Streaming on Twitch is the dream of many gamers and not just them. Since live streaming is growing in popularity and there are more and more people watching streams every single day, every single stream option is growing from cooking to gaming. The problem is that you cannot simply open your computer, buy a random camera and start streaming.
If you are serious about live streaming on Twitch, here’s everything you will need.
A Very Good Computer
Most streaming is done from a gaming desktop PC or a gaming laptop. When referring to specs, Twitch says you need at least the Intel Core i5-4670 (or the AMD equivalent), Windows 7 and 8 GB of RAM. Streaming is also possible on MAC computers.
What is particularly important is the internet connection. Ethernet is mandatory. Using WiFi is a very bad idea. An upload speed over 3 MB per second is mandatory. Fortunately, most of the home internet connections available these days offer this.
When you stream PC games, the graphics card you have needs to be strong to support the game and have free resources at the same time.
Whenever possible, try to stream from a desktop PC. You can also stream from a laptop but desktop PCs are normally better.
Just One PC?
The core requirements are quite forgiving, but when it comes to playing a graphically intense game and streaming at the same time, the computer ends up having to deal with quite a load. Many streamers solve this problem by simply using 2 PCs at the same time. One is used for gaming and the other one broadcasts.
Fortunately, it is really simple to set up a system with 2 computers. Also, the one that you use to broadcast does not have to be as powerful as the one you use to actually play the game. If you do not want to use 2 computers, make sure that you use a very powerful graphics card.
An Account On Twitch
This one is pretty self-explanatory. You need an account on Twitch. It is completely free. At the same time, you want to create your custom avatar and you need to add a good description and banner.
Broadcasting software is the most important part of the system you will create. It lets you show what you play and even you. The two really common streaming software options used today are XSplit and OBS (Open Broadcasting Software). XSplit has a free tier but if you want to use the best features, a subscription is needed. OBS is completely free.
No matter what software you use, the steps needed to start are:
- Picking sources – like gameplay feed, webcam or computer monitor.
- Laying out how the viewer will see the sources.
- Syncing the Twitch account with the software.
Camera And Microphone
Technically, all you really need is a good gaming headset. However, if you want your viewers to clear you as clearly as possible, a dedicated microphone is better. You can get a USB mic for around $130 and there are cheaper options available for those on a budget.
You will also need a webcam if you want to show your face, which is highly recommended. This will put you back around $100 since you want quality to be as high as possible.
The PS4 and the Xbox One allow you to stream right from the gaming console. You do not need extra software or devices. A free Twitch app is used for this on Xbox One and on PS4 the Share menu of the system allows you to go live. Direct streaming to Mixer can be set up if you use the Xbox. The stream cannot be customized but it is a good option to start.
If you want to stream Nintendo Switch games or you just want full control, a capture card will be needed. This records console gameplay on the PC. A really good one can be bought for around $180.
As you can see, you do not need a lot to get started on Twitch and stream the games. In fact, because it is so simple, we see thousands of people streaming at any point of day or night. If you decide this is something to try, be sure that you do not give up and you keep streaming. It takes a long time to build a loyal followership but you can have a lot of fine while you do that. Just play the games that you love, especially when you start streaming on Twitch.