How to Stream on Multiple Platforms: Multistreaming Guide

Stream on Multiple Platforms

Why stream on one platform when you can do just the same on many?

Move on from streaming to multistreaming and reach out to a much larger audience with ease.

That said though, multistreaming is not the piece of cake served on a silver platter. Getting the right multistreaming setup demands some basic know-how about it in the first place.

How to stream on multiple platforms is not just a typical DIY step-by-step guide. You need the basic concept right, other than the requisite setup that is.

Streaming your content to a larger audience gets easier when you’re streaming on multiple streaming platforms.

It is an excellent option to increase the subscriber base and diversify your online presence.

You can stream on multiple platforms at one go, but despite being a good option, the involved process is not quite as simple as streaming to a single platform.

Stream on Multiple Platforms: Multistreaming and Simulcasting

Multistreaming and Simulcasting
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Streaming to multiple platforms can help in more ways than one if you’re starting off.

Even though the majority of streamers and the target audience is on Twitch, YouTube and Facebook Gaming have come up with feasible and attractive alternatives.

Each of these platforms provides some advantages over the other and the overall benefit is not just about streaming to a larger audience spectrum but much more.

This diversification has been a boon for streamers as competition has forced each streaming platform to offer better features and a more comprehensive marketplace to users. Streamers can achieve higher monetization opportunities, partnerships, and more provided they hit the sweet spot.

But what does Multistreaming (and Simulcasting) have to do with streaming on multiple platforms?

Multistreaming is a method where a streamer uses more than one streaming platform to engage with a larger number of viewers.

However, this method doesn’t mean a streamer will be connecting to all its subscribers on a different platform simultaneously.

Instead, as a streamer, you will be dedicating different times or days to each platform. Hence there is no strain on the computer system, and the experience of streaming one content provides scope to improve the content further.

Multistreaming can either be done using cloud-based software such as restream or your computer system.

None of them are cheap. You would have to pay a subscription fee to use premium software services or upgrade your personal computer to handle the high system requirement.

On the other hand, simulcasting requires a faster computer system or dedicated software to stream to multiple platforms at the same time.

The main difficulty in this process is interacting with viewers from different platforms. Effectively managing the viewers from different platforms is the primary challenge behind adding more value to the content.

The advantage of this method is connecting with viewers from different platforms.

At the end of the day though, multistreaming and simulcasting are inter-related and essentially co-exist.

Both offer certain advantages over unique disadvantages. Hence, it suits the need of different streamers, such as whether or not they have a powerful computer to handle multiple encoding and streaming operations without pixelating.

Top Streaming Platforms: The Big 3

Video game streaming was always on the cards ever since 1972 when the first-ever esports competition happened on the hallowed grounds of Stamford University. We don’t game on Spacewar today and obviously prefer Fortnite, Warzone, DOTA 2, LoL, and quite a few other popular online games instead.

Streaming is all about you clutching through your first-choice game and earning handsomely from it. Streaming platforms, the big 3, are just monetizing your gaming skills (and content creation skills!) to sell it to a wider audience base who are keen to get as good as you are. 

Then there’s come sponsors, mostly gaming and other related brands, who are less interested in your clutches but much more in your subscriber base.

If you’re really good though, you can find an invitation in your inbox to join up with some esports gaming crew and suddenly, you’re hitting 5 figures a month!

But it all starts with streaming.

Twitch

Twitch

Twitch was officially launched in 2011 with an emphasis on capturing the esports and online gaming market. Amazon acquired it in 2014 for a big cash deal and has grown significantly since the acquisition.

You can easily multistream on Twitch and other major streaming platforms to gain more subscribers.

Twitch is the leading streaming platform specially designed and curated for gamers and fully dedicated to the gaming and streaming community.

Twitch now offers dual membership; one is free, and another is a paid turbo version. Their paid version removes all unwarranted advertisements and also provides better streaming and storage features.

Twitch will offer more opportunities to grow and expand your subscriber base. You can start earning from Twitch streaming by becoming a member of the Twitch Partner program.

