The Logitech C920 Webcam is ideal for streaming since it provides a h264 output out-of-the box. Especially if your streaming box has limited computing power like a raspberry pi. Most people use motion or other mjpeg webcam solutions, but i will show how to get 15-20 FPS live stream at 720p out of the raspberry pi model b. This solution also includes the ability to use jwplayer to watch your stream using most webbrowsers. These instructions may not be complete and only show you the way to go.


  • Read h264 stream from cam
  • Stream to local nginx with rtmp module
  • Create static website with jwplayer to view webcam


I’m using arch linux on my raspberry but you can adapt those requirements to your system like raspbian.

  • ffmpeg
  • gcc
  • make
  • lib32-openssl
  • git
  • v4l-utils

Compile nginx with rtmp module

Get the rtmp nginx module (git clone) and the nginx source.

$ cd nginx-src/
$ ./configure --add-module=/path/to/nginx-rtmp-module
$ make
$ make install

Setup nginx

Create directory /tmp/hls and chmod 777.

Edit /usr/local/nginx/conf/nginx.conf:

rtmp {
    server {
        listen 1935;
        chunk_size 4000;

        # HLS
        application hls {
            live on;
            hls on;
            hls_path /tmp/hls;

# HTTP can be used for accessing RTMP stats
http {
    server {
        listen      80;

        # This URL provides RTMP statistics in XML
        location /stat {
            rtmp_stat all;

            # Use this stylesheet to view XML as web page
            # in browser
            rtmp_stat_stylesheet stat.xsl;

        location /stat.xsl {
            # XML stylesheet to view RTMP stats.
            # Copy stat.xsl wherever you want
            # and put the full directory path here
            root /path/to/stat.xsl/;

        location /hls {
            # Serve HLS fragments
            types {
                application/ m3u8;
                video/mp2t ts;
            root /tmp;
            add_header Cache-Control no-cache;
events { worker_connections 1024; }

Setup stream webpage

Download jwplayer, the free version is all you need. There’s no need for an api key, so you might get the jwplayer files elsewhere.

Extract the contents to /usr/local/nginx/html/jwplayer.

Modify /usr/local/nginx/html/index.html:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<script src="jwplayer/jwplayer.js"></script>
    body {
        width: 35em;
        font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif;
        #stream {
                width: 100%;
                height: 100%;
<div id="stream">Loading...</div>
<script type="text/javascript">

playlist: [{
        sources: [{
width: 1280,
height: 720,
primary: "flash"


Remember to adjust the playlist.sources.file path to your ip address.

Start nginx:

$ /usr/local/nginx/bin/nginx

Setup ffmpeg

Change resolution of your output

$ v4l2-ctl --device=/dev/video0 --set-fmt-video=width=1280,height=720,pixelformat=1 

You have to change the resolution after every reboot and camera connect.

Stream to nginx

$ ffmpeg -r 15 -use_wallclock_as_timestamps 1 -copytb 0 -f v4l2 -vcodec h264 -i /dev/video0 -vcodec copy -f flv rtmp://

I use -r 15 and -use_wallclock_as_timestamps which solves the Incorrect dts errors of ffmpeg. This reduces performance a bit and you may want to use the timestamps without modification.

Check your stream

Check http://yourip/ which should serves your index.html, starts jwplayer and reads your rtmp stream.

You could also watch the stream directly using vlc:

Open Networkstream -> rtmp://yourip:1935/hls/movie