Either you are recording a professional tutorial or just want some quick video clips that you can leave on your parents’ computer, so they have a simple reminder of how to do basic tasks like sending an email, you need a screen capture software to make it. What this screen recording application is recording is everything you do on the screen (or on your screen) so you can save it as a video. You can then publish the video on platforms such as YouTube. You can even sell it to make money online, or send it to the person you are looking for.
There are also game streamers who post on services like Twitch, whether for pleasure or profit. While they do the same thing superficially, they also need a slightly different feature to successfully broadcast their games.
Finally, there are also some people who use a screen recorder to capture live broadcasts. Such use can often be illegal, if you are going to do it, first check that you are allowed to take live broadcasts legally. In some cases, capturing live broadcasts for your own use will be permitted. Catching one and sharing it online is almost certainly not going to
What Makes the Best Screen Capture Device?
What makes a good screenshot app depends on what features you care about the most(and what your budget). If you are a professional, making money from what you take on your screen, then the features you need and the amount of money you’re prepared will be very different from someone who wants to do one or two quick tutorials for Youtube Channels. Instead of trying to claim that they, Y, and Z features are very important, I will instead list some of the features that you want. The best screen recorders will have several combinations of both, so choose the one that works for you
- Screen Capturing. This one is the type of gimme. Every screen recording application must be able to record what is happening on your screen. If not, you see the wrong application. By saying that, there is some variation in how much screen capture control software will give you more than what is recorded. Do you only need to take a small part of the screen? Do you need to record footage from your webcam at the same time? Do you need to record from multiple monitors? What about your mobile device? These are all different features to think about.
- Editing. Many screen capture software comes with basic (or not so basic) editing features too. This means you can use one application to capture and edit your screen recordings. Better editors have special features for capturing screens, such as the ability to highlight the cursor or follow it around the screen, which ordinary video editors do not have. If you plan to edit your screencasts so that they flow better, you might want to think about getting them with a decent editor. On the other hand, if you plan to stream live or just install a raw video, you might not need it.
- Live Streaming and Publishing. All screen recording applications offer a way to save your catch as a video that you can do as you wish, but if you know exactly where you are going to publish your screencasts, it might be worth looking for applications that are integrated with you. For example, if you want to stream on Twitch, having an application that posts directly to Twitch will make your life a lot easier, instead of using multiple solutions. Similarly, if you want to stream directly on YouTube, you need an application that supports live streaming.
- Price. There are various prices for screen capture software. Some are free and open source, some are professional suites worth hundreds of dollars. While prices don’t have to correlate with quality, they correlate with how much development time can get into new features and how much support you can expect from developers. If you are just starting out (or just need to do a few quick videos), try a free open source application to ensure screen recording is right for you. If that is your career, consider investing in some professional software.
Professional Screen Recording Application
Let’s start with the super high end. Each of these applications costs at least a hundred dollars (or has an expensive subscription model). These are all full-featured choices for making serious online courses. If you just want to collect some fast screencasts, they are definitely not the application for you.
At a price of $ 1,099 for a full license (or $ 29.99 per month with a 12-month contract), Adobe Captivate is not cheap. However, this is the absolute best application for compiling e-learning courses. As well as having the best screen capture and editing tools available on Windows or macOS, you can capture screencasts from the iOS application and integrate them with other assets.
Where Adobe Captivate really shines is with its publishing feature. With that, you can take your screenshot and turn it into an interactive, complete and interactive e-learning course. Adobe boasts that it is the choice for 80% of Fortune 500 companies and it’s easy to see why.
For simple screenshots, Adobe Captivate is very excessive. Most people don’t need a feature set. But if it sounds like that to you (and you’re ready to pay for it) you should check it out.
2. Camtasia Studio
Camtasia Studio is a go-to application for many online educators. I know some of the course staff here at Tuts + use it. This is available on Windows and MacOS for $ 199. Every few years there is a new version with new features and the previous owner gets a discount. There is also a 30-day free trial so you can check it if you want.
