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► PLEASE NOTE: This review was originally done back in July 2012 (same goes for the video). Elgato have over the years been improving upon improving the software's features and usability even more than what was originally a top game capturing software.

There are now two device options to choose from:
1) Elgato Game Capture HD: The first model which is what my review is based on. This model supports devices via its HDMI & A/V inputs. This one is more suited for the last generation of consoles and prior such as the PlayStation 3 & Xbox 360. You can only record up to 30fps with this device.

2) Elgato Game Capture HD60 Featuring just HDMI inputs, this is made for the newer generation of consoles such as the PlayStation 4 & Xbox One... Well basically anything that supports HDMI. This newer version can also record up to 1080p 60fps!

Below you will find my original review for the Elgato Game Capture HD, followed by any updates I've made thereafter. It's a long review, however I hope it will help you make the right decision based on your needs.

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♦ Introduction ♦

When it comes to capturing gameplay from your consoles, you want as good quality as you can get so you can show your friends or the world those amazing moments in detail.

The problem is there are so many different game captures to choose from these days such as Roxio,AverMedia,Hauppauge +more, that it can be a daunting task to choose the right one.

Whilst I can't comment on the others being bad or good due to the fact I haven't personally tried them myself, I can safely say that 'Elgato Game Capture HD' offers simple connectivity, ease of use and very high quality.

♦ Box Contents & System Requirements ♦

So what's in the box?:
Game Capture Device | AV Cable(PS3) | Unencrypted HDMI Cable(Xbox or use as pass-through) | Component Cable | Micro USB - USB cable.

Minimum system requirements:
* Mac: Mac OS X 10.7, 2.0 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo CPU.
* PC: Windows 7, 2.0 GHz dual core CPU.
* Sound card | 4 GB RAM | Built-in USB 2.0 port | You will also need an internet connection to download the software from Elgato's official website as there is no software disk included.

♦ Set-Up ♦

Setting everything up was extremely simple:

Step 1) Download the game captures software.

Step 2) Connect your console to the 'Game Capture HD' using the appropriate cable:

- PS3: You need to use the AV cable rather than HDMI cable, this is because the PS3's HDMI port is encrypted (You can still get 1080i quality).
- Xbox: Use the HDMI cable provided.

Step 3) Link the 'Game Capture HD' and HDTV together via HDMI cable.

Step 4) Insert the USB cable included to both your computer and 'Game Capture HD'.

Step 5) Load up the software.

Step 6) Turn on your console.

- IMPORTANT PS3 Information: PS3 users will need to go to their PS3 "Settings" - "Display Settings" - "Video Output Settings" - "Components / D-Terminal" - When selecting resolution, make sure "1080p" is NOT selected, only go up to "1080i".

The PS3 auto-detects when an HDMI cable is used, but it doesn't auto-detects the AV input. The way I got around this at the time was hooking the PS3 up directly to the TV(whilst AV cables were also connected to the game capture), I then went to the display settings and clicked on "Component / D-Terminal", once selected I had quickly removed the HDMI from the PS3 and connected it to the 'Game Capture HD', this solved the problem and took me 30 seconds for me to do.

Alternatively (had to find this out afterwards...) if you start the PS3 by holding the power button for around 10 seconds, it will auto-detect your output, saving you even more time.

Step 7) If there is no picture displayed on the game capture software, go to the 'Game Capture HD Settings' which can be located within the "Device" box under the "Capture" tab. The setting button is to the right-hand side and looks like a hammer and spanner crossed over. It is important to have the "Input Device" on the right settings, after selecting the right option, you should have your gaming consoles screen displayed on the software. *Note*; the software has a few seconds delay on game footage, so use your TV to play games.

Step 8) Tweak other settings if necessary, then your done!

Set-up took barely 5 minutes overall, I was very pleased with how easy it was to set-up. :)

♦ Software / Use ♦

The computer specs I used whilst using the 'Game Capture HD' software were:
* Windows 7 64-bit Operating System | Intel i7 960 3.2 GHz Processor | NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 Graphics Card | 12GB RAM.

First of all, the installation process was error free(always a good start), the program loads up promptly and so far I have yet to see it crash.

The layout is basic in a good way and is very easy to navigate, you have simple settings to choose from such as where you would like the gameplay recordings to be saved, the quality of the video files(which will impact the file size) and adjustments in the picture output.

As for recording gameplay, couldn't be any simpler, just press the big red button to start the recording process and press it again to stop.

