Bandicam vs. OBS: Which Is better?

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Ben Jacklin Edited by Ben Jacklin

Whether you’re a streamer, an educator, an influencer, or you’re creating video tutorials and training sessions for work, you need a quality screen recorder – but which do you choose? Let’s talk about Bandicam vs. OBS and how to choose the best screen recorder for your needs.

Comparison parameter

Bandicam

OBS Studio

Interface

User-friendly

Not intuitive

Performance

May lag with high-FPS and/or high-resolution video recordings

Relatively lightweight but may be too resource-hungry for older systems

Pricing

Starts at $39.95/PC

Free

View all features

Bandicam

Bandicam is a screen-recording platform for Windows. It gives users the ability to capture videos from a part or all of their screens, and it includes specific modes to record the user’s full screen, an individual application or window, or an external device, like a webcam or gaming system. Its biggest user demographic is made up of gamers and gaming streamers who want to capture their gameplay live without lag. Along with the ability to record your PC, Bandicam makes it easy to capture gameplay on Xbox and PlayStation systems. Users can choose to purchase a one-PC license for $39.95, a two-PC license for $79.90, or you can pay a bit more for a five- or 10-PC license. All licenses come with the same features and abilities.

Key features

  • Simultaneous screen and webcam recording

  • Webcam overlay

  • Real-time drawing functionality

Pros

  • Supports multiple video file formats

  • Allows users to schedule and automate screen recordings

  • Comes with a freeware program to repair broken videos recorded with Bandicam

Cons

  • Not compatible with Mac or Linux computers

  • Not suitable for games with high frame rates

Interface

As we compare OBS Studio vs. Bandicam, it’s worth noting that Bandicam has a fairly intuitive interface. Downloading the software is relatively quick and easy, and users can take screenshots or capture videos from their full screen, a custom area of their screen, an application, or on their Xbox or PlayStation. With that said, some users have reported difficulties using Game Recording Mode. Typically, if Bandicam isn’t working with Game Recording Mode, it's because the DirectX/OpenGL/Vulkan app isn’t running. If you come across this issue, try activating DirectX on your PC.

Performance

Bandicam records at a relatively high frame rate, but it may still create some lag when recording videos and newer games with high resolution and high FPS (frames per second). To record at a higher FPS in Bandicam, users must change their video settings to a lower resolution. This will allow you to record a video with decent quality, but you likely won’t be able to record in 4K. You may also want to close other applications and reduce the load on your CPU while recording to avoid lag.

Price

Unlike a lot of screen recorders, Bandicam doesn’t include multiple tiers with different features. Pricing starts at $39.95 for a single-PC license and increases based on how many PCs you want to add to the license. With that said, Bandicam does offer a bundle with Bandicut, which allows users to cut, split, trim, and join videos. Some other screen-recording programs include trimming and cutting features, though. So, you may want to shop around before you commit to the bundle. Likewise, the base prices for the Bandicam licenses do not include upgrades. An upgrade license can be purchased as an add-on for $27.79 per computer.

Features

Bandicam is generally fairly feature-rich. It includes live drawing and annotations, a feature that’s very popular with users recording live presentations and tutorials. It also includes a feature to schedule and automate screen recordings. So, if you want to record a live presentation or a livestreaming event at a given time, you can set Bandicam up to do this for you. It also supports multiple video export formats, which increases its utility for a lot of users.

OBS Studio

Which is better, OBS or Bandicam? OBS Studio is a freeware program that’s popular with a lot of live streamers. Gamers and gaming streamers enjoy OBS for its ability to capture multiple audio feeds simultaneously. So, you can record the audio from your gameplay and your commentary from your microphone at the same time. It’s also a lightweight program, which is helpful for users who want to record videos with high frame rates and/or high resolution without lags.

Key features

  • 2D and 3D video recording capabilities

  • Unlimited image and video scenes

  • Audio mixer with noise gate, suppression, and gain

Pros

  • Easy download, install, and setup

  • Free with no watermark

  • Flexible video-editing capabilities

Cons

  • Unintuitive user interface

  • Occasional system lag issues

Interface

OBS Studio’s interface is not the most intuitive on the market today. Users who have experience with other freeware programs, as well as screen recording and video editing, may find it easier to use. For newer users, though, OBS Studio’s interface can be a bit intimidating – and definitely comes with a bit of a learning curve. A lot of beginners find it necessary to watch video tutorials to find all of the functions and features that come with the software. While OBS doesn’t have a ton of online support, there are a lot of user-generated materials available. 

Performance

OBS Studio is relatively lightweight, and its developers point out that it can record multiple scenes simultaneously without lags. With that said, some users have reported that system lag can be an issue on some computers. If you have an older PC or Mac, and you need to record from multiple sources, you may run into some lag issues with OBS.

Price

Price is definitely one aspect where OBS wins in the contest between OBS vs. Bandicam. Because it’s open-source freeware, OBS is 100% free with no watermark and no limitations. Instead of opting between free and premium versions, users can get all of OBS’ features at no cost. With that in mind, newer users have reported difficulty learning how to navigate OBS Studio’s interface.

Features

OBS includes multiple video-editing tools, and it integrates with other freeware applications to create a more robust recording, editing, and streaming platform. With that said, OBS does not include features like live drawing and annotations. And you cannot schedule and automate your screen recordings ahead of time like you can with Bandicam.

OBS vs. Bandicam

So, which is better – Bandicam or OBS? Both programs are functional screen recorders that can capture video and audio, but they have a few key differences. The right choice for you will depend on your needs and how you want to use the software. As you consider your options, we recommend keeping a few factors in mind:

  • Interface: are you a video pro? Do you have a lot of experience picking up and adapting to new applications and different types of interfaces? If so, you may enjoy using OBS. If you don’t want to spend a lot of time figuring out how to record your screen, you may want to choose Bandicam.

  • Performance: Bandicam is a more resource-hungry application than OBS, but both will run without lags on newer computers with plenty of available RAM. Consider your system’s capabilities as you make your choice.

  • Price: if you need to stick to a very tight budget, OBS Studio may be your best bet. However, if you can allocate a few dollars to your screen recorder, and you want to save some time, you may want to opt for Bandicam.

Summary: Choose the right screen recorder for your next project

With the information in this article, you should have a clear idea of Bandicam vs. OBS Studio, in terms of performance, price, features, pros, and cons. Based on our reviews and tips, we hope you can make the right choice for your next screen-recording project. While both are feature-rich and relatively lightweight, OBS is less likely to cause lags than Bandicam. On the other hand, Bandicam is easier to use, has less of a learning curve, and includes features like live drawing and annotations.

If you’re still having trouble deciding, why not try downloading a free trial of Movavi Screen Recorder to discover the benefits of an affordable, feature-rich, user-friendly screen recorder with editing capabilities?

Frequently asked questions

Is Bandicam good quality?

Bandicam is a quality screen-recording program that allows users to capture a part or all of their screen, webcam footage, and gaming footage. It’s a good option for users who want a paid screen recorder, but it does have some limitations – and updates are not included in the base price of the program.

Why do people use Bandicam instead of OBS?

While OBS is free and includes a number of screen-recording and video-editing features, many users choose Bandicam because it is more user-friendly and includes a few features that OBS Studio lacks. For example, OBS does not include live drawing or annotations during screen-recording sessions.

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