AWS for M&E Blog

Generating input preview thumbnails using AWS Elemental MediaLive

Within the media and broadcast industry there is an incumbent need for broadcast operators to maintain visibility of video workflow health and performance.

AWS Elemental MediaLive is a broadcast-grade live video processing service that creates high-quality streams for delivery to broadcast TVs and internet-connected devices.  MediaLive has a rich set of alerts, Amazon CloudWatch Events and Amazon CloudWatch Logs available for the operation and monitoring of running channels.

MediaLive includes an enhanced monitoring capability that enables users to view a live thumbnail of the current active input. Thumbnails are available on the AWS console for a channel and via a secure API, which allows for integration with third-party monitoring solutions.

The ability to view live thumbnails allows operators to have confidence that the source being fed to MediaLive is the expected one and provides an instant quality and integrity check for any corruption upstream of the service.

A single-pipeline MediaLive channel produces one thumbnail while a standard channel produces one thumbnail for each encode pipeline.

MediaLive Thumbnail Image

Thumbnails are generated directly from the incoming source, before any processing of the video has occurred and are encrypted at rest with Amazon S3 managed keys.  Thumbnail API requests are activated via the same MediaLive service endpoint as channel control. They do not count towards account TPS limits.

  "thumbnailDetails" : [ {
    "pipelineId" : "0",
    "thumbnails" : [ {
      "thumbnailType" : "CURRENT_ACTIVE",
      "body" : "{base64 encoded image}",
      "contentType" : "image/jpeg",
      "timeStamp" : "yyy-mm-ddThh:mm:ss"
    } ]
  } ]

On a successful GET request, MediaLive will return a JSON object, an example of which is shown previously, with the JPEG thumbnail image encoded as base 64 along with associated metadata.

Visit the AWS Elemental MediaLive documentation for more details on accessing and using thumbnails along with other features available in the service.

Daniel Colgan

Daniel Colgan

Daniel Colgan is an AWS Senior Edge Services Specialist Solution Architect.

Andy Chandler

Andy Chandler

Enterprise Account Engineer based in EMEA, helping customers deliver a best-in-class media experience with AWS Elemental Media Services.