Live streaming has completely taken over the gaming industry. Nowadays, everyone wants to share their gaming with others. And, if you’re funny enough, you just might be able to make some money off of your streams.
If you’ve decided it’s time to jump on the bandwagon and share your gaming with others on Twitch, this is your complete tutorial on what equipment you need to start your stream. Our team at TRUgaming is in no way affiliated with any of the products or services that are about to be mentioned, we’re just trying to give you all a good start to becoming a successful streamer. So, here is all the equipment you need to stream on Twitch.
A Good PC
Your PC really depends on what you want to stream. If you’re streaming PC games, you’ll definitely need a stronger graphics card. However, if you’re streaming a lower-quality game, you won’t need as powerful of a PC. It’s generally recommended that you’re PC has the following PC specs for a good quality stream:
• CPU: Intel Core i5-4760 processor or AMD equivalent
• Memory: 8GB or RAM
• OS: Windows 7 or newer
A Twitch Account
To stream to Twitch, you obviously need a Twitch account. Join for free, create your custom avatar, and add a banner and description so your viewers can get to know you a little bit. Just head to https://www.twitch.tv/ and click the "sign up" option in the top right corner.
Head Set and Microphones
If you really want to gain popularity on your streams, a headset and microphone are a must. Viewers like to communicate and interact with streamers, and this happens through a headset and microphone. Some viewers will even leave your stream if the mic quality is bad. So, here are some recommendations on what you should get. However, do NOT use a headset and mic that are combined.
• Zalman ZM Mic1. This mic is great for beginners and is pretty high quality for the price. It’s simply a clip-on mic that would be just fine when paired with any headphones or ear buds.
• Blue Yeti USB Microphone. This Blue Yeti USB Microphone is another one on the marketplace that is actually reasonably priced and has great quality. It’s actually been widely acknowledged as the best microphone for desktops. It offers professional sound quality, looks professional, and is extremely easy to set up with its USB wiring. It will also last you a pretty long time.
• Hyper-X Cloud Revolver S. As far as a headset goes, this is widely recommended by many different streamers as well as the many positive product reviews. For the price of under $200, there really isn’t a better gaming headset out there. The sound and isolation are incredible and it’s definitely a reliable product.
Streaming Software or Capture Card
This is probably the most important part of your equipment list, as this is what lets your audience actually see your gameplay. This section varies depending on what you’re streaming from. For instance, streaming from a PC will be different than streaming from a PS4 or Nintendo Switch. We’ll break this down based on the different devices.
For PC, You’ll Need Streaming Software
We’ve talked about the best streaming software on the market in a previous blog post, but we’ll still give a brief recap. If you’re streaming from a PC, you’ll need some form of streaming software. Two free and commonly used streaming programs are xSplit Gamecaster and Open Broadcasting Software (OBS). These will both get the job done just fine and are great if you’re just starting out, especially since no expensive prices have to be paid. They allow for basic customization and even let you add in additional features like your head set and webcam.
For Xbox One and PS4, You’re Good to Go
If you’re streaming from an Xbox One or PS4, you have the ability to stream right from your console without any additional devices or software. On your Xbox One, just download the free Twitch app and stream from there. Xbox One users can also stream from Microsoft’s Mixer platform. On your PS4, you can stream directly from the system’s "Share" menu. These streaming options won’t allow you to customize your stream as much as you would be able to with a PC, but it’s still a quick and effective way to get your stream started.
For Other Gaming Consoles, You’ll Need a Capture Card
If you want more control of your stream or would like to stream from other consoles such as a Nintendo Switch, you’ll need to get a capture card. Capture cards record your gameplay from your console to your PC. The type of capture card needed depends on the game you would like to stream, but here are two of our recommendations:
• Elgato Game Capture HD. With just a Google search, you’ll see that lots of streamers are using Elgato capture cards. This individual card is reasonably priced at $129 and flawlessly records 1080p video from just about any system with an HDMI output, such as an Xbox One/360, PS4/PS3, and Wii U. It is extremely easy to use and even has a component adapter for older consoles. For even better streams, you can even upgrade to the Elgato Game Capture HD60.
• Avermedia Live Gamer Portable. The Avermedia Live Gamer Portable is another popular capture card that is good for streaming on the go. It’s slim, lightweight, and USB based, which makes it a lot easier to set up and get going than an internal card, and, it still offers a great quality stream. While the quality may not be as great as internal cards, the portability of this card is unbeatable.
A webcam really is not a required piece of equipment you need to stream on Twitch. So, whether you use one or not is completely up to you. There are lots of streamers out there who don’t use a webcam but are still entertaining with their commentary; but there are also a lot who do a webcam, since viewers typically enjoy seeing the gamers faces and reactions to different situations. If you do decide to use a webcam, here’s what we recommend:
• Logitech HD Pro Webcam C920. This webcam has often been described as the "webcam for everyone." If you aren’t looking for anything specific, this is probably an ideal product for you. It provides professional 1080p images, great low light performance, auto-focus features, flexible image adjustment, and is pretty affordable. It’s really easy to set up and can typically be found for under $80.
• Logitech C922. This webcam includes all the features of the Logitech C920 with a little bit more. It’s basically the C920 that’s focused on gaming. Aside from the wonderful features in the C920, this product includes improved low-lighting quality and a background replacement feature. However, the cost is definitely much more than the Logitech C920.
So, that is your complete answer to what equipment do I need to stream on Twitch. Hopefully you’ll check those products out and get started with your streaming. Again, TRUgaming is not affiliated with the products mentioned, we are just providing some friendly recommendations.
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