OBS-Studio: High quality recording and multiple Audio Tracks

OBS-Studio: High quality recording and multiple Audio Tracks

In OBS-Studio you can very easily configure everything for "High Quality" recordings as well as multiple Audio Tracks. We simply need to go into the "Output" settings of OBS.

Simple High Quality Settings
If you do not plan on streaming and do not want to record multiple audio tracks you can even keep to the Simple Output Mode as shown below:
You have 4 "presets" (Recording Quality) to choose from which explain themselves pretty much and you can switch the output format to your liking:
And you can also select a different Encoder. This is especially interesting if you have a Hardware Encoder like NVENC or QuickSync available in your System. In this case you will have the option to select them as you can see in my example:
Now you can change the recording path and recording format to your liking and start recording.

Advanced High Quality Settings and Multiple Audio Tracks
If you want to record multiple audio tracks and maybe stream at the same time switch to the Advanced Output Mode at the top which will give you full control of all the settings:
In this mode you can stream and record at different resolutions (currently with the same fps setting), record up to 4 audio tracks and select a different encoder for your stream or recording.

Setup advanced High Quality Settings
Now the interesting settings are in the lower section, but they depend on the selected Encoder:

  • Rate Control: CRF
  • CRF: 15-25
  • CPU Usage Preset: can be lowered to superfast/ultrafast on high cpu usage
  • Rate Control: CQP
  • CQP: 15-25
  • Preset: High-Quality
  • Profile: high
  • Target Usage: quality (lower to balanced or speed if you encounter problems)
  • Profile: high
  • Rate Control: CQP / ICQ or LA_ICQ
  • on CQP: QPI/QPP/QPB: 15-25
  • on ICQ: ICQ Quality: 15-25
  • on LA_ICQ: ICQ Quality: 15-25, Lookahead Depth: 40-50
AMD VCE [H264 Encoder (AMD Advanced Media Framework)]

  • Preset: Indistinguishable or Lossless
  • Quality Preset: Speed, Balanced or Quality (Speed is fastest, Quality is slowest)
  • Keyframe Interval: 2 - 5 Seconds
  • There are also Presets for High Quality, Recording, YouTube and Twitch. These will set up the encoder for that type of usage and will update it whenever a plugin update comes out.
With those settings, whatever content you record, the encoder will be able to just increase its bitrate if necessary to reach a high quality.

Setup Multiple Audio Tracks
Let us take a look at the option of recording multiple audio tracks. In the advanced recording settings, select Track's 1 to 4. Make sure to also change the Recording Format from flv to a format that supports multiple audio tracks.
In the Audio settings you can currently select 3 recording and 2 playback devices in OBS-Studio (you can even add more as sources, but let's not make it too complicated for a start):
And using the little cog wheel I marked in red you can open the Advanced Audio Properties.
Here you can select which audio device should be saved on which track:
In the streaming settings we can select one audio track in which all audio devices will be mixed together for your stream. (I use Track 1 in this example.) But for recording (unless we use flv as our format as the warning states) we can curently save up to 4 separate audio tracks with our video file.

The example shows Desktop Audio, Mic and Mic 2 going to track 1. This track can also be used for a stream at the same time. Track 2 will only record the Desktop Audio and Track 3 Desktop Audio 2 which wont be heard on a stream. Last but not least Track 4 will include Mic 1 and 2. You should be able to load the saved Video right into Adobe Premiere or Sony Vegas for example and change the tracks independently.

If you use a Capture Card it will also show up in the Advanced Audio Properties if its active in the current scene. So it's audio can also be recorded on a single track if you desire to do so.

As you can see its pretty easy to record at a High Quality with multiple Audio Tracks in OBS-Studio. Be aware if you stream and record at the same time, at different settings, this will increase the CPU load on your system coming from OBS.
First release
Last update
4.76 star(s) 25 ratings

More resources from Jack0r

Latest updates

  1. Added AMD VCE

    Thanks to Xaymar and RytoEx I was able to add recommended settings for AMD VCE to the guide.
  2. Updated to accomodate latest OBS changes

    Added Hardware Encoders and new OBS settings.
  3. Small update

    Some text and image changes to make it easier to understand hopefully.

Latest reviews

Very very good. I got a little lost between the audio settings and the advanced audio properties. Didn't realize that those were on the main mixer, not in the settings panel.
Superb. I'm completely new to OBS and this laid out every step of the way clearly enough to easily follow and understand, without sacrificing any detail (that I know of).
Thanks for the info. Twas very clear. I have a question tho. I'm connecting two camera inputs to OBS via HDMI. How do I make the audio from one of the cameras(say camera 1) be the master audio that goes out to the stream and is recorded. So that when I switch cameras, the audio from camera is still maintained. Thanks.
This guide literally changed my life. I wish I was kidding.
this is really helpfull. However, i still dont quiet get how to make obs output tracks as a different files.
OMG! Thank you for this guide. So compact and yet complete. Helped me out a great bunch!
An extremely good guide for users who want to "up" their video quality a notch in OBS MP.
Great and easy to follow
Thanks for clarifying a little around NVEC, I've been more or less fat fingering my config for this codec but for my local dual streaming setup it has by far the best performance.
thanks for instruction keep updating and make thing easy for noob user :)