What Equipment Do You Need to Start a YouTube Gaming Channel?

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What equipment do you need to start a YouTube gaming channel?

So you want to start a YouTube channel to stream your favorite games or upload clips of your gameplay videos. You want to share your gaming skills with the world.

Maybe you figured out how to create a YouTube channel, which is pretty simple to do, by the way.

But now you wonder, “What equipment do I need to start?”, “Do I need any equipment at all?”, and more such thoughts might cross your mind. We are here to answer them all.

In this article, we will go in-depth about do you really need any equipment? If yes, then what kind of equipment do you need to start a successful YouTube gaming channel?

Even if you’re just a beginner, This article will help you to make better decisions while choosing and setting up the best equipment, at the best price possible.

Let’s dive right in!

Do you really need any equipment?

In order to answer this question, you’ll first have to figure out the platform you wish to play your games on and also the future plans for your gaming journey.

Check out “PC/Laptop vs console vs mobile” and “Determine your goal” [in-article links].

After you have figured out the stuff mentioned above, head over to the “Equipment you need according to your budget” section, in this article.

In case you want the simple answer—you won’t need much equipment if you’re just starting out.

You only need a video + audio recording/streaming software, video editing software, and a microphone (optional) to do the commentary while playing.

That’s more than enough to get started.

With time, of course, you will need to upgrade your stuff as per the requirements, but as a beginner, stick to the equipment mentioned above and you’re good to go.

If you want to build a full streaming studio for yourself, read on to find out about all the equipment you’ll need for that.

PC/Laptop vs console vs mobile

The very first step is to find out what platform you play on the most and want to stick to as a gamer. You already know if you are a PC/Laptop, console, or mobile gamer.

In case you are confused, take a look at the following question to find out which platform is the best for you:

Which among these platforms do you enjoy playing the most?

  • PC or Laptop
  • Console (for example PS5, Xbox Series X, etc.)
  • Smartphone or Tablet

It is not a question of which one of these is better than the other. All of these platforms have their pros and cons. I recommend choosing the one you like the most and enjoy playing on for hours.

No matter what platform you choose, you are going to be playing awesome games at the end of the day. 🙌

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Determine your goal

Now that you have decided the type of platform you are going to play your favorite games on, it is time to figure out what is your goal for starting a YouTube gaming channel.

Are you a casual gamer and play just for fun, with no intention of turning it into a full-time thing?

OR

Are you a dedicated gamer and want to turn it into a career?

Simply ask yourself the questions mentioned above and you’ll figure out your goal for starting a gaming YouTube channel.

Basic hardware & software requirements

I am assuming you already have a console, capable gaming PC, laptop, or smartphone/tablet (whichever is applicable).

You will need software for video recording/streaming and video editing. If you play on a console, you will have to invest in a game capture card.

Also, you will need to have a strong and stable internet connection with 5 – 15 Mbps speeds.

Here are the basic requirements for each platform with links to the best hardware/software products.

PC/Laptop:

Console:

There are two ways to stream or record your gameplay on a console. You can either use a video game capture card to stream with a PC or laptop, or you can use the built-in Twitch app inside your console.

If you need help setting up either of these methods, simply do a Google search and you’ll learn the stuff in no time. Alternatively, take a look at this article.

Make sure to create a Twitch account, if you plan to stream on Twitch as well.

Here’s an explanation of capture cards by StudioBinder: “A capture card is a device that’s used in conjunction with a computer to capture on-screen content and encode it for playback in either a live stream or a high-quality video file. Capture cards can be used with video game consoles new and old, as well as computers and cameras.

Here is a list of some game capture cards on Amazon:

Additionally, you will need to have the software mentioned above in the PC/Laptop section to record, stream, and edit the videos captured by the capture card to upload them on YouTube.

Smartphone or Tablet:

Here we have three methods to stream or record your Android gameplays.

Method 1: You can directly go live on YouTube (learn how).

Method 2: You can make use of your internal in-build game capture tool. If you don’t have that feature, here are some apps on the Play Store that can record your gameplays:

Method 3: You can use your PC or laptop to use the same software as mentioned in the PC/laptop section above to stream or record your gameplay videos.

You will need to turn on the USB debugging option and have a USB cable to connect your smartphone or tablet to your PC or laptop.

Here’s a tutorial:

You can also use the software mentioned above in the PC/Laptop section to record and edit the videos on your PC or Laptop to upload on YouTube.

Equipment you need according to your budget

After learning about the basic requirements, let us now dive into the equipment you will need to start your YouTube gaming journey.

I have broken it down into three categories:

(a) Beginner [$0 – $100]

As mentioned before in this article, you won’t need much equipment to get started with your YouTube gaming journey.

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Keeping this budget category in mind, you can simply start streaming in your favorite place without having to spend on any new equipment!

If you create good content with what you have already, you will see growth, regardless of the equipment you have or don’t have.

Having said that, I recommend getting a decent microphone to help you take your content up a notch.

Viewers enjoy listening to the commentary of their favorite streamers while enjoying the gameplay.

