The Best OBS Plugins
Written by Paul Richards on February 8, 2022
The core OBS Studio application features a robust API that developers use to create plugins to extend the functionality of OBS. Plugins can be found to do everything from instant replay to automatic scene switching making OBS as powerful as many paid video production software suites. Plugins for OBS can be found in the resources section of the OBS Forum page (https://obsproject.com/forum/resources/). In order to download a plug-in you will generally be directed to GitHub because all OBS plugins must be open source. Github is a social source code-sharing website that allows software developers to interact and share their work. By default, OBS plugins on the website are sorted by their last update. You may find it more useful to filter the 120+ OBS Studio plugins by “most downloaded” or “best rated” to find the most reliable and useful plugins.
Pro Tip: All the plugins in this book are outlined on GitHub with download links at https://github.com/streamgeeks.
After sorting through dozens of OBS Studio plugins, the following list has been compiled of the top plugins for OBS. Each plugin in this list will be reviewed in greater detail in an upcoming chapter.
Top 10 Plugin List
- Plugins for Production
- Multiple RTMP Output – This plugin allows you to stream to multiple CDNs at the same time via RTMP. This is popular for live streaming to YouTube and Facebook at the same time for example but does require extra upload bandwidth to work properly.
- Advanced Scene Switching – This plugin is designed to automatically switch between OBS scenes based on a variety of triggers such as audio, media, and Hotkeys. It can be used to switch to a specific camera for example, when a microphone becomes active.
- Source Docks – This plugin allows you to dock any source inside the OBS interface. This is a great way to quickly view and control media inside of the OBS interface.
- Source Record – This plugin creates a filter you can use to record a specific source independently from the main video recording.
- Replay Source – This plugin allows you to create live instant replays using OBS. It allows you to apply a filter to any given source which will record the video for instant playback in your computer memory. This plugin offers the ability to use hotkeys and play the video back in slow motion. This is a great plug-in for sports productions.
- NewTek NDI® Integration – This plugin allows you to connect OBS to NDI® video sources in a couple of different ways. First, you can bring NDI® video sources on your network into OBS by adding NDI® as a source. Additionally, you can output video from your OBS production as an NDI® source on your network. And finally, you can add an NDI® output filter on any source. This allows you to output individual sources as NDI® outputs on your network.
- Plugins for Audio
- Audio Monitor – This plugin allows you to use a filter to route audio to any virtual or physical audio output available on your computer. This is often used to send an audio output from OBS to software such as Zoom using a virtual audio cable.
- Virtual Audio Cables – While these are not officially a plugin, they will enable you to use OBS in new and powerful ways. Virtual Audio Cables are technically audio drivers which can be used to route audio on your computer using OBS.
- Plugins for Control
- Websockets – The OBS Websockets plugin creates an API you can use to remotely control OBS. There are many plugins available that use this API.
- Filter Hotkeys – This plugin allows you to use Hotkeys to turn Filters on and off. This is ideal for toggling effects on and off during production.
- PTZ Controls – PTZ camera controls are available to operate PTZ cameras from the OBS interface. This is ideal if you have PTZ cameras that you are working with inside of OBS.
- Plugins for Graphics
- Animated Lower Thirds – This plugin allows you to control animated lower thirds with a dockable controller. The dockable controller is well designed for managing lower third content and the animations used.
- Move Transitions – This plugin allows you to control transitions for individual sources as they move with scene transitions. Therefore, individual sources can move in and out of scenes with custom effects as you switch between scenes.
- Closed Captions – While this is not technically a plug-in, Web-Captioner is one of the best tools for closed captions. Web-Captioner takes an audio output from OBS and creates an HTML web page that can be brought back into OBS with the closed captions.
- Background Removal – This plugin uses an advanced neural network to remove the background of images and video sources. This allows you to apply an audio/video filter to any image or video and replace the background with something else. This is popular for green screen applications used to create virtual sets or blurred backgrounds.
- OBS Color Monitor – This plugin adds crucial tools for color grading which include a Vectorscope, a Waveform, and a Histogram. These tools allow you to properly color balance live video sources. A Vectorscope is a visual representation of color in a live video source. A Waveform Monitor is considered the counterpart to the Vectorscope and it handles exposure and brightness. The Histogram displays red, green, and blue colors for the select source on a graph.
