What is the difference between unicast and multicast streams?
Unicast involves communication between a single sender and a single receiver. This is a type of point-to-point transmission, since the packet is transmitted to one destination at a time.
Multicast sends IP packets to a group of hosts on a network, represented by a "group address." In this case, packets are transmitted from a single sender to multiple receivers. Since the same data packet can be sent to multiple nodes by sending just one copy of the data, the load of the sender and the overall load of the network are both reduced.
If the streaming video is to be distributed to a single destination, then you would start a Unicast stream by setting the destination IP address and port on the encoder equal to the decoder destination’s values. If you want to view the stream at multiple concurrent locations, then you would set the destination IP address to a valid Multicast IP address (188.8.131.52 – 184.108.40.206).
Since Multicasting is a relatively new technology, some legacy devices that are part of your network might not support Multicasting.
Before using the Oupree Video Encoder in Multicast streaming mode, check the functional specifications of your network infrastructure to ensure that the Multicast stream will not create major traffic on your network. Verify that your backbone switch supports Internet Group Messaging Protocol (IGMP) snooping, which allows the core of your network to ignore the traffic streams that Multicasting may generate.
For more information on IGMP querying and snooping please refer to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_Group_Management_Protocol & https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IGMP_snooping.