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The best podcast and livestream equipment (2020): microphones, stands and more

Good video quality is an essential part of the livestream. We also have equipment recommendations from cameras and tripods to lighting.

A reliable camera

The most important part of a live streaming kit is a good webcam. Due to the high demand from those working at home during the global pandemic, they are currently difficult to come by. We like that Logitech C920X Pro and Razer Kiyo if available, you can only use what you have on hand. We have instructions on how to use your smartphone as a webcam.

If you have a GoPro or another DSLR or mirrorless camera, you can also use it as a replacement for a webcam. Simply search online for instructions that are specific to your model.

A stable tripod

A small tripod that can hold your camera or smartphone can be an indispensable accessory as it can be used to change your setup if things get too crowded. There are many good ones for cheap, but this one Kit from SmilePowo ($ 1

9) should have everything you need.

A smartphone microphone

Whether I record Instagram live videos or occasional review videos for WIRED, I have used and enjoyed them Shures microphone and tripod kit ($ 249). It offers much better audio quality than your smartphone’s built-in microphone and comes with a chic tripod so you can put it anywhere on your desk.

It is worth noting that this only works with certain Android phones. I had no issues with my Google Pixel 4, but make sure it’s compatible before pulling the trigger. iPhones or iPads shouldn’t have any problems. This kit is also great for live podcasts or outdoor video streams.

Get lights

A couple of LED lights can make the difference between a beautiful and an ugly current. Quality lights can be expensive, but this one from Viltrox ($ 50) is recommended by WIRED Deals employee Brad Bourque.

If you’re looking at other lighting options, just make sure the temperature is right and Brightness adjustment, not just one or the other. If it contains diffusers (for scattering and shaping light) or batteries (for portable use), that’s a plus.

Smartphone lenses

Everyone at WIRED (and almost all of the other gear nerds we’ve met) are big fans of Moment’s phone cases and lenses. They’re not always cheap, but they can really take the pictures you get on a smartphone to the next level. If you’re recording a podcast with a static recording or using an old phone as a camera, the wide-angle lens is a great way to get everything in the scene. They are also helpful for streams on the go.

Moment lenses require a moment cover on your phone, but the company only supports the top brands like Apple, Google, OnePlus and Samsung. Be sure to check if the company makes an argument for your phone model.

Try these apps and tutorials

Equipment is not the only thing you need to start with podcasts or live streams. Check out these apps and we’ve summarized some of the best YouTube tutorials we can find to help you.

  • Open Broadcaster Streaming Software (Free): If you want to stream on Twitch, YouTube or almost any other platform, the free streaming software OBS is the industry standard. The open source software is available for MacOS, Windows and Linux and is sponsored by Twitch, Facebook and Nvidia among others.

  • Boldness (free): From GarageBand to Pro Tools, there are many great digital audio workstations (DAWs) that you can use to record audio. The best free option for most beginner podcasters and streamers is Audacity. It offers everything you need to edit and upload audio, and a user-friendly interface for booting.


YouTube is a great free resource. We have selected a few places to get started. However, you can also search the platform for videos that may be helpful.

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