To the right of the record button you have a "time-shift" bar, this is probably the best feature I have ever seen. Lets say you decided to stop recording because the game your playing is not going in your favour, then out of the blue you do the most epic thing you have every done in gaming history, which of course could not be re-created even with the highest bit of luck... well don't despair, the software keeps an ongoing backup for a certain period of time, which by using the "time-shift", you can go back in time to record that epic moment.

There is also an edit tab available, however it is very basic. Tools available are 'trim' & 'delete', it basically lets you keep the good parts and throw the bad out. For those wanting that extra editing experience, I would suggest something like Sony Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum 11 (other software's available).

The final part of the edit section is a quick share where you can click on lets say "YouTube", then all you have to do is type in your account details and it uploads the video for you.

♦ Overall Opinion ♦

Overall I think this is a completely solid package, and whilst it may seem a tad expensive, I do feel you get your monies worth and would highly recommend!

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♦ REVIEW UPDATE ♦

Since the review had initially been published, there have been several significant updates for the software:

1) Now supports 1080p.

2) Live Commentary: This is my most favourite update for the software, it lets you capture your voice by using a microphone that's connected to your computer, results are fantastic and I use it all the time.

To use, you have to enable the microphone icon and then select the microphone from the "Audio In", there is also an option which when checked, reduces the game volume as when your talking through the microphone which delivers a fantastic balance between game & microphone audio.

When you decide to stop recording using this feature, as you would before, give it 5-10 seconds after you have finished your gaming before you click to stop recording, this will ensure nothing is cut off.

3) Stream live gameplay onto websites such as Twitch.

4) You can now record from your standard definition retro gaming consoles.

5) Now confirmed it works with Nintendo Wii U via HDMI!

6) Xbox One Console will work with the Elgato.

7) Sony PlayStation 4 (PS4) is now supported, you'll just have to make sure the HDCP is disabled within the PS4 settings.

- ♦ - Current software available is 'Version 2.0'. - ♦ -

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- ♦ - Elgato Game Capture HD -VS- Hauppauge HD PVR 2 GE+ - ♦ -

After recently having the chance to use the HD PVR 2 GE+, I have decided to do a mini comparison below:
(+ Positive | / Neutral | - Negative).

♦ Elgato:

+ Sleek looking, very lightweight and portable.
+ Simple and clean looking software.
+ Time-shift mode (allows you to go back in-time to record the footage you've missed).
+ Advanced microphone features (Game audio dimming when talking).
+ No power adapter needed.

/ Cables aren't too long (Great for people who love less clutter, not good for people who have their devices further away).

- Requires much higher computer specs to use on your computer:
Windows 7, Windows 8 or later | 2.0 Ghz (or higher) dual core CPU, or 2.0 Ghz (or higher) multi-core i3, i5 or i7 CPU | Sound card | 4GB Total Installed RAM (or higher) | Built-in USB 2.0 port.

♦ Hauppauge:

+ PVR 2 In my opinion looks cooler, especially when the LED lights up.
+ Instant record button on the PVR 2.
+ 5.1 surround sound support via optical cable.
+ Comes with additional editing software where you can add text and effects.
+ Not too demanding on computer specs: Windows 7 (32 or 64-bit), Windows Vista or Windows XP Service Pack 3 | PC with 3.0 GHz single core or 2.0 GHz multi-core processor | 512 MB RAM (1 GB recommended) | Graphics card with 256 MB memory | Sound card | USB 2.0 Port.

/ Cables are long (This for me is EXTREMELY handy for my recent set-up, but some could see this as a nuisance).

- Requires the use of a power adapter.

♦ Both:

+ They are both normally available with a similar price-tag.
+ Easy to set-up.
+ Software is simple to navigate.
+ Commentary features.

- Requires computer to be turned on to pass-through to TV.

Picking one over the other is a very hard choice because they both have their positives and both output top quality.

To date... I much prefer the Elgato software mainly down due to the advanced mic & time-shift features, but when it comes to practicality for my needs, the PVR2GE+ wins with it's longer cables, one-push record and is less resource heavy on my computer.

Both are very good contenders in the Game Capture market and both deserve 5 stars, I would recommend either one so it entirely depends on which suite your needs the most.
9797 comments|215 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 26 December 2013
I was ridiculously pleased to get a hold of this little thing at long last and it really didn't disappoint! The software presets and live commentary features are phenomenal and the fact that it remembers the last 30 minutes of game-play even if you forget to press record is a real life saver. I was shopping around for a capture card for quite a while before I settled on the Elgato and for the price it is in my opinion a clear winner over the Hauppage HDPVR 2 and Roxio devices, the colours are less vibrant than the Hauppage and some people have claimed vertical sync to be a problem but adjusting the settings in the software eliminates these problems and the performance of the Elgato is hard to beat.

