Knowledge Base > OBS Studio > Power of Projectors

Projector outputs in OBS Studio are incredibly strong and lightweight to help accomplish getting your feeds out into the world and into your workflow. Projector outputs are handy because you are able to projector practically anything in OBS out to another display connected to your graphics card(s). Individual sources, scenes, program, preview or the built-in OBS Multiview are able to be projected either in fullscreen or as a window.

Projector outputs have some settings available per-projector, or globally via the General Settings menu. You can have your projector set to always-on-top which is helpful when you have a lot of movement going on, or are using it to output to a display that other people will see rather than just yourself. In that same vein you can also hide your cursor over projectors. If you’re planning on not changing your projector output needs too often, you can choose to save your projectors on exit which will automatically re-open them all when you next open OBS. Lastly you can limit one full screen projector per screen which is helpful to prevent having multiple open at once on the same screen when you can only see one at a time. Each individual projector when opened if right-clicked on (even if your cursor is hidden) will pop open a menu for that projector which can allow you to manipulate these settings for that projector output specifically.

Settings for Projector outputs in the General Settings menu
Settings for Projector outputs in the General Settings menu
The right-click menu for a projector output
The right-click menu for a projector output

Projector Outputs as Auxes

As mentioned above, projector outputs can also output individual scenes or sources which can allow you to fill the need of an Auxiliary output (or an “Aux”) of a traditional switcher. If you right-click the desired scene or source and then hover over Fullscreen Projector (Source/Scene) for the sub-menu to select which output you want to send it to, or click on Windowed Projector (Source/Scene) to have it open as a window.

Opening a Source as a Fullscreen Projector output.
Opening a Source as a Fullscreen Projector output.

Because you are able to output full scene compositions as a projector output, this actually allows more potential flexibility than a standard switcher aux, more akin to a M/E output. With live DVE’s available in scenes as well as OBS’s easy-to-use layering, you can have very complex outputs become fairly simple as a projector output. This is very useful for example when you want to send a replay machine an aux of gameplay with all graphics baked in (like scoreboards or camera PiPs), or if you want to be mixing a different show for an in-venue screen than what goes to broadcast!

Example of an Aux output
An example of an Aux output to change what is shown in a venue versus on broadcast, taking the broadcast program feed and sizing it down to make it easier to watch in a cinema theatre environment. A looping background video and border was also added to prevent the screen from being empty around the edges.

Built-in Multiview

When you have multiple scenes in OBS and are working on a live broadcast you will likely want to be able to see everything that’s going on at once. OBS has a built-in multiview output that is available and has a few customization options as well! By clicking on the View menu you can open up a multiview by either clicking on the Multiview (Windowed) button or hovering the Multiview (Fullscreen) sub-menu to select which graphics card output to send it to.

There are a handful of options available at the bottom of the General Settings menu. From there you can choose to make the scenes clickable to switch between them which is helpful when outputting the multiview to a touchscreen display. You can choose whether or not to show the scene names (which are automatically loaded based off the name of the scene) as well as choosing whether to show title and graphics safe areas with outlines (do note they only work for 16:9 canvases). Additionally you can choose the layout of the multiview which look to fill the frame of your output by default. The Horizontal and Vertical determine whether or not the preview & program views in the multiview are shown horizontally or vertically with the program view being on the right or top respectively.

 The settings for multiviews in OBS
The settings for multiviews in OBS.
An example multiview output with 8 scenes, set horizontally.
An example multiview output with 8 scenes, set horizontally.

Custom Multiviews

With the information around Auxes mixed with the concept of Scenes as Sources, it is actually quite easy to create custom multiviews. Sometimes you might need more than what you can fit in one screen, or just need something a bit more custom than what the default OBS layouts allow. Create a new scene in OBS, and name it something recognizable so you don’t accidentally take it to air. Then in that scene, add whatever sources you want to be able to see in your secondary multiview such as various scenes, cameras, perhaps even just graphics! For creating borders and labels you can easily create an image as a PNG and drop it in, use colour sources and text sources or get creative with obs-websocket to build something even more adaptable! Then if you start a fullscreen or windowed projector output of that scene, you will now have your own multiview output available.

An example of a custom multiview used at the Global Championship 2022 in Toronto shown in the lower-middle screen. 16 direct sources are loaded. Flanking it is the regular OBS multiview set to horizontal, 24 scenes and a program view directly above the custom multiview.
An example of a custom multiview (left) next to a regular OBS multiview (right) for EVO 2022’s finals. Some scenes are used as sources, while others are direct sources.

Digital Signage and In-Venue Experiences

OBS being a powerful compositing tool means for easy use for in-venue experiences and usage in digital signage! OBS also is able to have the canvas be at any resolution required up to 8K pixels squared which means you can have pixel:pixel mapping available for your signage. If your display processor is read as 1 display on your computer then set your canvas resolution in OBS to the resolution of your display, and output a program projector output and you’re good to go! If you’re needing to send out across multiple displays: you can try and merge them in your graphics cards settings, open a 2nd OBS instance to receive the combined canvas (via virtualcam, NDI or similar) and then transform it into individual scenes as aux projector outputs or have multiple OBS instances with each one running one of the desired output slices.

The Pyramid at DreamHack San Diego with 3x 16:9 Canvases worth of LED Walls powered by OBS. Picture taken by Alex "Jebailey"