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Genki’s new capture cards make it cheaper to stream in 4K

Time is running out to get its latest (and most promising) hardware at a backer discount

A photo of Genki’s new Alpine Collection of streaming and charging accessories, including the ShadowCast 2 Pro, the ShadowCast 2, and the Covert Dock 2. Photo: Genki
Cameron Faulkner (he/him) is Polygon’s commerce editor. He began writing about tech and gaming in 2013, and migrated from The Verge in 2023.

Genki is something of a powerhouse when it comes to making gaming accessories. Up there with 8BitDo, my head always snaps quickly in Genki’s direction when it announces new products. This month, the company debuted its “Alpine Collection” of streaming and charging accessories on Kickstarter, clad in lusciously translucent plastic. The collection blew through its goal in less than a day, and you have through Oct. 26 to back one of these products at a discounted rate, if you’d like to. Each of the products below will ship in December.

A photo of the Genki ShadowCast 2 Pro, a capture card used to save footage from video game consoles at a high resolution. Photo: Genki

I’m most excited about the ShadowCast 2 Pro because it seems poised to disrupt the high-end capture card space. It’s wildly capable yet surprisingly affordable at $119 during the fundraising campaign. Frankly, its $160 retail price seems like a good deal, too. It pushes the bar above the category mainstay, Elgato’s HD60 X, thanks to its higher 4K HDR / 60 frames per second capture. Capturing at 1440p? You can capture content at 144 frames per second. Its passthrough capabilities (what you’ll see on-screen as you play games) are impressive, too, retaining HDR and variable refresh rate (VRR), assuming your input console or PC is compatible.

In terms of ports, it features two HDMI 2.0 ports, a USB-C port to connect to your PC (or an iPad), plus two 3.5mm ports (one for audio monitoring and chat, the other for audio mixing).

A photo of the Genki ShadowCast 2 capture card plugged into the rear of a PlayStation 5 console.
The ShadowCast 2 plugs directly into your console’s HDMI port.
Photo: Genki

Genki’s newest bite-sized capture card solution, the ShadowCast 2, has received some great upgrades. It plugs into your console or PC via HDMI, then connects to your capture source via USB-C just as its predecessor did. Genki implemented USB 3.2 in this version, allowing 10x more bandwidth than USB 2.0, which it uses to deliver uncompressed stereo sound and 1080p resolution capture at 60 frames per second. Genki told me it can capture 1440p at 30 frames per second, as well. This gadget is $39 during the Kickstarter campaign, going up to $50 at retail.

I reviewed the first iteration of the ShadowCast over at The Verge. While I loved its portability, its capture quality left quite a bit to be desired. So, I’m looking forward to testing out its successor.

Genki’s Covert Dock 2 plugged into a wall power outlet. Plugged into the product are a USB-C cable and an HDMI cable.
So long as you have an outlet, you have a portable Switch or Steam Deck dock in the Covert Dock 2.
Photo: Genki

Lastly, the Covert Dock 2, which mimics the functions of Nintendo’s Switch dock (as well as most USB-C docks) is improved in ways that might tempt owners of the original model. Its power has been boosted by 50%, and its USB ports now recharge at combined top speeds of 45 W — perfect for the Steam Deck. The new model can display 4K resolution at up to 60 frames per second, a drastic upgrade over the previous model that couldn’t go beyond 1080p. And, just like the original, you can plug in an accessory via its spare USB-A port. The Covert Dock 2 is a pretty good deal at $49, its price for the duration of the fundraising campaign (it’ll retail for $60).

Genki has earned a place in a couple of Polygon’s buying guides, including the best Switch accessories, and in our best capture card guide. With this new line of accessories, perhaps it’ll have an even bigger footprint after we’ve had time to properly test them out.

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