There are two streaming platform that dominate the broadcasting market right know, when we speak about, overlays, notifications, designs, sounds, and receiving donations. In this article we will compare this two, Streamlabs vs. StreamElements. We already wrote about Streamlabs, with a detailed guide, how you can set it up, but let’s see, how they relate to each other.
Streamlabs and Streamelements very similar in features, but Streamlabs have a software which you can install, while StreamElements uses an OBS plugin to adapt their functions.
To be able to determine which fits your needs, we need to go into details, because of the similarity between them. However you can find a short table at the end of the article, If you want the extract of this article.
Main differencies – Streamlabs vs. StreamElements
In the following we going through point by point, to see how Streamlabs, or StreamElements functionality stands out from the other one. The first and foremost is the installation process and the system behind the two platform.
Streamlabs as a platform, have a software called Streamlabs OBS. The program is built upon OBS Studio, which an open-source broadcasting software.
While, OBS Studio can be a little basic, compared to Streamlabs OBS, which has functions like:
- Twitch, YouTube, etc. Chat,
- Predefined, and unique overlays,
- More advanced transitions,
- Alertboxes, event and goal trackers,
- Chatbot – called Cloudbot
Basically all the features, that you can find on the website, you can use instantly in the software, without installing or do magic with some code.
But that basic functions in OBS Studio works perfectly, while Streamlabs OBS, which packed full with features, sometimes stays behind in performance.
In contrast, StreamElements recommends their plugin, which connects to OBS Studio, called SE.Live. You need to install that as well, but after the setup you will find the settings inside OBS Studio on a new tab.
Therefore, your main program, OBS Studio will not change, but gets the features that StreamElements gives, like:
- Overlays, Themes,
- Stream chat,
- Widgets, media requests,
- Alerts, goal trackers,
So let’s see the specifics for each platform.
Overlays one of the best features that you can get for free in each platform. With these themes you can make a unique broadcast, and specify for each game you playin’. StreamElements offers more free overlays than Streamlabs, however the basic ones are available only without cost. While StreamElements recommends other overlay creators, StreamLabs have more advanced themes with the subscription of Ultra.
We gathered the best free overlay creator platforms, which you can find here.
The main widgets and boxes are available for both. Like Stream Chat, Subscription, Tipping, Notification Widgets, Goal trackers, and Chatbots. But of course, these platforms offers their own chatbot, and their own tipping and donation system. How do they differ?
We already wrote about stream chatbots, also you can find in the article other providers too. In short, Streamlabs and StreamElements chatbots are free, but currently Streamlabs have more features, like plus options for polls, and in minigames. There’s a whole loyalty program which you can connect with chatbot, then viewers can redeem to Merch or other discounts, etc.
However StreamElements also have mini games in chatbot and a loyalty program, focuses on the main features like user management, and spam filters.
Tippings and donations are a big income element of the streamers, which the platforms have. Streamlabs and StreamElements too by default gives you a nice page, where your viewers can donate you, and also send a message with the money. Both platform will send you the whole amount so there’s no fee, and also works with PayPal.
You can find credit card options as well, then the donation will instantly, or under 1-3 days, land it into your bank account. StreamElements calls it SE.Pay, and the default fee is 2.8% + $0.28, while Streamlabs charge you 2.9% + $0.30 transaction fee (we can see a little fight here). (On StreamLabs Skrill payments are not available till update 2023-03-06.) We can consider these values standard, based on Stripe, but for example Braintree can be a little cheaper.
It’s a great virtue to also donate some percent from your income to charity, but also you can create a whole show for charity. For that purpose both platform have built-in charity donation option.
Connectivity – Twitch, YouTube, Facebook
As a donation, and goal-notification tracker-alert platforms, StreamElements vs. Streamlabs do not differ, because currently there are four social website where you should stream. Twitch – YouTube – Facebook and Trovo. These fours are supported by the platforms.
However in case If you want to stream to other sites, Streamlabs takes the first place, because of the easy login options. While OBS Studio sometimes uses manual setup, like you need to find stream key and host to connect to, Streamlabs offers an easy login option. Also Streamlabs out of the box allows you to stream to two platform at once with their software. If you are using StreamElements, then you need to use other sites for that purpose as well.
Keep in mind, If you’re a Twitch partner you can not stream to multiple platforms at the same time. But you can upload streams later on.
Streamlabs vs. StreamElements faster? – Performance
Here comes the part, especially If you’re low on computer resource, where we determine which is better for streaming in terms of CPU and RAM usage. This will be a short paragraph, because of the easy decision we can make based on feedbacks, and experience.
We already recommended, that If you’re started your streaming career you should check it out all the software options that have on the market right now. But with a little attention you will see, that Streamlabs will use more of your computer performance, than OBS Studio. We can not know why, we can guess, like because of the widgets, or the interface modification (because Streamlabs OBS basically OBS Studio, with a little tweak), but we are not sure about that.
After installation, OBS Studio will be faster, but after you set up the StreamElements plugin, you should be aware that the more widget you use, the more resource will need to run.
Streamlabs have mobile connection, so you can use your phone as a remote controller, and manage different scenes on your phone. But with many feedbacks, this app works over Wi-Fi, so we can calculate with a lag. Of course, If you want to be a more advanced streamer you should buy a stream deck, and a second monitor is necessary, If you want to play and also follow the chat. But If you’re a beginner, than it’s a big plus from Streamlabs.
StreamElements have a new program called Mercury. Mercury is a dynamic tool, which connects to your YouTube channel, and basically always changing your background, your video descriptions and comments as well based on some goal, or where your current following count as well. It’s a great tool, but it’s also a “grey zone”, based on that your comments will changing regularly, etc. We can not find any related feedbacks for that, If that comes with penalty from YouTube.
Streamlabs Ultra subscription can be heavy If you’re a starter, however, with the package you’ll get 8 application which gives you an instant boost, in terms of quick and easy streaming and video creation. With Oslo you can create quick videos, and edits, Cross clip help you with highlights and short for YouTube or TikTok, then Willow is a link sharing site, like Linktree.
The following table, will help you to easily choose between the two platform. Let’s see the difference’s what we talked about in this article.
|Installation||Individual Software||Plugin for OBS Studio|
|Overlays&Themes||Few for free, more with Subscription.||Some for free, advanced ones from other platforms.|
|Chatbot||Included, more functionality, loyalty program||Included, basic functions, but loyalty|
|Connectivity||4 platform included, multistreaming option||4 platform included|
|Performance||Little Slower than OBS Studio||Faster than Streamlabs – out of the box, pay attention to widgets.|
|Functions + Advantages||Mobile remote controller, Subscription with plus tools||Free merch store, Mercury|
|Subscription||Streamlabs Ultra $19/mo $149/year||Free|
Which is your preferable one? Let us know in the comments!
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