How To Set Up Your Streaming StationIf you love a good bingefest, take a look at our suggestions for the stream of your life.
If you’re going to do it, do it right. That goes for a good streaming session too.
We’re not talking a casual glance at social media, either. If you’re just looking to see if any of your friends have liked your latest selfie, maybe while you’re in between train stops, your smartphone or tablet will do just fine. But if you’re a diehard fan of Twitch or YouTube, you need a supercar-level setup, including desktop, gaming chair, multiple screens – the whole enchilada.
With that in mind, here’s our guide for the best equipment and accessories out there on the market.
You don’t actually need a lot of computing power to watch your favorite podcast. Almost any internet-ready desktop (or laptop) can handle things easily.
Having said that, you should definitely use a computer that you can enjoy high quality visuals at top speed without glitching, and your device should be robust as well. The last thing you need is to have something go wrong in the middle of a rousing livestream, just like you don’t want your car falling apart during your commute.
Your decision might boil down to one simple question: Are you a Mac, or a PC? Generally speaking, Macintosh computers – including Macbook Pro laptops – are the most reliable pieces of hardware you can buy. However, PCs are more widely-used and more versatile, so you might find it easier to put together a tricked-out gaming system using these as your base.
Like most things involving computers, the price of monitors has dropped significantly in recent years. It’s easy to snap up a few screens and integrate them into your work and play station. Curved monitors aren’t quite as popular as they were a few years back, but in theory, they’re better for your eyes and easier to fit around your headspace.
Now it’s time to get behind the wheel. You’ll be “steering” your computer using input devices – keyboard and mouse are standard for most, but there are other controllers out there. We’ll get to those in a moment.
The keyboard is a must. Gaming keyboards are readily available; you’ll want a mechanical keyboard, meaning the keys are activated using switches rather than membranes and/or rubber. The switches make the keyboard more responsive, and longer-lasting too.
A gaming mouse will be a welcome addition to your arsenal if you don’t have one already. For security, wired is preferable to wireless for all your online gadgets, mice included. You’ll definitely want an LED/laser mouse rather than an old-school ball mouse.
There’s nothing quite as disappointing as getting into a sweet, sweet ride and finding out the seats aren’t made of leather. You’re going to be spending hours at a time at your computer streaming, so if you want the best experience possible, you want the best gaming chair possible.
Or do you? Sitting down is fine for the most part, but when you’re livestreaming for several hours at a time, it might be healthier for you to use a standing desk, or perhaps a kneeling chair.
If these options aren’t your thing, definitely spend some cash on one of those gaming chairs that look like they came from the deck of the Starship Enterprise. Lumbar support is key; some of these chairs also have massage units, head pillows, armrests, footrests – you name it.
On top of these basic poker work and play station elements, you have a whole host of secondary accessories. For example, you can get a mouse pad and/or keyboard with wrist support. Some kind of drink tray would be nice, too – gotta have those cup holders.
Lastly, but perhaps most importantly, make sure you’re using Ethernet rather than Wi-Fi when you go online. Again, it’s all about staying connected, so keep it wired instead of wireless, and build in some redundancies (back-up power source included) in case of emergency.
That’s it: Our simple guide to all of the different components of a winning poker setup. Choose the brands you like the most at the prices you can afford. If at any time you feel like you need upgrading, go ahead and make whatever changes you feel like. You have the control.