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WiFi Bandwidth and Router considerations

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By bhiga, Recognized Contributor on 9th January 2014, 11:57 PM
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9th July 2014, 03:22 PM |#41  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhiga

See the attachments for use examples and how the required bandwidth can multiply: Note that the 10 Mbps figure is just an example.

  1. Standard Internet stream example
    YouTube, Hulu Plus, HBO Go, VEVO, etc use this methodology
  2. Direct stream from LAN storage example
    Plex (from a local Plex server) and fling (from a desktop) work this way. Desktop and Tab casting from Chrome also uses this data flow.
    Data is sent from the LAN device via WiFi
    Chromecast receives data from the LAN device via WiFi
  3. Streaming from wireless device storage example
    Casting content stored on the device (device-local) from Avia or RealPlayer Cloud use this method.
    Data is sent from the casting device via WiFi to Chromecast
    Chromecast receives data via WiFi
  4. Forwarding from LAN storage example
    Casting content stored on a LAN device (DLNA, network share, etc) from Avia uses this method.
    Data is sent from the LAN device to casting device running Avia via WiFi
    Data is sent from the casting device running Avia via WiFi to Chromecast - this is the forwarding piece, data travels through
    Chromecast receives data via WiFi

To optimize available bandwidth for Chromecast:
  • Use an 802.11n dual-band router and put your other wireless devices on the 5 GHz access point whenever possible
    or use a separate WiFi access point connected to the wired network for Chromecast
  • Use wired connections for cast sources (server/desktop/laptop) wherever possible
  • Reencode high-bitrate media to lower bitrate (4 Mbps should be fine for most use)
  • Optimize Chromecast's ability to get a stable WiFi signal - move it away from the TV using the HDMI extender or an HDMI extension cable
    and/or move your router so it's closer to Chromecast (but not too close - too close can get into a "drowned in the noise" situation)

I am thankful I found this post. I have been having trouble streaming mp4 files from my desktop pc (the file won't stream smoothly) and thought it was a files size issue. I tried to encode the files down into very small files thinking that was the problem, but this produces poor video quality. However, it may not be a problem with the file size, but rather just be my process/setup. I am currently using Localcast on my phone to browse to the file on my wired PC, and then stream that to my chromecast. I was under the impression the phone handed off the address of the file to the chromecast and from that point the pc was casting directly to the chromecast. However, looking at the comments above, I wonder if it is actually streaming through my phone. Is that the case? If so, that could explain the poor streaming performance.
 
 
9th July 2014, 05:26 PM |#42  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whitenack

I am currently using Localcast on my phone to browse to the file on my wired PC, and then stream that to my chromecast. I was under the impression the phone handed off the address of the file to the chromecast and from that point the pc was casting directly to the chromecast. However, looking at the comments above, I wonder if it is actually streaming through my phone. Is that the case? If so, that could explain the poor streaming performance.

Yes, most likely the case is:
  1. Localcast on your phone retrieves file data from your wired PC
    Wireless traffic: AP->Phone
  2. Localcast on your phone sends file data to Chromecast
    Wireless traffic: Phone->AP, AP->Chromecast

Above is worst case, it's also possible that the app that runs on Chromecast itself is smart enough to directly retrieve the file data from your wired PC directly, but in most cases this only happens for content being served from a DLNA server, rather than SMB/CIFS.
9th July 2014, 05:33 PM |#43  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhiga

Yes, most likely the case is:

  1. Localcast on your phone retrieves file data from your wired PC
    Wireless traffic: AP->Phone
  2. Localcast on your phone sends file data to Chromecast
    Wireless traffic: Phone->AP, AP->Chromecast

Above is worst case, it's also possible that the app that runs on Chromecast itself is smart enough to directly retrieve the file data from your wired PC directly, but in most cases this only happens for content being served from a DLNA server, rather than SMB/CIFS.

Thanks for the reply. Is there a way to test if this is the case? I guess I could start the stream and then power off my phone? If the stream continues, it must be getting it straight from the PC?
9th July 2014, 05:54 PM |#44  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whitenack

Thanks for the reply. Is there a way to test if this is the case? I guess I could start the stream and then power off my phone? If the stream continues, it must be getting it straight from the PC?

Yup, that's the litmus test.
Start something playing, then power off your phone (or turn off its WiFi), then wait a few minutes. If the video keeps playing after a few minutes, then the communication is happening directly between Chromecast and the file source, rather than being brokered through your phone.
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9th July 2014, 07:15 PM |#45  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhiga

Yup, that's the litmus test.
Start something playing, then power off your phone (or turn off its WiFi), then wait a few minutes. If the video keeps playing after a few minutes, then the communication is happening directly between Chromecast and the file source, rather than being brokered through your phone.

Tried it out at lunch and Bingo! The stream hangs when I power off. I tried it on two different devices to make certain and it hung both times. Thanks for helping with this. Now I just need to find an alternative to Localcast that allows a direct PC to Chromecast connections. I have seen BubbleUPnP mentioned a few times. Does that allow direct connection? ETA: Does it allow a direct connection when triggered from the android app? I know it has a direct connection when it is triggered from the desktop, but I need it to trigger from the phone.
9th July 2014, 08:05 PM |#46  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whitenack

Tried it out at lunch and Bingo! The stream hangs when I power off. I tried it on two different devices to make certain and it hung both times. Thanks for helping with this. Now I just need to find an alternative to Localcast that allows a direct PC to Chromecast connections. I have seen BubbleUPnP mentioned a few times. Does that allow direct connection? ETA: Does it allow a direct connection when triggered from the android app? I know it has a direct connection when it is triggered from the desktop, but I need it to trigger from the phone.

I haven't checked BubbleUPnP recently, Plex does do a direct connect.

Now that PlexPass is not required for Chromecast functionality, it's just the one-time cost of the Android app. The app was recently free on promo at Amazon Appstore and on sale for a while before that, but looks like it's back to regular price, so if you're going to buy it just this minute, I'd get it from Google Play as apps are updated faster on Google Play than on Amazon Appstore.

If you're in the US, Costco (at least my local one) has $60 Google Play packs (three $20 cards) at a discount (I think it's $54.99).
Not sure if Sam's Club or other warehouse clubs have a similar deal.
6th November 2017, 03:41 PM |#47  
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Using Philips Android TV with my notebook, both devices are connected to the same network over 54g (yes not N) using Tp Link W9970 router, i only get 4-5 mbps for each device for simultaneous communication. 1080p videos are played choppy.

Is it because of router or the interference of my neighbours?
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