OBS-Studio: High quality recording and multiple Audio Tracks

Setup OBS-Studio for recording at a high quality and with multiple Audio Tracks for later editing

  1. Jack0r
    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:
    [​IMG]
    You have 4 "presets" (Recording Quality) to choose from which explain themselves pretty much and you can switch the output format to your liking:
    [​IMG]
    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:
    [​IMG]
    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:
    [​IMG]
    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:

    x264
    • Rate Control: CRF
    • CRF: 15-25
    • CPU Usage Preset: can be lowered to superfast/ultrafast on high cpu usage
    NVENC
    • Rate Control: CQP
    • CQP: 15-25
    • Preset: High-Quality
    • Profile: high
    QuickSync
    • 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.
    [​IMG]
    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):
    [​IMG]
    And using the little cog wheel I marked in red you can open the Advanced Audio Properties.
    [​IMG]
    Here you can select which audio device should be saved on which track:
    [​IMG]
    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.
    John Difool, Esenfur, EBrito and 10 others like this.

Recent Updates

  1. Added AMD VCE
  2. Updated to accomodate latest OBS changes
  3. Small update

Recent Reviews

  1. amsyar ZeRo
    amsyar ZeRo
    5/5,
    An extremely good guide for users who want to "up" their video quality a notch in OBS MP.
  2. xboxer214
    xboxer214
    5/5,
    Great and easy to follow
  3. bingeboy
    bingeboy
    5/5,
    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.
  4. digudc
    digudc
    5/5,
    thanks for instruction keep updating and make thing easy for noob user :)
  5. Trichael Man
    Trichael Man
    5/5,
    Very informative! Could you elaborate on why you opted to use CQP over VBR for NVENC? Also should I enable 2-pass encoding or disable it?
    1. Jack0r
      Author's Response
      With the CQP option I do not have to set a Bitrate at all and the encoder can pretty much decide whats needed, similar to CRF on x264.
      According to nvidia: 2-pass rate control modes help the encoder to
      gather statistics of the frame to be encoded before actually encoding it in the second pass, thereby resulting in optimal bit-utilization within the frame and consequently, higher encoding quality.
      So I would leave that option on.
  6. Ruyzinho Qwerty
    Ruyzinho Qwerty
    4/5,
    Thx m8! That helps a lot
  7. ICEThat
    ICEThat
    5/5,
    Thanks for this guide! I was having massive lag in games until I changed from VBR to CRF.
  8. Jonah S.
    Jonah S.
    5/5,
    Great! Although you should make a guide for 144hz monitor users for csgo and other fps shooters.
  9. resonansER
    resonansER
    5/5,
    Cool! Just keep going! Thank you so much!
  10. Masterjap
    Masterjap
    5/5,
    This works perfectly. Just noticed the new OBS also has AMD support build into it!