Now several people have mentioned the lack of vertical sync can cause screen tearing but as I said this is easily fixed in the options menus. Some have said that using the Elgato means you can't play your consoles unless you run the software but that isn't true either, if you just turn on the console before running the software beforehand the Elgato will not send the video to the TV until you open the software on you computer as it hasn't been switched on yet, once it's has been recognised by the software it will not switch off again until there is no input for the computer or console so the capture software can be closed.

I have used this device to capture an XBOX 360 at 1080p with a stable frame rate of 25fps and neither my computer nor my console slowed down. That said there is a few seconds delay between the computer screen and the TV so you shouldn't expect to be able to use your monitor for console gaming. The videos render quickly and flawlessly with no delay in either the game audio or the recorded commentary. The only exception I have found to this is the Wii U, although there is a specific preset to optimise for the Wii U I have had multiple instances of the capture freezing for close to 5 minutes after which it jerkingly works its way back to the present but any commentary and video between the initial freeze and the point at which it catches up are lost and the live commentary disabled for the rest of the recording, if this happens its better to scrap everything after the freeze and rerecord but it is just as likely to happen again hopefully a software updat will patch this little issue into oblivion before too long. Still well worth buying if you want to record commentaries or just make self congratulatory montages of how awesome you are at not sucking!
0Comment|4 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 13 December 2012
Having used 2 other capture cards (EasyCap - terrible, Roxio Game Capture - okay), I was quite scared of wasting more money on equipment but after using this for about a hundred videos, I have to say, this is the best piece of equipment I've ever used! It's tiny, easy to move and easy to set up. It works astoundingly well even though my computer is under the minimum requirements!
The file size is small for a high quality 720p video file (can do 1080p but I see no point for me) and the software is FANTASTIC. With the recent update that adds voice commentary and streaming, I see no reason to ever choose anything over this.
1111 comments|108 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 3 May 2016
This product is amazing for those looking to get 1080p60fps quality recording of video games with having a PC. Only thing required for this is the device, hdmi ports, a console and a laptop/computer that has USB 3.0.

I've been using this for around two weeks now and haven't face any problems with the recording or the device. It has a Solid bulid in such a small form factor.

If you're looking to start a gaming channel or want to stream online then this is the device you'd want to get!

My test video: [...]
22 comments|3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
This generation of gaming has been truly revolutionary. Implementing the online capabilities which were put into widespread use with the PS3 and XBOX 360, the latest consoles have taken these features even further, now allowing gamers to share their game clips with other users. Although novel and exciting features, the in-built functionality of game capture capabilities are fairly limited, both on the PS4 and XBOX ONE.

I own both the latest consoles and have tried my hand at sharing a few game clips. I have only shared a sparse amount of gaming clips, partially due to the restrictions on clip times and lack of ease with YouTube integration. However, I have seen gaming videos online and although cliched, have always wanted to try my hand at posting extended versions of my favourite gaming clips.

The Game Capture HD60 is a welcome addition to capturing gaming videos in a quick, easy and user friendly manner. I was contacted by the manufacturers of this device and asked to trial a unit. The item is well presented and comes in a very attractive outer packaging, which would make for a great gift. Upon opening, the box contains the Game Capture HD60, USB cable and a HDMI cable, for connecting to your screen. There are no instructions, but there is a message inside, prompting the user to visit the manufacturers online website.

A huge plus point with this device is the sheer portability. The device itself is well constructed and robust, as well as being small and compact, allowing for easy portability. It is around the same size as an Apple TV, for reference. There is also no need for a separate power supply, as the device gets its power from USB, which I welcome as I loathe unsightly wires.

The device captures game footage in 1080p, and I have been impressed with the overall video quality. I like my gadgets to "just work" with minimal fuss. This device fitted the bill for my expectations. I have managed to connect the Game Capture to both my next-gen consoles. The device allows a significant and welcome feature in its ability to record clips with voiceover and editing. This will allow for commentary whilst playing your favourite games, enhancing both the quality and structure of your gaming videos, which is essential for walkthroughs. I have been using the software, which can be downloaded from the manufacturers website, on a mac, and have had no compatibility issues.

