Games

Elgato Stream Deck Mk.2 Review

Streaming is a manufacturing, irrespective of how giant your viewers. From adjusting audio ranges to make sure these watching can take the whole lot in while not having to pressure to listen to the streamer or the sport beneath them, to having the ability to simply transition scenes and screens, having the ability to do all of it simply is the place the Stream Deck makes its bones. I’ve used a Stream Deck Mini for a couple of 12 months now, however the smaller face and restricted quantity of buttons began to really feel a bit of bit…restricted. Fortunately, Elgato has lately launched a refreshed model of their mainstay Stream Deck, dubbing it Mk. 2. How does it maintain up over just a few weeks use, although, and is it a tool that may make your manufacturing higher?

Quick reply: sure. 

Specs

  • Value: $149.99 MSRP on Amazon
  • Dimensions: 118 x 84 x 25mm / 4.6 x 3.3 x 1.0 in (with out stand)
  • Weight: 145g with out stand / 270g with stand
  • Keys: 15 customizable LCD keys
  • Interface: USB 2.0
  • Software program Assist: Elgato Stream Deck
  • Comes with USB-C to USB-A cable, Stream Deck, Desktop Stand, Fast Begin Information

First Ideas

As I acknowledged in my Elgato Facecam review just a few weeks again, Elgato has gotten its packaging all the way down to a science. There’s restricted waste right here, and little to no plastics concerned within the packaging making the entire affair higher for the setting and extra sustainable – which ought to be applauded. 

The Stream Deck Mk.2 appears to be like nearly an identical to its predecessor with just a few notable exceptions. The now seemingly iconic 15-button LCD format takes up a lot of the entrance actual property of the display, every button giving a satisfying tactile really feel when pressed. Curiously, the Mk.2 is a bit of (like, barely perceptible) bigger than its precedessor, nevertheless it nonetheless solely takes up a small footprint on my desk. 

Elgato Stream Deck Mk.2

The stand is altered from the earlier model, this time Elgato choosing a hard and fast 45-degree angle stand for the Stream Deck, giving the right angle (for many, I would wager) to entry the face buttons simply. Crucially, the Stream Deck Mk.2 comes with a removable USB-C 2.0 cable, which I drastically admire. Whereas the usual cable is lengthy sufficient for my setup (I exploit a standing desk as properly, which implies I usually want longer cables at my PC), I like the very fact I can swap the cable for one thing a bit of longer if I wanted it. That is one in every of my main complaints with the Stream Deck Mini – not having the ability to detach the cable really pressured me to rethink my setup to make sure I wasn’t pulling the Mini off my desk each time I wanted to face throughout the workday.

One other main change is the removable and swappable faceplate. Proper now there are about seven of them on the market on Elgato’s web site, every costing about 10 bucks. I’ve additionally seen some streamers and YouTubers discuss creating their very own customized faceplates to provide their setups a bit extra character. That is actually a beauty factor, nevertheless it’s a pleasant contact to enliven your setup when you select – I am Saturn faceplate myself.

Every LCD button is superbly backlit, the colourful colours of the LCD shining via clearly. Whereas 15 buttons won’t look like rather a lot (particularly once you evaluate it to the Stream Deck XL’s format), the place the Deck comes into its personal is all the way down to software program.

Utilizing the Stream Deck Mk.2

Stream Deck’s software program is the place you may get probably the most out of your system, as you’ll be able to arrange your format and button macros to your coronary heart’s content material. The Stream Deck comes with OBS, Twitch, Streamlabs OBS help and extra constructed proper in by default once you first boot it up, although the intensive retailer you’ll be able to browse lets you seize extra merchandise to combine into your Stream Deck. 

For me, I used to be in a position so as to add help for the Wave XLR mixer, in addition to my Philips Hue lights in my workplace, and extra. I even management Nvidia’s Shadowplay because of a third-party mod on right here, permitting me to rapidly screenshot and even enter Ansel at a second’s discover. 

15 buttons can go rapidly, particularly when you’ve received rather a lot to work inside OBS or Xsplit itself. Fortunately you’ll be able to create folders to increase this even additional. I discovered it moderately extra organized for myself to have a separate folder for the Wave XLR controls, the Streamlabs OBS controls in addition to pre-roll music we use on our streams in a 3rd folder. This helped additionally create a moderately organized workflow when streaming, serving to to make our streams a bit extra skilled wanting within the few weeks I have been toying with this (Although I nonetheless have to recollect to unmute my mic generally!).