It also helps keep the streams/videos engaging and helps create a special connection with the audience.

Below I have listed three pieces of equipment you can get for under $100!

However, you don’t necessarily need to spend 100 dollars. You can pick and choose the ones you want and can fit into your budget.

Let’s start with microphones. Here are some cheap but good-quality microphones to choose from.

Microphones under $50:

Headphones with a mic under $20:

A good pair of headphones with a microphone is necessary to have if you play multiplayer competitive games like Counter-Strike Global Offensive, Dota, Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds, and more.

It will help you communicate with your teammates, which in turn will help you make better decisions in-game.

Here are my top picks for headphones with a mic under $20:

Webcams under $30:

Getting yourself a good webcam or camera that can record or stream your face while you play is important to help you build a better relationship with your audience.

Showing your face will help you create a unique persona and help you build your personal brand for the future as well.

You can simply put the relay from the webcam scaled down at one of the corners of the computer screen. You can do so in any video streaming/recording software like OBS Studio.

Here are my top picks for webcams under $30:

(b) Intermediate [Under $250]

In this section, we can throw in some more equipment to make our content more professional and appealing to the audience.

You can use a good-quality webcam or a digital camera to show your face while streaming.

Furthermore, you can get a better quality microphone for under $100. You can also get a small ring light to help illuminate your face while recording/streaming.

Microphones under $100:

Since we have increased our budget for microphones to $100, investing in a good quality microphone is highly recommended.

It will make your content look and sound even better and more professional. You don’t want any background noise or interference sounds while streaming.

Here is a list of microphones under $100:

Headphones with a mic under $50:

We have bumped up our budget for headphones with a mic to $50. Here are my picks:

Webcams under $50:

Here are my top picks for webcams under $50:

Ring lights under $50:

Having better lighting to light up an environment or a subject is a crucial step in making a movie/video that much more professional. So why not take your video production to the next level with cheap ring lights. They are cheaper in price but can make your face well-lit and help you and your streams/videos look professional.

Here are my top picks:

NOTE: You don’t have to buy all of the equipment mentioned. Please choose according to your budget & needs.

(c) Advanced [Above $500]

In this section, we will see upgraded microphones, cameras, lights, and more new equipment that you can invest in to make your very own streaming studio.

Headphones with a mic under $200:

Here are my top pics:

Microphones under 200$:

Getting a microphone like the Blue Yeti, which is the most-used microphone by the streamers, is enough for streaming purposes. Still, if you like to upgrade your microphone, I won’t stop you.

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Here are some microphones under $200:

Digital cameras under $200:

You can get a digital camera or camcorder for producing top-notch professional content.

Here are my picks:

Tripods under $100:

If you are getting a camera or camcorder, you’ll need to have a tripod to keep it fixed while gaming.

Here are my picks:

Gaming chairs under $200:

You need to be in good posture and feel comfortable while playing. For that, getting a good gaming chair is recommended. Plus, it makes you look cooler. 😎

Here are my picks:

Keyboard & mouse under $200:

Why not get a new RGB gaming keyboard & mouse for the new studio?

Here’s a list:

Mouse pad under $30:

If you are going to get a keyboard & mouse, getting a good mousepad will help you increase precision in competitive shooting games.

Here are my picks:

Controllers under $200:

Some games are meant to be played only with a controller. If you play or plan to play games that require a controller, I have got some picks for you.

Here is a list of controllers under $200:

Start creating content

After setting up your gaming space, it is time to start creating professional and engaging content for your audience. The truth is, you will have to struggle a lot in the first few months. But being consistent with the streaming and uploading is the only way to move forward and build a loyal fanbase.

You should create a schedule for streaming and uploading videos on YouTube. I recommend streaming at least 4 days a week and uploading at least 2 to 4 times per week for the first few months. After gaining some loyal viewers, you can start to decrease the frequency of uploads, if you want.

Frontloading content at the start is very important to get yourself discovered, because there is so much competition in the gaming industry right now, and it will only continue to grow.

Be consistent

As mentioned above, YouTube is not easy, especially in the gaming industry. You have to be consistently putting out great content for weeks and months before you can expect to see any growth.

You have to be patient throughout the whole journey. You would get frustrated at times and feel like giving up, but patience and consistency will help you reach your goals eventually.

Here’s a quote from Bruce Springsteen that might inspire you to work harder towards your goals:

“Getting an audience is hard. Sustaining an audience is hard. It demands a consistency of thought, of purpose, and of action over a long period of time.” – Bruce Springsteen

Final thoughts

In conclusion, let me summarise the key points of this article.

Key points:

  • You don’t really need to buy a bunch of equipment if you’re just starting out.
  • Making good content with what you have will help you grow, nonetheless.
  • Here’s the list of equipment to buy, categorized into three parts:
  • You should stream 4 days & upload 2-4 times per week in the first few months.
  • Be consistent throughout the journey and resist the feeling of giving up.

I hope you succeed with your YouTube gaming journey. 😊

Please share your thoughts about this post in the comments below and share it with your friends and family who could use the information. See you in the next one! 👋

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