Twitch streaming as a hobby, side hustle or even a full-time job has really caught on in the past few years, with lots of gamers taking up streaming during the COVID19 pandemic as a way to pass the time at home, meet new people and enjoy a social life without actually having to go outside. You might be surprised to find out how many people actually enjoy watching gamers doing their thing. Twitch streaming isn’t always about playing the best games or even winning, but it can be a fun way to get together with your friends, meet new people, have a laugh and learn something new. If you like watching streamers on Twitch and have considered giving it a go yourself, then getting the right setup is essential.
Twitch streaming can take up a lot of computing power, especially if you’re playing high-spec games at the same time, so it’s crucial to make sure that you’ve got everything you need before you start so that you and your viewers can get the best experience.
Getting the Right Gaming PC
While you can stream from a laptop, many gamers who stream on Twitch like the authenticity that comes with having a gaming PC. There are definitely more gaming PC options available now than ever before, as PC gaming becomes more popular, or you might want to look into building your own. Look out for a reliable and well-known brand like Lenovo whether you are buying a ready built gaming workstation PC or looking for components like processors and graphics cards to build a custom one.
You will need to make sure that you have plenty of RAM, as Twitch streaming while gaming at the same time can take a lot of multi-tasking, and the last thing you need is a PC that starts going slow or overheating when you’re trying to entertain your viewers. A powerful dedicated graphics card is also a good idea, although how much you will realistically need to spend on this can vary depending on the type of games you are planning to play.
Finding a Good Webcam
Once you have the right PC setup for Twitch streaming your games, it’s time to move onto the accessories that you are going to need to have a successful time. A web cam is essential as your viewers will want to interact with you as you are playing, so you’ll need to show your face if you want to get anywhere with your streams. A webcam that is designed for the purpose of Twitch streaming or gaming is a good idea, as this can be more reliable and will be designed with the kind of things you are doing in mind. However, you can also use a standard webcam that would be a good choice for conference video calls, for example. Whatever kind of webcam you decide to use, it’s important to make high quality picture and sound a top priority.
Setting Up Your Monitors
If you are going to be streaming on Twitch while you’re playing games on your PC, then it’s a good idea to have a dual monitor setup, or even more. This will allow you to use one monitor to play your game while the other shows Twitch and allows you to interact with your viewers as they write things to you in the chat box. Otherwise, if you’re only using the one monitor, then you are likely going to be doing a lot of switching in between tabs and you might miss out on valuable interactions with the community members that could cause your performance stats to drop over time. All you need to do is plug both monitors in and make sure that they are set up before you start. You may want to consider investing in accessories to make your setup a little bit neater, like a dual monitor stand or wall mount.
If you’re not already using one as a gamer, or you could do with a new one, then you’re going to need a good quality gaming headset to start streaming on Twitch. Not only will this allow you to hear your games clearly, but you can also speak into the mic on your headset when you are interacting with your viewers. Another option to consider if you want to get even clearer, better quality sound is to use a separate microphone that is set up in front of you, along with using your headset.
Remember that Twitch streaming successfully is just as much about interacting with your audience as it is about entertaining them with your gameplay, so a headset and microphone that helps you do this better is always worth investing in.
While the above covers the basics when it comes to what you need to get started with Twitch streaming, there are lots of other accessories that you may want to consider investing in, especially if you start to stream on Twitch regularly. You may want to consider using hardware such as a Steam Deck to make interacting with your viewers easier, or a dedicated gaming keyboard and mouse that you can use to improve your performance while playing games on Twitch. You can also get accessories for your room, like LED lights that connect to your Wi-Fi and can be controlled by your viewers in Twitch for more fun and interaction.
Finally, if you want to make it big as a Twitch streamer then it’s a good idea to have an online presence. Come up with a streamer name, logo and brand colors and set yourself up on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and TikTok where you can advertise your upcoming streams and connect with others in the community who may be interested in getting to know more about you and what you do.
If you’ve been thinking about Twitch streaming as a gamer but aren’t sure where to start, these are some of the main things that you will need when it comes to getting set up.