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UVC Video Streaming (RTSP)

Table of contents

  1. Overview
  2. Requirements
    1. Hardware
    2. Target Software
    3. Host Software
  3. Setup Hardware
  4. Network Configuration
  5. Run Software on Target
    1. Starting FFmpeg
  6. Viewing Stream
    1. VLC
    2. QGroundControl
  7. Recommended UVC Cameras


This user guide provides the necessary steps to get video streaming over RTSP network using a UVC (e.g. USB webcam like a Logitech C270) and the VOXL system.

In short, we’ll be doing the following:

  • Connect an HD USB webcam to the VOXL’s USB Hub
  • Use ffmpeg on the VOXL to stream the video to the host computer
  • Use either VLC or QGC on a host computer to view the video stream



Part NumberDescriptionLink
Host ComputerGround Control Station (Ubuntu 18.04) 
VOXL-DKVOXL Development KitPurchase
MPS-00001-15V/6A Power SupplyPurchase
MCBL-00009-1USB Cable (Host, 4-pin JST to USB 2.0 Type A Female)Purchase
Camera USB CableUSB Cable included with camera (Mini USB) 

One of the following VOXL Add-on boards is required.

Part NumberDescriptionLink
MDK-M0048-1-01VOXL Microhard Modem Add-onPurchase
MDK-M0017-1-01VOXL USB Expansion Board with Fastboot and Emergency BootPurchase
MDK-M0030-1-01VOXL Cellular LTE and USB hub add-onPurchase

Target Software

TODO check isn’t this part of the base system image now??

ffmpeg is no longer included as part of the VOXL-Suite, a stand alone IPK can be found here.

Host Software

  • On the host computer, install VLC media player, which we’ll used to display the RTSP video:
sudo apt-get install vlc

Setup Hardware

  • Disconnect power from the VOXL
  • Attach the USB Hub accessory to VOXL J13
  • Attach the JST cable to the JST USB connector (J16 or J17)
  • Attach the Logitech C270 (or equivalent) UVC camera to the USB connector on the JST to USB Female A cable
  • Connect power to the VOXL


Network Configuration

  • Configure the VOXL as an Access Point (or connect it to a network)
    • instructions on how to do this are here
    • the default IP address of the device will be
  • Connect the host computer to the VOXL’s Access Point (default password is 1234567890) or to the same network you connected the VOXL to

Run Software on Target

Starting FFmpeg

  • SSH onto the target (see here for details) or ADB in using a micro-usb to USB cable
  • First, validate the the USB device is found using the lsusb command:
root@apq8096:~# lsusb
Bus 001 Device 003: ID 046d:0825 Logitech, Inc. Webcam C270
Bus 002 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0003 Linux Foundation 3.0 root hub
Bus 001 Device 002: ID 0424:2514 Standard Microsystems Corp. USB 2.0 Hub
Bus 001 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0002 Linux Foundation 2.0 root hub
  • Start ffmpeg with the following default command
ffmpeg -i /dev/video2 -f mpegts udp://QCS_IP:4242

Replace GCS_IP with the IP address of your host computer acting as the Ground Control Station.

FFmpeg has a large variety of flags that can be set in order to change the encoder settings and modify the resolution, framerate, bitrate, etc. of the video stream. The documentation can be found on the FFmpeg website.

Viewing Stream


  • On the host system, run the VLC software

  • Go to Media > Open Network Stream

  • Enter the following URL: udp://@:4242

  • Click Play to view the video stream


Before attempting to view the video stream, follow these instructions on connecting to QGC: How to Connect QGroundControl to VOXL using WiFi

  • After your connection has been established to QGC, press the purple QGC logo in the top left corner in order to access the Application Settings menu.

  • Under the General tab, scroll down until you find the Video section.

  • Under the Video Source dropdown, choose MPEG-TS (h.264) Video Stream.

  • In the UDP Port field enter the default: 4242

  • You will now be able to view the video stream under QGC’s Fly view.

The Arducam is the recommended UVC camera for the m500. There are many different Arducams to choose from depending on your requirements. You can find the Arducam Specs and Selection guide by going here.

The Arducam B0229 is an excellent choice:

  • Field of View (FOV)D=105°, H= 90°, V= 65°
  • Supports MJPG 15fps@ 3264x2448, 30fps@1080P, and YUY2 30fps@ 640x480 formats.

How to mount Arducam on the m500 Gimbal

Next: Streaming FLIR Video