Interested in streaming your Xbox gameplay? Depending on your desired platform, there are a few different ways you can go about it. Today we’ll talk about the different ways to live stream Xbox gameplay including what hardware and software you’ll need to get the job done.
How to Stream Directly from an Xbox
Whether you don’t own a PC or simply don’t want to use one, you can broadcast your Xbox gameplay straight from your console to Twitch. At the moment, Twitch is the only platform supported for console direct broadcasting. No software needed: you simply need to navigate to Capture and Share from the Xbox dashboard, then Live streaming. As for hardware, you’ll need a USB microphone to plug into your Xbox (check out our article for recommendations). Headphones and/or a webcam aren’t required, but are great accessories to consider. If you’re uncomfortable with the idea of showing your face, you can check out our article on streaming with an avatar.
If you want to stream with different overlays, alerts, and widgets, you need to check out Streamlabs Studio, which is available for Xbox One and Xbox X or S series. Not only are overlays and widgets important for making a stream look professional, they allow for personalization to make your streams stand out. Alerts are crucial for encouraging viewers to subscribe and donate, as people love seeing their names on screen and, more importantly, want to receive verbal recognition from the streamer.
To use Streamlabs Studio, you’ll need to download the Twitch app from Microsoft and then log into streamlabsstudio.com to customize your stream—you can even log in from your smartphone. We have an article with step-by-step instructions for new Streamlabs Studio users. You can use Streamlabs Studio for as little as $4.99 per month or opt for the yearly subscription at a discounted rate of $49.99. If you’re unsure whether the software will work for you, the 7 day free trial is the perfect way to experiment and go live today.
How to Stream Xbox Gameplay with a PC
If you want to stream to a platform besides Twitch (such as Trovo, YouTube, or Facebook), you’ll need a PC. Though not as comfy as streaming Xbox gameplay directly from your couch, with the use of a gaming PC and a software like Streamlabs Desktop, you can create professional-looking live streams easily. Streaming Xbox from a PC also allows you to multistream to all of your preferred platforms at once. There are two methods to stream Xbox gameplay from a PC: with a capture card or without.
With a Capture Card
For an Xbox, a capture card isn’t required but is still recommended. A capture card enables high quality streaming and takes a bit of the load off your PC at the same time. If you’re on a budget, you can check out our article on the best capture cards for under $150 USD. If you're interested in streaming in 4K, you’ll need to spend a bit more.
By connecting your Xbox’s HDMI cable to the capture card and then connecting another HDMI cable from the capture card to your PC, you can easily live stream and record your Xbox gameplay. From there, you can add your gameplay to streaming software like Streamlabs Desktop as a “Video Capture Device.” We have a full tutorial on how to set up an Elgato capture card in Streamlabs Desktop (even if you aren’t using an Elgato card, the steps will be largely the same).
Without a Capture Card
While a capture card is required for a Nintendo Switch, you don’t need one for an Xbox (or a PS4). You can always try streaming without a capture card to see if your PC can handle the load and purchase one later if needed. With this method, you’ll need to hook up your Xbox to your PC directly and choose “Game Capture” in your streaming software. You’ll also need the Windows Companion app. Be sure to choose the Companion app for your specific “Game Capture” window.
Whatever method you choose to go with, we hope you found this article helpful for learning how to stream with your Xbox! What game are you going to stream today?