Get Started with Streamlabs OBS

Streamlabs OBS (SLOBS) is a streaming software used by many online streamers today. Streamlabs OBS supports streaming to online services such as Twitch and YouTube, and also includes setting options to stream to other services as well. Let’s look at how to get started with Streamlabs OBS!

Installing Streamlabs OBS

Installing and getting started with Streamlabs OBS is a relatively straightforward process, and after installation the software guides the user easily through the process of setting up their stream. Streamlabs OBS can be downloaded directly by clicking here, or by visiting the Streamlabs website.

When opening the software for the first time, users will be guided through the setup process to get their stream ready to go. The software will first ask the user to login using their streaming account from either Twitch or YouTube, or create a Streamlabs account with an email and password.

Next, Streamlabs will ask if you have an OBS Studio profile that you want to import. If you do not have an OBS profile, this option can of course be skipped.

Next, Streamlabs will present the user with several recommended widgets to install. Some highly recommended widgets worth installing are the Alert Box and the Event List. If you’re looking to monetize your stream, the Tip Jar is a nice widget to use as well.

And finally, Streamlabs OBS will ask the user to run an auto optimizer. This can be skipped, but it’s highly recommended to run this process as it will analyze the hardware of the computer to set recommended settings for the stream. All of the settings can be changed later, but it gives a good starting point to get going with.

The Streamlabs OBS Settings Menu
The Streamlabs OBS Settings Menu

Overview of Streamlabs OBS Features

Streamlabs OBS allows the streamer to create or download various ways to customize the look and feel of their stream. This is done through the use of customized overlays, sources, and scenes. As seen in the setup process, widgets are a very useful feature of Streamlabs OBS, allowing for popup alerts on stream for new followers, the ability to recognize top donors, and much more.

Installed widgets can be managed through the software, or through the Streamlabs website.

Setting up Sources in Streamlabs OBS

Sources are the various elements that are loaded into the stream, such as display capture, webcam capture, audio interfaces, and widgets. These sources can then be arranged in the editor view to get a custom look and feel for the user’s stream.

Streamlabs OBS Editor View
The Streamlabs OBS Editor View

Streamlabs Themes

Streamlabs OBS also has a vast library of themes that have been created by other users, available from within the software, or on the Streamlabs OBS website. These themes typically include overlays, graphics, and Alert Box layouts. Many of the themes available are for sale, but there are several free themes that are worth checking out if you are new to Streamlabs OBS, and not familiar with building themes from scratch. These free themes can provide a great starting point, and can be edited and customized as well.

The Streamlabs App Store
The Streamlabs App Store

Setting up Streamlabs Scenes

The use of various scenes within a Streamlabs theme allow a way for the streamer to easily change the layout of their stream. Downloaded themes will come with several scenes, and users can custom create their own scenes as well. With scenes, the streamer can switch between a Starting Soon screen, a main screen with display and webcam capture, a full screen webcam display, and a BRB screen.

Using Streamlabs OBS to Monetize Your Stream

Streamlabs OBS provides various ways for streamers to monetize their streams. This includes donation options, merch stores, and face masks. Streamlabs also has an affiliate program that can be used to earn commissions for promoting their Streamlabs Prime service, which includes customized streamer websites.

Using Streamlabs to Create a Merch Store
Using Streamlabs to Create a Merch Store

Get Streaming!

Now that we’ve figured out how to get started with Streamlabs OBS, the final step is to go live and start your stream! But before going live, it’s important to make sure that your description and category are set, as this is what users will see when browsing streaming platforms such as Twitch or YouTube. This can be done through the settings menu, though, by default Streamlabs will open a popup window when the user clicks on the Go Live button to set these options.

The Streamlabs OBS Live View
The Streamlabs OBS Live View

When the live stream starts, Streamlabs will switch the software view to the Live Tab. The Live Tab will show a preview of the stream, recent events such as new followers or subscribers, and also show the chat from the streaming service being used. Streamlabs OBS also includes stats at the bottom of the screen that can be used to analyze the stream health, such as any dropped frames.

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