At some point in history, gamers were considered outcasts and withdrawn people. The mention of games could not be spoken outside of certain social circles without ridicule or laughter. The idea that one day it would be possible to broadcast their gaming sessions live did not even occur to most young players. These were tough times.
Fast forward to the current day and you won’t even be able to figure out that Twitch hasn’t always been used. Since the transition from Justin.tv, gamers and game streamers have finally found refuge. This is still true even with the many changes made to the platform over the years.
Twitch has gotten so big it’s not about gaming anymore. It has also become a haven for artists, aspiring chefs and even people who just want to communicate directly with their audience using the ‘IRL’ category. Even as competitors like YouTube Gaming, Caffeine, and Mixer are eager to get a piece of the streamer pie, Twitch stands out above the rest. The platform is home to over 15 million daily viewers and nearly two million creators who entertain them.
It’s clear that you can’t just start streaming on Twitch without some tweaking and foresight on your part. You will need to figure out which system you will be streaming on, what streaming software you will be using, the various peripherals to increase the stream, and how to create an account.
How to Broadcast on Twitch: A Beginner’s Guide
Despite the recent transition to Mixer of two of Twitch’s biggest streamers, Ninja and Shroud, the Twitch platform continues to perform very well. Plus, it’s still considered the best streaming destination.
For beginners looking to learn how to stream on Twitch, whether it’s a hobby or a professional career, it can be difficult to know where to start. We think that the first thing you need to worry about is which system you plan to use for streaming.
A gaming PC, Xbox One, or PlayStation 4 are required if you plan to start streaming to Twitch. Twitch streaming requirements will vary depending on how you want your stream to look to your audience. Higher quality requirements will require higher technical specifications for computers.
We suggest building your own computer to fit whatever specifications you prefer. This will require additional technical knowledge and time, but this is the best way to â€œstream perfectâ€. Those who do not have the necessary knowledge or time to create a personalized PC may instead choose to use a console or an off-the-shelf PC depending on your preference.
High-end laptops are a worthy streaming investment as well, but usually aren’t as powerful as the systems previously mentioned. Less demanding games or anything you choose to stream to Twitch will require less investment.
Audio, video and voice
Headsets are a higher priority for console streamers as they can stream content directly to their device using the Twitch app. Plus, it’s more compact and easier to use than buying a set of separate parts required for PC streamers.
HyperX Cloud Stinger (Budget Purchase)
SteelSeries Arctis 7 for PC / PS4 or Xbox One (mid way)
Victrix Pro AF (high quality, competitive)
A webcam is not a requirement for streaming on Twitch, but it increases audience engagement, which is helpful if you ever plan to do it big. There are many viable hardware options out there, but most beginners should choose the Logitech HD Pro C920 or C922
Each one provides 1080p HD video streaming and recording, delivering 720p output at 60fps.
While there are other higher quality options as well as more budgetary options, this mic is the best option for a new streamer. It delivers professional quality at an affordable price, and for most streamers, updates start and end on the Blue Yeti
Create Twitch Account
- To create a Twitch account, go to the official Twitch.tv website.
- In the upper right corner of the screen, click the purple Sign Up button.
- Fill in all the required information in the pop-up window.
- Click “Register” once all information has been entered. You can also create an account using your Facebook ID by clicking the Connect to Facebook button at the bottom of the window.
- Sign in to your Twitch account, click on your icon in the upper right corner and select Creator Dashboard from the menu.
- Then open the menu on the left and select Channel from the Settings drop-down list. Here you will find the Primary Stream Key, which you can copy and paste into the area indicated by the streaming program of your choice.
- Now go back to the Stream Manager window and click Edit Stream Info.
- Fill in each field with the correct information.
- Go-to-air notification is not required for first-time streaming users. Come back to this when you have the following.
- Populating a Category with the game you are playing will often auto-populate the tags as well.
- Even if there is a section for Stream Language, it must also be present in the header. Placement is preferable at the beginning of the title to suit the game you are playing and what is happening.
- An example might look like this.
- Click Finish. Your title will now appear at the bottom of the window.
This will be your username, strong password, and your email address.
Now that the hardware is down and you have your Twitch account set up, your next step to streaming on Twitch is choosing your streaming software. As with most things on the Internet, there are tons of options, but most streamers prefer three over everything else.
OBS, Xsplit or Streamlabs OBS are the top 3 that streamers generally use for their streaming sessions. Each one is free and the choice you make is entirely up to you. Streamlabs boasts an average of 30% increase in revenue from their tools, so this is something to keep in mind for streamers looking to make money.
A basic understanding of audio I / O, bitrate, and navigation in Windows Explorer goes a long way when setting up your Twitch streaming software. Using any of them will take some effort to get used to how they work, but shouldn’t be too much of a problem even for beginners. If you run into some problems, please refer to the documentation for the specific software on the official site.
Broadcasting to Twitch
The streaming software is customized just the way you need it. So it’s time to go? Wrong. Before you can click the Go Live button on the respective streaming program, you will need to get the stream key and add some stream information.
If prompted, your chosen streaming software will directly connect you to Twitch using your Twitch account details. This means that the streaming program already has the stream key required to start streaming. They will even link you to stream information for editing, as well as Live Chat.
However, if this is not the case, you can follow these steps.
Broadcast to Console
All the information already provided is more than enough for anyone trying to stream to Twitch from a PC or laptop. The info is also good for consoles like Xbox One and PS4 with some extras.
Whether you choose to stream to Twitch via Xbox One or PS4, you’ll still need to download the app from the said console store. You can get the Twitch app from the Xbox Store for Xbox One and the PSN Store for Playstation 4.
- After downloading and installing on the machine, log in and activate it.
- Open the game you want to stream through your console controller.
- Press the Xbox button (or the Share button for PS4) and select Twitch.
- Change the settings to your liking before streaming.
- Once the stream is live, you can interact with the audience through a chat window or verbally through a purchased headset with microphone.
Newbie Streamer Pro Tips for Success
To become a professional streamer, you need to remain committed to your craft. Building a large audience and generating a stable income will take a lot of time. Here are some tips to help you achieve your goals.
- While hardware is an essential component of streaming, don’t be overly concerned about choosing the best options. You can always update the game later, so just use what you have access to or what your budget allows.
- A niche game has a better chance of reaching new audiences. High-profile games already have many streamers and viewers of their own, making it nearly impossible for new streamers to grow.
- Decorate your feed with images and information, including a personal bio and social media connections.
- Engage with your audience as early and often as possible. Stronger streamers will establish a certain rapport with their audience.
- Stream regularly and provide a visual schedule for your viewers.
- To understand your audience and evaluate their interests.
Though gear is an important component of streaming, donâ€™t allow yourself to become overly concerned with having the best options. You can always upgrade later so just use what you have access to or that which your budget allows.
A niche game has a stronger likelihood of bringing in a new audience. High-profile games already have plenty of streamers and their own viewers that it making it nearly impossible for new streamer growth.
Spruce up your channel with images and information including a personal bio and social media connections.
Engage with your audience early and often. Stronger streamers will have developed a certain rapport with their viewer base.
Stream regularly and provide a visible schedule to your viewers.
Keep a watchful eye on your streams health and statistics to understand your audience and gauge their interests.