OBS Studio is regarded as one of the best open-source screen recorders because of its powerful recording features. However, when recording the screen with OBS, many users reported that they experienced the OBS display capture black screen issue. If you encountered the same problem and are looking for solutions. Just follow this post to find ways to fix OBS black screen issue now.
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Carina Carina | Updated on Aug 11, 2023

Possible Reasons about OBS Window Capture Black Screen

When recording screens or doing live streaming, the most common issue you may come across is the black screen. But before fixing the OBS Studio black screen issue, let’s have a look at the possible causes of the issue:

# 1. PC in an error state: If you leave your PC running for a long period, it might end up in an error state and hinder the overall performance, which may lead to the OBS Studio black screen issue.

# 2. Lack of Administrator Rights: If you are sharing the entire screen with OBS, there may be some situations where the computer restricts its access and then OBS cannot show you the contents. To solve this issue, you just need to start the tool after taking administrative access.

# 3. Overlocking: Overlocking can boost your PC’s performance, but it also has adverse effects on the application. It can turn down your screen which causes you can’t see anything. You can try disabling overlocking to recover from this situation.

# 4. Compatibility Issue: Sometimes the OBS showing black screen may be caused by a compatibility issue. As there are two OBS versions available (32-bit and 64-bit), the one you installed may not be supported by your operating system. System upgrades might also cause compatibility problems.

# 5. Conflicting Software: Other comparable capturing applications may be operating in the background. This program may clash with OBS and trigger a race for resources, causing OBS to malfunction and not perform correctly.

# 6. Dedicated Graphics Interfering: When you launch an application or a game, the operating system will determine whether to allocate resources from the dedicated graphics card or the normal motherboard-integrated graphics. This choice may harm running programs, and OBS may turn to the black screen.

#7. Wrong capturing settings: OBS provides many recording options, like a specific recording area and full screen. So it can sometimes cause glitches if you enable the wrong recording settings.

Also Read: OBS Lagging Fixed | OBS Encoding Overloaded | OBS Audio Out of Sync | OBS Not Capture Full Screen

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How to Fix OBS Black Screen Issue?

In Part 1, we concluded the possible reasons for OBS recording black screen which also occurred when users went to live stream. Once we’ve identified the cause of the problem, we can take the appropriate troubleshooting steps to fix it. The following part included the remedies for OBS showing black screen. Let’s see how to fix OBS black screen issue.

1. Restart OBS Studio or the Computer

The most straightforward way to solve the OBS black screen issue is to quit OBS and run it again. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t. Just give it a try. If you are still facing the black screen problem, then try to restart the computer.

Turn off your computer for a while and remove all power sources from desktop computer or take out the battery from laptop. Hold the power button for a while to make sure all power is unloaded. Leave it for several minutes and then restart your computer. Check if the problem got resolved. If not, then move on.

2. Update OBS

The black screen may also occur due to the outdated version of OBS. You can check the latest version of OBS and download the newest OBS to eliminate the issue.

Here is a how-to guide:
1. Launch OBS Studio and click on “Help” from its top menu bar;
2. Select “Check For Updates” from the drop-down list.
3. Then OBS will check for updates, and a new window will pop up if there’s a new software update available.

OBS Black Screen Fix

3. Grant Administrator Rights

As stated before in Part 1, if you lack administrator rights, you need to take access to administrative and then run OBS again to solve OBS black screen issue.

Gain Administrator rights as follows:
1. Right-click the OBS Studio icon on your computer screen;
2. Select the “Properties” from the context menu and switch to the “Compatibility” tab;
3. Check “Run this program as an administrator” option and click on "Apply".

Restart your computer and launch OBS again to check if the trouble is resolved.

OBS Recording Black Screen

4. Disable Overlocking

Overlocking allows users to have better frame rates and performance but once it reaches the threshold temperature, the clock speed will return to the default and it is cooled down. And the OBS may be affected and display a black screen if your PC has enabled overlocking. Then you should disable it by visiting the setting option, and you can also launch the overlocking-related software. Then launch OBS again.

