Is a macbook pro good for streaming?

mooonlite102938

New Member
Hello,

I use a macbook 2012 13" A1278 with the specs of intel core i5, intel hd graphics 4000, 8gb ram, and I switched out the 500gb hdd for a tb of ssd. I need to stream/record at 720p60 or 1080p60 with no lag, in minecraft latest release. I get about 120-165 fps in game normally, and 200-220 at minimum settings. While recording I never got higher than 80-85 fps. However my obs says to record at 480p60 or 512p30. Will this setup be good for streaming, and since I cant get any extra hardware like a gpu or capture card, what are better settings?
 

twindux

Member
iN general, a MB Pro can be good for streaming.

Sorry to say, if you want high res/high framerate as you stated, your 9-year old machine is gonna be a pretty tough one to use.
 

JohnBBeta

New Member
I'm using a current 13" MBP - high end, from June 2020 for my streaming - check out 'johnbbeta' on twitch for what I'm managing to squeeze out of it. Works pretty well. If you want to use elgato camlink4ks for hdmi capture its a no go though, need a dedicated graphics card for some capture devices to work properly. even my mac couldn't handle camlinks.
 

Tv.blogger.german

New Member
Hello all together.
I am new here and want to use OBS Studio for my streams. Am a musician and produce beats and would like to record that. Now have OBS Studio installed and have my DAW on at the same time.

It is jerky and I have a Macbook pro 2016.

Am I doing something wrong with the settings?
 

Nass86

Member
I own a variety of macbooks, imacs and Windows setups.

I can firmly say that if I had the choice, although I much prefer the apple macs to use day to day, they have had a rougher time with streaming and I would go with a windows laptop or pc with NVIDIA Graphics card that supports NVENC because you can then get good framerates at higher resolutions.

That said, if you absolutely must go Apple Mac, make sure you get one that does not only have the Intel Graphics but also has an AMD Graphics card. Many of the macbooks you can buy used or new have these and you would switch the OBS Settings in Output to "H264 Apple VT Hardware Encoder" with Keyframes set to 2. OBS recently gave us all the ability to use the Hardware encoder via AMD - it doesn't look as nice but it is okay for how I stream (DJing), not sure about high framerate gaming.

Keep in mind that if your viewers will be watching on mobile phones you need to keep the bitrate between 2000 and 3500 which restricts you to 720p 30fps or 60fps.

Your viewers would rather watch a 30fps 720p video that doesn't buffer than a glitchy 60fps 1080p. I once had my stream running at 5,000 kb/s and most viewers were fine but a cluster of them kept buffering and opted to leave. I would have rather kept them and gone for around 3000kb/s.

For a 1080p 60FPS stream, you need at least an 8mb (ideally more) internet connection and to send 8000kbps.

Further info here and there is a good guide inside this OBS forum somewhere:
 

mooonlite102938

New Member
thanks for the reply, I actually was thinking of getting an external gpu like an rtx 2070 super or something, or just directly get a new computer with like a gpu pre installed. Sadly my mac doesn't have a gpu. I use a xfinity wifi router (10.0.0.1), and use wired connection to my mac, and it's I htink way more than 8mb, more like 18-20mb I think. I'll also check out the link. Thanks again for the detailed reply
 

mooonlite102938

New Member
Hello all together.
I am new here and want to use OBS Studio for my streams. Am a musician and produce beats and would like to record that. Now have OBS Studio installed and have my DAW on at the same time.

It is jerky and I have a Macbook pro 2016.

Am I doing something wrong with the settings?
idk, depends on your gpu and cpu, try 720p30 and use quicksync or something
 

Tv.blogger.german

New Member
Thank you for your reply. I will test it directly tomorrow morning. For me it is still interesting to know if an external audio interface is not a problem. Have a Rode-NT3a for the audio recordings. I have had the issue with some DAW's that the buffering didn't quite work. I hope it works.
 

mooonlite102938

New Member
Thank you for your reply. I will test it directly tomorrow morning. For me it is still interesting to know if an external audio interface is not a problem. Have a Rode-NT3a for the audio recordings. I have had the issue with some DAW's that the buffering didn't quite work. I hope it works.
did it work?
 

Nass86

Member
I would just like to say, there's a chance this could perform better if you try the following and are not gaming on the macbook you are streaming from.

The x264 encoding actually works brilliantly for me on my various macs if its the ONLY thing it is doing. A lot of these macs are quad core so they do pack power, just they do a lot running the operating system.

Try this to improve encoding performance (and don't open anything during the stream)

#1 Do everything you possibly can to close all apps, including those at the top near the clock/date. Close absolutely everything. Especially Chrome.

#2 Don't watch your own video back on that computer (use your phone, ipad, or something else if you have to)

#3 Free up some memory by doing the following:
a) Remove as many Dock items, this apparently pre-loads some of the apps to make those apps launch faster
b) Same for the RECENT ITEMS tab (Click Apple logo in top left > RECENT ITEMS > CLEAR ALL

#4 Go to your OBS. You'll see inside OBS the screen contains a video preview of what is being displayed. This takes up a lot of CPU itself. If you shrink down the app (using the corners of OBS app) as much as you possibly can, the job it is doing of presenting the video back to you takes up considerably less CPU.

