AVerMedia Live Gamer 4K GC573 hardware review

Platform: PC
Publisher: AVerMedia
Developer: AVerMedia
Medium: Hardware

The AVerMedia Live Gamer 4K, or the GC573 if you prefer the model number, is the latest in the AVerMedia capture card family. This is an internal capture card, connected with a PCI-e X4 Gen 2 connection. Boasting passthrough and capture resolutions of 2160p60 HDR /1440p144/ 1080p240, this is a beefy card to say the least. After an extremely simple installation and set up, I put those claims to the test, and it checked every one of those boxes without a stutter.

The drivers needed for the card to function are found right on the AVerMedia website and were simple to install, and the RECentral 4 software is simple and intuitive. It is important to note that this card does also work with other software like OBS Studio, but I did not find much of a reason not to use the software that was provided. The software automatically detects the resolution of whatever you have running into the card and matches it. I plugged in my PS4 Pro and it automatically began to try and capture at 2160p/60. I changed over to my Switch, without rebooting the software or my PC and it changed over and began to record at 1080p/60. I am sure if you are an experienced streamer or someone who works with this software a lot, you will find it pretty basic and stick with what you know, but for newcomers this simple and easy to use software is a great start.

Speaking of software, the GC573 comes bundled with access to CyberLink PowerDirector 15. On the surface this is pretty cool, although if you already own software like Sony Vegas Pro this will be relatively irrelevant. My biggest complaint with this included software however comes in the form of some fine print on AVerMedia’s website. If you follow the asterisk after they inform you of the inclusion of the CyberLink software, it reads “4K video editing software. Does not support HEVC encoded files or HDR editing. Please note that this version of PowerDirector 15 is not the retail version and some functionalities may be restricted or require paid upgrades.” While would not normally be a huge deal, one of the big selling points for this capture card is the ability to record in HDR, so bundling it with “free” software to edit footage that then makes you pay to upgrade it to edit your HDR footage seems like either an oversight or a gross ploy to sell upgrades to the software.

Note: This capture card was installed to a PC with the following hardware:

  • Intel Core i5 7600k Kaby Lake
  • GTX 1080
  • 32GB DDR4 RAM

As I stated above, installation was as simple as sticking it into a free PCI-e slot on my motherboard and screwing it onto my case for stability. It has one HDMI 2.0 in slot and one HDMI 2.0 out slot. That’s it. Once the drivers are installed and the software is downloaded, you are ready to record. I think I went from installation to use in about 5 minutes. The card comes bundled with an HDMI 2.0 cable, but it was woefully short. Luckily I have about a dozen lying around the house so I just used one of my existing ones.

Sticking with the common theme of all high end PC components in late 2017/2018, this capture card comes complete with some RGB lighting of its own. Unfortunately it is not able to be linked with any other RGB management software yet, so if you use Aura by Asus or Corsair Utility Engine you will not be able to link your capture card with them just yet. The GC573 has 3 different settings for RGB aside from simply “off”. You can choose between “colorful breath”, a setting that strobes between all of the available colors, “hue cycle” which is somewhat of a waterfall effect and “dreamy” which is an extremely washed out color cycle that I did not find very appealing. You can also set it to simply show the status of the card, blue when ready and red when actively recording. I hope that with time they include some way to sync this with the rest of the RGB in a PC, but no word on anything like that yet.

The price point for the GC573 is without a doubt a selling point. With an MSRP of $299, it sits lower than the competition and adds many more features. The GC573 is very much oriented to stay current for several years, and typically thinking that far forward with hardware requires you to take out a loan. The reasonable price, along with the outstanding features make the GC573 the perfect card for anyone looking to get started with streaming and recording, and a great upgrade for someone looking to make the jump to 4K. The GC573 is brand new, so online support is pretty much nonexistent outside of reaching out to AVerMedia directly, so if you run into any issues you will have to go straight to the source. The same can be said for pretty much any brand new piece of technology however, and is certainly not a reason to ignore this card. I cannot recommend the GC573 highly enough for anyone looking to capture professional quality video and conduct any sort of high end streaming.

Below is gameplay footage of “Inside” for the Nintendo Switch captured with this GC573. Also stayed tuned for an upcoming episode of our “Pressed for Time” podcast where co-host Benny and I will discuss this and other upcoming AVerMedia cards as well as headphones.

Inside- First 7 minutes on Switch

Note: AVerMedia provided us with GC573 hardware for review purposes.

Grade: A