The 8 Best Capture Cards for PC and Console


Whether you’re a streamer, YouTuber, or simply just want others to enjoy your gameplay, a video capture card enables others to enjoy high-quality streams of your content.

Plus, most capture cards are now compatible with PCs and consoles, so no matter if you’re playing solo or sitting down on the couch with friends, you can still capture those memorable moments.

Here are the best video capture cards available today.

The ASUS TUF CU4K30 saves you from cluttering your desktop PC by installing an extra PCIe card. Again, you may not be able to spare a classic USB Type-A port while gaming from a thin and compact laptop. The USB Type-C port of ASUS TUF CU4K30 comes to your rescue. You can easily set up the capture card with any desktop or laptop computer using HDMI or USB Type-C ports.

Furthermore, if you own game consoles like Xbox, Switch, or PlayStation, this capture card will support those devices. This capture card can deliver a lag-free video stream of 4K resolution at 30fps. Then again, if you want to stun your audience with a higher frame rate of 60fps, you can reduce the video resolution to 2K. You can also stream crisp visuals of 1080p at a whopping 120fps video configuration if you are on a bandwidth budget.

The 3.5mm audio jack lets you deliver live commentary with your squad or solo. The ASUS TUF CU4K30 also comes with OBS Studio certification for multi-platform streaming. Finally, the front-facing RGB lighting strip gives you another solid reason to buy this capture card.

Key Features

  • Certified for OBS
  • RGB Lighting
  • Headset and game controller ports
  • Supports PC, PlayStation, Xbox, and Switch
Specifications

  • Brand: ASUS
  • Max Passthrough Resolution: 4K60
  • Max Capture Resolution: 4K30
  • Interface: USB 3.2 Gen1 Type-C
  • OBS Compatible: Yes
  • Mic In: Yes
  • Built-in Hardware Encoder: No
  • Bundled Software: No
Pros

  • No complex setup needed
  • You can create commentary with team or solo
Cons

  • Doesn’t support HDCP protected signals

Buy This Product

The Elgato HD60 X strikes a nice balance between performance and affordability. It can capture 4K at 30fps or 1080p at 60fps. And, since there’s no software or drivers required, you can simply plug the device in, and you’re ready to go.

The lag-free response is ideal for capturing game footage. However, the bundled software can be touch and go; instead, you can use OBS studio as the Elgato HD60 X is compatible with it.

Although there is a decision to be made between smooth capture or the finer details, the Elgato HD60 X definitely delivers what it says it’s going to.

Key Features

  • No drivers required on Windows or Mac
  • Streams to any platform
  • Sub 100ms
  • No watermarks
Specifications

  • Brand: Elgato
  • Max Passthrough Resolution: 4K 60Hz
  • Max Capture Resolution: 4K 30Hz
  • Interface: USB 3.0
  • OBS Compatible: Yes
  • Mic In: Yes
  • Built-in Hardware Encoder: No
  • Bundled Software: Yes
Pros

  • Reliable capture at 4K 30fps or 1080 60fps
  • Lag-free
  • Easy to use and set up
Cons

  • Trade off between high resolution or high frame rate

Buy This Product

The AVerMedia Live Gamer GC311 is the ideal choice for an entry-level capture card. For those who are just starting to stream or want to start creating YouTube content, it’s a great option thanks to its affordability. It’s also very simple and straightforward to use.

Thanks to its plug-and-play nature, the AVerMedia Live Gamer GC311 means the setup process is non-existent since you can just plug it in and use it straight away. This makes it a breeze to get going, and less daunting for beginners.

While there isn’t anything more than HD streaming here, the AVerMedia Live Gamer GC311 is budget-friendly. You can also use the RECentral streaming software along with the capture card to unlock other interactive features like rich overlays, multi-stream, and more.

Key Features

  • Zero latency Full HD gameplay streaming
  • Built-in H.264 hardware encoder
  • RECentral streaming software
  • Micro-USB 2.0 port for Windows or Mac
Specifications

  • Brand: AVerMedia
  • Max Passthrough Resolution: 1080p60
  • Max Capture Resolution: 1080p60
  • Interface: USB 2.0
  • OBS Compatible: Yes
  • Mic In: No
  • Built-in Hardware Encoder: Yes
  • Bundled Software: Yes
Pros

  • Records gameplay video and reduces load on CPU
  • Enjoy rich overlays, multi-stream, and chroma key using RECentral software
Cons

  • Doesn’t have 3.5mm audio input/output
  • Limited to HD

Buy This Product

AVerMedia Live Gamer GC311

Plugging directly into a spare PCIe slot on your motherboard, the AVerMedia Live Gamer Duo is super easy to install and set up. It’s also easily recognizable when using third-party software, so takes little effort to do what you need it to do.

Video processing is done onboard, so you don’t need to manually intervene. And, with two HDMI inputs, you can stream content from your console, PC, or even your camera. It’s very simple and efficient at what it does.

However, there are other more powerful capture cards available that can record and stream in higher resolutions, at a more affordable cost. The trade-off here is that it’s pretty much plug-and-play, and you don’t need to fiddle with it afterward.

Key Features

  • Dual HDMI input
  • Supports console and PC gaming
  • Zero lag passthrough
  • Onboard video processing
  • Compatible with most streaming software
Specifications

  • Brand: AVer
  • Max Passthrough Resolution: 4K60
  • Max Capture Resolution: 1080p60
  • Interface: HDMI
  • OBS Compatible: Yes
  • Mic In: No
  • Built-in Hardware Encoder: Yes
  • Bundled Software: No
Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Stream multiple inputs at once
  • Works with PC and console
Cons

  • Limited to 1080p
  • Passthrough only on HDMI 1

Buy This Product

The Mirabox HSV 320 is the ideal capture card for you if you’re looking to strike the right balance between value and performance. While it may only be able to capture and stream 1080p at 60fps, it is incredibly affordable, and that’s what you need to remember here. Similarly, this video capture card isn’t limited to gaming. It can also be used for live-streaming events, online education, and online meetings.