In my Wave XLR evaluation, I discussed how that controlling the sound ranges utilizing easy buttons versus faders or dials felt a bit of imprecise – and that also stands true even with the bigger Stream Deck this time round. Nonetheless, help for Elgato’s ecosystem implies that even these lower than intuitive features will be managed in a method that I could make it work, comparable to including a fade to music because it leaves the stream and we transition in the direction of gameplay – or to fade out the sport audio itself on the finish to begin the music to play us out. 

Transitioning scenes in OBS is way simpler now, as it is a easy click on of a button. Having the additional buttons on the bigger Stream Deck versus the Mini as properly lets me do much more – I can listing out the entire totally different scenes we use each right here at MMORPG as properly my private streams and have the whole lot housed in a single folder, clearing up any litter.

I’ve additionally taken to utilizing the Stream Deck Mk.2 as a moderately costly mild change for my workplace, controlling my Phillips Hue lights that bathe my workplace in hues of blues and purples every stream – or annoy my daughter after we’re gaming collectively within the room by continually altering them at a moments discover. It is a lot simpler to set these keystrokes up on the Elgato Stream Deck versus digging into the packages themselves, which mainly satisfies the explanation this exists: to make manufacturing and management over your gadgets simpler.

Is the Elgato Stream Deck Mk.2 Price It?

It is onerous to say if the Mk.2 itself is value an improve when you’ve received the unique Stream Deck itself. As the one actual variations are the stand, removable cable, and the faceplate, you are not essentially getting any further performance. Nonetheless, when you’re like me and you have used a Stream Deck Mini – or one other system that (moderately efficiently) marries the performance of the Stream Deck with that of a GoXLR within the AVerMedia LiveStreamer Nexus, it is a terrific addition to the setup. 

I really feel like I’ve extra management over each side of our video creation right here at MMORPG, and it additionally permits me to up the manufacturing worth alone private streams when the itch arises to make a idiot of myself on the interwebs. Folders give the Stream Deck seemingly infinite screens to make use of, and the truth that there’s a lot third get together integrating into the system, it provides me extra confidence that the Stream Deck will likely be supported properly into the long run for fairly a while. The Elgato retailer additionally has a small, however fascinating library of music and sound results to show the Deck right into a soundboard for streams and podcasts, providing you with much more customization and character to your streaming manufacturing.

In the event you’re trying to up the standard of your stream manufacturing – or simply need a easy option to management a number of the apps in your PC, the Elgato Stream Deck Mk.2 is not a foul selection – although it may be cost-prohibitive for some. Clocking in at $149.99, it is not low-cost. Nonetheless, when you’re critical about upping your stream qualty, it is not a foul product to spend money on. In the event you’re like me, the upper price ticket of the unique Stream Deck is one purpose why I went with the Mini initially, although having used the standard-sized Deck I am wishing I had simply invested sooner. 

Fortunately, too, the Stream Deck Mk.2 is intuitive to make use of as properly – It actually did not take a lot time to get arrange with the software program and be taught to make use of it straight away. It is right here the place I believe Elgato actually drives house its worth. The gadgets themselves are cool all their very own, however their software program actually makes them definitely worth the funding. With the Stream Deck software program, I’ve a lot management over each side of my manufacturing after we are reside – or I can simply log onto web sites I frequent or launch a sport rapidly with a easy press of a button. It has taken over loads of my workflow round my desk for the higher. Although this would not be attainable if the Stream Deck software program itself weren’t stable by itself. The very fact I can even use each of my Stream Decks concurrently helps as I used to be capable of successfully maintain my Mini set as much as management my Key Lights whereas my Mk.2 dealt with the remainder of the manufacturing load. 

It is a bit simpler to make use of this when you’re already engrained within the Elgato ecosystem, too, although if there was anybody product to make use of with out being embedded in Elgato merchandise, the Stream Deck can be it. 

The Elgato Stream Deck Mk.2 is a refined enchancment over the unique model – it does not add any extra flexibility or performance over the 2017 Stream Deck, however what it does add: the removable cable, customized faceplates, and completely angled stand (for me, anyway), makes the Stream Deck Mk.2 and integral a part of my PC arrange now. It is dear, and for smaller streamers, it won’t be a simple funding, however when you’re critical about growing high quality whereas getting again high quality type and performance, you actually cannot go flawed with the Stream Deck Mk.2.

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The product described on this evaluation was offered by the producer for analysis functions. 

https://www.mmog.com/hardware-reviews/elgato-stream-deck-mk2-review-2000123151 | Elgato Stream Deck Mk.2 Overview

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