When it comes to capturing your gameplay or taking a high-quality image, you will always want the best kit that money can buy. The first option that is almost on everyone’s mind is, Elgato. I have always used the Elgato HD60S, Razer RipSaw HD or straight from my PS4 PRO or Xbox One X. Recently however, I was building a custom PC for myself and picked up the Elgato 4K60 PRO Mk II.
Elgato recently announced their latest capture device, the 4K60 S+ which is the portable version of the 4K60 Pro. Elgato are always trying to push the envelope when it comes to their products and always try to give content creators and streamers the best from their products. The Elagto 4K60 Pro Mk II is the slimmer version of the old 4K60 Pro and there are some newer features thrown into the mix as well.
The newer model can capture your gameplay at 2160p and 60 fps all while being able to capture HDR10 as well. This is one of the main reasons that I chose this model for my custom rig and fits well with my Xbox One X and PS4 PRO. I am also happy with it due it being ready for when the PS5/Xbox Series X drops later in the year. I may even need to acquire a second one to capture from both consoles without the need of constantly switching cables(Elgato/Corsair if you are listening *wink-wink*).
The Mk.II also supports up to 240fps on a 1080p resolution, which will definitely come in handy for us console gamers who are waiting for the next generation of consoles that could possible offer those kind of frames in our games that our PC big brothers have also boasted about. It can also capture at 1440p/144fps as well while giving you seamless passthrough and low latency.
What I really love about the Mk.II is that it also has hardware tonemapping that lets you play in HDR and capture in SDR. What this means is that you will get the best representation and colour while you play in HDR and the capture card will record it in SDR, if the mood fancies it. Obviously, the main reason I wanted the Mk.II capture card was to capture in 4K60/HDR, but it’s nice to have the choice. Another cool feature is that you can capture your gameplay using multiple apps, like OBS, Xspilt and Elgatos very own Capture Utility, which I find is a lot better than the one I previously used with my HD60. What this means is that you can stream your gameplay to your favourite platform like Twitch or Mixer, while recording your gameplay via the 4K Capture Utility.
From what I have seen online and in reviews on YouTube, the older version of the Elagto 4K60 PRO was a much beefier kit. It was a lot bigger and it had a backplate on it too. With the Mk.II version, it is almost half the size and it can now fit into the PCIe x16, x8 and x4 slots on your motherboard. There two HDMI ports, one is the input and the other is the output and everything about this capture card is plug and play. It’s just a matter of popping it onto your motherboard and Windows 10 will pick it up without the need to install any drivers for it to run.
So once you have it setup in your PC and hooked up either to your PS4 or Xbox One, the Elgato 4K Capture Utility is what you will need to download, plus OBS or anything else you think you may want to use for recording or streaming. I am more into recording gameplay and have stuck with using the Elgato software. If you are familiar with the capture software that Elgato offers, then you will undoubtfully know about Flashback Recording, which is handy feature. For those that are unfamiliar with this feature, it lets you retroactively record your gameplay if you forgot to hit the record button and missed some epic goals in FIFA 20 or that killer shot in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare.
You can also record your mic audio on a separate track like live commentary, but you would need to make sure you have a mic plugged into your PC at the time. I would love if Elgato gave us the option to record our party chat along with the gameplay. There are a few tricks to get it done and a few hoops to jump through, but I wish it was more straightforward like everything else in the software.
There are also some settings that you can change in the options menu and you get options like Picture, Recording and Device. Here is where you can tinker away to get the right image you are looking for to get the best out of your capture card. You can adjust the contrast, hue, brightness and saturation levels of your picture to get it exactly right. You will also be able to choose what Bit Rate you want to record at, though remember the higher your Bit Rate is, the bigger the size of the file it will create. So, while you may get an amazing looking video, it may eat up your hard drive space. Again, it’s all about getting the right balance of quality and performance from what you need. You can find a lot of tutorials on this on YouTube or online, as this can vary depending on what setup you have and what you want to achieve.
When the 4K60 PRO first launched, it was around £400 I believe, which is quite expensive when you can pick up the Mk.II for nearly half that price and probably lower now. When I picked up mine before Christmas, I got it off Amazon for €249.99 and it’s a killer price for the piece of kit that Elgato is offering. I was sceptical at the start when using it, but I can’t see myself without it now and like I mentioned earlier, I will be looking to pick another one up before the year is out.
There is one thing to note before you decide to pick it up, and that is to make sure your PC has the hardware to run it on. I built my rig around my Elgato 4K60 PRO Mk.II and was happy with the results. The minimum requirements you would need is below, but it’s always to try and get the best kit that is within your budget.
OS: Windows 10
CPU: A 6th Gen Intel Core i7 or higher/AMD Ryzen 7 or better
GPU: NIVIDIA GeForce GTX 10xx or better
Others: PCIe Slot x4/x8/x16
Elgato has always been at the forefront of gaming with their capture cards and keep pushing the envelope with their features that they offer us gamers. The 4K60 PRO Mk.II for me is a must have hardware option for your gaming rig or console when you want to get the best representation of your gameplay to show the world your glorious moments. There is something missing however, and that is the ability to record party chats while capturing our gameplay. It is a small complaint on my part, but hopefully an update on the Capture Utility can rectify that in a future update. I HOPE!
GoG Rating: 9.5/10