Doing each of these things are relatively small improvements but collectively together give you the slight edge and seem to drastically improve performance on Macs encoding at x264.

Good luck :)
 

OBSquad

New Member
Many of the macbooks you can buy used or new have these and you would switch the OBS Settings in Output to "H264 Apple VT Hardware Encoder" with Keyframes set to 2. OBS recently gave us all the ability to use the Hardware encoder via AMD - it doesn't look as nice but it is okay for how I stream (DJing), not sure about high framerate gaming.

I've only just discovered thanks to this post that I have Intel and AMD graphics in my Macbook Pro. But why would you use one over the other if "it doesn't look as nice" if you wouldn't mind explaining?

I use a Macbook and OBS to stream sports matches live but some viewers complain about picture quality. I only stream at a bitrate of 2500 / 720p30 so am wondering if I should bump that up to about 4000 as I have a solid and plentiful upload speed.
 

Nass86

Member
I've only just discovered thanks to this post that I have Intel and AMD graphics in my Macbook Pro. But why would you use one over the other if "it doesn't look as nice" if you wouldn't mind explaining?

I use a Macbook and OBS to stream sports matches live but some viewers complain about picture quality. I only stream at a bitrate of 2500 / 720p30 so am wondering if I should bump that up to about 4000 as I have a solid and plentiful upload speed.
All I've been able to glean on this is what works (rather than why) as I'm not too far into learning all of this myself.

Hardware encoding only works well above 10,000 (or 20,000, or 30,000 kbps) i.e. it isn't that suitable for streaming as your watchers really need you between about 3000 and 4500 (otherwise they buffer).

So that actually means - guessing some of these settings - if you can do the following, it should work better.

1. Do everything I listed in the long post from me, above these posts to take the stress off the CPU
2. You can't do 1080p very well at lower bitrates. So I recommend setting this to 720p with the following extra settings

4500 kbps Bitrate
720p resolution
60 Frames per second
Keyframes 2
Profile HIGH
CPU usage FASTER (or pushing it, you could try VERYFAST)

Try doing some test streams and open VIEW - STATS, keeping an eye on DROPPED FRAMES area.

If you get jitters (and warnings on the stats of Dropped Frames due to Rendering or Encoding lag), you might need to turn down the following:

60 frames per second to 30fps
CPU usage down from FASTER to VERYFAST.

See what happens.

If loads of your users complain they are buffering, you might have to turn down the 4500kbps to 3500 or 3000 or 2500 etc but it will look worse.

I'm hoping for you that you can give them 720p x 60fps at 4500kbps.
 

OBSquad

New Member
if you can do the following, it should work better.
Thanks - I'll give all of that a try. I have recently set up a separate user account on the Macbook for only streaming use, so all my dock and menu bar extensions are minimal. Together with the advice above, I'll play around and see what works best.
 

mooonlite102938

New Member
I've only just discovered thanks to this post that I have Intel and AMD graphics in my Macbook Pro. But why would you use one over the other if "it doesn't look as nice" if you wouldn't mind explaining?

I use a Macbook and OBS to stream sports matches live but some viewers complain about picture quality. I only stream at a bitrate of 2500 / 720p30 so am wondering if I should bump that up to about 4000 as I have a solid and plentiful upload speed.
this is sorta late because @Nass86 beat me to it, but short answer, intel graphics is in built, amd graphics is an actual gpu, and more powerful. Also I changed mine from 2500 bitrate to 3000 recently for fun, and actually it worked, so I use that.
 

Sikosis

New Member
No ... it's not. OBS runs like complete and utter crap on macOS. I've been using OBS on 3 different machines over the last 7 months and had nothing but problems. The latest machine I was using was a brand new MacBook Pro i7 quad-core with 16GB RAM. OBS uses an extreme amount of CPU (350%+), it crashes often with the logs show nothing about why, browser plugin doesn't work, etc. I was starting to think that OBS was a terrible piece of software until I ran it on a Windows box (with onboard Intel graphics card, no discrete card) and it runs like a dream compared. So I've ditched using macOS for streaming.
 

mooonlite102938

New Member
No ... it's not. OBS runs like complete and utter crap on macOS. I've been using OBS on 3 different machines over the last 7 months and had nothing but problems. The latest machine I was using was a brand new MacBook Pro i7 quad-core with 16GB RAM. OBS uses an extreme amount of CPU (350%+), it crashes often with the logs show nothing about why, browser plugin doesn't work, etc. I was starting to think that OBS was a terrible piece of software until I ran it on a Windows box (with onboard Intel graphics card, no discrete card) and it runs like a dream compared. So I've ditched using macOS for streaming.
bruh

also how did you get 350% of cpu being used? the mac is 100. Did you mean 35?
 
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