Live button to begin configuring your Live post.

4. Depending on the requirements of your encoding software you will use one of the following options:
  • Single Field: Your encoding software requires only a server address or url. 
  • Separate Field: Your encoding software requires both a server address and key. 
Be sure to enable a secure connection if your encoding software supports rtmps.


Important: The Server URL and Stream Key can only be used for a single Live preview/post connection. You must use the same URL and key to preview and post. That is, you cannot preview, stop the stream, and then resume at a later time. The URL and Key also expire 24 hours after creation.

5. Copy and paste the Server URL and key to your encoding software. Each encoding software has its own configuration. In most caes, you will need to find and edit stream settings and configure a Custom Streaming Server or RTMP Server as the type and enter the copied server URL and/or stream key. Review your encoders help documentation for more information on configuring a custom rtmp stream.

6. Press the Preview button to configure the Live Post and to preview the encoder stream output. If you have already started the video stream from your encoder it may take anywhere from 1-10 seconds for the video stream to appear within the preview area.

The Go Live button remains disabled until a valid stream from the encoding software is detected. If you receive a Stream is offline message, make sure you have started streaming from your encoding software. If you still have issues, check the server url and/or stream key were copied correctly. You can reference the server url and key anytime in the tab.

7. Add the Video Title and Video Topics Tags on the Basics tab and use the icons in the footer menu to tag, add feelings, specify a location and set a preferred audience (see more about audience restrictions below).


8. Add Audience Restrictions: If your need to restrict who sees your broadcast (for example, your broadcast rights only apply to certain countries), you can use Audience Restrictions.


Like Posts, you can restrict your audience by age, gender and/or location.

9. The advanced tab contains:
  • The option to create a continuous live stream. A continuous live stream supports a stream of unlimited duration. Use cases for continuous live include live feeds of aquariums, museums, and zoos. (Before streaming using continuous live, please note that continuous live streams do not generate VOD, and do no not send notifications to followers.).
  • The option to create a live reference stream for Rights Manager.
  • The ability to pull a player embed code, or block embedding, for the live stream.

Go Live 

Press the Go Live button to begin the Live post. Once Live, you will see the red Live indicator appear on the video player.

You can monitor a few key Live metrics in the Video Performance section:
  • Live Viewers: number of unique viewers actively watching the Live video post. 
  • Total Views: A running count of the total number of views received throughout the Live video post including those that are not currently watching. 
Press the View Post button to navigate directly to the Live post on your page.

Press the Finish Live Video button to end the post. Please note, to avoid accidentally ending a Live Post,you must also confirm by pressing the End button in the message box.



Live Videos in the Video Library

Once your Live Video post is finished, the video will automatically begin transcoding into a normal static video and will appear in the Video Library. You can find live, and previously live, videos quickly using the Live options under advanced filters.

Live Video Specs

Video Format


  • Facebook currently only accept video in maximum 720p (720 x 1280) resolution, at 30 frames per second. (or 1 key frame every 2 seconds).
  • You must send an I-frame (keyframe) at least once every two seconds throughout the stream..
  • Recommended max bit rate is 4000 Kbps.
  • Titles must be less than 255 characters otherwise the stream will fail.
  • The Live API accepts H264 encoded video and AAC encoded audio only.

Video Length


  • 240 minute maximum length, with the exception of continuous live (see above).
  • 240 minute maximum length for preview streams (either through Live dialog or publisher tools). After 240 minutes, a new stream key must be generated.

Advanced Settings


  • Pixel Aspect Ratio: Square.
  • Frame Types: Progressive Scan.
  • Audio Sample Rate: 44.1 KHz.
  • Audio Bitrate: 128 Kbps stereo.
  • Bitrate Encoding: CBR.

Troubleshooting

Still unable to connect?

  • Make sure you have a reliable internet connection.
  • Disable all ad blocking software or browser plugins that could prevent the video player from loading.
  • Check your firewall settings and ensure rtmp is allowed.
  • If the Server URL and Key are older than 24 hours they are no longer valid. Create a new URL and Key.
That's all that is required, takes a bit of practice to familiarize with the whole set-up but once you do, it'll be a breeze and each casting onto the Live platform will look good and professional.

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