When using Art-Net and sACN, it's essential to ensure that your network infrastructure has enough capacity to handle the amount of bandwidth your project requires alongside any additional headroom. Too little bandwidth will lead to dropped frames and potentially jerky-looking fades or movement. It’s always better to air on the side of caution and build headroom to your network infrastructure than try and take your network to the absolute limit.

Every network has slight variation based on the infrastructure used, and it’s always wise to factor in overhead.

At ENTTEC, we have carried out tests with each protocol set to its most intensive settings to determine the bandwidth required when sending multiple sACN or Art-Net streams at various frame rates over a wired network. We have derived a network bandwidth calculator by determining the network bandwidth needed for each element of your network to make specification simpler.

Please download the calculator attached to determine the bandwidth.

Our Testing Setup

The test setup consisted of a Straight Ethernet (CAT5e) cable between the computer running ELM and a single gigabit endpoint with no network switch or other network hardware between each.

  • No DHCP
  • Fully wired Network
  • Point to point

CPU: Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-8265U CPU @ 1.60GHz (with SSE4.2)

GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 with Max-Q Design


OS: 64-bit Windows 10 (2009), build 19043

Art-Net / sACN Source Application:

Application name: ENTTEC LED MAPPER (ELM)

Application version: v570 (64-bit)

Artsync: ON

sACN Sync: ON

Optimise frames: OFF (for maximum Bandwidth)

Type: Broadcast

Network Capture Software

Application: Dumpcap (Wireshark) 3.4.8 (v3.4.8-0-g3e1ffae201b8)

Background Activity

With no output of Art-Net or sACN from ELM, small communication between the computer and device. This registered as 100-500 Bit/s, with peaks increased slightly on device connection/power-up. This is expected to proportionately scale with each device added to the network.

Graphical user interface, table

Description automatically generated


Test Results

1, 2, 4, 8, 40, 80, and 400 universes at various frame rates were recorded.

The results were observed to be close to linear with the following bandwidths recorded. Key values to note were as follows:

  • Art-Net - ~0.31 Megabits/s per universe at 60FPS
  • sACN - ~ 0.39 Megabits/s per universe at 60FPS

All results have been compiled and used to inform all options selectable within the bandwidth calculator.

Chart, scatter chart

Description automatically generated

This article should be used as a guide only - ENTTEC always recommends factoring in overhead for device updates and future expansion of your project. If you can test using your infrastructure, we recommend you do so. If unsure, get in touch with the ENTTEC team.