I admit, most of the videos on my channel are in potato quality. My first videos were recorded with my digital camera set up on my chair’s armrest with just the TV’s audio playing in the background. I started recording games on my low-end Windows XP with screen-recording software like Hypercam and today, when I need to, I’ll use the screen-recorder, Fraps, on my low-end Windows 8 or 10.
After my YouTube channel started to gain momentum in 2007, I knew I needed a TV tuner card. I wouldn’t have known about recording from a TV to a computer if it wasn’t for a website and channel called GTAmissions. The website admin “revealed his secret” about how he recorded his Grand Theft Auto gameplay videos. No other channel did this and it was a fairly new thing at the time. Not everyone knew what a TV Tuner Card was (a card like Pokemon and Yu-Gi-Oh?). His website became an affiliate with the GameSpot union I moderated at the time, GTA Legends and I became interested in creating gameplay videos for my YouTube channel, ThumbsUpMaster. But… everything has a consequence, and mine had to do owning a cheap computer.
I bought a TV tuner called Dazzle in January 2008 (it was the second capture device I owned and I honestly don’t remember the story of my first one). The problems it had were distorted audio, frame-skipping and it would lag tremendously when recording in widescreen. My computer wasn’t very good, it was the only one I owned at the time. Windows Vista was just released and I was still using my half GB of RAM Windows XP. I bought 1 GB of RAM, but it was the wrong type (DDR or DDR2) and I ended up frying my motherboard. All I wanted to do were playthroughs of Glover and Portal for my YouTube channel, was that too much to ask?
All I could really make in 2008 was machinima because of a cheap computer and bad decisions. I liked creating Subliminal Sequel, Banjo-Shorties, and the old Breegull Mail Introduction, but my channel could’ve been a lot more. I had an idea of what I wanted my channel to be like in 2008, but I did what I was able to do with whatever I had. In 2012, with a small Windows Vista tower my sister let me use and the same Dazzle that worked a little better on it, I uploaded my Banjo-Tooie Boss videos and was inspired enough to create a “Rated E?” for Nuts & Bolts. The frames would still skip but only if I played long enough, so boss battles and sexual innuendos were short enough for me to record.
I’ve been in the same situation with recording videos for almost ten years until my girlfriend surprised me with an Xbox One last year. She knew I needed one and I can’t thank her enough for it! The built-in capturing software on the Xbox One is literally the best thing to happen for my YouTube channel. With it, I’m able to record high-quality gameplay for up to 10 minutes – not bad! I’ve been on a roll since November, uploading a video every month (something I’ve never done before).
These videos were made possible thanks to the Xbox One’s DVR:
Things are looking up now, stay tuned for many more to come!