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Game Streaming: Windowed or Fullscreen & Downscaled?

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I've recently started streaming some Let's Plays for myself and my buds on Twitch, and currently am trying to have a stream quality that's not absolute crud despite a similarly wonderful upload speed of 750kbps. I'm using Open Brodcaster Software (OBS) to stream it, with some relevant settings in place: CBR@560kbps, 1080p base with 3x downscale (360p), 30FPS, x264 preset to medium.

My hardware specs in my sig mean I'm not wanting for local resources, plus the sorts of games I'm playing (Katamari Damacy on PCSX2, Rogue Galaxy, assorted indie or 2D games where art style trumps visuals) at the moment means I can kind of get away with low-res 360p@30FPS streams without overly impacting the quality of the gameplay and subsequently my friends' enjoyment of me bumbling through the games. rolleyes.gif

I do wonder, though, if I can get my stream to be a bit cleaner. I'm playing a bit with the settings, but my main question is if I should play in fullscreen at my monitor's native 1080p resolution then downscaling it to 360p, or if I should play windowed at lower resolutions to minimize downscaling. Does it matter from an image quality point of view? Does downscaling it from native act like SSAA on the output resolution?
     
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post #2 of 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by firagabird View Post

Does it matter from an image quality point of view? Does downscaling it from native act like SSAA on the output resolution?

Yes, and yes. Downscaling will smooth out jaggies in the image in a very similar manner to SSAA.
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post #3 of 3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blameless View Post

Yes, and yes. Downscaling will smooth out jaggies in the image in a very similar manner to SSAA.

Thanks for the reply. I tried doing a bit of experimenting by varying the window resolution of Katamari Damacy on my PCSX2 and downscaling each to 360p. I then took screenshots of approximately the same moment in each video, which I'll post below:
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
1080p Windowed, downscaled to 360p on OBS


720p Windowed, downscaled to 360p on OBS


360p Windowed, no downscaling on OBS


1080p Windowed, 360p base resolution on OBS i.e. using Edit Scene on OBS, the game capture was shrunk to fit the screen


Something odd I noticed, though, is that when I compare the edges of the 3D models, like the Prince's body on the lower right, they seem to be sharpest on the 360p windowed + no downscale combo, whereas the other screens show blurry edges. Is this considered a better image quality, or does it mean the non-downscaled solution is superior?
     
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