How to stream on Twitch from a console

From Xbox to Nintendo, there's a method for everyone.

Image via Twitch

Streaming on Twitch might look like a difficult task if you’re restricted to a console, but it’s much easier than you’d think.

If you want to take streaming to the next level and turn your hobby into a career, there are a few initial investments that you need to take into consideration. You have two possible options when it comes to streaming on a console. You can either stream using a capture card with a PC, or you can use a built-in Twitch app.

Here’s everything you need to know about streaming on Twitch from a console. But before you begin, remember to create a Twitch account if you haven’t already.


Image via Twitch

To stream gameplay from an Xbox, you first need to open the Twitch app on your console, link your Xbox account to Twitch, follow the instructions, and enter the six-digit code provided.

  • Find and download the Twitch app from the Xbox Store
  • Open the app and login with your Twitch account
  • Enter the six-digit code that you can find on your Twitch dashboard.
  • Select the Broadcast option to start streaming
  • (Optional) Enable your Kinect device to allow your video and headset to work for your viewers
  • Enter a title for your broadcast and then click the Start Broadcast button


Screengrab via PlayStation

Similarly to Xbox, to stream on a PlayStation device, you first have to link your PlayStation account to Twitch by following the directions on your screen in the Twitch app and scanning the QR code or entering the six-digit code provided.

  • Start a game
  • Press the Share button on your PS4 controller
  • Select the option Broadcast Gameplay.
  • Select the Twitch option
  • Login to your account if you haven’t done so already
  • Set the title and options for your broadcast
  • Start streaming

You can also end the stream at any time by pressing the Share button and choosing the option to end your broadcast.

Nintendo Switch

Image via Nintendo

The Nintendo Switch, unfortunately, doesn’t have a native streaming app like PlayStation or Xbox. The only way to stream games from the console is by using a capture card.

Problems with native gaming app streaming

While a streaming app can be an easy solution for someone looking to jump into a stream without any additional hassle, it has its setbacks.

Games on PlayStation, for example, can sometimes block streaming and recording entirely. Many companies, like Atlas (Persona 5) and Bandai Namco (Dragonball series), have included in-game functions that stop their titles from being streamed after a certain period of time.

There’s no real way to tell which parts of the game will be cut either, and streamers often find out the hard way. There’s also no way to disable it.

Streaming with a capture card

Capture cards are physical devices that link your console with your PC and a TV, allowing you to stream your game onto a piece of software like OBS, XSplit, or Elgato Game Capture. This software then broadcasts or records your gameplay and audio to Twitch.

There are many capture cards that you can use depending on your setup, but the Elgato HD60S is one of the best and cheapest devices around. Take it out of the box, connect the cables to your PC, and you’re ready to go.

When you have everything set up, take some time to explore the settings for each broadcast software in order to find the one that suits you best. Try hosting a few practice streams to see how things look on your channel.

What are the minimum specifications that a PC needs to stream?

In order to use your computer to stream on Twitch, you need to have a specific build. Twitch recommends that streamers have these components to stream through a capture card or on a PC:

  • CPU: Intel Core i5-4670 (Compare your CPU)
  • OS: Windows 7 Home Premium or newer

The main issues with capture card streaming

The first problem that comes with capture card streaming on Twitch is the cost.

Not only do you need a PC, but you also need to invest in the capture card itself. The Elgato costs more than $100 at retail, and a good PC could set you back hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

There’s also a level of experience needed to know how to stream on a PC and how to set up the look of your stream. Most of the basic information and guides for streaming with a capture card are available online, though. You can also find guides for each piece of broadcast software on Twitch.