[Guide] OBS Plugins Tutorial

OBS Studio Plugins Tutorials - How to install OBS plugins
How to install OBS plugins

OBS Studio is an open source software and it could be incredibly helpful & powerful when equipped with a variety of add-ons and plugins. As an OBS user for 5 years, I am very willing to answer some frequently asked questions and share with you some of the amazing OBS plugins in the later episodes. 

Q1: What is OBS?

A1: OBS stands for Open Broadcaster Software. It’s a free and open-source software for video recording and live streaming, the best of its kind barring none.

Q2: What are the advantages of OBS?

A2: Open source, platform-agnostic, active community, myriad third-party plugins. And, it’s free!

Q3: What version of OBS should I use and where to download it?

A3: You could download it from the official site. Steer clear of local redeveloped versions or older versions. 

Q4: What are OBS plugins?

A4: OBS plugins – third-party add-ons released in the OBS forum feature OBS to be more powerful. OBS offers a whole variety of APIs which developers can use to design amazing features. The file directory for a typical OBS plugin looks like this:

OBS plugin file directory
OBS plugin file directory

Q5: Where do I download OBS plugins?

A5: First of all, let’s go to the plugin section of the official forum and click the desired plugin to enter its page for descriptions. And you’ll see “Go to download” button in the top-right corner. Go click the Download button if that plugin is exactly what you need.

OBS Studio forum - how to download OBS plugins

The plugins on the official site are the latest versions. Every plugin has a separate sub-forum where you can find tutorials and user feedback. You can check each plugin’s update frequency and ratings on the official site, and quickly get an idea about whether the plugin is properly maintained. On the official site you can find the original plugin repository where you can view the source code and report issues to developers. 

Q6: How to install OBS plugins?

A6: Plugin installation is a no-brainer. Let’s take Windows plugins for example. You can choose one of two installation methods depending on the file type.

Two types of installation methods of OBS plugin
  • For an exe file, double click to install. 
  • For a zipped file: unzip it, enter the kernel (32bit, 64 bit), then drag the folders inside into the OBS directory.

Answer 5 and 6 show the traditional way to explore and download OBS plugins. However, what if streamers need to search and install a multiple of plugins to enhance the functionality of OBS? Rather than repeating the above steps, is there a more friendly way to make streamers’ life easier? The answer is yes, Starscape Creator Studio PC – a UI friendly software integrated with Top OBS plugins to support streamers & content creators explore, install, uninstall and manage OBS plugins by just a tap of clicks.

Q7: How to run a OBS plugin after install?

A7: There are three types of plugins: sources, tools, filters.

  • For sources, streamers could tap to add a “New Source”. Below is an illustration of a plugin I installed.
Add a new source in OBS studio
  • Tools are for controls such as scene switch and remote control. They don’t belong in the source category or filter category. One of the tool plugins I installed:
Add a tool in OBS Studio
  • Filters, such as motions and shaders, are for applying effects to scenes or sources.
Add a filter in OBS studio

Q8: Are configurations necessary for the OBS plugins? And are they complex?

A8: That depends. Some plugins require configuration, some don’t. And in later chapters, I will explain in detail how to use each plugin.

Q9: Anything to add?

A9: The plugin tutorial is not an introductory read. So, if you have never used OBS before, you need to familiarize yourself with OBS first before exploring plugins.

Q10: What OBS plugins will this series cover?

A10: I’ll introduce you about a dozen plugins in the up-coming series. To name a few:

  • Remote WebSocket (remote control)
  • Spectralizer (audio visualization)
  • Virtual Cam (virtual camera)
  • NDI (LAN video wireless transmission)
  • Shader Filter (special effects for text and images)
  • Transition Matrix
  • Scrab (screen capture)
  • Lower Third in Html/CSS (text movement effect)
  • Input overlay (input visualization)
  • Motion Effect (animation effects)
  • Reply Source (playback control)
  • Advanced Scene Switcher
  • PTZ Controller (PTZ camera control)
  • Browser Plugin

Ending: 

If you’re tired of spending countless hours of setting up OBS with plugins, try out OBS plugin manager module in Starscape Creator Studio PC software – a fast and easy way to install, uninstall and update your plugins by just a few taps! 
Editor: Kiran