5. Select the Correct Version of OBS

As Windows operating system and OBS are both shipped in two versions (32-bit and 64-bit), if you install the wrong version, then OBS may not work and show a black screen. So we need to first check the version of the operating system.

1. Right-click on This PC icon on your computer screen and select “Properties”. Then you can see your system type.
2. Check the installed OBS type. If you installed the wrong type, just reinstall it and go to the OBS official website to download the right one.

6. Change the Compatibility Mode

If your OBS are in the right type with your computer, but you still have a black screen issue, you can change the Windows compatibility mode. Some users reported that the latest version of Windows doesn’t support OBS, so you can change the compatibility to Windows 7 or disable the compatibility mode, which can also instantly solve the issue.

Follow the below guide to change compatibility mode:
1. Find OBS and right-click it, then select “Properties”.
2. Choose "Compatibility" tab and check the option “Run this program in compatibility mode for”.
3. Select “Windows 7” or “Windows 8” and apply the change.

Now launch OBS and see whether the issue is solved. If not, go on to other solutions.

OBS Showing Black Screen

7. Check Conflict Software

If there is some additional software related to video recording and screen capturing running in the background, you may also find that your OBS records a black screen. To solve this, you need:

1. Click “Windows + R” and type “appwiz.cpl” in the dialogue box, and press OK;
2. A new window will pop up, and you can look for the recording apps you may install on your PC and right-click them to uninstall them.

OBS Display Capture Black Screen

8. Enable Multi-adapter Compatibility

OBS has a feature called Multi-adapter Compatibility, which is available on devices that have SLI or Crossfire technology. After enabling the capability, you can connect two graphics cards and utilize them both in your gameplay or applications to fix the OBS black screen.

9. Choose Correct GPU for OBS Studio

OBS black screen may also appear if you are running the software on the wrong GPU. When the system has two graphics cards but the application uses a different graphics card than the game is using, your OBS may show black screen. To solve this issue, you need:

1. Right-click anywhere on your screen and select the “Nvidia Control Panel”;
2. Navigate to the “Manage 3D Settings” tab and open the “Program Settings” section;
3. Find the OBS display capture. If you can’t find it, click “Add” and search for an OBS.exe file;
4. Choose the best graphics processor for screen capture. For streaming, the NVIDIA Processor is the best solution. For simple screen capture, the standard GPU is generally sufficient;
5. Save the changes and restart your computer. Then launch OBS to see if the black screen error is fixed.

OBS Window Capture Black Screen

Tips: This method is only available if your computer has a dedicated graphics card. If you don't have one, consider getting one for better performance.

10. Change OBS Settings

OBS allows users to set the configurations according to their preference. However, if the settings you customized are conflict with the software, then OBS will turn to black screen. To change the settings, follow the below steps:

1. Launch OBS and go to its “File” > “Settings”;
2. Make the changes in the settings:
Disable “Force scaling.”
Disable “Transparency.”
Disable “FPS Lock.”
Disable “Anti-cheat.”
Disable “Overlays.”
Enable “Record Cursor.”
Downscale the FPS and lower the resolution.
Change the x264 preset.

OBS Records Black Screen

If you use this tool for the first time and get unfamiliar with OBS, you can take some help from YouTube or other social sites.

11. Choose an Alternative Recorder

If you don’t want to detect the reasons one by one or you think the methods are too complicated, then you can also directly turn to another screen recording software to get rid of the OBS recording black screen issue. The next part will introduce a highly-recommended screen recorder. Please keep reading!

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This post has concluded the possible reasons for OBS Studio black screen and offered the major remedies to the issue. Hope you can fix the OBS black screen issue. Or you can consider using the provided alternative program to record screens without hassle.
That’s all. Thanks for reading!

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