If you have ever used OBS to record or live stream content on Twitch, you are probably using H.264, a video encoding that has been the standard for twenty years now. Used for tons of video services ranging from videos to YouTube to the TV series on Netflix, H.264 is everywhere, it could be compared to the JPEG of the photo world. However, over time increasingly efficient and high-performance formats have developed, but it is difficult to detach yourself from such a widespread standard.
Despite this, it is precisely video streaming that is taking this step forward: moving from the obsolete H.264 to codec open source AV1. In recent years we have seen Netflix approach the format, but now also the new version of OBS Studio has enabled support for AV1 encoding on AMD and Intel GPUs.
It’s an exciting step, although one that not everyone will be able to use right away. There are two basic types of video encoding: software (which relies completely on the CPU and is very CPU intensive) e hardwarewhich uses the GPU to speed up the encoding process. Hardware encoding is much faster and more efficient and doesn’t drive CPU usage to 100%, which is how most of us record movies or stream on platforms like Twitch today. But it’s also typically of lower quality.
AV1 has the advantage of much better quality than H.264 at lower bitrates, which is especially useful for streaming to Twitch where bandwidth is limited. This new version of OBS adds support for encoding AV1 per some specific GPUs: AMD’s RX7000 series and Intel’s Arc cards. In November OBS added support for tabs Nvidiama for 4000 series GPUs only which have a new encoder on board. Anyone with an old card Nvidia unfortunately he cannot take advantage of this. If you own one GPU AMD brand new however you can test the coding AV1 immediately.
This recent video from Linus Tech Tips gives an overview of the advantages and disadvantages of AV1, comparing the performance of the codec on Intel Arc. But not only that, there are a few more additions and improvements in the full patch notes, which you can read about below OBS Github. To continue reading other news, click who!