Being an entertainer can be stressful in itself, so it’s important that you’re using reliable streaming software to make your life a little bit easier.

We’ve been using streaming software for years, back when Twitch was still Justin TV (there’s a blast from the past), and over time we’ve tried and tested all different softwares. Here, we’ve narrowed it down to the best three we’ve used.

Streamlabs OBS

Streamlabs is the most popular free streaming software. It’s built on top of another streaming platform, OBS: Open Broadcaster Software. Streamlabs took OBS and simplified it, making this software one of the easiest to use and manage.

Streamlabs comes with a lot of features that you’ll probably be looking to use when you’re streaming as well, such as follower alerts, subscription alerts, and donation goals.

The ease of use makes Streamlabs a strong option when it comes to streaming your content live on Twitch, YouTube, or any other compatible streaming service.

Unfortunately, with all software that comes fully loaded with everything you might need, there may be a lot of features that you might not need or use. This drains resources on your computer when streaming and, depending on the specification of your computer, could cause it to struggle more than other streaming platforms available.

We do recommend Streamlabs though, because it’ll make your life a whole lot easier when it comes to streaming your content.

Pros

  • Free
  • Easy to use
  • Comes with a lot of features preinstalled
  • Works on Windows and Mac

Cons

  • Uses a lot of resources, sometimes resulting in bad performance
  • Can be overwhelming with all the options you have to choose from

https://streamlabs.com/

 

OBS: Open Broadcaster Software

As mentioned above, this is the software that Streamlabs is built on top of, so you already know it’s good. It’s also free.

OBS is a comprehensive streaming software that has the exact tools you need to go live. What it doesn’t come with however, is all the bells and whistles that you might be looking for.

Fortunately, the bells and whistles can be added as plugins to enable you with a fully-functioning software like Streamlabs, meaning you can still have your follower alerts, subscription alerts, and donation goals.

By adding only the things you need and use to OBS, this system causes less strain on your system and will naturally give you better performance. 

It does mean that you need to have a little bit of technical expertise to get the plugins up and running and be experienced in diagnosing any issues should they arise.

If you’re comfortable with that, then we’d definitely recommend OBS: Open Broadcaster Software over Streamlabs.

Pros

  • Free
  • Good performance due to less resources being used
  • Works on Windows and Mac

Cons

  • Slight learning curve to get it fully up and running
  • Doesn’t come with alerts built in

https://obsproject.com/

 

Xsplit Broadcaster

Xsplit is similar to Streamlabs with its ease of use, but unlike Streamlabs, it also has good performance at the same time. For a beginner, it’s a solid platform to get your stream up and running.

However, it has very little support for additional features that OBS and Streamlabs have, which you typically see on other people’s streams. This will quickly become an issue for people looking to add functionality to their stream similar to other gamers’.

It’s currently not as popular as Streamlabs or OBS, but based on what’s been happening with Xsplit over the last few years and the growth of their software, it could definitely be a stronger contender in the near future.

Pros

  • Free (with limitations)
  • Easy to use
  • Good performance due to less resources being used

Cons

  • Only works on Windows
  • Paid version unlocks more features ($5 per month or less if you buy a package)
  • Weak audio features

https://www.xsplit.com/