So one of my buddies recently bought one of these gizmos. It is actually pretty nifty. You may or may not have heard of capture cards. These devices help console and PC gamers set up streams and YouTube channels. The nice thing about them is they come with software to help you do all that too. Recording and streaming with the preset features of the Xbox One and PS4 have some big limitations. You probably already know that if you’ve tried to seriously do some streaming on one of those platforms. You’re limited on how much footage you can record, and what you can do with the footage after you’ve got it. Who wants to really upload a bunch of video game videos to Facebook? That’s what I thought.
Capture cards let you record as much as you want, straight to a hard drive of your laptop or desktop if its close enough of course. Some even have slots for sd cards, but you’re probably going to want those files on your computer anyways to do some editing and whatnot. Also you’ll be able to customize your stream with different layers so it will put you apart from all those other hundreds of people who are trying to stand out on Twitch. My buddy bought the Elgato HD and he hooks it right into the computer and TV and console. Then boom he gets that footage in 1080p on his computer and can do whatever he wants with it. Edit it, share it with friends, or post it up on his YouTube channel. Pretty cool huh? It’s just plug and play baby.
Here is what it looks like. Yeah. Its no eye sore to be fair. It actually looks pretty good in any setup. As you can see in the pic they are suggesting to hook it up to a next gen console and then a laptop near your TV. That’s probably the ideal scenario if you have a decent sized hard drive in your laptop. Remember HD files take up A LOT of space so just keep that in mind before you try and record like 10 hours of gameplay or something. If you have a smaller hard drive you may want to invest in an external hard drive. If you’re interested in the Elgato they have a website.
Elgato isn’t the only player in the capture card market. There’s actually quite a few options, as streaming took off these devices kind of followed. The main thing to look for is what is the maximum quality they can record at and what sorts of cables you’re going to need and all that. High Ground Gaming has a good review of the most of the best options at their page here. They talk about the best capture cards for streaming and the different features each one has. That site also has a table that compares the main features.
Well that’s pretty much it for today. Let me know what you think of capture cards and how you use them in the comments below.