Video Capture Devices

Using Video Capture Devices for Screen Recording

Benny Tritsch April 10, 2021

In the past, capturing on-screen footage has relied on specialized software. Such screen capture software consumes local system resources, including CPU, memory and graphics cards. For simple video capture use cases a software solution might be good enough, but when you are serious about quality and accuracy of on-screen recordings, a dedicated capture card is an essential tool to minimize the impact on system resources. A capture card will alleviate any frame-rate drop which can occur while recording and is therefore regarded as an essential item.

The design goal of a video capture card is to hardware-accelerate the process of converting a video signal produced by a television tuner, gaming console, tablet or personal computer to digital video and sending it to local storage. The resulting digital data are referred to as a video stream which may be recorded as a computer file.

Using a video capture device for recording simload screen videos is a mandatory element in the context of benchmarking perceived remote user experience. Here is a list of compatible video capture devices:

  • Epiphan DVI2PCIe or DVI2USB (
  • Epiphan 4K (
  • Inogeni 4K2USB3 (
  • Elgato Game Capture HD60 S (
  • Hauppauge HD PVR 2 Gaming Edition Plus (hardware H.264 encoder)
  • Razer Ripsaw Uncompressed HD 1080p at 60fps
  • many other USB 3.0 1080P HDMI video capture devices

Typically, such a video capture device comes with two accompanying items: an HDMI cable and a USB cable. The USB cable connects between the video capture device and the computer used for recording. The HDMI cable connects to the video capture device and the video out on the endpoint device you’re wanting to capture the footage from. VGA-to-HDMI and DVI-to-HDMI converters can be used if the endpoint device doesn’t have an HDMI video output. The video stream produced by the video capture device can be used as the input signal for video recording software, such as OBS Studio.