Tag Archives: OBS

About OBS Scenes, Collections and Profiles

When I first started using OBS Studio, I was tremendously puzzled about its use of Scenes, Collections and Profiles. It all makes sense if you know what these mean, which I guess eventually you’ll find out – but I wish someone had explained this philosophy to me instead.

Let me help you with that in this article.

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Where does OBS Studio save settings?

I genuinely like what OBS has to offer – especially the new OBS 23. In fact I like it so much that I’ve decided to support Jim and his the entire project through their Patreon Campaign.

Today I’ve “refreshed” my Windows system, which is the system that I use OBS on primarily, and after every good Windows refresh comes that time when you have to restore your machine to a working condition. So the question arose, where did OBS save all my scenes, collections and profiles?

Thankfully, Windows is clever enough to make a backup of the old Windows folder, deep down in which those settings reside (it’s called Windows.old in case you’re in the same predicament). Even if you’re not in this situation, let’s take a look at where those settings are hiding so we can all make a backup and sleep a little easier at night.


On Windows 10, you’ll find the OBS settings in %appdata%\obs-studio. At least that’s what several forum posts tell us. To the likes of you and me however, that might not mean all that much.

You see, %appdata% is a Windows system variable that contains a path to application related data. Depending which drive Windows is installed on, and what user name you have, its contents varies.

Let’s say my user name is “versluis”, and Windows is installed on the C: drive. This means that the full path to to the OBS data location would be

  • C:\Users\versluis\AppData\Roaming\obs-studio

You can back up the entire folder, or replace the contents of your current folder with that of a backup to bring back all your profiles, collections and scenes.


On macOS we’ll have to dig into the current user’s Library folder to find the same setup as above. The full path is

  • ~/Library/Application Support/obs-studio/

Much like in the above example, the Tilde symbol means “your current home folder” (macOS has two Library folders, one for each user, and one for the system). Again, if my user name was “versluis”, then the full path to the OBS Settings would be

  • /Users/versluis/Library/Application Support/obs-studio

I haven’t got OBS on Linux, but I believe the setup is similar to the Mac.

How to “transcode” FLV into MP4 files with OBS

By default, OBS Studio likes to record files in FLV – for a reason that’s absolutely beyond me. I easily forget to change this setting into something more sensible, which means I frequently end up with FLV files that contain my material. At that point I have no way to edit those properly.

This means I’ll have to transcode my files in order to make them useful.

Or do I? Well, yes and no. Let me explain a bit more about this dilemma.

Continue reading How to “transcode” FLV into MP4 files with OBS

Creating a round cutout mask for OBS Studio

I like the way my PlayStation 4 adds a soft round cutout mask to the PlayStation Camera Feed when streaming gameplay. I wondered how I could best recreate this effect in OBS Studio for a consistent experience, no matter which device I decide to stream from.

Here’s how I did it, with a little help from Photoshop – feel free to use the resulting asset without any need for further fiddling.

Continue reading Creating a round cutout mask for OBS Studio

How to add Subscription Alerts to your stream in OBS Studio

Have you seen those fancy graphic overlays that animate over gaming live streams? They’re great for audience interactions, and when I did my research on how to create those, I came across Streamlabs.com. That’s a service most successful streamers seem to use these days.

There are two ways to set this up: either download a modified version of OBS Studio from the Streamlabs website (it’s called Streamlabs OBS, but it’s Windows only at the time of writing), or use their Alert Box widget with the regular version of OBS Studio.

I’ll show you how to get the latter option going in this article.

Getting the Alert Box URL

The way this service is provided is via a transparent graphic created in CSS, using a simple browser window. We’ll capture the output of that URL and use it as a caption overlay in our OBS scene.

To get the URL for either a YouTube or Twitch account, head over to streamlabs.com and login with either of those credentials. Essentially, you’ll grant Streamlabs access to your account so that new subscribers and donations can be accessed by their servers. On this occasion, connect your Patreon and PayPal accounts so that such notifications can also be displayed.

On the left hand side, under Widgets, you’ll find several options, among those is the Alert Box. Select it and see all the configurable options on the right. Copy your unique URL from the field that’s hidden by default. We’ll need to add that to OBS in a moment.

Create an overlay in OBS Studio

Open OBS Studio and add a Browser Source to your Scene. Note that this needs to be at the top of your list so that these alerts can be displayed on top of your scene. Mine only contains a simple Display Capture otherwise.

In the Browser properties, paste the URL from Streamlabs in the dedicated URL field. That’s all you need. Make sure to scale and position your Alert Box to your liking.

Testing Alerts

Back on the Streamlabs website, in the Alert Options, you’ll see a list of test buttons that let us trigger dummy alerts. They’ll allow us to preview how those alerts will come up when we’re live. Click any of them, then head back to your OBS preview window and see what it looks like in action.

Note that Streamlabs OBS has this option built in as a plugin by default. The above setup is only necessary for the regular version of OBS Studio, available from obsproject.com. Here’s an example of what the alert looks like:

Feel free to explore the other widgets you get from streamlabs.com.