The Ultimate Guide to Separate Audio Sources in OBS Studio

Are you tired of not having complete control over your game audio, Discord voice chat, music, and microphone while streaming? Fear not, creating separate audio sources in OBS Studio is the solution you’ve been waiting for.

There’s no need to spend money on expensive equipment like a GoXLR or Elgato Wave microphone. You also won’t be lost in some super complicated software like Voicemeeter. This guide will show you a new method that can be done entirely within OBS Studio, without plugins.

Step 1: OBS Audio Settings

Let’s make sure our audio settings are set up correctly before adding individual audio sources. Open up your OBS settings, head to the Audio tab, and ensure that Desktop Audio and Desktop Audio 2 are both disabled to prevent duplicate audio.

OBS Studio - Audio Devices
OBS Audio Settings

Also, make sure your microphone is correctly added in the Mic/Auxiliary Audio dropdown. Once you’ve made these adjustments you can close the settings.

Step 2: Creating a Nested Scene

To avoid repetitive work, we can use a nested scene for all our individual audio sources instead of adding them to every single scene separately. Add a new scene named [NS] Audio Sources (the NS helps remind us it’s a Nested Scene). Now we can proceed to add our separate audio sources in OBS.

Creating a Nested Scene in OBS
Adding a Nested Scene

Step 3: Adding Audio Sources

Let’s add our first audio source, which is for music. Keep in mind that the application you want to capture must be open, and playing audio, or else it won’t appear. This could be Spotify, Apple Music, or any other music app.

Play some music and switch back to the new nested scene in OBS. Add a new Application Audio Capture source and name it Music to keep things organized. Next, locate Spotify.exe (or the application you’re using to play music) in the Window dropdown.

Set Window Match Priority to Match title, otherwise find window of same executable. This will ensure the correct Spotify executable always gets found.

OBS Separate Audio Properties
Application Audio Capture Properties

You should see a new fader in the OBS Audio Mixer displaying the audio levels for your new Music source. This is completely separate from the other PC audio sources like system sounds, game sounds, or Discord voice chat.

Next, repeat this process for every other audio source you want to capture. For example, add a source for Discord called Chat, one for game audio, and one for your browser if you use it to watch YouTube on stream.

Separating Audio Sources in OBS Studio
Separate Audio Sources in Nested Scene

Step 4: Adding your Nested Scene as a Source

After adding all the audio sources to the nested scene, you can add it as a source to your regular scenes. This way, you can easily control all the independent audio sources in the Audio Mixer – that’s the beauty of using the nested scene method!

Go to each of your regular scenes (e.g. Game, Just Chatting, Starting Soon, etc.) and add a new source. Select Scene as the source type, and then select the already existing nested scene which should be named [NS] Audio Sources.

Adding a Nested Source in OBS
Add Existing Nested Scene

You now have full control over each audio source for your stream, and you can adjust levels, mute sources, and add advanced filters as desired.

Step 5: Adjust Audio Levels with Stream Deck

If you use a Stream Deck, you can add actions to adjust the volumes of these independent sources with ease, without having to switch back to OBS.

Simply add the Audio Mixer key which you’ll find under the OBS Studio category. Next, select the audio source you want to control (e.g. Music), and then select whether you want to adjust the volume up, down, or toggle mute.

Stream Deck - Audio Controls in OBS
Stream Deck Audio Mixer Controls

Step 6: Automatically Lower Music when Speaking

If you want to automatically lower your music volume (or any other audio source) when you speak, you can set up audio ducking or side-chaining. To do this, select your music source in OBS, add the Compressor filter, and select your microphone as the Sidechain/Ducking Source.

You’ll want to adjust the filter settings to fit your setup. Here are some suggested starting points that you can use:

OBS Studio - Audio Ducking Settings
Audio Ducking Filter in OBS
  • Ratio – This is the ratio that your music source will be reduced by when you’re speaking. The higher the Ratio value, the more aggressive the compression. Generally, a ratio of around 4:1 is recommended for audio ducking, but it can be adjusted based on the specific audio source and your preferences.
  • Threshold – This is the volume level that your microphone needs to reach before ducking is applied to the music source. Since you want this to apply every time you’re speaking, set this to around -40 dB.
  • Attack – This controls how quickly the audio ducking effect is applied to the music source. To prevent the effect from sounding abrupt, it’s suggested to set this to about 50 ms.
  • Release – This controls how quickly the audio level will return to full volume when you stop speaking. Set this to around 500 ms.

It’s important to test that the audio ducking filter is working correctly. To do this, play some music and observe how the audio levels drop whenever you start speaking, and increase when you stop speaking. If you want the music levels to be even lower when you speak, adjust the ratio value of the filter to 5:1 or higher.

For additional assurance, run a test recording using OBS to hear how the new audio ducking effect sounds before going live. This way, you can make adjustments to ensure your audio is exactly the way you want it before streaming live to your audience.


Separating audio sources in OBS Studio will give you complete control over your audio and enhance the overall streaming experience both for yourself, and your audience.

Using the nested scene method, you can easily add and locate individual audio sources, enabling you to adjust levels, mute sources, and even apply advanced filters.

Looking to take your microphone quality to the next level? Check out our Advanced Mic Settings guide for tips on how to get the best sound out of your microphone in OBS.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I separate audio in OBS?

Separating Audio Sources in OBS Studio

To separate audio in OBS, you can use the Application Audio Capture source with nested scenes. First, ensure that your audio settings are set up correctly. Next, add individual audio sources to the nested scene using the Application Audio Capture source. Finally, add the nested scene as a source to your regular scenes to control all the independent audio sources in the Audio Mixer.

How do I record separate audio tracks in OBS?

To record separate audio tracks in OBS, go to the Output tab in the Settings menu, and select Advanced Output Mode. Then, select the Recording tab and enable the number of audio tracks you require. Next, add the audio sources you want to record to separate tracks and assign them to the appropriate track in the Audio Mixer. Finally, start your recording, and you should have separate audio tracks for each source.

Video Guide

As with all of our guides, below we have included a full video tutorial if that is your preferred method of learning.

Separate Game Audio, Discord, Music in OBS

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The founder of Gaming Careers with a borderline unhealthy obsession for cameras, microphones, and all things streaming. He gets mistaken for Stephen Merchant at least 5 times a day.

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