Today's Hard|Forum Post
Today's Hard|Forum Post

Tuesday January 08, 2019

OBS with the New NVIDIA NVENC Encoder Improvements Is Available to Beta Test

Open Broadcaster Software (OBS) is a multifaceted streaming and capture software solution that has become popular with broadcasters on YouTube, Twitch, and other live-stream platforms. To get the highest quality broadcasts, an expensive dual PC solution is typically utilized where the game is played on one PC and a second PC captures the game footage and uploads it to the streaming service. NVIDIA announced at CES 2019 that they were collaborating with the OBS development team to lower NVIDIA GPU usage by 66% and raise the overall quality of NVIDIA GPU encoding. This work resulted in the NVIDIA NVENC encoder in NVIDIA RTX products achieving parity with the x264 medium quality preset in OBS. This means broadcasters that previously used dual PC solutions can create high quality content with just one PC utilizing an NVIDIA RTX GPU! The quality improvements are for the new NVIDIA RTX series of products, but older NVIDIA GPUs will also benefit from the speed increase.

OBS forum administrator "dodgepong" has announced that a beta version of OBS that utilizes the new NVIDIA NVENC encoder and NVIDIA SDK is available for download. He quickly tempers OBS user's enthusiasm by stating, "The quality improvements you may have been hearing about will largely only be seen on Turing GPUs (RTX 20XX), but the performance improvements should be measurable on all GPUs that have NVENC (GTX 6XX and higher)." These improvements have come about by OBS no longer sending frames to system RAM prior to being sent to the NVENC encoder. "Instead, the frames are sent directly from VRAM, which should noticeably reduce resource usage."

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GeForce RTX GPUs are up to 15% more efficient (i.e. require 15% less bitrate at the same quality level) than previous-generation Pascal GPUs when streaming in H.264, thanks to architectural improvements to the dedicated hardware encoder, NVENC. For you as a streamer, this means that GeForce RTX GPUs can stream with superior image quality compared to x264 Fast, and on par with x264 Medium. We have been collaborating with OBS, the industry-leading streaming application, to help them release a new version with improved support for NVIDIA GPUs. Scheduled to debut at the end of January, the new OBS will reduce the FPS impact of streaming by up to 66% compared to the currently shipping version.

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