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Capture On-Screen Video for Windows 7

Posted on 2014-08-29
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Last Modified: 2014-09-07
The client does research, and wants to be able to capture and record videos of all sorts that appear on his computer screen.  

Can somebody recommend a high-quality video capture program for Windows 7 ?


Thanks.
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Question by:computerlarry
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by:Brad Groux
Brad Groux earned 300 total points
ID: 40292662
Camtasia Studio is probably the most popular - http://www.techsmith.com/camtasia.html

The software is easy to use, has great support, a great community and robust. It allows for you to record entire screen(s), windows or custom areas - it also allows you to overlay a camera stream (such as a webcam) on top.

As an example of the quality, see the training videos here - http://channel9.msdn.com/Series/C-Fundamentals-for-Absolute-Beginners/01
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Joe Winograd, EE MVE 2015&2016 earned 1100 total points
ID: 40292749
Hi Larry,

I've been very pleased with Screencast-O-Matic:
http://www.screencast-o-matic.com/

I started out with their Free version and liked it well enough to go with their Pro version, which is just $15/year (I actually went for three years at $29). The trial version is limited to 15 minutes and places a watermark in the lower left, which can be very bothersome. I used it to record ten 5-minute video Micro Tutorials here at EE. The first three were with the Free version — here's one:
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Web_Development/Document_Imaging/VP_208.html

The next seven were with the Pro version — here's one:
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Web_Development/Document_Imaging/VP_217.html

The main reason I went with the Pro version is that the watermark was blocking important stuff.

Here are some other possibilities for you:

(1) I've used the free version of WisdomSoft's AutoScreenRecorder:
http://www.wisdom-soft.com/products/autoscreenrecorder_free.htm

It works very well and I didn't have a need for the features of its Pro (paid) version, but if I had, I think that the $49.95 price is reasonable, and based on the quality of the free version, I wouldn't hesitate to go for the Pro version. Here's a comparison matrix of the Free vs. Pro versions:
http://www.wisdom-soft.com/asr/asr_compare.htm

You can decide which one satisfies your client's needs. Of course, you may as well start with the free version and see if it works for your client. That's what I did and I was very happy with it before moving to Screencast-O-Matic.

(2) CamStudio is free, open source software at SourceForge:
http://sourceforge.net/projects/camstudio/

It allows recording all screen and audio activity, creating industry-standard AVI video files. It also has a built-in streaming Flash producer to convert the AVIs into SWFs. If you have any problems with it, take a look at the Issues section at its own website:
http://camstudio.org/

(3) FFVideo is also free, open source software at SourceForge:
http://sourceforge.net/projects/ffvideo/

It allows recording from screen, audio, webcam, microphone, and other devices. It uses the [ffmpeg] screen-capture-recorder as its recording engine:
https://github.com/rdp/screen-capture-recorder-to-video-windows-free

[ffmpeg] provides for a number of output formats, including MP4. It is also free, open source and available at SourceForge:
https://sourceforge.net/projects/screencapturer/files

(4) Atomi Systems' ActivePresenter comes in Free, Standard, and Professional Editions:
http://atomisystems.com/activepresenter/

Even the Free edition can capture an application, specified screen area, or full screen (both manually and automatically). The Free edition supports audio recording and audio/video editing. It has no time limit and creates no watermark. Here's a comparison table of the three editions:
http://atomisystems.com/activepresenter/features-comparison/

Unlike AutoScreenRecorder and Screencast-O-Matic, where the non-free edition is reasonably priced, the non-free editions of ActivePresenter are somewhat expensive – $299 for Standard and $399 for Professional.

(5) Problem Steps Recorder is free, built into Windows:
http://windows.microsoft.com/is-IS/windows7/How-do-I-use-Problem-Steps-Recorder

However, afaik, there's no control over what part of the screen it records...it always records the entire screen...in fact, multiple displays, if you have them. I don't know exactly what your client is looking for, but in my case, I have two large monitors in an extended desktop configuration, and Problem Steps Recorder records everything on both of them, which I usually don't want. I'm typically interested in just one program (window) being recorded and AutoScreenRecorder Free and Screencast-O-Matic Free can do that.

It all comes down to which product meets your client's exact requirements. Regards, Joe
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by:Kimputer
Kimputer earned 300 total points
ID: 40292786
I think Jing will suit you well. It's free and easy to use. Everything you see is geared towards simplicity. I don't think you can go wrong here.
http://www.techsmith.com/jing.html
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by:Merete
Merete earned 300 total points
ID: 40295047
For anything on his desktop could include web pages youtube videos lots of things.
Just for a snapshot use the windows 7 inbuilt snipping tool
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-AU/windows7/products/features/snipping-tool
http://www.capture-screenshot.org/snipping-tool/

If it is part of a web page/ flash youtube just use youtube downloader and save it then edit it if there is no copyrights
http://youtubedownload.altervista.org/
For web pages
Keep video
http://keepvid.com/
WM recorder
http://wmrecorder.com/

Snagit is another I use
http://www.techsmith.com/snagit.html
And BSR Recorder
http://www.bsrsoft.com/
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