Choosing a live streaming equipment is complex and can be overwhelming, especially if you’re new to live streaming and you aren’t sure what to look for.
With this article, we aim to help make things simpler. We’ll cover the basics for a successful live streaming setup, critical considerations when choosing between live streaming equipment and a few recommendations of the best live streaming equipment in several categories. Hope it helps!
Understanding Live Streaming Setup
Before starting to choose live streaming equipment, you should, first of all understand what a successful live streaming consists of.
- An audio/video source – to provide material for the stream
- An encoder – to package the input and send it to a platform, website, or network
- A switcher – to allow you to switch between different sources, especially when you have multiple video inputs
- A monitor – to monitor live streaming
- A recorder – to record your live streaming for post productions
- A stable internet connection – to transfer data to the destination
- A streaming service – to act as the destination and provide output
This is the basics for a successful live streaming setup. You can opt to add to delete according to your specific needs.
Key Factors to Consider When Choosing a Live Streaming Equipment
1. Possible compatibility issues
Compatibility with your cameras is the key to consider before purchasing live streaming equipment as you probably don’t want to invest in another camera. Ask for the compatibility list and make sure your camera is on the list. But if you’ve already purchased the equipment, don’t panic. An emulator usually works for a lot of compatibility issues.
2. Live streaming platform
No matter what live streaming equipment you choose, you always need a platform that you can send your live stream to, whether it is Facebook, Youtube or any others. Be sure to check if the equipment supports live streaming to the platform that you prefer, whether through direct integration or via RTMP(s). Second, confirm how many platforms it supports live streaming simultaneously and make a decision according to your own needs.
3. Advanced or additional features
There’re lots of live streaming equipment out there on the market and they come with many diverse features. Scope out these features that meet your live streaming needs before committing to one live streaming equipment.
4. Software update frequency
A live streaming equipment with a higher software update frequency makes sure it stays competitive and meets your various streaming needs.
5. Ease of use
The next key factor that greatly simplifies your choice is to look for a live streaming equipment that is easy to use. This is critical because streaming is such a complex technology. Live video is built on a number of parts, and these parts are linked by a complex set of software and hardware tools. An easy-to-use live streaming equipment will significantly save your time, improve work efficiency and best for those without any expert skills.
Last but not least – the pricing. Choose what can best meet your needs, not the cheapest. A good live streaming equipment can go a long way in making your live stream more appealing.
The Best Live Streaming Equipment in 2022
Best live streaming software
The Open Broadcaster Software Studio is like a gateway software for those new to live streaming. It’s free and compatible with a variety of platforms, including Windows, Mac, and Linux. You can also customize OBS as much as you like.
The all-in-one application comes with a lot of built-in tools and features that are especially helpful for streamers to create a diverse live streaming experience.
Best live streaming switcher
Blackmagic ATEM Mini Pro
When doing larger live productions with multiple cameras, it’s very useful to see all your video sources on a single monitor and you should have a switcher to do that for you. Blackmagic ATEM Mini is probably the most famous switcher on the market and it is what is described and marketed – very easy to use and fast to learn. Simply press any of the input buttons labelled by number on the front panel to cut between video sources when the “Cut” button is enabled. Or by pressing on the “Auto” button, you can use transition effects when switching inputs.
Most notable, all video sources will re-sync to the switcher if they operate at different video standards so you don’t have to worry about connecting video devices as they all just work!
Best all-in-one live streaming equipment
If your live streaming mostly happens outdoors, where carrying a computer all the way is undoubtedly not a good option, you need a more portable option like YoloBox Pro.
YoloBox Pro is an ultimate all-in-one live production system. Integration of an encoder, switcher, recorder and monitor built-in one 8-inch box that makes professional yet easy live streaming accessible to everyone. Small, compact but versatile with up to 8 video sources. It’s widely used in various verticals including house of worship, weddings, sports, music, production studio, education and more.
Most notable, all the premium features on YoloBox Pro are totally free including chroma key, audio mixing, monitor mode, countdown timer overlay, USB webcam out, and many more are coming including reuse project, web URL overlay, auto-switching, more multi-views and overlay templates, and more.
Accessories for Live Streaming
A perfect live streaming setup cannot go without accessories. As for the bits and bobs for the perfect setup, please check out this guide that we’ve combined by combing through a variety of popular live streaming gears.
Before Go Live
Once all your live streaming equipment and necessary accessories are set up, don’t miss out on the one last important thing before going live – check the ultimate live streaming checklist to ensure streaming.
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As product operation manager at YoloLiv, Esther and her team stay focused on our customers’ needs and constantly push forward new updates for YoloBox and Pro. Also, she contributed some blog posts from perspectives on how to enhance live streaming experience, live streaming sop for newbies, and more.