AverMedia is no stranger in the history of capture cards. They are well known for their products around the world. The recently released the Game Capture HD II which greatly improves over its previous iteration. The Game Capture HD II is a wonderful device for all the hardcore gaming enthusiastic who want to record and share their gaming moments with their friends or the world. The device is designed in such a way that there is absolutely no need for a PC at all. You can perform all the basic functions of capturing video, editing it and uploading it to YouTube, straight from the capture device.
- Input Signal:
- Component Video
- HDMI Input
- Stereo Audio
- Output Signal:
- HDMI Output
- Stereo Audio
- Internal: 2.5” SATA Hard Drive (9.5mm/7mm)
- External: USB 2.0 Hard Drive
* Hard drive is not included. Please install or connect a hard drive before using Game Capture HD.
- Recording Format:
- MP4 (Codec: H.264 & AAC)
- Supported Resolutions:
- 480i / 480p / 576i/ 576p/ 720p / 1080i / 1080p (50/60 Hz)
- Maximum Recording Resolution: 1080p@30fps
Packaging & Accessories
AverMedia Game Capture HD II comes neatly packed in a box, which looks rather sturdy and well made. It doesn’t exactly feel like cheap packaging at all. We can see that the main platforms that they have targeted here are PS3, Wii U and Xbox 360 but it doesn’t mean that we can’t use this capture card with the next generation consoles, the PS4 and Xbox One. Sony has promised that PS4 will soon support external capture devices in a firmware update but it still has HDCP protection at launch, just like PS3.
In case of Xbox One, there is no HDCP protection so we can easily use AverMedia Game Capture HD II to record crisp clear 1080p HD footage from Xbox One – or we can opt to go for 720p footage at glorious 60 fps. So we have the choice of either capturing in Full HD 1080p at 30 fps or 720p at 60 fps. AverMedia also highlights about their GameMate App on the front of the box, that is available for free from iOS App Store and Google Play on Android devices. On the back, we have the main features highlighted for Game Capture HD II along with a list of features in various languages of the world.
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Inside the box, we can find a HDMI Cable (which doesn’t look cheap at all but is rather short), a Manual, pack of batteries for the remote control, the power adapter for the capture device along with a quick set-up guide.
The remote control really helps in capturing our favorite gaming moments in the easiest way. Want to take a screen capture, just press the screenshot button on the remote control, it will be saved instantly to the storage device. Video capture also works in similar way, and can be started and stopped with the press of a button on the remote control. In case you have no access to remote, you can also record the gameplay by pressing the recording button on the front of the device.
Design & Build Quality
AverMedia Game Capture HD II sports a short and sleek design. It can sit pretty nicely next to our consoles and feels like a tiny console on its own. At the front, we have the usb port (for external storage), the power and the record button, microphone and headphone input. At the back, we have the HDMI Input, HDMI output, component video and audio input, a LAN connection (for connecting the device online) and the AC adapter input.
At the bottom of the device, we can fit a 2.5” SATA Hard Drive (9.5mm/7mm) hard disk, to be used as a storage device. Since we can directly upload the captured video to YouTube, it is much more convenient to do so, especially if you just share and upload gameplay clips to YouTube without much editing on PC.
AverMedia Game Capture HD II also comes with a remote control for easily accessing the main features of the capture device. Alternatively, we can also record and capture video directly from the main device by pressing the record button at the front of the device.
Video is recorded with a very high bit-rate and looks almost as good as the real-time footage from the actual console. They are all encoded using the superior MP4 format, supported by a wide array of devices. Screenshots are sadly saved in JPEG format but they still look good, but we would have opted for a uncompressed PNG format here.
AverMedia Game Capture HD II has a fully featured UI for editing and uploading videos. We can also play our captured videos or see our capture screenshots of the game. While the UI might be slow at times, it does its job decently for the most part. The video editing is surprisingly fast and while it may not match the speed of a desktop PC, for a captured device, it is more than enough.
We can either use an external storage device or internal hard disk to record footage. It is much more convenient to use an external USB hard disk since we can simply plug the usb into a PC and edit/tweak our captured footage from there. During our testing session, we used a simple Kingston flash drive along with a external Western Digital USB hard disk and both worked pretty well.
When the software works, it works great, but still, there are occasionally problems sometimes, when it takes a little longer to bring up the features menu of the capture device. During our test, there were cases when we were able to access the navigation menu with ease, and then there were some when it didn’t respond to our prompts despite several tries.
The editing feature not only allows you to edit your videos, cutting the extra stuff that you don’t want in the video; it also allows you to record your own gameplay commentary over the captured footage, which can then be uploaded to YouTube straight from the device. In short, AverMedia Game Capture HD II makes it really easy for us to record and share our gameplay footage(with added commentary) online.
AverMedia Game Capture HD II also has its own video player with standard video controls. We can view our captured footage, that we recorded on our storage device, using this video player. While it is fairly basic, it works well and is simple enough. We can easily time-skip to our preferred moment in the video using the timer of the video – for both – playing and editing the video.
AverMedia also has a GameMate app available for Smartphones/Tablets on iOS and Android. It requires the capture card to be connected to your network and you can then access the features of the capture card straight from your device. The app is fairly basic yet it allows streamlined controls of all the capture card features. You can browse videos, record them or upload them to YouTube/Facebook using this application. That is, if you don’t fancy the usual way of doing this all using the stock remote control, which is, of course, a better choice. Despite being totally optional, the availability of this app is definitely a welcome addition in term of software support for the capture card.
Recording your gameplay footage using AverMedia Game Capture HD II is relatively easy. All it requires is a press of single button and the device will start capturing footage. It is indicated by a red flashing light on the front of the device.
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Once your desired footage is captured, you can just press the record button again to stop recording; it will take a few seconds to process the footage and then it will be saved to the storage device. From there, you can simply upload it to YouTube or edit out the extra bits and add your commentary or just take it to PC and use your own editing software on it.
While with the next gen consoles already have their own sharing and recording features, they still don’t allow users to put it onto an external storage or share to other popular sites like YouTube. In case of AverMedia Game Capture HD II, you can simply take the captured footage and either upload to YouTube or any other site that you like.
AverMedia Game Capture HD II Review
AverMedia Game Capture HD II is a great choice for using as a capturing device, it comes with its own set of neat features, sports a sleek and neat looking design and delivers freedom, that is unrivaled on any next generation console. As a capturing device, especially one for enthusiasts uploaders, it is pretty great package overall with respect to its price.