How to setup OBS Studio for streaming

In this tutorial we’ll tell you about OBS settings and features, which are you need to know in order to perform your live streams.

Stream Settings

All the process of OBS setup for streaming can be divided into two main stages:

  1. Getting and entering of your credentials for streaming service (URL and Stream key)
  2. Setup of video and audio options which are meet the recommendations of your streaming platform (eg. Twitch, YouTube, etc.)

This guide is about OBS settings in general. We also recommend you read tutorials with specific instructions for your live streaming video platform:

Encoders and Quality Presets


  • x264 is recommended to use for the best quality, but it’s also a most processor-intensive encoder and you need a good processor to use x264 without lags in processor-intensive games.
    Recommended by default.
  • QSV aka Intel Quick Sync Video has medium quality and performance. Available only on systems with processors which are supports Intel QSV.
    You can try to use it if you have performance problems with x264.
  • NVIDIA NVENC H.264 and AMD Advanced Media Framework (AMF) has a better performance but worse quality than QSV and x264. Available only on systems which are supports those encoders.
    You can try to use it if you have performance problems with x264 and QSV.

CPU Usage Preset (only with x264):

There are many available presets:

  1. ultrafast
  2. superfast
  3. veryfast (default, recommended)
  4. faster
  5. fast
  6. medium
  7. slow
  8. slower
  9. veryslow
  10. placebo

They are arranged in ascending order of quality and descending of performance, i.e. “ultrafast” has a best performance and worst quality and “placebo” has a worst performance(very high load of processor) and best quality.

But in a fact, only first 3 are useful for streaming purposes and has a significant difference in quality. All other presets after 3rd has a big difference in performance but almost have not any difference in quality. This is why “veryfast” is recommended as the best balance between quality and performance.

Scene setup

Scene is your main working area were you can control the view of your stream: add sources such as game, chat or webcam.

You can create several scenes with different sources and switch between them. It may be useful when you’re want to create a different scenes for different games or IRL streams, etc.

Ok, let’s setup our first scene. By default, first scene hasn’t any sources. You need to add them. Start OBS and a game or program which you’re want to capture. Click “+” icon under the “sources” panel and then click “game capture” or “window capture” depending on your needs. Set mode to “capture specific window” and select a window which you’re want to capture.


It’s pretty easy, doesn’t it? There are a lof of source types. The same way you can add any other sources, for example you can add your webcam, any image, text file, or even donations.