If you don’t have thousands of dollars to throw at a powerful streaming setup don’t worry. You can still have a great quality stream even with a low end PC. We are going to go through the best settings, to get the highest quality stream with no lag and high quality even on a budget build.

If you don’t like reading check out the video below:

Best OBS Setting For Low End PCs

Best OBS Studio Settings For Low End PCs

Settings – Video

Best Video Settings For Low End PCs on OBS Studio
Best Video Setting For OBS Studio for Streaming

We want to first adjust the Base Canvas Resolution. To get the best performance out of your stream you will want to set this to 1280 x 720. Your stream may not look as crisp as a 1080p stream however it will use less resources on your computer.

If everything is running smooth in 720p you can adjust upwards to 1080p later down the line and see if your computer can handle it.

Next up is the Output Scaled Resolution. We also want to set this to 1280 x 720 when starting out. This will give your viewers the best possible viewing experience. If you still find that your stream is lagging you can try a lower scaled output resolution however I would not recommend moving any lower than 852x480p as your stream will look extremely poor.

For Downscale Filter select Bilinear if you’re not scaling between your base canvas resolution and output canvas. If your scaling from 1080p to 720p you should set this to Bicubic for this setting.

FPS Type should be left at Common FPS Values and this should be set to 30. Do not set this number any higher as it will put strain on your PC.

Best Output Settings For OBS For Streaming
Best Output Settings For OBS For Streaming

Settings – Output

When it comes to our output settings there is two options we can choose from (Hardware & Software). This means we will either use our GPU or CPU to encode the stream. Which option you should use will depend on your specific build. If you are using Hardware and find that your graphics card is throttling and causing games/streams to lag then switch to Software and vice versa.

Select the Output tab in settings and select output mode as advanced. This allows us to access more settings.

There is two ways we can do this depending on whether we want to use Software or Hardwar encoding.

Option One (Software x264)

Set the encoder to x264 (This means you will use your CPU to stream). Select Rescale Output and set it to 1280 x 720. Again if this is struggling you can always adjust downwards later.

We want to set Rate Control to CBS and set our bitrate to 3000 Kbps. If 3000Kbps is still laggy or jittery then adjust downward in 500 Kbps increments until you reach the sweet spot.

You should also set CPU Usage Preset to Veryfast.

Option Two – Nvenc

If you have an Nvenc enabled GPU I would recommend utilising the Hardware NVENC encoder.

Set your Audio track to 1. Select Nvidia NVENC as your encoder and select Rescale output and set to 1280 x 720.

Rate Control should be set to CBR with your Bitrate set to 3000 Kbps. If you find that your stream is still lagging you should adjust your Bitrate downward in 500 Kbps increments until you hit a sweet spot.

Your Preset should be set to Performance and Profile set to main.

If you find that your stream is running smoothly and you want to up the quality you can change the Preset from performance to quality.

Settings Wrap Up

These are the main settings that you want to adjust in OBS Studio to make the biggest difference in your stream. However if you find that you’re still having some problems on your stream you should check out the extra tips below.

How To Improve Stream Performance On A Low End PC

Close Out Of Any Unnecessary Apps When Streaming

If you have any other apps open on your computer such as chrome, spotify or editing software make sure to shut these down before going live. Even thought these apps might not be doing much in the background they can still take up a considerable amount of your computers resources. Especially Google chrome that thing eats RAM like crazy.

Use A Simple Overlay

If you have an animated overlay on your stream this will take up a huge amount of resources on your computer. I would recommend just using a static overlay when starting out. You may not even need to use an overlay at all other than your camera if you use one.

Lower The Settings On The Games Your Playing

When streaming you’ll likely have to play your games on lower settings than you would when you’re not streaming. Knock down your settings a little bit in the game you’re playing and you’ll see a nice performance boost.

Remove Animated Alerts From Your Stream

If your alerts for followers or donations are animated you may want to move to a static option. You may find that when you get an alert through your game has a massive lag spike. This is because these alerts take up more resources than you would expect.

Wrapping Up

Hopefully this article has helped you improve your stream settings and have a smooth, great looking stream even on a low end computer. Enjoy streaming and building your audience without the headaches of having a freezing stream.

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James is a marketer by day and gamer by night. He loves sharing his Marketing background in the world of streaming. When he's not working on campaigns he's likely to be spotted in Verdansk.

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