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OBS Studio as a Virtual Webcam

moniquelive profile image Cyber ・Updated on ・2 min read

In the year 2020 video conferencing exploded worldwide. It became a necessity for many (now) remote workers.

If you happen to be a lucky (debian-based) Linux user, this set of steps will show you how to use OBS Studio as a video source in any conferencing software (Google Meet, Zoom.us, Discord, etc.). Here we go:

Install OBS, libOBS, v4l loopback, qt-dev

sudo apt-get install obs-studio libobs-dev v4l2loopback-dkms qtbase5-dev
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Configure the kernel module (v4l2loopback)

sudo touch /etc/modules-load.d/v4l2loopback.conf
sudo echo v4l2loopback > /etc/modules-load.d/v4l2loopback.conf
sudo echo 'options v4l2loopback card_label="OBS Video Source" video_nr=10 exclusive_caps=1' > /etc/modprobe.d/v4l2-obs-studio.conf
sudo depmod -a
sudo modprobe v4l2loopback
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Parameters:

  • video_nr device number that will be created /dev/video10
  • card_label camera name that will show up on Meet/Zoom/Discord/etc
  • exclusive_caps to work with Google Chrome

Install the OBS plugin (v4l2sink)

git clone --recursive https://github.com/obsproject/obs-studio.git # OBS
git clone git@github.com:CatxFish/obs-v4l2sink.git # Plugin

cd obs-v4l2sink
mkdir build ; cd build
cmake -DLIBOBS_INCLUDE_DIR="../../obs-studio/libobs" -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=/usr ..
make -j
sudo make install
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(edit: I just found out how to install plugins on your home dir instead of messing around your system's filesystem)

It'll be installed in /usr/lib/obs-plugins, but let's install it on our home directory:

mkdir -p ~/.config/obs-studio/plugins/v4l2sink/{data,bin/64bit}
ln -sf /usr/lib/obs-plugins/v4l2sink.so ~/.config/obs-studio/plugins/v4l2sink/bin/64bit/
ln -sf /usr/share/obs-plugins/v4l2sink/locale ~/.config/obs-studio/plugins/v4l2sink/data/
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If all worked, on the Tools menu there'll be an item V4L2 Video Output.
Set the device to /dev/video10, the video format to YUY2. Click on Auto-Start, Start and create a scene...

Happy conferencing!

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