The best 1440p 144hz capture card for gaming is a hotly debated topic. Elgato, Avermedia and Razer have been producing newer and more powerful capture cards to meet the demand of gamers everywhere. Thankfully, today we can purchase a cutting edge capture card, install any drivers and be ready to game within minutes.
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Why you need a 1440p 144hz capture card for gaming
The addition of an internal or external capture card to your streaming setup allows you to greatly improve the quality of your stream. Increased bitrates, higher resolutions and multiple inputs for all of your game consoles makes it a no-brainer. A capture card is necessary for your dual pc streaming setup, Voicemeeter Banana setup, and can co-exist with streaming peripherals like a Stream Deck.
Major brands like Elgato, Avermedia and ASUS have all been competing for dominance in this space and thankfully, their competition has brought us capture cards capable of 1440p 144hz game capture.
The capture cards featured here will work flawlessly with the best streaming software for Twitch, and will transform your Twitch streaming experience. Additionally, a definitive guide to streaming equipment for every budget will provide you with the critical information needed to make the best selection for your gaming needs.
By reading the sections below you will get a better understanding and explanations to the following most popular questions:
- What does passthrough mean for a capture card?
- How do you use a capture card in passthrough?
- How to setup a capture card in OBS Studio
- Should you get an internal or external capture card?
- Are there any 4k 120hz capture cards on the market?
Let’s take a closer look at the best 1440p 144hz capture card for gaming:
AVerMedia Live Gamer 4K
- 4Kp60 HDR10 gameplay capture and passthrough
- Record up to 240 FPS on a Full HD signal
- Perfect for consoles or PCs with support for 4Kp60, 1440p144, and 1080p240
The Avermedia Live Gamer 4k is capable of 1440p 144hz passthrough and has multiple recording and capturing resolutions: 4k 60hz, 1440p 144hz, 1080p 240hz.
This capture card supports recording format MPEG 4 (H.264 + AAC) or (H.265 + AAC). However the H.265 + AAC format is only supported with the Avermedia RECentral streaming software. Along with an internal PC connection of PCIe Gen 2 x4, this is capable of recording and capturing high frame rate gameplay sessions with minimal to no latency.
Looking at the IO side of the Avermedia Live Gamer 4k capture card you’ll notice 2x HDMI 2.0 inputs. Additionally, with the RECentral software and the H.265 + AAC format, this capture card can record HDR gameplay sessions for those with high end PC monitors.
- 1440p 144hz passthrough
- Multiple capture resolutions: 4k 60hz, 1440p 144hz, 1080p 240hz
- MPEG 4 H.264 + AAC encoding
- HDR capable capture only with Avermedia RECentral streaming software
- PCIe Gen 2 x4 connection
- Ultra low latency
All told, this is a very capable and definitely one of the best internal capture cards currently on the market, however, there is some competition.
AVerMedia Live Gamer ULTRA
- 4K HDR Pass-through: The Live Gamer Ultra delivers 4Kp30 capture while its pass-through allows gamers to experience lag-free 4K HDR at 60fps; The video capture card can pass-through high refresh rates of up to 240 Hz on a Full HD signal to PC monitors
- 4Kp30 & 1080p60 HDR Recording: This capture card records 4K 30fps video from your next-gen game consoles: PS5 or Xbox Series X/S, also captures HDR footage at 1080p 60 frames per second; Note: only NVIDIA graphics cards are supported
- High Frame Rate Capture: The LGU with its high frame rate capture ability of up to 120fps on Full HD 1080p signals delivers super smooth recordings to your video archive
The Avermedia Live Gamer ULTRA is the newest capture card for gaming and it’s entry into the market as one of the most feature rich and powerful external capture cards.
Boasting 4k 60fps HDR support, it’s also capable of 1440p 144hz passthrough in addition to a wide range of recording and capture resolutions.
It supports USB 3.1(Gen 1) Type C connection while it has HDMI 2.0 for video input and video output. Also includes RECentral software and H.265 + AAC format and is capable of recording HDR content.
- 1440p 144hz passthrough
- Multiple capture resolutions: 4k 30hz, 1440p 60hz, 1080p 120hz, 1080p 60 HDR
- MPEG 4 H.264 + AAC
- HDR capable with supported resolutions
- USB 3.1 (Gen 1) Type C
If you need the features of dedicated PCI-e internal capture cards but in a compact and portable external capture card for gaming, then look no further, the Avermedia Live Gamer ULTRA has you covered.
Elgato 4K60 Pro MK.2
- Input: HDMI (unencrypted)
- Output: HDMI (lag-free pass-through). Supported resolutions: Up to 2160p60
- HDR 10-bit: Pass-through and recording. Encoding: HEVC/H.265 HDR, AVC/H.264
The Elgato 4k60 Pro MK.2 is a compact and sleek internal capture card. This is aimed at professional streamers and as such is guaranteed to work in a plug and play fashion.
