OBS-recorded MP4 won't open in Premiere Pro


New Member
The machine I run OBS on is a Mac with Catalina (not my computer - I use it once a week), but I do editing at home on my Windows 10 PC with Premiere Pro. In the past I had been downloading from YouTube to edit, but yesterday I tried recording in OBS while streaming. Everything seemed to be fine - it was recorded as MKV and automatically remuxed to MP4 afterwards, and I took the MP4 file home. It plays fine in VLC. But there is something about it that Premiere Pro doesn't like. In PPro 2020 I get: "The importer reported a generic error." In PPro 2019 there is no complaint during import, but the preview pane says "Media Pending" forever and the timeline won't play (the audio waveform is visible in the timeline, so apparently the audio is okay but the video isn't). I've never seen either of these behaviors with any other media, so I'm guessing that there is something strange about how OBS on the Mac created the file. Any ideas about what might be going on?

In PPro, the media file's properties are listed as follows:
Type: MPEG Movie
File Size: 853.99 MB
Image Size: 1280 x 720
Frame Rate: 30.00
Source Audio Format: 48000 Hz - compressed - Stereo
Project Audio Format: 48000 Hz - 32 bit floating point - Stereo
Total Duration: 00:44:40:18
Pixel Aspect Ratio: 1.0
Alpha: None
Video Codec Type: MP4/MOV H.264 4:2:0
Variable Frame Rate Detected
All of that looks right, but clearly something is wrong.


New Member
Thanks for responding. Yeah, I saw that thread and others like it. In my case the file didn't even get accepted well enough to stutter. But after writing my questions, based on the comments in those threads, I installed Handbrake and converted the file I got yesterday from MP4 VBR to MP4 CBR, and Premiere Pro accepted it. But that isn't a long-term solution - the transcoding took two hours for a 45-minute video, and I assume the quality was degraded. Next Sunday I'll try your idea of bringing home the MKV instead of the MP4 and transcoding it in Handbrake, but I don't know if that will work, or be any faster. Surely there are settings in OBS that would make it work without a middleman.


Active Member
Again - not my area of expertise (like anything in OBS is), but I saw reference to NOT using CBR in recording (ok, CBR desirable for streaming, but not local recording) but that was in the Windows forum (from memory, I could be very wrong).
So... just a thought, if others don't comment on this question
- Post a new question...this time asking for recommended video format and settings on a MacOS OBS for stream recordings for later use in Win10 Adobe Premiere Pro

And if quality degradation and issue, maybe record using 1080p instead?
Even though FB only allow us to stream at 720p, it is for video quality reasons that I've set my base canvas and recording to be 1080p.

Have you checked out these and related posts on optimizing MacOS OBS recording settings? https://obsproject.com/forum/threads/recording-on-mac-very-low-fps-and-bitrate-mac-10-15-2.113809/
or https://obsproject.com/forum/threads/mac-os-obs-recordings-are-blurry-fuzzy.115242/


New Member
I was actually surprised that the original file was VBR, because in the OBS settings, streaming is set to CBR with bitrate=2500, and recording is set to "same as stream" (I don't want to tax the computer too much by trying to do two separate encodings). But according to this post, MacOS can't actually do CBR - go figure.

The content in our case is not demanding (most of the background doesn't move), so either CBR or VBR would be fine. PPro will, of course, accept either type. I transcoded just to shake things up.

The reason I'm not streaming (and therefore not recording) in 1080p is because there is no internet on site, so we have to stream via tethering to a phone. Even at 720p30, we typically have an average of 2-5% dropped frames on the network according to OBS (going great for awhile and then suddenly get bad for a bit and recover). That's why I would prefer to use a local recording rather than download the video from YouTube afterwards. Most weeks I also manage to record in the camera (occasionally I forget), and that would of course be the best video (even 1080p30), but the audio is from a separate source (our sound system, which doesn't run through the camera), so I'd have to sync the audio to the video in PPro. Perhaps that's worth doing, but I thought clicking "Start Recording" in OBS would be simple. Ha!