If you're a streamer or a macro fiend, you've probably have heard of Elgato's Stream Deck. This little gadget has a simple premise: fifteen customisable keys, each with a little LCD screen behind it, that can be bound to accomplish a wide range of things from scene switching in OBS and monitoring your computer's vitals to launching programs or muting your microphone. Normally the Stream Deck costs £150, but today it's down to £90 at Amazon UK.
This particular Stream Deck is the 'Stream Deck Classic', aka the original model that launched back in 2017. There is a newer 'MK.2' model, launched this year, but the two are surprisingly similar - they run the same software and use the same keys, the only difference is that the new model has interchangable face plates, a fixed 45-degree angle stand instead of the adjustable original and a USB-C plug instead of Micro USB. In terms of functionality, they're basically identical - so going for the one that's ~£40 cheaper makes a lot of sense to me!
Of course, the Stream Deck isn't the only macro pad out there - , which uses a 2x6 grid instead of the 3x5 grid here, and there are probably a fair few other alternatives as well. The reason that the Stream Deck is the go-to option is because Elgato (and parent company Corsair) have been working on the Stream Deck for years, and have built up a massive library of pre-prepared integrations with popular software, from streaming programs like OBS and Xsplit, to social media like Twitter, to streaming sites like Spotify and YouTube. There's also an open SDK that allows developers to write their own Stream Deck integrations, so unsurprisingly there's a massive amount of third-party 'apps' for you to install at your leisure.
The Stream Deck is also just easy to use, with a simple drag-and-drop interface, folders to give access to way more than 15 functions and an icon creator that lets you make each button look just perfect. You can record macros and set up profiles too, making it easy to adapt the Stream Deck to basically any game or task that can be automated - and there's of course good integration with Corsair's iCUE software too.
At £90, the Stream Deck makes a lot of sense for streamers, content creators and automation enthusiasts, so if you fit in one of those boxes - or you're just curious! - then this is definitely worth a try.