Top 10 Best ElGato Cam Link Alternatives in 2022

FSK Digital Audio : a good elgato cam link alternative

Smart streamers are always trying to upgrade their content somehow. One way of doing that is getting their hands on some new equipment. The overall quality of streams depends on many variables, like the charisma of the streamers, how often they post content, and, obviously, the video and audio quality of the transmission.

No one would like to keep up with a stream where you can count the pixels on the screen. But better yet, instead of having just a good video quality in your streams, why not go for excellent video quality? Because you could easily achieve that too.

That’s where devices like The Elgato Cam Link and capture cards enter the picture. We’re going to tell you a little bit about them, clarifying what they actually do in order to improve the video and audio quality of your streams. 

We’ll also talk about some great options of capture cards available in the market to buy, exposing products’ main characteristics, standout features, and main pros and cons. 

Let’s start!

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Quick View: Top 5 Cam Link Alternatives

10 Best Elgato Cam Link Alternatives

Loya Ark Video Capture Card 4K

The Good

  • Runs without any trouble in 1080p at 60fps and 4K at 30fps
  • Plug & play
  • Minimum delay on video/audio
  • Heat dissipation system
  • 3.5mm audio interface

The Bad

  • A little bit more expensive

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    Compatible with: Windows, MacOS and Linux.

The Loya Ark capture device comes at a higher price compared to others on this list, however it runs both 1080p at 60fps and 4K resolution at 30fps without major hiccups. 

The product is compatible with USB 3.0 ports and is powered by a ultra-low delay feature that enables transmissions to happen practically in real time. A loop-out output function is also present and allows for video broadcasting to run smoothly in a resolution of up to 4K.

You also have the option of connecting an earphone and microphone, and use the 3.5mm digital audio interface that the device provides, which enables crisper and clearer voice recording and transmission. There is no need for drive installation.

The capture card has a metal shell that provides extra resistance to scratches and an effective heat dissipation system that makes the devices more durable and very useful for streams that go for longer than usual. 

Extenuating Threads 4K Capture Card

The Good

  • Plug & play
  • Minimum delay on video/audio
  • Solid customer support

The Bad

  • Trouble with 1080p at 60fps and 4K 

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   Compatible with: Windows, MacOS and Android.

This is a very practical plug & play device that doesn’t seem to displease with any characteristics you wouldn’t hope for at this price range.  

After you plug the device in the USB 2.0 entry, your computer instantly recognizes it as your webcam of choice and you can start streaming right away, without the need of installing any drivers or softwares. 

Transmissions at 1080p (30fps) run smoothly and with minimum delay on audio or video, so you won’t have to worry about viewers complaining about a delayed voice on the chat. 

Customer support provided by this brand also receives a lot of compliments from buyers.

However, there are common complaints when it comes to the video broadcasting in 4K resolution and not-so-common ones regarding its use in 1080p at 60fps. The device is definitely a better choice for those who wouldn’t bother streaming in 1080p at 30fps.

Rybozen 4K Capture Card

The Good

  • Plug & play
  • Minimum delay on video/audio
  • 3.5mm mic input 

The Bad

  • Trouble with 1080p and 4K resolution

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Compatible with: Windows and MacOS.

The Rybozen capture card option has a wonderful black design with white details and is suited for 3.0 USB ports.

No driver or external power is required with the device; it is automatically identified as a webcam by your PC or Mac. 

The super low latency technology enables minimum lag behavior on the transmissions (both video and audio). The device also comes with 3.5mm mic and headphone inputs that enable you to connect your favorite headset or mic and provide audio commentary to your videos, making it perfect for game streaming or even video classes.

Although it’s advertised that the product supports 4K and 1080p at 60fps, most buyers claim that to not be the case. 1080p at 30fps supposedly works just fine though.

BlueAVS Capture Card

The Good

  • Minimum delay on video/audio
  • Supports up to 2K at 30fps
  • Very affordable for what it accomplishes

The Bad

  • Trouble with 4K resolution

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    Compatible with: Windows and MacOS.

The BlueAVS capture card seems to be the best option for an Elgato alternative that also comes at a MUCH more affordable price range. Streamers on a tight budget should be really happy with this one. 

