So, I’m part of a bunch of communities where people share knowledge about streaming or talk about streaming-related matters with each other and from time to time, one of those communities hosts “Stream Reviews” where everyone gives genuine advice to people that wanted to get reviewed. It’s a common thing on Twitch actually as there are tons of streamers on Twitch that want to find their own style or improve… and in the last one hosted by CastOrDie, I saw how someone was using “Display Capture” instead of Game or Window Capture and the reason why that is super bad is that when he switched to Discord to check something, everybody on his stream got to see that person’s private messages.
Hence, I wanted to talk about why Display Capture sucks and why you should just use Window or Game Capture depending on what you do!
OBS is a broadcasting software that allows you to share your gameplay or scenes or specific screens with other people around the world, live and in colour. Of course, you can also use the inferior “Streamlabs Desktop” (formerly known as “Streamlabs OBS” or “SLOBS”) or “Twitch Studio Beta” but personally I’d recommend just sticking to OBS as it is “essentially the same but better”. To capture a game or a window, most people end up using Game or Window Capture. This is because those have a lot better performance (in my experience) compared to Display Capture. Obviously, there are still usages for Display Capture – for instance, when you want to capture your desktop and show people processes like installing a program or a plugin or something… or when you want to capture multiple windows, which you also can do with multiple window captures but Display Capture works just easier. The issue with Display Capture, however, is that when you have something on the screen that you don’t want people to see… They’ll see it. Be it your pirated games, your bank details or your porn collection, people will see it all as long as it’s on there. Game Capture or Window Capture will only capture that specific game or window that you set up.
As for performance, I noticed that game capture tends to work the best for me when it comes to gaming followed by window capture, which I mostly use for emulators as NDS games require a bottom and a top window and having two window captures is easier for that… meanwhile, Display Capture is much worse when a lot of stuff is going on, especially because every single time you Alt+Tab out of the game, people can see that and every single glitch or flashing or whatever that happens in the process is noticeable on stream, causing issues for your viewers or at least impacting your stream’s quality. At the same time, some games may not get captured properly on Display Capture, even though you set it up correctly.
My biggest issue with people using Display Capture, though, is that you may accidentally leak direct messages that others shared with you or private information that you don’t want to share. Like in that case with that one streamer, it’s a breach of privacy even if “nobody is watching” or even if “there is no VOD” or whatever… it doesn’t matter. Someone trusted you with something or messaged you privately instead of @-ing you on Twitter about it, so that should be respected. If you reach out to someone with a concern you had or your feelings about them or an apology or you really needed help with something, you wouldn’t possibly want that to get out there. Same thing with pictures. Some pictures are okay in public. Others are not. The person who decides what is okay and what is not okay to be in public is the person depicted in them. If someone sends you a picture of themselves, they may not necessarily want that picture to end up on your stream. If they share information about themselves with you, they don’t want to be doxxed by people based on that information because of you.
Hence, don’t use Display Capture. Just use Game Capture and make it capture any game in the settings… You don’t even need multiple game captures or one scene per game. You can use one game capture for all of the games out there. Display Capture’s risks aren’t worth it, especially when it comes to your privacy and the privacy and trust of others, as well as the possibility of you showing something on stream that may get you banned. So, if you use Display Capture, don’t.