Twitch Bitrate in 2023: What is Recommended for Top-Tier Streams?

As a small business owner and entrepreneur with years of experience in video production and live streaming, I‘ve helped configure many streaming setups to maximize quality on Twitch. In 2023, with ever-improving internet speeds and encoder technologies, achieving professional 1080p60 streams is more accessible than ever before.

Twitch‘s Recommended Upload Bitrates

Here are Twitch‘s latest recommended bitrates for each resolution and frame rate combination:

Resolution FPS Bitrate (Kbps)
480p 30 2000
720p 30 3500
720p 60 4500
1080p 30 4500
1080p 60 6000

As you can see, a high-quality 1080p 60fps stream requires an upload bitrate around 6000 Kbps. For reference, that means having approximately 5-6 Mbps upload speeds available for your stream alone.

The Impact of Your Internet Speed

Your internet upload speed is a major limiting factor for video quality. Here are the upload speeds I recommend for various bitrate targets:

  • 5000+ Kbps bitrate – 25 Mbps upload
  • 4000-5000 Kbps – 10-15 Mbps upload
  • 3000-4000 Kbps – 5-10 Mbps upload

Upgrades to 50Mbps, 100Mbps or even gigabit fiber connections provide plenty of overhead for the highest quality 1080p60 streams.

Dialing In Your Hardware

On the hardware front, video encoding requires serious CPU and GPU horsepower – especially when targeting 60 FPS.

For software encoding via x264, an 8-core / 16-thread processor like the Ryzen 7 5800x can efficiently encode 1080p60 on fast/medium presets. This keeps CPU usage under 50% for game headroom.

For GPU encoding via NVENC, an RTX 3060 Ti or better equipped with the latest NVENC chipset can produce excellent quality 1080p60 streams using the "Quality" preset, offloading work from your CPU.

Dual PC setups allow separate encoding and gaming machines to maximize quality and performance.

Additional Factors to Consider

Game selection also impacts the optimal bitrate and FPS targets. Slower paced games can get by at 1080p30 in some cases while fast shooters demand 60fps. Enabling B-Frames in OBS to 2 or 3 can save on bitrate with minimal quality loss.

Overlays and notifications also consume encoding resources; keeping them simple and lightweight is advised. Enabling VSync alignment in OBS aligns frames with rendered game frames for smoother motion.

Conclusion

At the end of the day, dialing in Twitch stream quality comes down to carefully balancing your internet capabilities, CPU and GPU encoding power, and selecting encoding settings that maximize quality while minimizing performance overhead.

With the right connectivity and hardware, achieving professional, high bitrate 1080p60 streams is within reach for any aspiring Twitch streamer! Let me know if you have any other questions.