Live streaming on different platforms like Youtube and Twitch has grown extremely popular within the community of gamers. And with how things are going, there are obviously no signs of this slowing down.
With that, a lot of powerful and highly efficient software allows newbies to achieve the quality that professionals can produce. And this is done by utilizing a plethora of effects like seamless transitions, customized logos, excellent audio, as well as multi-source scenes. Because of this huge popularity, a ton of companies are joining the bandwagon, offering everyone with very useful equipment for such task.
Elgato is one of the known and good companies around, and they’ve become a subsidiary of Corsair just some time ago. In addition to this, they also announced their latest product, the Stream Deck XL, which is a bigger version of their original Stream Deck. The company enhanced their standard Stream Deck’s 15 OLED keys and increased them to a good 32 keys for ultimate flexibility and use.
With the upgrade, is the Stream Deck XL a device that’s necessary for everyone who does live streaming? Today, we’re going to focus on this specific product from Elgato to learn more about its uses, what it does, what its features are, how well it performs, and if it’s something you should invest in for your streaming tasks.
Elgato Stream Deck XL Review – What’s in the Box?
Elgato opted for a blue theme, so when we received the Stream Deck XL, it came in a nice and sturdy blue cardboard box that is durable enough to protect the Stream Deck XL. The front part of the package displays an image of the device itself, while the back portion showcases a collection of information and a ton of specifications about the Stream Deck XL.
When opening the package, it’s somewhat similar to the boxes used for smartphones today. It does have that self-forming vacuum seal amid the two parts of the package which keeps the Stream Deck XL sealed and completely protected. Once opened, you’ll immediately find the Elgato Stream Deck XL, a 1.5 meter USB C – USB A cable, one magnetic 45-degree stand, and the user manual.
Elgato Stream Deck XL Review
The Stream Deck XL from Elgato boasts a total number of 32 buttons, hence, its size which is bigger compared to the original Stream Deck. With its stand, this measures 90 millimeters high, 125 millimeters deep, and is 185 millimeters wide; without it, the Stream Deck XL would be 35 x 115 x 185 millimeters.
For the 32 LCD displays, each of these roughly measures around 16 x 16 millimeters, with a resolution of 72 x 72, and has about 3.5 millimeters of space between the keys. Each display sports a soft-touch plastic that has a slight concave shape to them to make these easier and more convenient to press. You can also say that they’re quite grippy, so your fingers won’t slip on every press.
The buttons measure around 2 millimeters, and all these are placed adequately for easy pressing whether the Stream Deck XL is set upright or is laid flat. Behind this, specifically inside its stand, you will find an empty spot for the cables to keep everything neat.
Removing the Stream Deck XL from its base, the rubber feet on each corner are securely magnetized, allowing you to securely lock this with the stand, or have it lay on a flat surface. Lastly, the bottom portion of its stand is set with a nice and sturdy rubber mat which is necessary to prevent the device from slipping off your desk.
To properly run the Stream Deck XL, you will need to have a computer that has the Mac OS 10.13 or newer, or Windows 10 (64-bit). When it comes to its primary specifications, the Stream Deck XL has a total of 32 customizable LCD keys and uses the USB 3.0 interface.
It measures 90 x 125 x 185 millimeters with the stand, and 35 x 115 x 185 millimeters without it. For its weight, the product weighs with the stand, and 410 grams without it.
Extra Large for More Control
The Stream Deck XL provides additional studio-level control to effectively optimize your content. This lets you save time and boost your production value while keeping your audience hooked to your stream.
The Centerpiece for Streaming
Elgato Stream Deck XL lets you do everything – start streaming, adjust or mute audio, tweak lighting, change scenes, switch cameras, and more. You have supreme creative control which is best for advanced live production.
Sets Higher Benchmarks
The expanded x 4 grid provides a total of 32 LCD keys. Each of these provide crisp resolution, fluid playback, and even one-touch tactile control. For every command,the Elgato Stream Deck XL also provides instant visual feedback. Additionally, it comes with a non-slip magnetic stand so you can tap without worries since it keeps the Stream Deck XL steady and holds it at the perfect angle.