Camtasia The studio is a complete screen recording and editing package. It has all the tools you need to gather professional tutorials. It even has features like Chroma Keying which is not available in most screen recording editors.
The price is a little steep, but for many professionals (and of course someone who uses Windows) it’s the application that will be sought.
At $ 129, Screenflow is slightly more than half the price of Camtasia Studio and more than half of the application. Even though it doesn’t have all the same advanced features, this is still a highly qualified screen capture and editor; it can even be achieved from iOS devices. This is an application that I use to record and edit all my Tuts + courses.
Like Camtasia, there is a new version every two years at an upgrade price. There is also a free full-time trial with no time limit. However, the trial version filters your video, which eliminates the professional appearance.
If you are a MacOS user and don’t need the more sophisticated Camtasia feature (which most people might have), Screenflow is the best application available. There is a reason I use it.
The Best Affordable Screen Recording Application
Now that we’ve put out big guns, it’s time to see the best screen recording software for most people. If you just want to collect some fast screencasts, this free (or most unreachable) application is what you will be looking for.
4. Filmora scrn
Available on Windows and Mac, Filmora scrn (yes, that’s how they gave the application title) is the best and cheapest choice. A lifetime license for a PC or Mac is $ 24.99 (the annual is $ 19.99 so it might not be worth considering).
Like Camtasia and Screenflow, Filmora scrn is a screen capture and editing application. The screen capture feature is actually free to use with a a trial that is not limited to time, but the editing features that pull it together.
For a fraction of the price of one of the stronger choices, you get 90% of the feature set. Unless you believe you need a more expensive application, Filmora Scrn is the only thing to look for.
CamStudio is a free and open source solution for Windows. This is the most basic application on this list, but it is exactly what it says. It captures your screen and doesn’t cost a penny.
CamStudio doesn’t have the editing features of the previous selection, but because of you can save the video and edit it in another application you want, this might not be a big problem for you.
For many people, CamStudio might be a little simple, but if you really only need something to capture your screen, it works perfectly. It’s not flashy, it’s not fancy, but it records your screen when you want it.
If you have a Mac, there is already a free screen recording application that you can use. This is a feature built into QuickTime. We actually discussed how to use it here on Tuts +.
The QuickTime screen recording is very basic and does not really store the candle to one of the paid applications. But, it’s free and already on your Mac. If you are not really fussy about your level of stew screencasts, this is a choice that is definitely worth exploring. At the very least, it saves time and effort to find other free applications that do the same.
The Best Live Streaming Record Application
All software so far is really designed to record your screen so you can upload it or publish it later. If that’s what you need, then it’s awesome. But if you are looking for a way to capture the screen and stream it directly, you need one of the following applications.
7. OBS Studio
While OBS Studio can also be used as a screen recorder, free and open source applications available for Windows, Mac and Linux are the best when you are undergoing direct screening. It has all the features you need to install the Let’s Play channel on one of the main platforms.
There is a little learning curve, as is often the case with open source software, but if you want to start streaming live without dropping money, it is the best screen capture software that must be updated.
While Gameshow functions with the same purpose as OBS Studio, this $ 29.99 Windows and Mac application has more polish and developer support. It is also designed explicitly for streaming (and recording) games in high resolution while still keeping the CPU low so it doesn’t waste valuable cycles of your game.
If you start seriously with live streaming on your own playing computer games, Gameshow is very worth seeing. There are many professional bands that use it to make money from Twitch.
9. XSplit Broadcaster and XSplit Gamecaster
The most professional choices in the live streaming space, XSplit Broadcaster and XSplit Gamecaster are two slightly different Windows applications that you get with the same license. The XSplit Broadcaster feature set is intended for multi-camera broadcasts set up rather than just your screen while XSplit Gamecaster is designed only for gamers to stream live.
Professionalism, however, is not cheap. The twelve-month license is $ 59.95, even though a lifetime license is available for $ 199. With this price, you really need a professional level of production that you can get with the split application to justify the purchase.
There are many good screen recording applications out there. There are even several free screen recorder applications.