One of the most popular pieces of open source software, OBS Studio, gets a major update.
It is one of the best screen recorders on Linux and in fact almost all other desktop platforms (Windows/macOS) as well. This version brings a lot of new features, which also build on the numerous previous features.
Let’s take a look at what’s new!
🆕 OBS Studio 28.0: Shocking Release
The last release we covered, OBS 27.2, brought official Flatpak support, as well as a host of UI improvements.
With version 28.0 we are getting some of the key highlights including:
- UI framework update (Qt6).
- HDR and 10-bit color support.
- Native Apple Silicon support.
- New default theme (Yami).
- Encoding improvements.
Before you try it out, let me briefly talk about some improvements.
Enhanced color and high dynamic range support
As OBS Studio becomes more and more popular, it was time to support more modern use cases. One such case is the use of HDR to allow for significantly greater realism without “cropping” the screen. This means that whites can be whiter and blacks can be blacker, without losing the accuracy of the colors in between.
Speaking of colors, OBS Studio 28.0 also introduces 10-bit color support. Essentially, this means that OBS-captured footage can support up to a billion colors, compared to a measly 16 million for 8-bit color. The result is almost complete removal of color blocking in dark environments, as well as smoother gradients without dithering.
Native support for Apple Silicon
Although not of particular relevance to Linux users, this release is the first with native support from Apple Silicon. We’ve already seen native ARM support for other platforms (in particular, Linux and Raspberry Pi), and it’s great to see this support extend to Apple’s ARM platform.
However, it should be noted that not all plugins will work out of the box on these builds, as many rely on some x86-only components. So using the x86 version may still be better, at least until all the plugins you use are updated.
Updated UI framework to Qt6 and new theme (Yami)
Qt, the software used to make the graphical components of OBS, has had a major update within this release. Previously, OBS Studio used Qt5, the same software that KDE Plasma is built with.
OBS Studio 28.0 finally brings support for Qt6, which has a lot of benefits for all platforms. First of all, it means that OBS Studio can use Vulkan or Metal instead of the deprecated OpenGL API. For users on high DPI monitors, OBS Studio should now scale correctly as well.
Unfortunately, this change also means that some older platforms will no longer be supported. So if you are using Ubuntu 18.04 or earlier, Windows 7 or 8, or a 32-bit operating system, it may not work.
One can expect a visual makeover with the UI framework update. And the new default theme gives you that. It looks quite clean compared to its previous version.
🛠️ Other changes
In addition to those mentioned above, OBS Studio brings a couple of other smaller changes. These include:
- Updated AMD encoder on Windows.
- ScreenCaptureKit support on macOS 12.5+, resulting in significantly improved capture performance.
- Significant improvements to the Apple VT encoder on macOS.
- Application-specific audio capture on Windows.
- NVIDIA background removal built into Windows.
For more details, you can refer to the official release notes.
Suggested reading 📖
📥 Download OBS Studio 28.0
The best way to get the latest version is to install the Flatpak package via Flathub. You can also get it using the Steam client on any platform.
For other platforms and options, you can head over to their GitHub releases section to download packages.
Overall, this release has brought a lot of new and exciting changes, and I’m curious to see how they affect people’s workflows.
Unfortunately, if you are on KDE, the main user interface may look somewhat broken, due to an incompatibility with the KDE Breeze theme. For everyone else though, I wouldn’t expect any major bugs.
Share your thoughts on this release in the comments below!