Best Screen Recording Software
Get the lowdown on what the best screen recording software is for you with this guide
Screen recording software is an essential tool for any kind of content creator, blogger, educator, or creative.
Finding the right screen recording software for your needs can be more difficult than you might think. Software manufacturers have built their programs to be specialised to certain use cases, so there may be some software that is better suited to your required tasks.
We’ve put this guide together to help you find the best screen recording software so you can start capturing on-screen video for your content.
We’ve listed both free and paid software. Paid programs often have many more features and flexibility in recording options to produce more complex captures. This level of complexity might be overkill for some users, where, so work out what features you’ll actually use before buying anything.
Something important to consider is whether you need to have editing functionality. This can be avoided if you already have a video editor. Also if you need to add extra graphics or visual elements, check if the program is capable.
In addition, depending on your needs, check that the software can capture the desired amount of simultaneous sources. Not every program can record more than one source at a time.
Finally, not all programs are cross platform so check what’s compatible with the machine you are using first!
Pros: Quick and simple, some nice editing tools, multi device capture
Cons: Windows only
Flashback Pro is a powerful screen recording and video editing tool. You can capture video from any source on your computer, making it a screen recorder and a webcam recorder.
It can record from these multiple sources simultaneously - this includes screens and cameras - and several different audio streams. It also has a narration mode allowing you to overdub vocal recordings. These video editing tools paired with the easy export, share and upload mechanics makes Flashback Pro a fast and flexible all-in-one solution for screen recording based work.
Price: $199 Standard / $399 Pro
Pros: Extensive Features, Powerful Presentation Tools
Cons: Expensive, Overcomplex for basic tasks
Active Presenter 8 by Atomi is an eLearing author tool. Basically it's an all in one screen capture and video editing software, with presentation, interactivity and graphical features. This makes it extremely useful for teachers and lecturers, or anybody making educational content. It also has unique features including advanced features geared towards educators, letting you create interactive quizzes and tests in your presentations.
It has powerful arrangement editing and organization features, letting you create custom and flexible on screen layouts to present your information. It also comes with a bunch of professional looking templates to get you started. You can create shapes, edit images, and choose from many animation and transition presets. You can even animate your presented text.
This is a fantastic tool for anybody in the presentation scene, but would probably be too complex for simple screen recording tasks.
Pros: Extensive Features, media library, workflow
Cons: Expensive if only used for screen capture
Screenflow is a high end professional screen capture software aimed at educators, marketers, bloggers and online video trainers. It allows you to record multiple video and audio sources simultaneously. It also allows you to record the screen of an external iOS device.
It's easy to learn and use with an intuitive interface. Beyond recording, it has video editing and animation tools, effective media management and caption support. It also has many file format publishing options, and access to a stock media library to find extra graphics and media for your video. The media library could be a useful timesaver for sourcing extra material for your content. Consider this choice if you are a Mac user needing to create regular screen casts with minimum setup effort.
Pros: Speedy workflow, presentation tools
Cons: Simplistic editing
Snagit is a streamlined screen capture and presentation creator. It has a simple 3 step process: Capture > Add Explanation > Create Visual Instructions. It has been designed to be extra useful for creating demonstrative videos and presentations.
Above the standard screen and audio capture tools, it has Panoramic Scrolling Capture allowing you to capture infinite scrolling webpages, chat messages etc. It has an interesting tool called Text Grab which can “copy” text from non text sources i.e images/screenshots. This saves you from having to retype the information.
Pros: Very Powerful features, Media Library, iOs, Green Screen
Cons: Complex, Expensive
Camtasia is a high end screen recorder and video editor built to help you create professional looking videos and presentations. It has many presets and templates that can quickly make a huge improvement to the aesthetics of your presentation.
Its notable features are PowerPoint integration, annotation adding, transitions, animations and device frames to simulate phone or laptop screens. It has some audio repair tools such as noise removal, volume balance, and pitch correction. It also has a nifty table of contents creator, so you can make interactive contents for viewers to navigate through sections of your video.
Camtasia is one of the more expensive programs so only consider this option if you are looking for a high end solution.
Pros: Mouse highlighting, narration overdub, works on all platforms
Cons: Limited formats in free version
Free cam is a free cross platform screen recorder that helps you create professional videos and eLearning presentations. You can select the onscreen area to record, and record audio simultaneously, or overdub narration post-recording. It also has mouse highlighting functions so you can show your audience when you are clicking, right clicking, or dragging.
It also has a simplistic video and audio editor, with tools for cleaning up your audio, and cutting your video to the right length. You can export and share to online platforms from within the program.
Pros: Flexible, Multi-track recording, streaming, works on all platforms
Cons: File formats/setup can be fiddly
OBS is a fantastic free recording and streaming software that is available for Mac and PC.
It’s got flexible video recording tools so you can capture from multiple video sources and screen capture windows.
It lets you create different recording screen setups so you can quickly switch between webcams, screen captures and different mic sources. With OBS you can record separate audio streams to a multi track to be edited independently later. It has really powerful tools for streaming services so you can stream videos to different platforms such as Twitch and YouTube simultaneously.
Pros: Easy, fast
Cons: Fairly limited, single source, Mac only
Using screen record in Quicktime is a Mac only feature, you can download Quicktime Player for Windows but it doesn't have any recording function.
Quicktime recording on Mac is quick and easy, taking only seconds to get a recording going. You can choose full screen or windowed recording, or you can select a fixed area of the screen to capture. You can switch between different audio and video sources prior to starting the recording. Quicktime is good in a pinch for simple screen recorder tasks but doesn´t have the flexibility of pro software.
No matter your budget or operating system, hopefully you’ve found a screen recorder, webcam recorder or video capture device that suits your needs. If you want to learn more about working with audio for video, make sure you check out our YouTube channel and Blog for some in-depth guides!