TAIPEI, TAIWAN - You never know what kind of cool stuff you’re going to see on the Computex 2019 floor. Case in point, AverMedia’s Live Gamer Bolt (GC555) external capture card. With an estimated launch price of $499 (availability still TBD), the company claims that this nascent piece of tech is the world’s first 4K HDR external game capture box.
The Bolt is a bit larger than an average man’s hand, but still small enough to fit into just about any bag or purse. The otherwise unassuming black aluminum box is lit up with an LED strip with a large reservoir of colored illumination front and center and a thin slit on the sides for good measure. The back of the capture box has ports for HDMI, USB 3.1 and Thunderbolt 3.
The Thunderbolt 3 port is where the magic happens, allowing gamers to capture their gaming exploits from PC, PlayStation or Xbox and transfer them to a connected laptop or desktop in 4K at 60 frames per second in HDR (High Dynamic Range) for some high-quality livestreaming. If you’re looking for higher frame rates, the card can capture in 1080p at 240fps or 1440 at 144fps with ultra-low latency.
I played Spider-Man on a PlayStation 4 Pro that was connected to a MSI GS75 Stealth via the Bolt. I swung through the air, beat up baddies and all the other things a spider can, without any latency. Glancing over from the large television screen to the Stealth’s smaller display, the graphics quality was almost identical. I’d love to see how it fares livestreaming on Twitch or Mixer.
It’s a bit pricey considering other 4K capture cards on the market. However, as the only device currently capable of capturing at 240fps, it’s a compelling option for gamers looking for a truly portable capture card capable of delivering super high frame rates.
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Sherri L. Smith has been cranking out product reviews for Laptopmag.com since 2011. In that time, she's reviewed more than her share of laptops, tablets, smartphones and everything in between. The resident gamer and audio junkie, Sherri was previously a managing editor for Black Web 2.0 and contributed to BET.Com and Popgadget.