I never usually cared about which graphics card I bought on pc. I would sometimes flip a coin to see if an Nvidia card or an AMD card would be my next purchase. I would go on many review sites to investigate features and specs, but nothing would usually jump out at me and I would mainly focus on “the best bang for the buck”. My attitude started to change when I picked up an Nvidia Shild a few months ago and I swapped out my AMD R7 260x 2gb graphics card for an Nvidia GTX 750 ti 2gb graphics card.
Why did I swap out the card? Well, for starters, you can’t use the streaming technology that the Nvidia Shield needs to stream games from the PC to the Nvidia Shield. I tried using an app called “Splashtop” to stream games from my pc to my Shield portable, but it was very finicky to use and it only supported running games in “windowed” mode. There were also other issues with getting games to work how you would want them to. Once I installed the Nvidia card though, everything worked so well, it made me forget that I was streaming a game from my pc. It simply just worked as if Steam was running directly on my Shield.
I mentioned in a previous post that I was a bit disappointed with the Nvidia Shield. I am happy to say that I have finally started to warm up more to it with some new features that I recently unlocked for it. Did you know that it can stream Playstation 4 games now?! How cool is that? The impressive thing about this streaming technology that Nvidia graphics cards use though is that it works on virtually any Android device, which doesn’t limit you to just using the Shield handheld.
I bought an Ouya Android game console when it was on sale last year. Yeah, I know, it didn’t really live up to its promises and it’s not the best “console” by any stretch of the imagination, but did you know that it works as an awesome Steam streaming box? Who knew?! I installed this app called “Limelight Game Streaming” that is in the Ouya store and I was able to play Team Fortress 2 and Skyrim on my 42 inch TV across the house from where my desktop pc is. It ran on a wired connection, so there were no frame drops and it played great! The Ouya controller also has a trackpad built into it to simulate mouse movements. I also tested the “Limelight” app on the AmazonFire TV console and a few tablets I had lying around the house and it works pretty good as well, but make sure you have a high speed 5 GHZ router for the best results (if wired isn’t an option).
The streaming technology that Nvidia is offering with their latest graphics cards is a real game-changer. I used to obsess over building a “living room pc” just so I could occasionally have a pc or emulated game to play without having to lug my desktop around, but this streaming setup I got going has been an awesome experience. It supports 360 controllers, keyboard and mouse, and several other input styles to suit your needs.
My only hope now is that AMD comes up with a streaming solution of their own, because competition will only give us more streaming options in the future. If you are fortunate to have an Nvidia GTX series graphics card, give it a try. Install the free Limelight app on whatever Android device you have and you’ll be amazed with how well it runs.