The following outlines the manual formula for calculating stream consumption.
If you would like to skip the manual formula, you can simply use our bandwidth calculator
You will need to know your bitrate
. If you do not know your bitrate, use 282k for video and 32k for audio.
Related Bit Rate resources: Key factors for choosing your bitrate
What is a stream measured in?
Streaming is calculated in kilobits per second (kbps). Do not mistake kilobits for kilobytes they are different! To convert kilobits per second to kilobytes per second you must divide your stream by 8. There are 1024 kilobytes in a megabyte and 1024 megabytes in a gigabyte.
How do I calculate bandwidth and gigabyte consumption?
- (divide X 8) – First you must convert (divide) your desired stream rate [kilobits per second] by the number 8 [kilobit to kilobyte conversion factor] to get the number of kilobytes per second.
- (X 60) – multiply your answer by 60 [seconds] to get the kilobytes per minute.
- (X 60) – Multiply this answer by 60 [minutes] to get kilobytes per hour.
- (divide X 1024) – You then take your kilobytes per hour and divide by 1024 [kilobyte to megabyte conversion rate] to calculate megabytes per hour.
- Once you have calculated the megabytes per hour [mb/hour], you can then take this information and calculate bandwidth consumption based on the specific data from your demographic research.
Audio Scenario example: You intend to stream at 20kbps and want to calculate how many listening hours one gigabyte would provide.
- part a 20kbps / 8 conversion factor X 60 seconds X 60 minutes / 1000 kb = mb/hour
- part b 1000 megabytes or (1GB) / mb/hour consumed = number of hours for 1 GB
Audio scenario calculation:
- part a(20 / 8 = 2.5) (2.5 X 60 = 150) (150 X 60 = 9000) (9000 / 1000 = 9 mb/hour)
- part b(1 Gigabyte or 1000 megabytes / 9mb/hr = 111)
1 GB of bandwidth would provide 111 audio listening hours if you streamed at 20kbps.
Video Scenario example: You intend to stream video at 300kbps and want to budget for 50 users each watching for one hour each day of a 30 day month.
- part a 300kbps / 8 conversion factor X 60 seconds X 60 minutes / 1000 kb = mb/hour
- part b mb/hour consumed X users X hours/day X days / 1000 megabytes = total GB’s of bandwidth consumed
Video scenario calculation:
- part a(300 / 8 = 37.5) (37.5 X 60 = 2250) (2250 X 60 = 135000) (135000 / 1000 = 135 mb/hour)
- part b(135 X 50 = 6750) (6750 X 1 = 6750) (6750 X 30 = 202500) (202500 / 1000 = 202.5)
Video streamed at 300kbps watched by 50 clients for one hour each day, for an entire month would equal 202.5GB’s of bandwidth.