How to Fix Common OBS Problems While Live Streaming Events

Mark Sergienko
Mark Sergienko
November 16, 2021
How to Fix Common OBS Problems While Live Streaming Events

This post belongs to a two-part series:

  1. Best Settings in OBS Studio for Live Streaming Events
  2. Fix Common OBS Problems While Live Streaming Events📍 You are here

No matter how skilled you are or how many live streams you did in the past, some problems can always arise and you have to fix them for the live stream to work smoothly.

When live streaming for your computer, OBS is the first thing you will need. Not only it's very powerful, but it's also free. It works on Windows, Mac, or Linux, and lets you go live with the EventLive platform within seconds.

OBS can take a variety of inputs such as web-cameras, DSLRs (via USB or HDMI-USB capture card), Mirrorless cameras, GoPros, Smartphones, and many others. It also allows you to add pre-recorded videos, screen-share, images, overlays, and other neat features to your live events.

That being said, the software isn't perfect without its much-needed tweaks. Configuring it can be tricky when you don't know the right OBS settings, but it's 100% worth it.

When spending some time live streaming with it, you might run into some problems. I'll show you how to fix them in this post.

Are you at an event right now? Do this now

  • Settings -> Video tab -> Output (Scaled) Resolution: 1280x720
  • Settings -> Output tab -> Bitrate set to 1500 Kbps
  • Restart the stream

Do that right away and you'll live stream with ease, even if your internet connection is pretty bad.

For everyone else that isn't afraid of missing the bride walking down the aisle in the next 90 seconds, there are better settings that will give you better quality with a stable upload speed. Keep reading!

Is your OBS live stream lagging?

If OBS shows "Encoding Overloaded! Consider turning down video settings or using a faster encoding preset", your computer does not have enough processing power to process the video in real time with the current settings.

Another way to detect this is to verify if your CPU usage is very high. If that's the case, your computer may be overheated, entered power saving mode, or other apps are slowing it down.

OBS Encoding Overloaded screenshot

How to solve the "Encoding overloaded!" issue in OBS

The first step is to cool down your computer if it's too hot. If you're live streaming an event on location, place your laptop in the shade, plug it into a power outlet, and close all unnecessary applications including browser windows.

Stop your live stream and open OBS Settings. Head over to the Output tab, and make the following changes:

  • Choose Output Mode: Advanced
  • Encoder: Choose Hardware Encoder if available, or else:
  • CPU Usage Preset: Choose superfast.
  • Tune: Choose zerolatency.

After you're done, open the Video tab and change the following settings:

  • Output (Scaled) Resolution: 1280x720.
  • Common FPS Values: Choose 30, or even 24.
  • Downscale Filter: Bilinear

Are you done? Perfect! You can restart the stream now.

Download the Full OBS Guide

Get the right settings and fixes to all common problems in a PDF file that you can keep on your phone at all times.

How to free extra resources when live streaming through OBS?

When live streaming an event on location, chances are that you want to have a full recording of the live stream in better quality.

Doing so will allow you to upload the higher-quality footage when the broadcast ends. The problem with this is that you might be asking your computer to do both the streaming and the recording simultaneously, which increases the processing power it needs to record to your drive in real time, as well as pushing the video feed to the internet.

The easiest way to fix this problem is to record internally to your camera, instead of doing it using the computer.

OBS on location: Common upload speed problems

Are your Dropped frames increasing? If you have a high number of these, or your indicator turned Yellow or Red on the bottom right corner, you need to fix your internet connection. To put it simply, your upload speed cannot catch up with your stream settings.

obs upload speed problems

Here's how to fix your Dropped Frames while live streaming an event:

Open your OBS Settings panel. On the Output Tab, you'll have to lower your bitrate.

This will reduce the quality of your stream, allowing your internet connection to catch up. The best way to go is to lower your Bitrate by 500Kbps at a time, until the problem resolves.

While you're at the Output tab, change your Rate Control setting to CBR.

If you couldn't solve the problem that way, here's an alternative:

  • Stop your live stream
  • On the Video tab change your Output resolution to 1280x720. HD will look better with lower bitrates.
  • While you're there, lower your FPS to 30 or even 24.
  • Restart the stream

Still having problems? You might have to try using an alternative internet connection.

Is your OBS audio and video out of sync?

We all experienced an awkward moment in which you're hearing someone but the video feed comes with a delay. No matter how small it is, it's uncomfortable to watch.

To fix the problem of your video and audio not being in sync, here's what to check:

  • Are you using an external camera? Turn off the in-camera image stabilization. Image stabilization can add a small delay to the video feed.
  • Are you using a capture card? Cheaper capture cards can introduce delay too.
  • You can also fix the sync problem by choosing Advanced Audio Properties on your audio in Audio Mixer:

obs audio properties

sync offset to correct audio source on obs
Add a sync offset to correct audio source, experiment with the value

No image from camera?

This can usually be fixed doing any of the following:

  • Selecting the right Scene within OBS
  • Making sure that the Video Source is active by clicking on the Visibility button (Eye) next to it
  • Checking that the Video Source is Activated, within the Properties.
  • Confirming that the placement of the video source is within the live streaming Frame.

If you're using a CamLink capture card, you might need to unpair and re-pair it.

OBS would not reconnect at an event?

Check your OBS settings to enable Automatic Reconnection:

Automated Reconnect settings

OBS was streaming fine but suddenly stopped?

Let's fix this quickly, so you can continue working at the event:

  • Restart OBS
  • Apply solutions from the Upload Problems section
  • If you're using an unlimited plan that has data caps at high speed, it might be an issue. Some carriers might throttle your connection, which can interrupt your live stream.
  • Try a different connection

If you couldn't find the solution to your problem, you might want to start by configuring OBS with the best settings for live streaming events on location.

Are you experiencing any other problem? Get in touch with us and let me know, I'll be happy to help.

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Mark Sergienko
Mark Sergienko

EventLive Founder, Entrepreneur. Live streaming & Wedding / Event Photography / Industry professional.

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