Best streaming equipment in 2020
So you want to become a streamer but aren’t too sure where to start. Don’t worry, I’m here to help!
Let’s start with the basics.
When it comes to streaming equipment for streaming on PC Every streamer needs one basic tool to get started, can you guess what that is? If you guessed a microphone, you guessed right! A microphone is essential to becoming streamer as most people like being able to audibly interact with the streamer they choose to watch.
After a Microphone comes the webcam, if you look at the majority of top streamers you will notice that they all have one thing in common, and that is that they all have webcams to capture their reaction to things that happen in a game.
It’s important to be able to connect with the audience and the best way to do that is with audible and visual aids. Last but not least, you will need reliable software to take your game, microphone & webcam feeds and broadcast them all at once to your streaming platform of choice.
Time to break it down.
Hardware you will need
Whether you are pursuing streaming as a hobby or a career, there are some investments you will need to make to become a streamer that people will enjoy watching and interacting with, let’s start with audio.
You might have an old Xbox headset kicking around that you use for in-game chatting all the time and you might be thinking of using that as your streaming microphone. I’m going to tell you right now that an old ratty Xbox microphone will not do the trick. At least not if you are trying to get and hold viewers which I believe is the goal of all streamers.
The ultimate streaming microphone that the majority of streamers that are just starting out is the Blue Yeti which is around $110 which may seem a bit expensive but you need to think of it as an investment., and investment in yourself. The Blue Yeti is a reliable desktop microphone that is a favorite among most twitch streamers, YouTubers, and podcasters. You get 3 different recording modes with the Blue Yeti, controlled by a simple shifting nob on the front and it plugs right into your PC via USB with no software, no need to be tech-savvy!See on Amazon
Now that you have your streaming microphone figured out, you will need a pretty decent webcam set up to help broadcast that beautiful face of yours to the world alongside that angelic voice.
Pro tip: If you happen to already be into photography and own a DSLR camera, it may be used as a webcam when you connect it to your computer via USB and will provide you with much better quality than most traditional webcams.
For everyone else, there is a large variety of high-quality webcams online for you to choose from. I suggest these two options:
The Logitech C920 which you can pick up for close to around $60 which is not bad at all for a full 1080p webcam. The Logitech c920 has a wonderful built-in lowlight detection feature that will keep your video quality crystal clear no matter your lighting situation.See on Amazon
The Razer Kiyo is a little more pricy at around $80 but slightly bests the C920. It’s full 1080p and even features a ring LED light that will help better capture your face and improve the quality of your stream.See on Amazon
You can not go wrong with either of these options when looking for the best webcam to stream with.
So now you have the two most important pieces of your equipment for streaming, your microphone, and webcam let’s take a look into capture cards.
Streaming PC games and other things on your PC is easy you just need software such as OBS or XSplit. But what if you want to stream from your PS4 or Xbox? To do that you are going to need a capture card.
When it comes to capturing cards you have two options; an internal capture card which you will need to install in your PC, or an external capture card which connects your console to your PC via HDMI, let’s take a look at both options.
External capture card
An external capture card is perfect for those who don’t necessarily have the tech skills to install an internal capture card, and it does virtually the same thing as an internal capture card. Same if you are planning to stream on a laptop which makes an internal capture card out of the question.
I recommend the Elgato Game Capture HD60 S. The HD60 S works with all modern consoles and records in crystal clear 1080p at 60 FPS. All you need to do in order to get the HD60 S working is connect the USB to from the Elgato to your computer or laptop, then connect the console to the HDMI in port and your TV into the HDMI out port.
All that’s left is to add the game capture source into your streaming software and you are ready to go live! The beauty of the Elgato HD60 S is that you will be able to stream or record with NO input lag making it the best USB capture card on the market.
You will also want to pick up the Elgato Chat Link which only runs for about $10 on Amazon. The adapter is used to pick up in-game chat and include it into your recording / live stream.
Elgato is one of if not the largest company in the capture card market, thousands of YouTubers and streamers trust and enjoy their products so I think it’s safe to say you will too.See on Amazon
Another great external capture card for streaming is the AVerMedia Live Gamer Portable 2 Plus as it’s Small and portable, has 4K passthrough, software is easy to use, records footage to MicroSD, and has console and PC support.
Internal capture card
Internal capture cards are a lifesaver when it comes to the stress it takes off of your PC when you are recording or streaming at high qualities. With an internal capture card like the AVerMedia Live Gamer HD 2, you can easily record both your console gaming and your PC gaming without an issue.
If it’s not obvious already I recommend the AVerMedia Live Gamer HD 2, this capture card lets you capture and stream your game footage at crisp 1080p quality, for a great price.
The AVerMedia Live Gamer HD 2 is compatible with Twitch and all major streaming platforms and run you about $140.See on Amazon
When it comes to streaming software for twitch or any other streaming website, there is only one that I can recommend which is Open Broadcaster Software (OBS).
OBS is open-source software and its 100% Free. There are multiple versions of OBS floating around there, OBS Classic, OBS Studio which works on all operating systems and even customized versions like Streamlabs OBS.
Thank you for reading
Hopefully, after this post, you now have a good idea as to what kind of streaming equipment you will now be using.
I wish you the best of luck in your streaming journey and truly hope you make it big!
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