Best streaming set up gear: Everything you need to be a pro streamer
© Mark Roe / Red Bull Content Pool
Make your livestreams as professional as possible with the best gear you can buy
This year – more than any other in recent memory – streaming has really taken off. With the majority of the global population forced to remain indoors for most of the year, viewers have been turning their focus to streamers to entertain them, and more people than ever before are setting up their own rigs and streaming their gameplay to the masses.
But, as viewership swells, people are increasingly turned off by 480p gameplay and tinny audio quality. There are standards potential subscribers want from their new favourite streamer. To that end, we've put together a guide to collect all the gear you'll need to make sure that you have slick, well-produced livestreams that attract viewers, subscribers, and fans.
Bear in mind the wealth of equipment that's available to any budding streamer, from budget to super-premium. With that in mind, we’ve chosen to go for mid-range gear; items that won't bankrupt you, but won't fall apart immediately, either.
Elgato Game Capture HD60 S+ - £180
Let's start from the top: in order to stream your gameplay to your eager fans, you'll need something that allows you capture and stream your content. The Elgato Game Capture HD60 S+ has one key selling point: simplicity. Elgato has been around for a while, making capture cards that just work.
The latest model, tagged with S+ rather than just S, supports 4k60 passthrough and HDR10, meaning it'll work a treat with all the latest console hardware and the fanciest PC setup you have, too. This means you can stream in crisp 1080p to your followers whilst enjoying the 4k graphics on your side of the stream. It's the best compromise between capture and budget, and is a delightfully simple product to use, too.
Sennheiser GSP 602 - £199
Although it's pricier than a lot of other headsets you can pick up, the EPOS | Sennheiser GSP 602 shows off just what the company can do with its ever-improving line of headsets. Fusing top-notch sound quality, a great aesthetic style, and – perhaps most importantly of all – long-term comfort, this headset really does earn its keep. Granted, it's a big unit that some may find a bit oversized, but it's worth the profile when you hear how good it sounds.
As anyone that's played with a gamer that uses a EPOS | Sennheiser GSP headset will tell you, the mic quality is phenomenal, too – picking up and isolating the voice in an impressive way. Another great consideration if you can't really afford (or don't have room for) a separate mic.
Samson G-Track Pro - £159
The Samson G-Track Pro has a wealth of great features and some best-in-class functionality that makes it really stand out from other mics in a similar price range. Made with a durability that will impress even the clumsiest gamers, shipping as a multi-pattern USB mic (which makes it great for streams or podcasts) this is a really simple plug-and-play mic that you'll see some of the top streamers using.
For you audio obsessives, you'll enjoy the fact the mic comes with a 1/4 inch audio input, too – meaning you can use it as a 2-track audio mixer. This gives you more utility down the line as your streams mature; want to add guests? Want to bring in a soundboard? All of this is made super simple thanks to the the bonus input. A dream for any stream!
Motion Backpack - £39.95
Streamers are not always limited to one place; often they'll be involved with collaborations, partner streams or other events. To this end, you may find that you need to pack your setup away and transfer it to another location – sometimes in a hurry. The Motion Backpack is a great choice for mobile streamers that may want to head from their home setup to a colleague's or partner's at the drop of a hat.
A decent size (30 x 50 x 19cm) that fits most gaming laptops, the backpack is durable and has a mesh-covered padded back, so the weight of your gear won't be too uncomfortable to lug around. Handy, well-designed, and stylish to boot, this backpack is ideal for streamers on the move.
Buy it: Redbull.co.uk
Neewer Bi-Color Dimmable LED Softbox Lighting Kit - £110
If you have the benefit of some good space around your streaming set-up, a softbox approach to lighting produces the best results, without a doubt. Other streamers tend to opt for an LED-based setup, but for some nice warmth and diffused, pleasant lighting for one of your most important assets (your face!) a Neewer softbox kit may be the way to go.
The rig definitely takes up some space, and may turn a streaming setup from a casual-looking affair into a more professional studio space... but maybe that's a good thing? The kit is customisable, too, so you have a lot of choice in how to light and present yourself to the adoring public in the best possible way.
Logitech Brio Ultra HD - £199
If you want to get your face out there, you're going to need a camera that does the job properly. There's a lot of choice, but most streamers tend to go for models that can keep up with the demands viewers are asking for these days – that is to say 1080p60 support. This camera has this, and performs nicely in low-light compared to some other products, too (ideal for those late-night streaming sessions).
Whilst top-end streamers will use something like a DSLR hooked up to their laptop to show off their face, that's not wholly necessary: a good quality USB device will do the job, and won't break the bank in the process. The Brio is a nice compromise between price and top-end quality.