Its HDMI video input system is compatible with video resolutions up to 4K at 30Hz for video input and passthrough. You can use the HDMI ports to connect to all other devices, apart from PCs which use USB 3.0 to enable it to connect with laptops and desktops.

And, if there was any doubt about its functionality, the Mirabox HSV 320 is compatible with OBS Studio, making it a great entry-level video capture card for new streamers or YouTubers.

Key Features

  • Supports a wide range of devices
  • Zero-latency HDMI passthrough
  • A true plug-and-play capture card
  • Compatible with many streaming/recording software
Specifications

  • Brand: Mirabox
  • Max Passthrough Resolution: 4K30
  • Max Capture Resolution: 1080p60
  • Interface: USB 3.0
  • OBS Compatible: Yes
  • Mic In: No
  • Built-in Hardware Encoder: No
  • Bundled Software: Yes
Pros

  • Convert DSLR or other digital cameras to webcam
  • Video conferencing and live social media streaming
  • It can be used for online education
Cons

  • Doesn’t have any audio input/output jack

Buy This Product

The Elgato HD60 Pro is a PCIe-based video capture card that offers unmatched lag-free gameplay streaming or recording. It’s perfect for streamers who want to capture gameplay from a PC or console. Plus, if you don’t want to add a bulky external video capture card to your setup, this fits neatly inside your PC, removing extra clutter.

The bundled software is easy to use, though it’s not as effective as the likes of OBS Studio (which it is compatible with). Stream almost any device with an HDMI output directly to your computer, and enjoy flawless graphics thanks to its built-in hardware encoder.

Key Features

  • Ultra-low latency technology
  • Dedicated H.264 hardware encoding
  • Instant Gameview
  • Flashback recording
  • Live commentary
Specifications

  • Brand: Elgato
  • Max Passthrough Resolution: 1080p60
  • Max Capture Resolution: 1080p60
  • Interface: PCIe
  • OBS Compatible: Yes
  • Mic In: No
  • Built-in Hardware Encoder: Yes
  • Bundled Software: Yes
Pros

  • User-friendly
  • Lag-free, ideal for streaming
  • Works with popular streaming software
Cons

  • Bundled software is somewhat limited
  • Newer iterations are more powerful

Buy This Product

The Elgato HD60 S is a small capture card that offers a plug-and-play experience using a USB-C connector. It’s capable of delivering 1080p at 60fps with ease, and can responsively stream to your TV. As a bonus, it also looks great too and strikes a nice balance for gamers who like a little LED added to their setup.

Furthermore, the Elgato HD60 S is capable of offering unlimited video recording of your gameplay using advanced GPU acceleration. Therefore, you can upload pre-recorded gameplay as well as stream your in-game content live as it happens.

At an affordable cost, the Elgato HD60 S is a great tool for gamers and streamers. The bundled software also allows you to easily add overlays, alerts, and more to make an impact and show off your style.

Key Features

  • Instant recording and streaming
  • LED status strip
  • Instant Gameview
  • Live commentary
  • Flashback recording
  • Stream command
Specifications

  • Brand: Elgato
  • Max Passthrough Resolution: 1080p60
  • Max Capture Resolution: 1080p60
  • Interface: USB 3.0
  • OBS Compatible: Yes
  • Mic In: Yes
  • Built-in Hardware Encoder: No
  • Bundled Software: Yes
Pros

  • Supports multiple apps
  • Comes with free USB 3.0 and HDMI cables
  • You can add webcam feed and stream overlays
Cons

  • Capture stream tends to be a little slower than passthrough

Buy This Product

If you’re looking for an easy-to-use capture card that looks stylish and is good value for money, you can’t go far wrong with the NZXT Signal 4K30. It’s great for recording 4K footage on PC and console, but if you only want to capture 1080p, then you can probably get a capture card that’s similar in performance, but cheaper in price.

Thanks to HDMI passthrough, you can play at a higher resolution than the NZXT Signal 4K30 can record. For example, you can play in 4K but stream in 1080p which is handy in some cases.

Once you’re done with it, the NZXT Signal 4K30 is easy to store thanks to its compact size. In fact, if you want to take it with you when traveling or are going to a friend’s house, it’s the perfect video capture card to fit in your pocket.

Key Features

  • Zero-lag passthrough
  • Plug-and-play
  • Compatible with OBS
  • Compatible with Windows and Mac
Specifications

  • Brand: NZXT
  • Max Passthrough Resolution: 4K30
  • Max Capture Resolution: 4K30
  • Interface: USB
  • OBS Compatible: Yes
  • Mic In: No
  • Built-in Hardware Encoder: No
  • Bundled Software: No
Pros

  • Looks stylish and compact
  • Easy to set up
  • HDMI passthrough
Cons

  • Doesn’t support ultra-wide monitors
  • Requires USB-C 3.2 Gen 1

Buy This Product

FAQ

Q: Are Capture Cards Worth It?

Video capture cards take the load off your game console or computer, offering a lag-free experience. You can stream content directly from your device, allowing others on social media, Twitch, YouTube, and more, to enjoy it.

Q: Does a Capture Card Improve Stream Quality?

Capture cards deliver better video quality during streaming or recording than free screen recording software. Capture cards can also offer lag-free streaming, making them a better option for content creators.


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