Modern games pretty much use all the digits from both of your hands, and of course your eyes and ears. Add multiplayer communication and you’ll have a say in the action too. And if you’re streaming to an audience, you have all of that to deal with, in addition to keeping a group of people engaged and managing a chat room. Elgato, now a subsidiary of Corsair, makes tools like the Stream Deck to help keep it all in line. The company’s latest gadget engages a part of your body you might not have thought of before.
The Stream Deck pedal is pretty much exactly what it sounds like: a set of USB-connected pedals that fit under your desk, within easy reach of your feet. The gadget features three footswitches (a big one in the center is a little less obvious) tied to just about anything you can think of doing in a game, Discord, Twitch, or any related program. Users can link the pedals to three separate actions and use program profiles to extend this based on whatever is running in the foreground.
This isn’t the first PC pedal input, of course – driving game fans have had car-style pedals for years, and various vendors have offered USB pedals that can be linked to different apps, and the Foot controls are popular for musicians who have no hands free. But Elgato’s pedal is the first you might see on, say, a Best Buy shelf, and it fits the company’s commitment to making managing a livestreaming setup easier for one person. It is technically possible to use the pedal in a game, or any other application, if you want to. Elgato’s software can set up sequences of actions linked to pedal presses, the programmable universal remote control.
Elgato wants $90 for the Stream Deck pedal, which sounds like a lot at first glance. But the gadget has surprisingly high-end components: a “robust” chassis with a non-slip texture, a removable USB-C cable and interchangeable springs to allow the user to customize the necessary activation pressure. The gadget is compatible with Windows and macOS, and it’s on sale now, although the Elgato store is showing it as out of stock at the time of writing.
Michael is a former graphic designer who has been building and modifying desktop computers for longer than he cares to admit. His interests include folk music, football, science fiction and salsa verde, in no particular order.