Tools to go liveIf you want to get into live streaming, here are some helpful tips to build your streaming setup.
Ever since videos started becoming more accessible to content creators on the internet, they have always been looking for ways to turn their craft more dynamic by interacting with their audiences, taking suggestions, and tailoring their content for their viewers in real-time. Live streaming or online streaming was the solution, and today streaming superstars like Ninja (1.6 million followers on Twitch), Tfue (10.7 million followers on Twitch), and Pokimane (8.2 million followers on Twitch) dominate their streams. Even in Nepal, streamers like James Shrestha (55.3 thousand subscribers on YouTube) and Sangam GC (80 thousand followers on Facebook) have found success going live on the internet.
According to an earlier Post report on the subject, Nepali gamers are exploring live streaming while also making money off of the venture. If you want to get into live streaming as well, here are some helpful tips to build your streaming setup!
The first thing to consider would be the platform—what would you want to stream on? Modern gaming consoles like the PlayStation and Xbox have robust social sharing features that also support live online broadcasting. You can also stream on your smartphone if you like, and on PCs, graphics card manufacturers like Nvidia and AMD offer similar broadcasting features inside their respective companion apps. There are third-party tools like Open Broadcasting Software (OBS) for computers that provide a whole lot of customisability and hardware support that many of the others might not. While there are plenty of benefits to streaming from the PC, streaming computers need to be high-end if you want to stream the latest AAA games (category of games published by midsized to major publishers) with overlays and audio mixing. OBS also integrates with Twitch to display donation notifications and overlays live while also supporting musical streams and sports broadcasts.
OBS can capture your screen but if you want your viewers to see something more than just your gameplay or computer screen, you might want to invest in a good camera. The Logitech C920 is a great choice since it records at 1080p 30fps and comes with a pretty decent microphone array. It is also really sharp with great auto-focus capabilities and their Capture app is just a wonder to use. The C920 costs Rs 24,900 at the Neo Store.
However, if you want a better visual quality, it would be good to consider a professional camera. These will cost significantly more but will provide better image quality than webcams. At Rs 71,000, the Canon PowerShot G7X is a good mid-range camera. But if you want to go for the best, nothing beats the Sony Alpha A7 series, which is arguably one of the best mirrorless full-frame cameras. The Sony Alpha A7 III costs around Rs 2,56,500 (body and lens). If you do decide to go for a stand-alone camera, make sure you think about mounting systems, you might need a tripod or an arm to hold the camera in place while you’re live. You can also go all out and have a multi-camera setup if you have the wallet to finance it.
If you’re streaming from a console, your options might be limited. For PlayStation consoles, you will need a PlayStation Camera while on Xbox, some third-party cameras are supported.
There is no overemphasising a good microphone. While live streaming, people will expect you to talk, engage with them, and acknowledge their comments. Nothing is a bigger turn off than a buzzing whiny microphone. Fortunately, good audio is not as expensive as good video. One of the mics that many streamers recommend is the Blue Yeti line of mics and they come in different models in varying price ranges and capabilities. The mics are great for desktop use, be it for streaming, recording music or voice chat during co-op games. The Blue Yeti Nano costs Rs 38,100 on Daraz, but if the Blue Yeti mics are too expensive for you, you can also go for a decent lavalier (pin) mics, which tend to cost less while providing decent voice capture. Lavaliers are made for a single person so they might not be the best for music recording or streams with multiple people.
If you want a more private audio experience, a headset is also not a bad option. The Sennheiser Game One headsets sound really good and have a great mic as well, which go for around Rs 22,990. If you want something cheaper, the Logitech G430 headsets are also not a bad option although they don’t sound as great as the Sennheiser’s. The Logitech G430 goes for around Rs 6,800.
Lighting and environment
There is only so much good cameras can do. Fixing the most flattering angle for yourself, making sure your face is well lit up, and your environment has good lighting are all the things you as a creative content creator need to decide. Getting yourself a ring light might be a good starting point as these lights are very cheap and do a really good job of lighting faces. You might also want to try multiple light sources as you grow more comfortable streaming. Adding some flair to your environment can also help you stand out among the hordes of streamers out there.