What is OBS?
OBS (Open Broadcast Software) is a free tool that we recommend using in tandem with CdnStudio in order to record and broadcast your work. It can be downloaded for free at: https://obsproject.com
OBS (Open Broadcast Software) is a funnel for video streams. It allows the user to take multiple video feeds (or images), put them all together, and then record or broadcast the content through a single, unified video feed. In relation to CdnStudio, OBS allows you to:
- Prerecord CdnStudio sessions, adding background images, text, and additional platforms (Zoom calls, webcam feeds, etc)
- Livestream CdnStudio sessions to YouTube, Vimeo and Facebook live.
This page will walk you through basic tools for streaming, recording, and accessing your videos.
OBS Basic Tools for Streaming
SOURCES (bottom left) are single streams of video or audio processed by your computer. Examples of sources include: internet browser windows, webcam feeds, movie files or even easy to edit text.
SCENES (bottom left) are your canvas’ for arranging and organizing various sources and/or text and images in order to create your desired custom video stream. It can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be. If you want to create a video with a few different “looks”, select the “+” on the bottom left and name it. If you are recording/streaming one “look” no need to add others. Some examples of when other looks would be helpful include title cards, credits, “blackouts”, etc.
AUDIO MIXER (bottom centre) allows you to monitor your audio inputs and control the volume output to your stream/recording. OBS automatically defaults to using your computer’s built in microphone. If you are using an external microphone you will need to add it as a source in the same way you would a video source.
SCENE TRANSITIONS (bottom right) are an optional feature in OBS where you can freely switch between SCENES by fading, cutting or sliding between them over a user defined amount of time.
CONTROLS is where you will find options to stream and record your work.
Connecting CdnStudio to OBS
- Make sure you have CdnStudio running in chrome. Note: in order for OBS and CdnStudio to work together, your Chrome browser/CdnStudio cannot be in full screen.
- In OBS, click the “+” symbol at the bottom left corner of the SOURCES window.
- Select “Window Capture”.
- Make sure “create new” is selected. Feel free to give it the name “CdnStudio” or you can leave it as is. Click Next.
- Click on the empty bar beside the red “Window”. This will drop down a list of every open browser window on your computer. Select the CdnStudio browser window. Press OK.
- You should now see CdnStudio within the canvas of your scene. Most likely, the window is much bigger than the scene so you will only see a portion of the Cdnstudio. This can be fixed by left clicking the window so it is surrounded by a red box, then right clicking within the red box, clicking “transform” followed by “fit to screen”. You should now see your full browser window in OBS.
- To crop out the “mechanics” of CdnStudio so that your audience only sees what you want them to, hold the ALT or OPTION key and then click/drag on one of the red corners of your source.
- This window can easily be resized and placed wherever you want within the “canvas” of your scene. To resize, click on a corner of the red box, hold, and drag to your preferred size. HOT TIP: If you hold shift while you do this, it will lock the aspect ratio of your video image so that it doesn’t get distorted or stretched while resizing. Once resized, left click and hold anywhere within the red box and drag to your desired location
Recording with OBS
- Once you’re ready to record your work, preset your cues by going back to the first scene you have established. Ensure the audio is picking up whatever microphone you are using (laptop microphone, external USB microphone, etc.). In CONTROLS (bottom right) click START RECORDING.
- On a Mac, the video will be saved in your MOVIES folder as an MKV file. If you can’t find your videos, select FILE > SHOW RECORDINGS. If you have VLC Media Player, you can play an MKV file. If not, select FILE > REMUX RECORDINGS.
Streaming with OBS
- Once you are ready to stream, under CONTROLS select START STREAMING. Because we have not yet setup the URL and Stream Key, we will be prompted to open settings to enter the URL and Stream Key in the ‘stream’ tab. Along the left side of the screen select STREAM and select which service/platform you are using.
- After you’ve selected your service, select GET STREAM KEY and it will walk you through accessing a stream key from whatever service you are using.