Using a streaming PC

Pros and cons of streaming PC setups



2pc setup with NDI

With one Ethernet port on both; each line is an Ethernet cable:

    /    \
Gaming Streaming

With two Ethernet ports on the gaming PC:

Router - Gaming - Streaming

Remember that you can always just buy another Ethernet port over PCI-e instead of getting a motherboard with two ports.



Your CPU must support instructions for

Your gaming CPU will also be put to work slightly when you send your output via OBS on your gaming PC to OBS on your streaming PC.



I see a lot of people have issues with NDI for whatever reason. I’d advise against buying a streaming PC for the purpose of NDI streaming since there’s a risk it might not work for inexplicable reasons.

A recurring problem I see is people who “don’t have true 60 FPS”. Make sure this is a resolved problem by the time you give NDI a shot.

We all know what it’s like to have issues with free software we depend on for streaming with OBS Studio, but with NDI, there’s the additional aspect of hardware-specific issues.


Virtual audio over Ethernet

While your at it, you can also cut out a lot of audio hassle with mixers and whatnot by sending your audio to your streaming PC over Ethernet using VBAN. Here’s a quick how-to video:

Official Twitch guide

Check out Twitch’s official two-PC broadcasting guide, too.

Form factors

In order of size:


Intel’s Hades Canyon:

NUCs aren’t cases but complete computer builds except your have to get the RAM yourself. One obvious reason the DDR4-2400 RAM don’t come with the NUC is that DDR4 prices are all over the place right now.

NUC are an all-in-one solution, which greatly simplifies buying and setting up the computer. The downside is of course that you can’t upgrade and customize them.


Console form factor

Mini ITX covers many sizes, but I am partial to those with a console form factor such as Fractal’s Node 202 (w/ PSU):

Cube form factor

Other mini ATX designs are cube-like; most are designed as small desktop PCs rather than something with portability.

Corsair’s Carbide Air 240 and Graphite 380T series do a great job of catering to this crowd.

  1. Gamers Nexusreview of the Elgato 4K60 Pro is a must-watch. The thermals are a serious issue that need to be handled either by you or Elgato themselves. ↩︎