You can monetize your live game stream by advertisement revenue, bits, and channel subscription. 

YouTube Gaming

YouTube Gaming

YouTube is the biggest video broadcasting channel on the internet even today.

YouTube Gaming was a standalone application but they soon realized the difficulty of regular video uploading and going live.

The negative user experience in using dual applications initially thwarted the popularity of this Twitch alternative although not anymore.

In 2019, this standalone feature was remerged into the YouTube application. Now any YouTuber can make use of live features. This has helped gamers and bloggers and a variety of businesses running live operations such as news channels and business marketing.

After merging YouTube Gaming back into the YouTube website, gamers are looking to YouTube to create a substantial user base that’s already available (and also because Twitch is just too crowded!)

YouTube Gaming had its best year in 2020. Now, you can monetize your live streams by advertising revenue, super chats, Channel Membership, Merchandise sales, and YouTube Premium Revenue.

The user should be over 18 years of age with 10,000 subscribers to unlock other added features.

Facebook Gaming

Facebook Gaming

Facebook Gaming is the third largest video game streaming service with a significant growth rate. Active members of Facebook can move to Facebook Gaming and stream without paying extra.

It has only a quarter million unique gaming channels, but out of all the streamers can easily draw more viewers from Facebook, which has over 2 billion active users.

Facebook Gaming offers a far better monetization opportunity than others, with the pre-add rollout feature integrated into the live streaming platform.

Once your gaming page crosses 10,000 subscribers and has marked over 30000 one-minute views, you will be eligible for the in-stream ads program.

Facebook Gaming being the latest to enter this segment, has consistently added new features and offers more monetization opportunities to target the largest subscriber base on the internet.

Live Streaming on Multiple Platforms: How to Get Started

Before you can understand the basics of multistreaming, it is imperative to first learn about live streaming and whether your PC can do it.

Get this first – your gaming PC may not be good enough for streaming!

Streaming PC requires encoding, which adds extra strain on your CPU or prompts the need for a hardware encoder.

Overlays and animated alerts also strain your PC. Multistreaming would amplify the system strain since each streaming platform requires a different encoding, video quality, and audio processing.

So, before you even start thinking of your live stream to multiple platforms earning a few grand per month, you will need a seriously powerful PC first.

Moving forward –

Software Vs. Equipment

Software Vs. Equipment

The software handles just the multistreaming process, which includes encoding the single-stream into different video quality. It also takes care of streaming to various platforms.

Multistreaming can be done using software such as Restream, CASTR, or Switchboard Live.

Capturing the stream can be done using streaming software such as OBS or Stream labs, or you can use a capture card as well.

Capture cards are far better than any streaming software, and it saves some extra headroom for your overlays and animated alerts.

Price should be a factor as a good capture card can cost you above $150, whereas services such as OBS and stream are open source, meaning they are virtually free

Check out this Elgato HD capture card to know what you’re getting into. For a proper lowdown on streaming software, check this out as well!

Strategy

Multistreaming gets you across the largest audience pool at one go. But you will need different strategies for each streaming platform and that depends on the platform we are talking about.

The most common way forward is to connect with your niche platform while streaming the content to other mainstream platforms and increase the scope of your monetization revenue.

On this note – Facebook offers more analytics and tools to target your audience, while Twitch offers a massive gaming community that can quickly popularize your content.

YouTube will allow you to explore the smaller gaming community compared to Twitch and alleviate your overall subscriber base but there’s much less competition on it.

You can read our Youtube Vs Twitch guide here, where we break down features that each platform has to offer.

Moving on, you can take advantage of the cloud multistreaming platforms like Switchboard Live to enjoy a seamless streaming experience. Whether or not to consider multistreaming is your choice.

It offers a good room for experimentation.

A Streaming PC

A Streaming PC
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Now that we know that a gaming PC may not be a streaming PC, let’s get the matter straight.

Streaming has its own set of priorities. One should not confuse between the two. A user with no reasonable budget and get the best system money can buy, but not all streamers have such a budget.

