On Using OBS For Lower Thirds In Google Hangouts

We pretty much all use Google Hangouts for our streams. What has been a pain lately is the lower thirds. All the plugins for Google Hangouts are done through third party programs. With all the changes to live streaming that YouTube is doing, they are restricting the ability for those third party programs to access the system properly.

But FEAR NOT, I think I have found a work around using the “VirtualCam” feature in OBS. The first step is to download and install the free version of OBS at the link below. NOTE: During installation you may be prompted to upgrade several Windows components before you can continue. This is normal.

OBS Open Broadcaster Software

NOTE: You may also need to install OBS-ViritualCam plugin as well.


Once OBS is installed run it and configure the following setting.

Go to Sources, click the + then Image, from there add your lower third image. NOTE: Once the lower third image is loaded, you may have to right click it in the Sources box, go to Transform and adjust it to fit the screen.

NOTE: If you were previously using the built in lower third from Google Hangouts instead of a custom lower third you will need to create a custom lower third image. You can do this through Photoshop or any similar program. The image needs to be in .PNG format, 1920×1080 in size and have a transparent background.

Now go back to Sources, click the +, go to Video Capture Device. From there add your webcam.

Next you will need to set your Resolution/FPS Type to Custom and change the Resolution to 1280×720. NOTE: Once you are done adding the camera you may need to use the Up & Down Arrows in Sources to move your lower third image back on top of the camera feed.

The final step of setup is to mute all the audio sources present under the Mixer section.

You are now ready to start the VirtualCam by going to Tools, VirtualCam and clicking Start.


Be sure that you have your settings in Google Hangouts set to OBS-Camera, Communications-Microphone and Communications-Speakers. NOTE: If you are using a USB headset, microphone, etc the last two of these may be different for you.

You should now be ready to broadcast! NOTE: Do not forget to close OBS when you are done broadcasting.

Chris Out!