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I'm Live is a live cam site that's been around for years. It covers straight, bi, tranny, and gay live shows and models, and here we're looking at the gay side of things. These performers are amateurs, and the site has all kinds of hot guys. There are muscle studs flexing and posing, slim smooth twink models, you've got your slightly chubby guy next door types and then straight looking, straight acting Joes from down the road. In fact, there are even straight models who list themselves in the gay solo section. I also saw some geeky-looking 20-somethings, skater boys, and one or two older bears. The guys are a mix of white, some black and some Latino, with European and American models who speak a variety of languages between them.

You've got a choice of three areas for hooking up online with the male models: Guy Alone (Gay) with 35 online when I was there, Guy Alone (Straight) with six, and Guy on Guy where there were 451 couples listed but none online at that time. Each model (or models) is listed with a photo to the left and then the start of his write-up which leads to his profile. The profiles are good introductions to the performers, and carry some background and lots of detail. They also have links to galleries that the guys might have, so you can see a bit more of them before committing to a chat or paid-for live show. You can also see if they speak your language.

When a guy is online and available for free chat you'll see a big green button telling you so (some guys have links straight into the paid-for live video chat). This means you don't waste time looking around to see who is available. Click in, and you'll link up to his live video cam. He can't see you until you start the video chat, but this part of the process is free. Some guys here show more than others. The guys I saw were dressed, shirtless or in their underwear, many close up to their computers or slightly further back on a bed. One was in his well-equipped home gym. They were friendly enough and charming, and of course they don't show too much until they get you in a private session.

The private chat window was sized at 678x475 and the quality of what you see will depend on the guy's cam and on your connection speed, but overall quality was pretty good - better than at some other live sites. Some advertise as being HD, though none were online, and the ones I checked out were a decent enough quality. I had no streaming trouble on a 4Mb connection, there was sound and the guys had their rooms well lit so you saw everything.

I started up a chat session with a couple of the guys, to see how the system worked. It starts automatically with a general hello from the model, you can then simply type in what you want to say. I noticed that automatic text appears while you are having your chat suggesting that you send the guy a tip. And while that's happening the model may also try to persuade you to go private and jerk off with him or them. And that leads to the question of price. You register for free and you can view profiles and galleries at no charge, but to go private you will need to use credits. These cost $1.00 per credit in packs of 25, 50, 75 and 100, with the top two also carrying bonus "House of Games" credits.

Clicking the button to go to a private sex chat you get a warning box telling you what you will be paying. Some private chats cost $1.98 per minute, but some performers put up discounts. You can opt for, for example, $47.52 credits for 30 minutes or $83.16 for a full hour. That was at one end of the scale as models charge different amounts for their time. The next guy I checked out was charging $5.80 per minute for a private session and up to $243.60 for a full hour. And remember that these credits work out at one dollar each. Once you have selected the amount you want to pay you can also opt to have your web cam running so he sees you, so if you want to reciprocate the action, you can. Chatting live one-on-one, the screen is at 756x568 and comes with various extra options. You can record the session, take snapshots, add the guy to your favorites, turn your cam and sound on and add more credits.

The one-on-one gay models have galleries with various numbers of posed shots per model, between three and ten seemed to be the average. Some of these were really good studio style photo shoots with pics up at 600x800 showing the model clothed or in underwear. Navigating the pics was easy, you can save individual images and there were slideshow functions to use. And you can browse pics for the offline models as well as the online models, meaning there's a LOT of profiles and picture sets to view.

I'm Live also offers videos. There were over 2,500 listed in the guy alone (gay) recorded live shows section, over 2,400 in the Hosts' own video series, plus a whole set of free teaser videos. You have to pay for this video content and become a bronze member by buying credits; turns out the "free" videos are only free for bronze members. The site also carries some other areas and features such as monthly competitions for the Hosts videos, areas for the best newbies, a Hall of Fame and the House Of Games, but when I was checking these areas out there was nothing in the gay section and the pages kept reverting back to the straight female models and their content.

My main issue was with navigation. I was constantly surrounded by the straight female models; every time I went to a new area of the site I would have to re-filter my content to find the guys. Some of the features that are available to the straight user are not available for the gay user, it seems. I was also a bit gob-smacked by some of the prices these amateur guys were charging - over $200 per hour in one case, although there are guys who charge much more reasonable prices.

On the one hand, I'm Live is an award-winning live cam site and well stocked with models' profiles and gallery pics, but on the other I felt that it was geared more towards the straight user. That being said, I visited again and there were plenty of guys, including some muscle studs, sexy twinks and a variety of others who were anywhere from dressed to almost fully nude. The video quality was generally good, there are some neat interactive functions, and it's easy enough to use once you get the hang of things. There are some great looking amateur models who are well deserving of your time and money, but I'd save up and learn your way around the site before letting yourself go wild.

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