Using OBS Studio

OBS Studio ( is a powerful, free, and open-source software suite for video recording and live streaming. It can combine multiple input video and audio signals and record (or stream) them, and so is very useful for screen and session capture. OBS Studio is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux.

The best strategy is to record initally in MKV format, then later remux without loss of quality (File → Remux Recordings) to MP4 format.

If a recording somehow crashes, an MP4 file cannot be closed properly and the recording is corrupted and lost. An MKV can be recovered.

OBS Studio records audio in AAC format by default.

1 Setup

These are some of the most important settings (for me on my machine):

o File → Settings → Output

  Output Mode:  Advanced


    Recording Format:  mkv

    Encoder:           NVIDIA NVENC H.264  [Hardware encoder if available]
    Rate Control:      VBR
    Bitrate:           5000 Kbps
    Max Bitrate:       6000 Kbps

    Encoder:           x264                [Otherwise, software encoder]
    Rate Control:      VBR
    Bitrate:           5000 Kbps
    CRF:               23


    set Audio Bitrate on each track to 160

o File → Settings → Audio

    Sample Rate:  44100 Hz
    Channels:     Stereo

o File → Settings → Video

    Base (Canvas) Resolution:    3840×2160
    Output (Scaled) Resolution:  1920×1080

    Common FPS Values:  20

o File → Settings → Hotkeys

  Set Ctrl-Shift-F1 in *both* Start Recording and Stop Recording fields
  (so acts as toggle)

o File → Settings → Advanced


    File Name Formatting


2 Making a Screen Recording with Audio

o Add Sources
  - Window Capture (say Firefox)
  - Mic/Aux (select microphone)

o Right-click on Window Capture
  - Resize output (source size)

3 Troubleshooting

4 Tutorials