My Second Twitch Livestream Setup

Back in January, I wrote an introduction to livestreaming titled My First Twitch Livestream Setup. In it, I created the how-to guide for getting started that I wish I had the day I found Twitch.

It’s now been a couple weeks and I’m becoming more acclimated to Twitch, though I still don’t get emotes and would prefer if Slack-style :emojis: were still in style πŸ˜… Oh, and in addition to PowerShellLive, I’m now a member of Live Coders! Thanks so much to Jeff Fritz for the invite 🌈

In this post, I’ll outline what I’ve figured out since writing the first post. If you’re new to Twitch, I’d suggest first reading My First Twitch Livestream Setup, doing a few streams that way, then returning to this post. All of it at once can be overwhelming, even if you’ve been doing computers your whole life.

  • Interacting with people
  • Streaming Services
  • Prettier profile
  • Music
  • Secondary camera
  • Stream Deck
  • Lights
  • What I still don’t know

Interacting with people

Twitch is awesome because it lets you “interact with the TV”. As a viewer, I’ll sometimes give a follow to see the delight on the streamer’s face or because I want to interact with them.

But as a streamer, if you don’t explicitly set things up, you can’t really see if someone followed you or if someone subscribed to your channel.

I felt bad that people were giving me follows and I couldn’t thank them, that I mentioned it during one of my streams. Microsoft’s Tyler Leonhardt of the PowerShell team was kind enough to let me know in chat when someone followed (I still don’t know how he figured that out.)

I was extra excited when I finally figured out how to create that alert. So pumped, in fact, I did a dance and posted it on Twitter:

It wasn’t hard at all, I just needed to find the time to do it. So how’d I do it? I used a free streaming service and basically just pasted a web address into OBS.

Streaming services

Streaming services provide all sorts of add-ons to your stream, including Alerts like the one above. There are a few competing streaming services, and I’m finding myself using a mix of them. Three popular ones include:

StreamLabs

One day during one of my livestreams, I was lamenting about how I couldn’t use Streamlabs because I had a Mac and Microsoft livestreamer Jeff Fritz (csharpfritz) told me that I still could! I just can’t use their beautiful OBS wrapper which currently only works on Windows, but I can use their streaming service.

Within just a few minutes of setting up Streamlabs, I had all of my alerts! It was as easy as:

  • Login to StreamLabs using your Twitch account
  • In the Dashboard, click AlertBox in your sidebar navigation
  • Copy the URL
  • Paste the URL into OBS as a Browser Source

Much easier than I expected πŸ‘ By default, there is a running zombie for new followers. It’s cute, but I like Yoshi more so I selected him from gifs included in their gallery. You can also upload your own gifs, but that’s for later.

StreamElements

StreamElements offers a lot of the same things as StreamLabs, like Alerts. It also offers overlays which is the border surrounding people’s stream that gives their social information, etc. Here’s what fellow PowerShell streamer VeronicaGeek’s overlay looks like.

Veronica was the one who told me about StreamElements after I asked how she did her overlay. I still haven’t entirely figured out the overlay thing so that’ll be included in my Third Twitch Livestream Setup.

I have not used muxy so I don’t have anything to report about that yet.

Prettier profile

I also stopped borrowing someone else’s Panel pics and made my own at nerdordie.com πŸ‘ It’s ultra easy. Here, I’ll do one right now for the blog.

Tyler took it a step further and paid someone to do his (I think). His profile is so good! Love the posh-git theme.

Music

I’ve changed my position on music, too. Mostly. I’m still not a big fan of pretzel, but I do enjoy streams like Jeff Fritz’s that use coder-centric music services.

These are playlists and sounds designed to be unobtrusive background melodies that get you in the zone. I also love lofi hip hop radio – beats to relax/study to but in my test stream, out of like 20 hours, 6 minutes did get muted.

Anyway, if you don’t care about getting muted in the video playback (live never/rarely gets muted), letting your viewers rock along with you is a lot of fun.

Secondary camera

I ended up adding a secondary camera to my stream, too. I had a Nest Cam laying around and added a Cat cam to my stream! It’s super cute.

They even have their own dedicated account, now. Check out this clip, which is a short highlight video, of Kitty and Potato.

The Nest Cam is an IP camera and I added it to OBS by following this tutorial on YouTube.

The awesomest

By far, the best addition to my Twitch stream has been the Elgato Stream Deck. This thing is SO FUN! It’s a macro automation keyboard that’s so well-made. Elgato seems to be like the Mercedes Benz of Streaming equipment. They also sell a gorgeous light called the Key Light and an elegant green screen.

You don’t need a Stream Deck to be a streamer, and you don’t need to stream to have a Stream Deck! After I posted a picture of some of the keys I’d done, my buddy Lee bought one just to make automation easier. My deck setup is still unfinished, but here’s the progress I’ve made.

The button in the middle starts PowerShell on my Mac and imports dbatools 😎 The row at the top helps me go between scenes real quick. And the steps are so easy! Check out my “Starting soon” button configuration:

It even changes my Twitter name and tweets for me! The configuration is drag and drop, too. If you want to extend it, that is also possible. I’m obsessed with this stream deck so I’ll probably write a follow-up intro article at some point.

Lights

Good lighting makes a huge difference! I turned on the lamp on the side of my desk and it was awful, like when you accidentally open the front facing camera.

Fortunately, I had a Happy Light laying around and it turned out to be perfect! You can’t even tell I have forehead wrinkles now, as can be seen in this reduced-quality Twitter video where I talk about the first time I met Jeffrey Snover.

Not saying that you gotta get a Happy Light, but if you’ve got one, it works well. There are lights dedicated to this, including the Elegato light, and also, a lot of people use webcams that have this soft light built-in, like the one Jeff Fritz mentions in his post Live Streaming Setup – 2019 Edition, the Razer Kiyo camera.

What I still don’t know

I don’t totally understand subscriptions, loot, cheers and all that. It looks like people give and get real money, but that seems outlandish πŸ˜…

I also want to learn more about bots, bot mods and emotes. Some emotes, I just don’t know what they mean. Like, what the hell is a pog champ?

Chrissy is a Cloud and Datacenter Management & Data Platform MVP who has worked in IT for over 20 years. She is the creator of the popular SQL PowerShell module dbatools, holds a master's degree in Systems Engineering and is coauthor of Learn dbatools in a Month of Lunches. Chrissy is certified in SQL Server, Linux, SharePoint and network security. You can follow her on Twitter at @cl.

Posted in Livestreaming, PowerShell

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