Whether you’re a new content creator who primarily enjoys playing Nintendo Switch games or an existing creator looking to branch out to Switch gameplay, you’ll find that streaming from the Switch isn’t quite as straightforward as streaming from a PC or other gaming consoles such as Xbox or Playstation 4. Though the process for live streaming your Nintendo Switch gameplay will take some hardware add-ons and time to set up, we’re happy to report that it’s possible and simpler to accomplish than you may think.
First and foremost, you should know that the Switch does not have any built-in streaming functionality. That means that you will need a capture card of some type to get your Switch’s signal to your Mac or PC so that you can stream and record it. It’s also important to note that live streaming only works for full-size Nintendo Switch devices and not Switch Lite. Spoiler: the set-up requires connecting a capture card and docking your Switch, which can’t be done with a Nintendo Switch Lite. This guide will teach you how to stream Nintendo Switch to Twitch, YouTube, Facebook, Trovo, or your favorite streaming platform of choice.
- What to know about streaming from Nintendo Switch: This device doesn’t have any built-in functionality that will allow you to stream. Live streaming only works for full-size Nintendo Switch devices and not Switch Lite but requires some hardware and software to get started.
- What you need to live stream from your Nintendo Switch: To live stream from a Switch, you need a full-size console capture card (for example, the Elgato HD60), an extra monitor, 2 HDMI cables, a USB cable, computer (Mac or PC), a streaming software such as Streamlabs Desktop.
- How to set up your Nintendo Switch for streaming: Setting up your Nintendo Switch to stream starts with connecting the device dock output to a capture card and then connecting the capture card to a monitor. From there, you must add your Nintendo Switch as a Video Capture Device using Streamlabs Desktop.
What You Need to Start Live Streaming from Your Nintendo Switch
As we briefly mentioned, streaming on your Nintendo Switch will require a few hardware add-ons and the proper software. You will need:
- A full-size Nintendo Switch console
- Capture card (for example, the Elgato HD60)
- An extra monitor
- 2 HDMI cables
- A USB cable
- Computer (Mac or PC)
- Streaming software (download Streamlabs Desktop for free)
How to Set up Your Nintendo Switch for Streaming
- Starting with your Switch in the dock, connect your device’s dock output to your capture card using one of the HDMI cables.
- Next, connect the capture card output to your monitor using your second HDMI cable. For a more detailed outline for setting up a capture card, see our in-depth guide for using an Elgato capture card with Streamlabs Desktop.
- Plug the capture card into your computer using the USB cable.
- Launch Streamlabs Desktop and connect your preferred streaming account in the “Streaming Destination” section of your settings.
- After verifying your streaming credentials, head over to the “Sources” panel of Streamlabs Desktop and add your capture card as a “Video Capture Device.” Remember to resize the box displaying your Switch gameplay to your liking.
- Set up your stream with preferred customizations such as scenes, overlays, alerts, etc., and hit “Go Live.” You’re officially ready to stream your Nintendo Switch gaming!
Getting set up to stream your Nintendo Switch gameplay takes a few extra steps over streaming PC gameplay, but in just a few minutes, you’ll be on your way to sharing your gaming experience with your growing community. If you have any questions or comments, please let us know. Remember to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. Happy Streaming!