Doing my best to break the AVIWEST #BeOnAIR. Today I was curious to see how low I could go, so I sent a stream of audio and video combined at 360kbps (1). I used the built-in encoder within the streamhub to output my stream as 1080 at 5Mbps constant bit rate (2) to Vimeo. I was amazed by the quality of the stream, really thought it would be unusable.
What the Aviwest cleverly does at low data rates is to deliver a lower resolution image, starting at 352 x 288 pixels, as the datarate increases so does the resolution of your video, 1080 25P needs approx 2Mbps.
If you were to send a low data rate / resolution stream straight to a streaming service like Vimeo (without encoding in the cloud) then Vimeo would lock to this initial resolution (352 x 288) for the duration of the stream, this would be bad.
You can fix the output within the BeOnAIR menu for the unit to match the input resolution, BUT this means you MUST have good enough signal for a datarate of at least 2.1Mbps for a 1080 stream.
By using the cloud encoder you can always ensure delivery of a 1080 stream, if the network becomes unstable the input resolution drops but reassuringly your video will remain useable, even at 360kbps!