Online gaming has changed our gaming experience over the years, and it has all been made possible by wonderful high speed internet. Of course, playing online with a good connection was never really a problem for most, as even the slower broadband connections could get away with relatively low ping. But what internet speed do you need to stream games?
How Much Internet Speed Do I Need to Stream Video Games?
Streaming on platforms like Twitch and YouTube has not only attracted a wave of new-age gamers, but it has also attracted a large following of games and personalities. The problem that many will find is that for a good quality stream there is a minimum internet speed required.
With players now broadcasting their gameplay to their respective audiences, a fast internet connection has never been more important. Twitch recommends that its streamers have a download speed of at least 3Mbps. Of course, this recommendation should be taken with care as it largely depends on what resolution you want to stream at.
For the best results at 1080p, you’ll want to make sure you have a minimum download speed of around 5-6Mbps, but you can stream at 420p resolution with as little as 1Mbps.
What if my Internet is not fast enough?
Slow internet is the bane of any gamer’s life; the last thing you need to play is lag. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to increase your internet speed while gaming / streaming. These tips which we will describe below could help you get a better online experience without needing to upgrade your current internet plan.
- Check bandwidth usage – While it is true that online games do not consume a lot of bandwidth, if they are crowded with other internet uses (someone is watching Netflix), you will notice an unstable ping when playing. For a quick fix turn off Netflix, make sure no one is downloading, and you’ll see a huge difference.
- Move your router – If you connect to your router wirelessly, you can try moving the device closer to your PC / game console. Improving the signal could increase your overall internet speed.
- Ethernet cable – Try wired! That’s right; we may be living in the age of wireless technology, but a wired connection can give you a much more consistent experience and eliminate dropout issues.
If these changes don’t have a significant impact on your experience, chances are your internet connection isn’t fast enough and you need to upgrade your plan or potentially switch providers.
What is the impact of Ping on streaming?
The quality of your stream may depend on your ping rate (speed data is sent from your PC to the server and vice versa). Ping or latency, as it can sometimes be called, is measured in milliseconds, and the lower this rate, the faster your data is transferred and the smoother your game will be. For optimal online play, you will need a ping of around 30ms, but the games are very playable down to around 70ms.
What type of internet connection is best for streaming?
You’re going to want to avoid using Wi-Fi unless you have a really fast internet connection. For best results, use a wired connection and opt for fiber optic if you want to change your current internet plan.
If you are looking to provide quality service from your channel and you think your internet speed is just not up to par, then I am afraid you will need to increase your current ISP plan. Alternatively or while you wait for the upgrade, consider recording the game and downloading the content for viewers to watch on demand.