The device is quite small and has a simple and discreet black and white design. All it takes to start using and enjoy its functions is to plug it in. 

The delay on video/audio is basically imperceptible, and for its price, and the image quality that the product can sustain, it’s quite impressive. Using 30fps, the video broadcasting should run with no trouble in a resolution of up to 2K. Anything beyond that (starting with 1080p at 60fps) should be a concern though.

Assletes Video Capture Card 4K

The Good

  • Plug & Play
  • Minimum delay on video/audio
  • Comes with USB-A to USB-C converter

The Bad

  • Durability could be better
  • Trouble with 1080p at 60fps and 4K 

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    Compatible with: Windows, MacOS, Android and Linux.

This Asslets capture card is compatible with USB 3.0 outputs and also extremely easy to set up, with an automatic and super quick drive installation.

The material of which the device is made has a metallic feel to it and looks great, with the capture card directly leading the small USB cable. 

The product also comes with a free USB-A to USB-C converter as an accessory, that enables you to connect iOS devices and other accessories to a USB-C port.

Transmissions seem to run really smoothly with 720p (30 and 60fps) and 1080p (30fps). However the same can’t be said for transmissions at 1080p (60fps), where image quality drops considerably. And 4K quality in video transmission is practically not obtainable according to most buyers.

There’s also some complaints regarding the product’s durability, claiming that latency problems can become quite common after 6+ months of use.

UCEC CAM NOVA Video Capture Card 4K

The Good

  • Good customer support
  • Comes with accessories

The Bad

  • Poor video quality in low light conditions
  • Some audio problems related

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    Compatible with: Windows and MacOS.

The UCEC capture card is best suited for good light conditions, but it comes with some great accessories. 

There’s an automatic driver installation required before you can properly use the device, but it generally doesn’t last more than one minute. 

The device also comes with two very useful accessories, one mini HDMI cable and one HDMI to HDMI cable.

As you would expect, video broadcasting tends to run smoothly in a resolution up to 1080p (30fps), anything beyond that framerate or video quality, will be hard to achieve. Is also not recommended that you record yourself in poorly lit environments, since there are some complaints about the image getting grainy rather easily. 

There are also some reports regarding a failed attempt for audio to be transmitted through the device due to a “drive error”. Secondary devices for audio capturing would be required for people going through such problems with the product. 

However, UCEC offers a one-year money-back warranty on the product and online technical support that tends to be quite responsive, according to buyers. 

DIGITNOW Capture Card

The Good

  • Extremely affordable
  • Plug & play

The Bad

  • Trouble with 1080p and 4K 
  • Reported cases of monophonic audio

    Compatible with: Windows, MacOs and Linux.

The DIGITNOW capture card may not have such a consistent quality at higher resolutions, but it’s the most affordable option on our list, and it’s especially recommended for people in the tightest of budgets at the moment.

The device is a solid choice for those who don’t intend to stream any classes, games, or video conferences at a resolution higher than 720p. Anything beyond that seems to be a problem here, but you could probably expect that for the price. 

This capture card works through a USB 2.0 and it’s a plug & play that should be working just as soon as you connect it to your PC. 

This would be particularly recommended, due to its price, for streamers who intend to work with more than one camera. You can buy 3 of these without hurting your pocket and then set up a stream using 3 GoPros in 3 different angles, offering a more dynamic experience to your viewers.   

There are some reports that mention a problem with the audio coming out is monophonic. However, this problem doesn’t seem to be very common. 

TKHIN Capture Card

The Good

  • Plug & play
  • Comes with USB-C to USB-A adapter
  • Runs 1080p at 60fps

The Bad

  • Mono audio 
  • Trouble with 4K resolution
  • Accumulates heat easily

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    Compatible with: Unix, Linux, Chrome OS, MacOS, Windows, Android.

This TKHIN capture card is one of the few at a low price range that manages to run 1080p at 60fps with solid consistency.

The device requires no external power and no driver installation. It’s designed with high-end chips and it’s made of an aluminum alloy shell, with the capture card leading to the small USC cable. The product also comes with a Type-C to USB-A adapter included for buyers that use iOS devices.

Regarding the video quality capacity in broadcasting, this capture card seems to operate in a more satisfactory way. Transmissions in 1080p (both in 30fps and 60fps) seem to run without major technical problems. At 4K resolution, however, things get tricky and unsustainable. 