Conclusively, if you are looking for an enhanced way to upload gaming videos to social media sites, with a particular emphasis on gaming guides and detailed walkthroughs, you may struggle to find a better device on the market. 5/5
33 comments|23 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 9 December 2012
Video Setup / Tutorial / Comparison: [...]
This is one of the best capture cards on the market as it is far smaller then a hd prv and a hd pvr 2. You also don't meed to plug this in at the mains as it gets its power from the usb port. This has a higher bit rate then the hd pvr so will loo a lot better and can achieve full 1080p quality for an xbox or 1080i for ps3. It comes with all the cables you need for either a ps3 or an xbox 360 however if you want to record a wii or other device you will have to buy the correct cable. The software on this device is fantastic and much better then any of its competitors as it offers flashback recording and the ability to live stream directly from the program, furthermore its in build editing software is easy to use, effective and able to work on both pc and mac. I honestly can't say how impressed with this I am however please note you need a better computer then the hd pvr to get this to work; the minimum requirements is a windows 7 pc with a 2.0ghz duel core processor and 4gb or ram. Fpr mac you need Mac OS X 10.7, 2.0 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo CPU.

You won't be disappointed with this, you may want to like Elgatos facebook as they post various offers that only last a few hours. I got mine for £109
55 comments|29 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 7 December 2014
After trying out Happauge's Gaming Edition 2 and coming away pretty disapoited, the name I kept hearing to check out was Elgato. And after ordering one of these, I downloaded the installation software, started to run it, and...it crashed on me. And it wouldn't load up again. And I thought this was off to a really bad start.

But thankfully one reset later I had everything setup and this was where I realized just how great this thing is. The first thing of note is the size -the previous capture devices I've owned were in large boxes, but this isn't. It's actually really small -shorter than my Galaxy S3 phone and not much wider than it. And even better, it doesn't require its own power supply -just plug the USB cable into your PC and that's it.

The main draw of this is that it can do up to 1080p at 60 frames per second -something that is going to become very relevant to Youtube uploaders as Youtube are now allowing 60fps videos. The elgato can do this, and do it well -I've recorded several videos on it and they look superb. The software you download works well, and, more importantly, doesn't crash every 5 minutes unlike a certain other brand I won't mention here.

Created videos can be edited in the software, which allows you to trim out parts. There doesn't seem to be a way of editing together several videos, from what I can tell, which is unfortunate -this is the only negative thing I have to say about this product. Saved videos are, as you'd expect, very large memory wise. Unless you've got a really, really good internet connection, you'll really want to download Handbrake (it's free) and get them compressed before uploading to Youtube.

The elgato HD60 is small, is easy to use and works extremely well -the only thing I had a problem with was seemingly not being able to edit videos together. Other than that, look no further for the greatest game capture product around.

Regarding PS3 games -whilst not advertised on the box, the capture software does have a Playstation 3 mode. The reason it isn't on the box is due to the fact that the PS3 has HDCP protection, preventing you from recording via HDMI. This can easily be worked around by purchasing a hdmi splitter -get one of these and you'll be recording PS3 footage in no time.

One final point -the HD60 can be used for streaming, but since I don't stream, I can't comment on how well it does this.
0Comment|8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 19 November 2013
I would highly recommend this product to anyone wanting to record game footage, after having purchased the HD PVR 2 Gaming Edition i found it too long to set up, didn't always work and decided to sell it, giving me enough money to buy the elgato. I thought i'd invest in the product as starting up a youtube channel for video game commentaries, and this is by far the best game recorder money can buy. Easy to use, small, and very few wires meaning it takes just 25 seconds to set up on my laptop. Love it! :D
0Comment|23 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 16 March 2014
This was bought for my 13 year old son. He finds it great for recording his gaming activities and posting them in Hi Definition on you-tube
He finds it easy to use, with a single usb cable to the pc and a nifty hdmi cable to his x box. It is permanently recording and is very easy to edit. He uses windows movie maker for additional editing and adding his voice-overs.

A video game capture device made excellent by its simplicity. A great xmas present. However, a minor drawback is that we have found it needs to be permanently powered by a USB power source, if the PC is not on and it is not connected (or it is fully disconnected)
0Comment|2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 17 January 2014
As a youtuber, this is a must buy! i had the HDPVR for about 2 years and although the quality was just as good, this is easier to setup and to use. its small and compact, the program which comes with the Elgato is great.

Highly recommend

5 star

[...]
0Comment|3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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