Using RTSP streams from Blue Iris

  • Blue Iris RTSP streams now work with the Echo Show through Monocle, using only the web service / alexa skill and no special tags or locally installed gateway.

    This is a game changer for me. As of Blue Iris version, any camera that works with Blue Iris (and that’s pretty much anything) can be made to work with Alexa. Simply use the Monocle web portal to setup your connection to your local Blue Iris web server’s RTSP streams. Here are some example settings that got my Hikvision doorbell working. You can set the resolution using the querystring of the stream URL. Match that resolution in the Monocle settings. Set authentication to “digest” if you require logging in from your local network. The video and audio codecs for me were h264 and AAC by default.

    example settings

    My doorbell cam would not work with my Echo Show using Monocle. But by grabbing a stream from Blue Iris instead of directly from the camera, now it does! This also helps limit the connections to the camera, as there is a 3 connection limit. There is a bit of a delay getting the video going compared to when I bring it up in VLC, but it works! Kudos to Ken Pletzer for offering unparalleled support for his product.

  • Offering insights - first - THANKS for the OP. Using BI to push the RTSP solved 4 cameras. Not just the 1 I was having problems with :).

    Initially, I had 1 camera functional - an full featured Onvif PTZ i call backyard. I used Monocle to proxy it direct to it’s local IP. for Authentication I was set to Basic (and that means use the login /pw for the camera itself - a stumbling block for me before). I don’t know what the diff is between digest and basic… but basic was the functional.
    First I upgraded my BlueIris. Not sure that impact, but I was on 5.2 something. Moved to the latest as of 11/27. (BACKUP YOUR SETTINGS).

    My Doorbell is an NDB313-w. I previously tried Monocle Gateway, and every iteration I could think of and never had Joy. But BlueIris (BI) always saw all my cameras. I could load Onvif Device Manager and ‘see’ all my cams. Using the RTSP string 'rtsp://[BI local server IP]:[BI local server web port]/[BI camera name] I was able to use VLC Open Network steam and view every camera. (Interestingly, I never needed to put a user or pw in the string here. - assumedly because it’s not going out to the proxy…?!?)
    The BI local server IP and WEB port is important. Initially I assumed it was the RTSP port, but that is NOT correct. it is the web port - in my case it was 81 shrugs.
    Because I had 1 camera functional, when I told alexa ‘discover’ I ended up intially with 5 cameras. I could tell Alexa to Show the backyard PTZ accessed directly (but still in the Monocle camera feeds list), but NOT via BI. (I gave Monocle a different name for that camera so I could compare them).
    I tested from a 3rd computer (with VLC, ) to be sure this wasn’t some localized problem with 1 machines firewall etc.
    I compared the Camera Feed History on Monocle. I found that the working camera was set to Basic authentication, but all the cameras I added had no Authentication. I adjusted all cameras to Basic, and entered their direct access user/pw. (what you would type if you logged into the camera via a webpage OCX etc.
    I removed all cameras from Alexa, Issued another Discover.
    I told Alexa Show to ‘show me Backyardtoo’ (the BI backyard monocle proxy).
    Bang. Camera came up! The delay was noticible, about 3 seconds. still acceptable!
    I tested all the other cameras and they came up. Regardless of resolution, which seemed to default correctly without any need for adjusting- however I did go back and dial them in both in the Video Resolution AND the params of the RTSP string I built so they matched.
    I also twiddled with Audio. I turned off audio on streams that had audio, and Alexa show worked. I set the Audio to the wrong audio codec on purpose, and audio STILL worked.
    I’m pleased as punch Blue Iris has been so good for me - I’ve recommended it numerous times, and it has never failed me. Currently I integrate BI and Alexa with my local Hubitat so camera triggers cause text on phone. Now I can use triggers to show on Alexa Show (such as doorbell action).
    Original Poster - Thank you. Blue Iris, Thank you.

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