TKHIN offers lifetime online technical support and a 1-year warranty on the product. 

Aside from trouble with the 4K resolution, some buyers also claim the device can only transmit audio as mono and that it gets heated pretty easily, not being recommended for extremely long streams.

Mirabox 4K HDMI Video Capture Card

The Good

  • Plug & play
  • Minimum delay on video/audio
  • Runs effectively on 1080p (30fps and 60fps)

The Bad

  • A little bit more expensive
  • Advertised as USB 3.0, but is USB 2.0
  • Trouble with 4K 

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Compatible with: Windows, Unix and MacOS.

This Mirabox capture device comes at a higher price, but also runs smoothly in 1080p, both in the 30fps and 60fps options, with minimum delay on video or audio transmission.

The device is a plug & play and should be ready to be used just by connecting to your computer. It has a small box-shaped design that isn’t particularly attractive, but makes it more resistant to accidental droppings. 

The product also has a HDMI pass-through port, which is very useful for games live streams specifically. 

Although this capture device is advertised as compatible with a USB 3.0 port, a major number of buyers claim that it’s actually only compatible with USB 2.0 ports, so make sure to keep that in mind before buying it. 

FSK Digital Game Capture Card

The Good

  • Minimum delay on video

The Bad

  • Poor quality control regarding audio

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    Compatible with: Windows and MacOS.

The last product on our list, the FSK capture card, unlike many others on this list, doesn’t seem to promise a resolution up to 4K in its video transmissions. But what they promise, they deliver.

The device looks basically like a black pen drive, very simply (but not badly) designed. It has a powerful chipset that allows the broadcasting to run effortlessly in a resolution of up to 1080p at 30fps. The delay on video and audio is almost imperceptible. 

There’s a driver installation required, but it only requires a few clicks and just under a minute to be done with. 

There are audio related problems reported by some buyers. The audio doesn’t seem to be transmitted at all in these isolated cases. 

What Does the ElGato Cam Link Do?

The ElGato Cam Link is a HDMI compatible device that enables you to connect any professional camera (that also has an HDMI output) to your computer and then use it to capture the image and audio for your live streams. It also can be used to capture the footage from your game console (PS4, Xbox, Switch) and stream it through your computer as well.

No more webcams, my friends. We’re talking about real video quality now. And the device also allows you to capture the footage directly to your HD, so you won’t have to worry about your camera’s SD card reaching maximum capacity and inadvertently interrupting your live stream. 

The device allows to broadcast video in a 4K quality (up to 30fps) and 1080p quality (up to 60fps) and is extremely easy to set up. Just plug it in and you’re ready to go.

Besides the improvement of video quality itself, just imagine the new dynamics that become available. With a professional camera, you can use multiple types of lenses. You can try out different lenses, at different depths and experiment with new stuff in your content, using some cool wide and close-up shots variations. 

You could also mess around with chroma-keying with the assistance of an improvised green screen and see where that leads you. Many streamers (and their viewers) seem to have a lot of fun with that.

Sky’s the limit and streamers with this kind of device are definitely ahead of their peers.

Can I Use a Capture Card as a Cam Link?

The short answer is: yes, you can.

Because, essentially, the Cam Link is a type of Capture Card. So, what differentiates them? And why is the Elgato Cam Link option more expensive?

Well, that’s because the Elgato’s option tends to offer a more solid quality on what is being offered. The delay on video/audio is minimal (a big deal for streaming, obviously), the quality of image and audio is great and the 4K and 1080p quality really does run smoothly at up to 60fps (unlike many of the capture card options available).

But, relax, that doesn’t mean the more affordable capture card options out there are completely disposable. They can certainly fulfill the basic needs of any streamer out there that has a smaller budget available, and they are a good way to start streaming with good video quality. 

Do You Need a Capture Card to Use a DSLR as a Webcam?

Most modern DSLR cameras are livestream compatible with their brand’s native software, however downloading the software and setting it up correctly can be more laborious than you might think. 

So, in order to prevent mishaps or unnecessary stress, we would recommend streamers out there to get their hands on a capture card device, which is a much simpler way of using your DSLR as a webcam and improving video quality.