How do I show what's playing on my streaming overlay ("Write to file")?

Allow your broadcasting software to read updates and update your stream in real-time

If you've ever seen a stream with the song playing announced and updated in real-time on their stream, that person is likely using "Write to File". Pretzel offers "Write to File" options from the Advanced Settings screen of the desktop application. It's not available from the browser version of the player (web browsers aren't able to alter files locally on your computer).

 

What does "Write to File" do?

The music player creates a simple text or image file locally on your computer that your broadcasting software can read and update in real-time. Pretzel can create a text file that shows any combination of the album, title and artist. It can create a delay in how long the player waits before it writes the file (in case you skip through a few tracks before you let one play). If the player is paused, you can change what the file says (for example, "Paused"). It can also create an album in JPG form, for people who want to create an overlay with the album art from the track onscreen.

 

How do you create an overlay using the printed files?

The player writes the files to your PC, and you tell your broadcasting software to read those files on your overlay. In OBS, you select a new source on any scenes where the track is to be displayed.

 

Choose your font and font size. Click "Read from file" and click "Browse". Choose the file path created by Pretzel. You can write this path and file to be anywhere you'd like on your local machine. For the example below, it's just saved on the desktop.

The illustration above shows (in the Track Info File field) where Pretzel is storing the notepad file on your local PC.

Repeat the steps used for the Track Name note file for the album art JPG.

 

Beyond that, all changes are stylistic. Fonts, scrolling filters, spacing, stroke, a ton of choices go into creating the aesthetic of your channel. But now Pretzel will always update your track/album/artist name in real-time in the overlay (and album art, if you've chosen to add it).