Each of these plugins will help you gain new capabilities inside of OBS. The process of installing a plugin into OBS is very straightforward. All you need to do is copy and paste the plug-in files that you download directly into the plugins folder for OBS on your computer. The OBS plugin folders can be found in the locations below.
32-bit plugins folder = C:\Program Files (x86)\OBS\plugins
64-bit plugins folder = C:\Program Files\OBS\plugins
Here are the steps you can follow to install any OBS plugin.
- Download the plugin files from GitHub
- Unzip the files onto your computer
- Copy and paste them into the OBS plugins folder
- Launch the OBS application
Once you have completed the steps above, the plugin you have installed should become available inside of OBS. It’s really that simple. Some plugins make installation even simpler with an installation wizard that handles this process for you. The following chapters will outline each plug-in on the list and the capabilities they add to OBS. You can pick and choose which plugins will add value to your production and watch the online tutorial videos available in the Udemy course with this book to see how they work. In some cases, plugins can be used together to create new functionality the developers didn’t intentionally plan out. So enjoy each plug-in overview and keep an open mind to the abilities each adds while you think about the overall functionality of OBS.
- Hundreds of developers have created plugins for OBS that extend the functionality of the software.
- OBS plugins are easy to install manually and some developers even include auto-installation wizards to make the process easier.
- All OBS plugins are open source and can therefore be customized to fit your needs.
- This book includes reviews for a long list of reliable plugins that can significantly increase the capabilities of OBS for your video productions.
Additional chapters from the OBS Superuser Guidebook
- Chapter 1 - An Update on the Updates here
- Chapter 2 - How to Customize OBS here
- Chapter 3 - How to Optimize OBS here
- Chapter 4 - How to use the core features of OBS here
- Chapter 5 - How to use video filters in OBS here
- Chapter 6 - How to use audio filters in OBS here
- Chapter 7 - The Top 10 OBS Plugins here
- Chapter 8 - The Multiple RTMP Streaming Plugin here
- Chapter 9 - The Automatic Scene Switching Plugin here
- Chapter 10 - How to record multiple sources in OBS here
- Chapter 11 - How to dock sources with live video in OBS here
- Chapter 13 - How to use NDI in OBS here
- Chapter 14 - How to route Audio in and out of OBS here
- Chapter 15 - How to use Virtual Audio cables with OBS here
- Chapter 16 - How to use VST Audio Plugins for OBS here
- Bonus Chapter - How to fix audio sync issues in OBS here
- Chapter 16 - How to use use hotkeys with filters here
Check out our other articles about Open Broadcaster Software below:
- Updated - How to connect OBS and Zoom with VoiceMeeter and Headphone Monitoring - here.
- How to connect OBS with Zoom, here.
- What's new with OBS 26, here.
- OBS vs vMix a complete review here.
- How to use Zoom for Church Meetings and Worship here.
- Here are the top 10 OBS features you need to know about
- Getting dropped frames in OBS. Here are some new feature to help with that.
- Take a look at OBS 24 and all the new feature here.
- Increase your productivity with OBS and learn how to use hotkeys here
- Learn how to setup animated stinger transitions in OBS here
- Learn how to install the NDI plugin for OBS (and why you should) here
- Learn more about the latest OBS user interface (UPDATED for 2019) here
- Make your audio in OBS sound great with these VST 2 plugins here
- Learn how to fix the most common OBS issues! Audio and Video Sync! here
- Learn how to use OBS 20+ here
- Learn how to use NDI Cameras with OBS here
- Learn how to use the OBS Multiview here
- Learn OBS quickly with our ZERO to SIXTY tutorial video here
- Learn more about OBS settings and optimizing your settings for live streaming here
- Learn how to record videos using OBS here
- New OBS 24 feature allows broadcasters the ability to pause and restart video recordings. Learn more here.
- Learn how to add live annotations over your OBS productions here
- Learn how to add a webcam and set up a picture in picture scene inside OBS here
- Learn how to crop and rotate inputs inside OBS here
- Learn how to use color correction tools and LUTs here
- Learn the best way to connect OBS and Zoom here
- Learn how to connect OBS and Teams here
- Learn how to use countdown timers in Teams here
- Learn where OBS recordings are saved here
- Learn how to live stream to YouTube and Facebook with OBS for free here
- Learn about OBS 27's new features here