Hence, it becomes crucial to learn about the component and how some minor changes and transform it.

Equipment: We have mentioned all the essential components and their impact on the overall streaming purpose. 

1. Motherboard 

Motherboard

The most important factor of a streaming PC is neither the CPU or graphics card but the motherboard, which decides the RAM frequency, SSD slots, and PCI-E gen 3 or gen 4 slots.

Most gamers prefer a powerful graphics card and CPU to enjoy high fps gaming. But these two alone will never guarantee consistent streaming outputs.

A budget streamer should go with mini ATX motherboards with at least two PCI-E gen 4 slots. For RAM, the motherboard must support at least 64 GB in dual channel. This will allow you to upgrade your system with a capture card in the future and save a lot of money in the long run.

2. Processor

Processor

AMD or Intel?

Other than having smaller per-core pricing, AMD offers more performance in a budget.

Intel processors will offer 5% of extra performance in gaming because of their superior single-core processing, helpful when you are using software such as OBS and your PC starts to encode, compile your footage.

It also handles the computing load of the camera, overlays, transitions, and other applications quite well.

Getting an AMD processor is all about concentrating on multitasking. You can check out the AMD Ryzen 5 3400G and pair it with at least a Gigabyte GTX 1660 GDDR6 graphics card. Enough!

3. Graphics Card

Graphics Card

For streaming PCs, encoding the video stream is another heavy task to do other than running the game itself.

If you are gaming and encoding on the same PC, high-quality encoding, you would need a powerful processor adept at multi-core performance. This would again substantially increase your overall budget.

At this point, the GPU comes into play.

Top GPUs available today come with a dedicated encoder chip that can handle the streaming part of things. And truth be told, AMD encoder chips are a few miles behind NVIDIA’s NVAC encoder chip.

AMD graphic cards are great for gaming, but they are not meant to provide superior gaming plus streaming encoding.

Most PC builders, when showing the performance of their system, do not include actual streaming software, encoding system, and other hardware equipment.

So, make sure you get an NVIDIA graphics card for your streaming PC, at least for 2021!

4. Capture Cards

Capture Cards

A capture card is a hardware device meant to take an un-encrypted video signal into a computer-readable format.

These devices are available as USB-connected or PCIe-connected devices. While both these modes are capable of recording good quality video, the actual processing is done by your CPU. 

PCIe-based devices are more reliable as they are directly connected with the motherboard.

USB-based capture cards do not offer the reliability of a PCIe-connected capture card because of the lower latency of PCIe slots.

On the other hand, USB-based capture cards can be used on multiple devices, including laptops.

5. RAM 

RAM

The overall ram clocking speed is designated by the motherboard of your computer system, which has already been covered. RAM will process and enable faster loading and multitasking. You should opt for at least 16 GB of RAM and save space for further upgrading the RAM to above 32 to 64 GB. 

Conclusion

Multistreaming is a prevalent concept these days that allow you to connect to multiple streaming platforms as compared to a few years ago. Streamers can use cloud simulcasting software to stream different video quality to various platforms. They even allow for an integrated chat system to efficiently interact with your viewers without switching between different platforms to read chats. 

If you are a serious streamer, simulcasting can significantly improve your overall video streaming capability. Not to mention the monetary benefits from subscribers on different platforms  

FAQs

How to multistream on Twitch? 

You can use multistream on Twitch just as any other platform. But if you have become an affiliate member of Twitch, the affiliate agreement doesn’t allow simulcasting. However, you can start new content on different platforms after ending the one running on Twitch.  For streaming the same content, you would have to wait for 24 hours after ending on Twitch according to the exclusivity clause. Otherwise, it becomes a violation of the affiliate agreement, and you might end up losing the benefits of a Twitch affiliate.

Can OBS stream to multiple platforms?

OBS is a streaming platform that encodes and captures your content and directs it to the streaming platform. However, you cannot use this software to stream on multiple platforms. With some tricks, OBS can stream on two different platforms, but that too is very difficult.

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