June 2012 Ian Chiu
A quick search on YouTube on nearly almost any console game titles can reveal walkthrough videos that help you get achievements and unlock unique trophies; footage from hardcore gamers showing off their fragging skills; and even an endless supply of gameplay videos from vintage games released as far back as the 80s. Trying to capture precious gameplay moments has never been easy, and only the tech-savvy gamers so far have managed to master the techniques of game broadcasting. But that’s about to be changed with Elgato Game Capture HD.
In a nutshell, the Game Capture HD is a USB-powered device that can record HDMI (i.e. XBox 360) or component video (i.e. PS3) on either a Mac or PC. There’s also a HDMI output on the other end of the unit so you can continue play your games while the Game Capture records in the background.
Inside the box is a H.264 / AAC encoder that can save source video a bit-rate of 30Mbps and audio at a 224kbps. The Game Capture only supports up to 1080i recording; it’s likely due to bandwidth issue or power requirement for processing full HD progressive video. For consumer capture solutions, only BlackMagic’s Intensity Shuttle manages to record 1080p60 but you will need a PC with natively built-in USB 3.0. In contrast, the Elgato Game Capture will run on a mainstream Windows 7 PC or Mac with just a 2Ghz Duo Core CPU, 4GB RAM and a USB 2.0 port. Last but not least is a complete software package that lets you edit the footage and share it on FaceBook, Twitter and/or YouTube.