This is an internal capture card capable of 1440p 144hz passthrough in addition to recording resolutions of 4k 60hz, 1440p 144hz, 1080p 240hz or 1080p 120hz.
In order to attain these resolutions it also requires a PCIe Gen 2 x4 internal PC connection. But with the added bandwidth of PCIe, you also have the added HDR 10-bit capture option at your disposal. With a maximum bitrate of 140 Mbps, multiple recording and passthrough resolutions the Elgato 4k60 Pro MK.2 is one of the best capture cards for gaming.
- 1440p 144hz passthrough
- Multiple capture resolutions: 4k 60hz, 1440p 144hz, 1080p 240hz, 1080p 120hz
- HEVC/H.265 HDR 10-bit or AVC/H.264 encoding
- PCIe Gen 2 x4 connection
- Ultra low latency
This is one of the most popular internal capture cards for gaming and it remains at the top of the product stack for Elgato.
DIGITNOW 4K Plus Video Capture Card
- 4K HDMI Capture Card: This game hdmi capture card is designed with Super Performance Chip, stylish and compact by decent Aluminum Alloy shell. Supports up to 4K 60Hz HDMI input. Support NV12/YUV2 /MJPEG.You also can use any 3rd party software to capture or stream you HD game, or HD video source.
- Plug and Play: Easy to use and No driver supply, compact and portable. Just connect your HDMI devices to your PC or Mac for recording easily. it ideal for hdmi device such as Wii U, PS4, PS3, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Wii
- Zero-Latency with HDMI LOOP-OUT: This video capture card has maximum input resolution up to 4K 60Hz and capture max resolution in 4K 30Hz , USB 3.0 Super High-Speed transmission, no delay, no freeze, without frame lag. It will bring you nice digital experience.
The DIGITNOW 4k Plus Video Capture Card is a feature rich external capture card capable of driving any modern gaming console to streaming platforms like Twitch.
This capture card will do 1440p 144hz passthrough in addition to recording resolutions of 4k, 1440p and 1080p. The recording format provided by the DIGITNOW 4K Plus is NV12/YUV/MJPEG.
The exterior of the external capture card has various inputs including USB 3.0, HDMI 2.0 input, HDMI 2.0 output, a headphone jack, a microphone jack and a 5V DC input for power.
- 1440p 144hz passthrough
- 4k 30hz maximum recording resolution
- USB 3.0
- HDMI 2.0 input/output
- NV12/YUV/MJPEG format
This capture card also boasts a driver free installation, truly plug and play. When you connect to a gaming PC it will also work flawlessly with OBS Studio and other streaming software.
ASUS TUF Gaming Video Capture Card
- Passthrough video in up to 4K HDR at 60 Hz is supported and offloads to capture video in up to 4K at 30 Hz for high-quality livestream visuals.
- Plug & Play UVC allows gamers to simply connect to any PC with USB 3.2 Type-C to immediately begin streaming and recording - no extra drivers or utilities required.
- Certified OBS Studio compatibility ensures optimal usage on a wide variety of streaming platforms
The ASUS TUF Gaming Video Capture Card is a feature rich and sleek capture card designed for the modern gamer. Capable of 1440p 144hz passthrough this capture card has multiple recording resolutions including 4k 30hz.
An external capture card that is designed for both PC gamers and console gamers, it’s certified for use with OBS Studio, therefore whichever operating system you choose to use, this capture card should plug and play flawlessly.
Looking at the ports of the ASUS TUF Gaming Video Capture Card we notice USB 3.2 (Gen 1) Type C connector, HDMI 2.0 input and output on the rear panel in addition to a headphone jack and a controller jack on the front panel.
- 1440p 144hz passthrough
- Up to 4k 30hz record and capture
- OBS Studio certified
- USB 3.2 (Gen 1) Type C
Additionally, this capture card comes in a sleek and compact design that should fit nearly anywhere on your gaming desk or under your TV/monitor.
What does passthrough mean on a capture card?
Passthrough on a capture card will allow you to play games at 1440p 144hz while live streaming at a lower resolution. Platforms like Twitch and YouTube will place a cap on live broadcasting at 1080p 60hz.
Any of the aforementioned capture cards will provide you with the flexibility and longevity of native 1440p 144hz gameplay with the option of passthrough. Regardless of what your live broadcasting quality is, you’ll be playing games natively at 1440p 144hz.
How do you use a capture card in passthrough?
Make sure your capture card is connected with your PC/console correctly. You will need to make sure that both of the HDMI 2.0 cables are properly installed. Oftentimes they might come loose and you run the risk of losing the signal.
Depending on the capture card that you have you will have two options, 1. The capture card has provided software that allows you to stream or record gameplay footage or 2. You will need to download and install streaming software and learn how to stream on Twitch.
Once your choice of software is installed make sure you can see your capture card as a video device. You will know the passthrough is working correctly when you can play games at your native resolution and record or live stream at a lower resolution.
