As you know, or you may not know, I run a YouTube Channel for the Xbox Star Trek Online. Some people on Xbox have asked me how do I do this, so here is how.
First thing you need is something to video about, in this case its Star Trek Online. I have just done a Battle Montage video for this month but I will also be showing some things you also need if you are for instance reviewing a ship you can build.
This is the hardware I personally use.
- iPad Pro with DS Note installed.
- Sybology DS115i for Office Duties.
- Hauppauge Rocket HD PVR.
- USB Drive.
- PC with Linux Mint installed.
- WD MyCloud 2TB NAS.
- An Xbox.
First of all, you need to build the ship that you want to review. In this instance I am lucky that I am in a very good fleet (The Minutemen) that allows me to get stuff out of the fleet stores and only contribute mainly Fleet Marks (though I do contribute more stuff as and when I have it spare). I think it goes without saying that you need to be good at STO as well (STO = Star Trek Online).
First thing you need to do after you have built the ships and tested it is to take notes on what you have done to build the ship, a kind of script. Below is screenshot of DS Notes of a recent video I have done.
DS Note is a note taking app that comes with the Synology DS115i that is private (IE I control the data, not a 3rd party) and is compatible with every device I own (any computer with a web browser, iOS and Android apps)
As you can see, I have noted down exactly whats on the ship, where to get it from, and further below I go through other details like whats coming up next and so on.
After you are happy with the ship in question and your script, its time for recording.
To record the game from my Xbox so I can edit it on a PC took time to work out which is the best way. At first I tried to use the XBox app that came with Windows 10 and play the game on my Windows 10 PC via that app while it was recording. I was never happy with the sound that came out of it and the resolution, and my PC is old so it couldn’t really do the job.
I also tried some capture software on Windows 10, again using the XBox app to get the footage to the screen but ran into the same problem.
So after looking around I found the Hauppauge Rocket HD PVR that can record a HDMI signal directly to a USB stick.
One good thing about this system is that its very simple to use, all the leads come in the box, its USB powered and you can attach a Mic on to do in game voice overs.
To start recording its as simple as pressing the big red button on the recorder, then press it again to stop.
I use DS Notes on the iPad to go through the script.
Editing the Video
Editing the video also proved slow thanks to my ageing hardware. I have 2 computers, a PC and a 2008 iMac. For a while I used the iMac with iMovie to edit the files, this was fine but to render a 1/2 hour video it took almost 2 1/2 hours. I also tried to use Hit Film 2017 Express on my PC. While the software is easy to use, it is very slow on my PC. The same render took almost 3 hours to do.
So I tried one last thing before thinking of upgrading my PC (which I don’t use a lot, only really to render the videos, for every thing else I use my iPad Pro) was to install Linux.
This is what I did, I have installed Linux Mint on my PC, below is a screenshot of the specs of my PC.
As you can see, it is a very old PC. For software I use 4 packages in total. All are free.
- Kdenlive – the Video Editor.
- The GIMP – To do the artwork you can use as a thumbnail in YouTube.
- Audacity – to do Voice Overs if I want to do some extra.
- Chronium – Open Source version of Google’s Chrome Web Browser.
So, now I am happy with my setup, I plug in the USB stick into the PC and drag the video that is on there onto the PC. Screenshot below is how the video is on the USB Stick.
Once I have it on the PC, I load Kdenlive and import it into the video editor. This is instant as it does not need to convert the video at all. iMovie on the Mac did have to convert the raw video footage before I could do anything with it.
I check the video in Kdenlive and see if it is ok, and if it needs any voiceover. If it does I fire up Audacity, play the footage and record the voiceover while watching the footage.
I then edit the video (putting in titles, other assets, trimming the video, editing the sound volume etc in Kdenlive. I then render it out to a file on the desktop. Below is a screenshot of Kdenlive rendering the video Battle Montage October 2017.
This video is 32 minutes long and took 1h32m to render, so roughly an hour quicker than the iMac. I check the video firs to make sure everything is ok then I back the video up to the WD MyCloud NAS Server. This automatically also gets backed up to a different location when I put files to this NAS Server so I have 2 copies of it.
The next step is to create the Thumbnail for YouTube. I do this in GIMP, a free Photoshop clone that you can get for Windows, Mac and Linux. Below is a screenshot of GIMP in action.
Once I have that its time to upload to YouTube.
The Final Step
Once I have the Video file and the Thumbnail to go with it, I goto YouTube and select “Upload New File”. I then drag the video to the screen to start the upload off, while it is uploading I also add the title of the video, the description and other bits and pieces for the video. Also I upload the thumbnail. Below is everything done, just waiting for the video to finish uploading.
Once this is done, then that it, Video is then available to the world.