Using Wi-Fi and Multicast Transmit Flows

When using a Wi-Fi network connection between Dante Controller and your Dante network, any multicast transmit flows configured in your network routing can flood the Wi-Fi link, and degrade the performance of the link.

You may be experiencing this condition if:

  1. You are using a Wi-Fi network connection
  2. You have multicast transmit flows in place
  3. You observe speed or stability issues with your Wi-Fi connection

Remedial action

Remove or reduce the multicast traffic

The easiest way to remedy this condition is to either remove all multicast flows and use unicast flows instead; or, reduce the amount of multicast bandwidth on the network by removing some multicast flows. There is no hard rule that specifies how much multicast traffic is too much for a Wi-Fi link – the performance of the link is the best real-world indicator.

If you are unable to remove or reduce multicast traffic, there are various ways to filter multicast media traffic from the Wi-Fi link.

Filter multicast media at the access point

Depending on the type of Wi-Fi access point (or AP - typically, a W-Fi modem / router) that you have, it may automatically block ‘unregistered’ multicast traffic, which is multicast traffic that hasn’t been specifically requested by a network device. Because Dante Controller will never request to join a multicast media stream, the AP will never send multicast media traffic (audio or video) to the Dante Controller computer.

It should however allow multicast control traffic – this is important for Dante Controller, because device discovery in Dante uses a multicast control protocol.

If the AP doesn’t automatically block unregistered multicast, you may be able to proactively filter it out using a ‘filter multicast’ feature in the AP. The feature should filter the high-bandwidth multicast media traffic, but again should allow multicast control traffic. Not all APs feature automatic multicast filtering, or a ‘filter multicast’ configuration option. Refer to the user manual for your AP for more information.

Connect the AP to a dedicated control port on a Dante device

Some Dante hardware devices include a ‘control port’, which is a Dante Ethernet port that automatically filters multicast media traffic. Control ports should be clearly marked as such on the device.

You can connect your AP to this port, which will enable Wi-Fi connectivity between Dante Controller and the network, but the port will not pass multicast media traffic to the AP. Refer to the user manual for your device for more information.

Enable IGMP snooping on the network switch

Enabling IGMP snooping on the network switch will block multicast media to all switch ports unless a device on that port has specifically requested to join a multicast group (stream). This means that multicast media can flow between audio and video devices but will not flow over the AP to Dante Controller. Refer to the user manual for your switch for more information.