Given that a lot of people are picking up this device now and plan to stream with it, I figure I’d share my knowledge. Through a lot of trial and error and research, I’ve found a way to successfully stream without many problems.
Keep in mind, though the HD PVR 2 is an incredible recording device, it is not the most versatile when it comes to streaming game media. That is not to say that it is incapable of streaming (which it does very efficiently), but you have to use a few workarounds to get everything right. I’ll explain that all here, and answer any questions you have.
(Included with device)
This is the proprietary software that the HD PVR 2 uses for capturing, recording, editing and uploading. It also is going to serve as a media source for when we want to stream. Whenever you want to stream, you always need this running in capture mode.
Makes streaming easy, hands down. While there is a free version, you are much better off purchasing the rather inexpensive license as the features you’ll need will not be available in the trial edition. If you plan on maintaining a stream similar to the ones hosted in the FGC (text/webcam/commentary), this is what you’ll need.
Open Broadcaster Software
Wonderful free alternative to Xsplit, which also has the benefit of not ruining you processor. Wonderful for those with low end computers that cannot handle Xsplit, or you want the best bang for your buck. Keep in mind, this software lacks a bunch of the features Xsplit has when it’s paid for. Regardless, solid program.
A little known beta release from the makers of the HD PVR 2. Quite literally plug and play streaming. Connect the device, set the video/audio source, set the preset to Low/Medium/High, and hit record. Bam, instant stream. Very solid piece of software and delivers a quality stream with little effort from the user. It is simply used for streaming game video and audio, nothing more, so don’t expect to do commentary or add anything fancy to your stream with this. Wonderful piece to get started with.
** II. Setting Up HD PVR 2 With Xsplit**
- Run ArcSoft ShowBiz and enter capture mode. Put in the proper source and wait till you have the feed on your PC.
- Open Xsplit. Set up your stream credentials.
- To add a video feed, click on “Add” (lower right), highlight “Add game” (again, the trial version will not work here) and select “CaptureModule (DX9Ex)”, which is ArcSoft (may be slightly different for you). Video feed should pop up onto the Xsplit screen.
Note: If you want to hear audio from the game on your stream, make sure it is NOT muted in ArcSoft Showbiz, as that is where Xsplit is getting the audio from. Same stands for the audio control on Xsplit, make sure to keep these regulated for the desired volume. I typically keep ArcSoft’s volume at the halfway marker, as it can get very loud.
A great way to see what settings work best for streaming on Xsplit is to run your stream through StreamEez on all settings. Twitch.tv automatically archives all recorded streams. Run some gameplay on all three presets and see which one performs the best for you. Note the values of those settings (most notably video and audio bitrate) and plug them into Xsplit for similar results. After I did this, getting ideal performance from Xsplit has never been easier.
III. Live Commentary/Webcam Feed
The HD PVR 2 suffers from recording delay when streaming, so adding voice commentary along with synced webcam footage takes a bit of work. While the sound issue is a small fix built into the PAID version of Xsplit, getting a webcam to sync with it takes usage of another piece of software and is rather heavy on your CPU, so it can hamper the performance of your stream if your PC cant handle it.
- Attach your desired microphone to your PC. Make sure that it is enabled and your default recording device in your Control Panel. Webcams with built in microphones will work fine.
- In Xsplit, Tools > General Settings
- Select your microphone in the drop down menu.
- Set your audio delay.
The ideal way to see what your delay should be is to play with this value while recording yourself play. When you are on a menu, say “up, up” while pressing up on the D-pad twice, in unison. Once you have your voice properly delayed to sync with the video, you are good to go and won’t have to mess with it again.
Delaying your webcam is a bit of a bigger fix. It’s still easy and follows the same method as the audio, but is a resource-heavy fix and is not suited for older/less-efficient processors. If this lags your stream, It’s time to invest in a Core i5/i7.
- Download VLC player and open it up.
- Media > Open Capture Device
- Click the drop down menu at the far right next to “Video device name” and select your webcam.
- Check off “Show more options”
- Fiddle with the caching value until everything in your stream is synced. You typically want this 500ms lower than the audio delay, due to VLC having a delay of it’s own with your webcam.
If you have any questions, feel free to ask here. I’m tinkering with this thing daily.