Perfectly and Smoothly Integrated
Elgato Game Capture, Streamlabs, OBS, Youtube, Twitch, Mixer, Twitter and many other tools are integrated in the Stream Deck XL. It also automatically detects your media, scenes, and audio sources, which let you directly arrange your stream on the fly.
Works with your Whole System
With hotkey actions, everything is faster and you won’t have to remember keyboard shortcuts. Now, you can easily launch websites and apps, open folders, and access pre-composed texts. Streamlining your graphic design, video editing, and production workflow is also made easier since you know where your macros are.
You can fully personalize your Stream Deck XL and create your own icons via the Key Creator. Just drag and drop actions on the keys, then set icons of your choice. You can choose from ready-made icons or make your own to make these more unique. If 32 keys aren’t enough, you can turn some of these into folders to assign as many actions as you want.
It Knows your Needs
With the Stream Deck XL, you can create unlimited Smart Profiles with various key layouts for different tasks. You can switch them or set the device to switch the key layouts automatically.
Trigger Chain Reactions
Tapping a key multiple times is no longer needed since one can do it all. Assign unlimited tasks to one key and launch everything with one tap. This can be launched by intervals or simultaneously.
Using the Product
The Stream Deck XL is snappy and we didn’t experience any lags when we were pressing and using it during our streams. We were able to create folders which is a key that provides you with an entirely new set of buttons; basically the folders allow you to store a collection of functions making them easy to access.
It’s a really awesome feature and we weren’t expecting anything like this, but the Stream Deck XL does it really well and we really liked it.
When it comes to its performance, the Elgato sure did an excellent job on its software. Its integrated applications provided us with all the tools that we needed to create beautiful and high-quality streams.
The great thing about it is that we didn’t have to memorize tons of key shortcuts which can definitely interfere with our gaming. For video editors, music producers, content creators, and more, the Stream Deck XL can provide you with a very efficient product to build your own shortcuts and Macros.
All in all, the Stream Deck XL and its software performed perfectly, and we give both of these two thumbs-up each for this.
The Stream Deck software from Elgato offers you a live display of all the things that you see on the Stream Deck XL without any latencies between the two, thus, allowing you to see in real-time. Generally, there are some keys that function better at the top or bottom of the Stream Deck XL; and because of the Stream Deck software, you will be able to customize where the titles will be positioned, as well as what font style and size will be utilized.
The default integrated buttons located along the right-hand portion are primarily aimed towards streamers; however, allowing sites or hotkeys to be assigned will greatly help in daily tasks.
Elgato also gives you the chance to make customized icons in their Key Creator which is a separate tool from the Elgato Stream Deck Software. Aside from customizing the icons, the Key Creator also lets you generate wallpapers for the Stream Deck XL, where all its keys are utilized individually to create a single image. For further customizations, you can also create your personal icons using any PNG or JPEG file.
The Stream Deck XL is a unique product from Elgato. It’s designed for a specific market (gamers and streamers) but surprisingly, it has more use than just improving stream quality. It’s the ideal tool for optimizing your workflow.
The build quality of the Stream Deck XL is excellent. We like its solid non-slip base that features a magnetic attachment since it effectively keps keep the device steady. We didn’t have to worry about the device while using it since we were sure that it was secure.
Another thing we liked is the removable USB Type C cable since it made things more convenient for us. For the buttons, these were also great and we really appreciated its concave shape and the tactile feedback. The spacing between each button was perfect too and we didn’t have to worry about accidentally pressing the wrong key.
We can’t deny that the Stream Deck XL is not cheap, but if you’re someone who produces content on a daily basis, this is a powerful tool that would definitely help you a lot. If you consider the time, effort, and frustration that you can save just by using the product, we highly recommend that you consider the Elgato Stream Deck XL.
Where to Buy
The Elgato Stream Deck XL is available in various online shops. Check out Elgato’s store locator to see which shop in your area offers this product.