OBS Lossless Captures

This page shows you how to use a custom-configured “portable” build of the Open Broadcast Software to get excellent quality, lossless game captures.  You won’t be able to dial in the exact fps of the console, but some people might prefer this software over others, as it’s free and open-source.  If you find OBS useful, please consider supporting their team:  https://www.patreon.com/obsproject


Required Software:

This capture method uses mostly free software.  Please download and install the following:

OBS Lossless RGB*:  https://www.retrorgb.com/assets/OBS_Datapath_Capture_2022-01-27.zip

No codecs are needed for recording, but if you have trouble playing the UTVideo files back, I like MPC-HC, no installation needed:  https://portableapps.com/apps/music_video/mpc-hc-portable

*There are no code changes to OBS; This isn’t a fork, just a custom-configured, “portable” build of OBS.  This is hosted here for free, in accordance with the OBS team’s license.

Installation and Configuration:

  • Extract the zip file to a permanent location on your PC.
  • The main exe is “OBS Capture\bin\64bit\obs64.exe”.
  • I like to create a shortcut to make launching it easier.
    • Right click on “obs64.exe” and hit “create shortcut”
    • Drag that shortcut to your desktop.  I recommend renaming it something like “OBS Uncompressed” so you don’t confuse it with other OBS installations.
  • Open the software and you’ll be at the main window.  If you’re using a Datapath Vision capture card, you’ll need to use beeanyew’s “RGBEasy” plugin that’s to capture video, not “Video Capture Device” – This is pre-installed.  More info on this below, but let’s check other settings first….
  • Hit “Settings” in the lower right, then “Output” on the left.
  • Now set your recording path.  Also, make sure “Lossless” is selected for uncompressed captures:
  • Click “Audio” on the left and set your settings.  I normally leave this as-is, but you might want to set it to “mono” for non-stereo consoles:
  • Now click the “Video” option on the left.
  • Set the resolution to match exactly what your source is.  Then set your framerate:
  • Click on the “Advanced” tab on the left.
  • Set the Color Format to RGB, Color Space to 709 and Color Range to Full.  You may need to adjust space and range based on your source, but I always recommend setting them as seen below.


Capture Card Direct-Capture Method

Warning:  If you’re using the Datapath direct capture method, make SURE you’re using beeanyew’s “RGBEasy” plugin (included in the above zip) and you’ve completed this page and your Vision window is loaded and configured before starting!!!

There are three changes to make, each time you capture via this method:

– Add a video source by pressing the + button and selecting “Video Capture Device” (unless you’re using a Datapath card, then choose RGBEasy as shown in the first picture on this page):

– You can name this anything you’d like, but I normally leave it default:

– Now here’s the very important capture settings that you need to get exactly right!
– Set the “Device” to the capture card you’re using.
– Resolution/FPS Type = Custom
– Enter the exact resolution that’s being sent to your capture card.  If you’re doing analog capture via a Datapath card, make sure the resolution matches what’s listed on the Input tab of the Vision window!
– FPS = Highest FPS
– Video Format should be set to what you’re capturing.  In most cases it will be XRGB.
– YUV Color Space should be set to match the source device*
– YUV Color Range = Full*
– Buffering = Auto-Detect
*Neither should matter for RGB captures, but I always leave it at 709/Full

– Hit OK

– Right click on the video inside the OBS window and set your preview scaling.  If you just need to view the window, I recommend leaving it at “Scale to Window” so the entire image will fit.  If you need to use the screen for calibration, you can set it to “Canvas” and get a 100% “zoom” of the image.

– Make sure your audio device is listed and working.  You might need to add another source and configure your Audio Input Device.

– Hit “Start Recording” and your uncompressed video will save to the target directory!!!

– Here’s a quick example of the results of this 720p capture, uploaded directly to YouTube with no other post-processing:


Window Capture:

Another method of video capture that’s often used is recording the preview window of your capture card.  This logic is that you can properly calibrate all of the settings directly via the capture card and not have any calibration via the recording software.

– Fully configure your capture card and leave the preview window open.

– In OBS, add a new source and select Window Capture, then name it whatever you’d like.

– Next, select your capture card’s window from the drop-down menu.
– I also recommend unchecking “Capture Cursor”, so you won’t accidentally get an arrow in your recording.

– Then hit OK.

– Go into the Settings menu and select Video

– Make sure the Base (Canvas) and Output (Scaled) Resolutions are both set to exactly the same as what your video capture device shows!

– Hit OK to go back to the main OBS screen.

– Right click on the video inside the OBS window and set your preview scaling.  For low-resolution sources, I normally leave it set to “Canvas” to get the sharpest image.  If you’d like a bigger preview window, you can set it to “Scale to Window”, then adjust the size of the program:

– Make sure your audio device is listed and working.  You might need to add another source and configure your Audio Input Device.

– Then just hit “Start Recording” to begin capturing.  Here’s an example of a Sega Genesis game captured with this method, then scaled using the technique described in the next section:


Click here to go to the next section: Scaling Retro Gaming CapturesClick here to go to the main capture page.