How to stream on twitch with OBS: A quick Twitch streaming guide

February 21, 2016 3:24 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

OBS stands for Open Broadcaster Software which is a completely free and open source program used to stream your gaming sessions through’s online service. The innovative OBS platform has eliminated the need for expensive livestreaming software and has allowed anyone to start streaming on Twitch fast, easy and most importantly- at no cost. This short tutorial will help you get Twitch streaming in the next 5 minutes or less. So let’s get started!

How to broadcast on twitch

Now is the time to download obs software if you haven’t done so already and once you have it installed follow these simple steps:

  • Go to and log in to your account (1)
  • Click on your username and then Dashboard from the drop down menu (2,3)
  • Click on Stream Key inside your Dashboard (4)
  • Choose Show Key and confirm by selecting I Understand to reveal your key (5,6)

I have visualised the steps on the screenshot below on how to gain access to your Stream Key. This key is very important so you should copy it to your clipboard and proceed to the next step which explains how to setup obs for Twitch.

How to get Stream Key from Twitch.TV and stream on Twitch using obs

Benefits of using obs

We use Open Broadcaster Software to stream on Twitch because:

  • It’s lightweight so your system can spend most of the resources on the actual streaming and gameplay instead of eating away a ton of useful processing speed.
  • It’s completely open source so you can rest assured knowing that there’s no funny business happening in the background (like someone stealing your Twitch username or worse!)
  • It’s free. I’m sure this doesn’t require further explanation.

OBS Settings for Twitch

  • Launch the Open Source Broadcaster software
  • Choose File and then Settings (1,2)
  • Click on Stream and fill in the fields as shown below (3)

Make sure to choose Twitch as your service and select a Server closest to your location for faster and less laggy livestream. Paste your copied Stream Key into the appropriate field and hit OK.

File settings and paste stream key

How to start streaming on Twitch

So far so good. There’s only one small thing left to do in order to start streaming on Twitch. We need to tell OBS which application (your game) it’s going to livestream to Twitch. Here’s how to set it up:

  • In the Scenes pane click on the green + sign (1)
  • Type the name for your scene and hit OK (2)
  • Keep your scene selected and hit the green + sign in Sources pane (3)
  • Choose Game Capture (4)
  • Create new game capture and hit OK. Rename it if you like (5)
  • Click OK on the next prompt as the default settings are okay (6)

Setting up scenes and sources in obs for livestreaming to twitch

You’re ready to start streaming!

The above settings for obs will allow you to stream to Twitch any fullscreen game or application you run. The only thing left to do is to hit the Start streaming button on the lower-right area in your OBS interface.

Setting up Window capture

Some games like Runescape don’t run in fullscreen mode by default so you will need to create an additional Source for your Scene by again clicking the little green + sign in your Sources pane and choosing Window capture instead.

You will be asked which window you want to stream so choose your game window from the drop down list as shown below. Your game should already be running in the background for it to appear in the list!

Window capture and start streaming options

How to get viewers on twitch

Getting more viewers to watch your livestream can be very hard at first because the market is already saturated with high impact competitors like PewDiePie who everyone already loves so if you’re new to streaming and just getting started you will most likely be struggling in getting more viewers to your Twitch stream. In order to become popular on Twitch you should keep in mind the following:

  • Don’t expect to be famous immediately, but start from the bottom up and just play the game that you enjoy.
  • Keep your audience entertained by actively talking to them. You can go one step further and give them a creative way to control your gameplay.
  • Be persistent and stream every day at the same time. Your viewers will get used to the routine and remember the time you’re online.
  • Once you’re actively communicating with your audience you can try to ask them to like and share your profile, but do it in a casual and subtle way.

The above tips for getting more Twitch followers is just a tip of the iceberg for what’s actually out there! In order to really understand all the tricks behind being a popular streamer you should take the time and read through the various twitch stream guides available on TwitchStarter.


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This post was written by ynef