How to set up a capture card in OBS Studio
You can quickly and easily set up a capture card in OBS Studio and this can be accomplished with a handful of steps.
Step 1. Download and Install OBS Studio
Check out the newest software package of OBS Studio and install it on your PC. Follow the prompted steps and within a minute or two you should have completed this step.
Step 2. Open OBS Studio
Once OBS Studio is open you want to look for the Sources section and click on the +(plus) sign to add a new source.
Step 3. Add a Video Capture Device
A capture card will be seen as a Video Capture Device by OBS Studio. You will first be prompted to name the new Video Capture Device, and this will help you keep track of your live streaming equipment in OBS Studio.
Step 4. Select your Video Capture Device, aka capture card
Select your capture card from the drop down menu, if you don’t see your capture card make sure the HDMI cables are connected properly.
Step 5. Resize your Capture Window
This last step is wholly optional, however for cleanliness sake and making it easier to see your recorded or capture gameplay you can resize your Capture Window to fit your screen. Sometimes this needs to be done when OBS Studio is installed for the first time.
Should you get an internal or external capture card?
In order to determine which is better for you, we need to understand the differences between an internal capture card vs an external capture card.
An internal capture card will utilize the PCIe slot on your PC motherboard for a connection, while an external capture card will most often use a USB connection. The vast majority of capture cards produced fall into either one of these categories, PCIe or USB.
PCIe vs USB capture cards
The more powerful capture cards might require additional power and bandwidth from the PCIe slot of a PC motherboard but you will have lower latency as a result. Although the most powerful live streaming computers will use an internal capture card, the additional processing power comes at a cost and that cost is system flexibility.
A USB capture card, while not as powerful or even as feature rich as a high end PCIe capture card; is a far more plug and play device. You can quickly and easily swap between PCs or gaming consoles should you require this. Can pack it up into a backpack and take it with you on the road.
Technically, the more powerful capture cards will almost always require the PCIe slot, as a PCIe x4 can provide a throughput of roughly 16 Gb/s. Whereas, a USB 3 connection spec sheet says it’s capable of 5 Gb/s or maximum use case of 625 MB/s.
Are there any 4k 120hz capture cards available?
The majority of consumer capture cards available are unable to record and capture at 4k 120hz and there are a couple limiting factors.
Most of the consumer capture cards on the market are bandwidth limited by HDMI 2.0 and might require a complete design overhaul to incorporate HDMI 2.1. Additionally, adding HDMI 2.1 capability at this point might be too costly for some of these capture cards.
Frequently Asked Questions about the Best 1440p 144hz Capture Card for Gaming
Can Elgato capture 1440p?
Yes, the Elgato 4k60 Pro MK.2 can capture a 1440p signal for gaming at 144hz. This makes it one of the most powerful capture cards currently available and a reason why most gamers buy this capture card for gaming.
Does Razer Ripsaw support 1440p?
The Razer Ripsaw will support 1440p resolution, however this capture card will be locked to a 60hz signal.
What bitrate is 1440p?
A 1440p resolution is also listed as 2k and if we take a look at upload encoder settings for Twitch and YouTube they will shed some light on this.
Recommended video bitrates:
Standard frame rate(30 fps)
Bitrate for 1440p is 20 Mbps
High frame rate(60 fps)
Bitrate for 1440p is 30 Mbps
Is it better to stream with a capture card?
Yes, it’s always better to stream with a capture card. The additional hardware encoder a capture card provides will alleviate valuable processing away from your CPU and GPU. This will in turn provide you with higher frame rates and less stutter while gaming and live streaming.
How to fix capture card delay in OBS
You can fix capture card delay in OBS in a few easy steps. By adjusting the video and audio delay to match your gameplay, you can accomplish this within OBS Studio.
Step 1. Right click within the OBS Audio Mixer section
Step 2. Select Advanced Audio Properties from the drop down menu
Step 3. Find the Sync Offset toggle
Step 4. Add a negative offset value of -500 ms
Step 5. The negative offset value should sync your video and audio accordingly
Can the Razer Ripsaw HD do 1440p 144hz passthrough?
Unfortunately the Razer Ripsaw HD is locked to 60hz passthrough.
Select the best 1440p 144hz capture card with passthrough
Choosing which 1440p 144hz passthrough capture card that suits your needs is no longer searching for a needle in a haystack.
All of the aforementioned capture cards are capable of 1440p 144hz passthrough so you can play games at your native resolution without sacrificing stream quality and this allows you to expand your setup to include a green screen for streaming, a stream deck or a lighting setup.
Additionally, you have the flexibility in choosing between an internal and an external capture card whereas that wasn’t always the case. External capture cards offer portability where there was none before, more ports than ever and remain compact and easy to place on a gaming desk.
If you’re interested in more streaming and gaming centric content then consider your definitive guide to streaming equipment for every budget. As this will cover the basics of what hardware you will need to get started and even what to consider when taking the next step in becoming a professional streamer.