If you want to stream you’d need a PC, an internet connection, and the streaming gear, but most importantly you’d need a streaming software that helps you and makes the overall experience of streaming a little less tiring and more enjoyable.
OBS vs XSplit
When it comes to streaming software OBS and Xsplit are the two names you would come across more than any other software. These 2 have been able to create the most impact among users and hence are two of the most widely used software today. Both of them offer a unique set of features for the user and today we are going to see how they rank, head to head.
Ease of Use
A software might have a lot of functions and every tool that the user needs but if it’s not easy to use then it will not sell. OBS offers Auto Configuration wizard when you launch the app for the first time and what it does is do all the backend work for you like setting everything to the optimum levels according to your PC and your internet connection. The interface is also cleaner than XSplit but the learning curve tends to be a little longer as compared to the latter. Beginners might find it a little hard and rather complicated to get started and some might need expert supervision to get started.
XSplit offers a very straightforward kind of setup. The interface is not as user-friendly as the OBS but once you get started and are aware of the ‘know-hows’ of the application, you will find it easier to work with XSplit. Initially, the user might have to work on settings like Resolution, Bandwidth, etc which is automatically taken care of by the auto-configuration Wizard of the OBS but attractive features like in-game overlays which are not present on OBS provide a compelling reason for users to choose XSplit.
Interface and Setup
Auto-Configuration Wizard automatically optimizes the performance based on how the application is used. It shows new & optimized options for recording and streaming as well as optimization for use with the virtual camera. The settings can be customized anytime for getting the most performance out of the application. But once the software is set up the interface of the OBS looks a little complicated. There are a lot of sections from scene and scene to sources, audio mixer, and Controls. While these provide you quick access to your most-used commands but functions like these are aimed at people who have experience of streaming.
XSplit on the other hand as a more simplified interface that displays the current scene and also gives you the facility to swap between different scenes. Advanced controls such as ‘Audio Mixer’ can be accessed through the Extensions and Tools menu. When XSplit is installed you have to log in to one of the four platforms i.e. XSplit, Twitch, Facebook, or YouTube, and when you log in your account details and settings are automatically imported which makes setting up of the stream easy and quick. OBS allows you to import filters, swap your broadcast source and change the scene transitions. ‘Studio mode’ is a feature that often comes in handy, it basically allows you to have a preview of the stream before you implement any change. You can change the scenes in OBS to but doing so takes a little longer.
Both XSplit and OBS fare equally in terms of performance. The former uses more resources than the latter which is attributed to the fact that it comes preloaded with all the plugins and overlays. One can argue that if both of the software are loaded with the same amount of plugins they would take an equal amount of time to startup and would use the same amount of resources. OBS being an open-source software fares better in recording, whether it’s the resolution or the ease of recording but the interface lags and frozen screens are incurred. XSplit, which lacks in the resolution of recording and ease of use makes up for it in the ease of use of the software.
OBS comes out as the clear winner in this category.
Being an open-source software the number of plugins that are available for OBS are plentiful. Just go to the
OBS project website and you can find plugins categorized by themes, scripts, guides. Xsplit on the other hand only has a relatively less number of plugins that are made by the parent company Splitmedia and authorized partners. They can be found in the application in the “plugin store” option under the “tools” section. However, the integration of plugins is better in XSplit. So it’s a battle of customizability options and integration of those plugins but overall the OBS is a better one of the two.
XSplit has more features as compared to OBS.
It offers direct uploading of videos to multiple platforms, this makes the software quite useful for multiplayer role-playing games (MMORPG), on the go editing is also one of the salient features of Xsplit. While XSplit may allow you to make private recordings and have a green screen built-in, these features come at a premium. You can do everything that OBS has to offer for free while the full functionality of the XSplit can only be achieved by purchasing different versions.
XSplit offers video and audio delay, supports interactive flash files, and offers simultaneous streaming while OBS supports more formats of video than the former, allows the users to make their own plugins, and is available across Mac, Windows, and Linux. OBS also has an active and very strong dev community that has a plethora of posts and people ready to help at any point of time.
Audio and Video Quality
XSplit has different alternatives for local recording, which are primarily video codecs like x264 and x265.
This makes it a better alternative when it comes to YouTube uploads. It also offers features that enable Video and Audio Optimization. OBS on the other hand lacks features like these. While it may lag behind its rival in this aspect it more than makes up for it by providing support for multiple file formats, VLC included. XSplit also offers inbuilt functionality to improve the quality of stream audio, the user take help of the ‘broadcaster audio preview’ to access the level of audio mixing. An extension called ‘Per Scene Audio’ allows the user to monitor audio during different scenes.
Top OBS features
Top XSplit features
Which streaming software is the best?
Both of the software are great in their own right. If money is not an issue then XSplit provides a good value albeit lesser room for customizations but the overall experience is better as compared to OBS. If you’re just starting out, can’t allocate money to streaming software just yet, and want as much control over the software as you can then go for OBS. To be honest, OBS is the way to go as it is completely free, has an active development community who are actually listening to their users and actively updating the software.