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Screencasting Tools For Creating Video Tutorials

Posted by Hemprasad Y. Badgujar on June 3, 2014

Ever wondered how people show you so clearly what is happening on their computer, like in the Photoshop Video Tutorials we shared with you? Thanks to screencasting software, anyone can do it. So what’s stopping you now from making your own how-to videos? Try out one of these 12 tools and get to making your first video!



AviScreen – As the name would imply, this capture program records the video into AVI files, but can also do BMP photos. It’s Windows only and does not record audio. – An open source program for capturing your on-screen video and audio as AVI files. Windows only, and absolutely free.

Copernicus – A free program for Macs that focuses heavily on making quick and speedy films by recording the video to your RAM for quicker access. Does not include any support for audio. – Beyond recording video, Jing allows you to take a picture of any portion fo your desktop, draw on it, add a message, and immediately upload your media to a free hosting account. You are then given a small URL that you can give to whomever needs to see the image or video. Works with Macs and Windows machines. – A Java-based screencasting tool that requires no downloads and will allow you to automatically upload to hosting. According to their site it works well with Macs and Windows machines, but does have some issues with Linux.

Wink – Screencasting software that focuses on making tutorials with audio and text annotation abilities. Outputs to Flash, PDF, HTML, EXE files and more.

ScreenToaster (Web-based, Free)P

Five Best Screencasting Tools

ScreenToaster is the only web-based offering in this week’s Hive Five, and it definitely fills a handy niche. Whether you don’t screencast enough to want to install a dedicated application or you just need to crank out a quick screencast wherever you are, ScreenToaster can help. You don’t get any advanced editing tools—screw up and you’re redoing it—but you do get full screen capture, support for picture-in-picture webcam video in the lower right corner, and audio for voice-over. When you’re done recording and previewing your clip, you can upload the video to ScreenToaster or YouTube, or download it as a MOV or SWF file. ScreenToaster is free and works with any Java-enabled web browser.


Adobe Captivate – While Adobe is almost always synonymous with quality, it also always means it’s going to be expensive. Pricing starts at nearly $700.

AllCapture – Capture in real time, add audio during recording or after completion. Can output to Flash, EXE, ASF, DVD, SVCD and VCD. Free trial available, Windows only.

HyperCam – Windows only system for recording screen activity to AVI files along with system audio. Free trial with $39.95 for full version.

iShowU – Offers a wide-range of presets that allows you to record directly into Quicktime and up to 1080P in both NTSC and PAL formats. Also does audio and the file is ready to be published as soon as hit stop. Mac only.

ScreenMimic – Software for the Mac that offers transitions, audio dubbing, can output to HTML, Quicktime and Flash. Free download and $64.95 for the paid version.

ScreenRecord – Outputs to Quicktime directly and can record your clicks and all on-screen activities. Offers a free trial and then $19.95 to purchase.

KEY: Top Tools 2013 Free Tool

Adobe Captivate : Rapidly create simulations, software demonstrations, and scenario-based training. Free Trial, Download 

AllCapture : Capture your desktop activities in real-time and create your demos, software simulations and tutorials. Free Trial, Download

Bulent’s Screen Recorder : Captures video, sound and pictures of anything you see on your screen. Any part of the screen or a window or the entire desktop can be recorded
Free trial, Download

 CamStudio : Record all screen and audio activity on your computer and create industry-standard AVI video files and using its built-in SWF Producer can turn those AVIs into Streaming Flash videos (SWFs). Open Source, Download

Camtasia : Record your screen to create training, demo, and presentation videos, aka screencasts. Free Trial, Download 

CaptureWizPro : A professional tool for capturing anything on your screen, even tricky items like the entire contents of scrolling areas, drop-down lists, tool tips, mouse pointers and screen savers. There’s also a high-performance recorder for capturing streaming video or creating demos. Free Trial, Download

DemoBuilder : Capture your activities in a running application and then edit the recorded material to add a voice-over narration track or background music, visual effects, annotations, comments and other elements that will add to the efficiency of your presentation. Free Trial, Download

Flash Demo Builder : Its powerful screen capturerecords keypresses and mouse movements to show clearly how some processes and applications work. Free Trial, Download

FlashDemo Studio : Record your PC screen activities in real time.  Publish as Flash movies. Download

 FreeScreencast : Record your screen, upload, and share with ease. Hosted

GoVIew : Capture your computer screen and audio, then instantly share your recording online. Hosted

Instant Demo : Screen Recorder Software. Free Trial, Download

iShowU HD Pro : Realtime screen capture from your Mac. Free Trial, Download

Jing : Always-ready program that instantly captures and shares images and video…from your computer to anywhere. Pro version available. Download 

Playback : For creating screencast tutorial videos in any subject using an iPad. Annotate your presentation slides as you talk.

 Screenbird – “record your screen like a boss” Hosted

Screencast-O-matic : online screen recorder. Hosted

ScreenCastle : One-click screencasting. Hosted

ScreenFlow : Professional screencasting studio (for the Mac). Free Trial, Download

ScreenJelly : Records your screen activity with your voice so you can spread it as a video via Twitter or email. Hosted

Screenr : Record your screen. Hosted 

ScreenRecord : A screen recording tool (for Mac) that allows the user to capture continuous images on the screen as a Quicktime movie. Free Trial, Download

ScreenToaster : Record your screen online. Hosted 

Screeny : capture your videos or images at any size (for Mac) Download

 TipCam – easy-to-use professional screen recording software for Windows. TipCam Pro available for purchase. Download

TurboDemo : Capture screenshots and explain software, PC applications, websites and products with animated demos and tutorials. Free Trial, Download

Viewlet Builder : Automatically reproduces the movement of your cursor, allowing you to create Flash tutorials or simulations that exactly mirror the way your product or web site works. Publish your finished tutorials as small, secure Flash files that can be delivered over the Internet. Free Trial, Hosted

ViewletCam : record PC applications, PowerPoint presentations, animations, and video directly from your PC screen and generate Flash movies for use in demos, troubleshooting, training classes, and presentations. Free Trial, Hosted

Webinaria : Create software demos and share online. Hosted

Wink Tutorial and Presentation creation software, primarily aimed at creating tutorials on how to use software (like a tutor for MS-Word/Excel etc). Using Wink you can capture screenshots, add explanations boxes, buttons, titles etc and generate a highly effective tutorial for your users. Download 

Wondershare DemoCreator : Screen Recorder to Record Screen Activities as Video Demos. Free Trial, Hosted


Product Name Publisher Latest stable version Latest release date OS Software license Open source
ActivePresenter Free Edition Atomi Systems 3.9 2013-06-19 Windows Freeware No
BB FlashBack Express Blueberry Software 4.0 2012-09-18 Windows Freeware No
Capture Fox Zafer Gurel 0.7.0 2009-11-25 Windows Freeware Yes
Jing TechSmith 2.8 Windows
Mac OS X
Freeware No
Windows Media Encoder Microsoft Corporation (x86) (x64)
2002 Windows Freeware No
Wink Satish Kumar 2.0 2008-07-14 Windows
Freeware No
CamStudio 2.7 r316 2013-02-15 Windows GPL Yes
RecordMyDesktop SourceForge 2008-12-13 Linux GPL Yes
VirtualDub SourceForge 1.9.11 2012-12-27 Windows GPL Yes
VLC media player VideoLAN 2.1.4 2014-02-21 Cross-platform GPL Yes
XVidCap SourceForge 1.1.7 2008-07-13 Unix-like GPL Yes
Freeseer FOSSLC 3.0.0 2013-08-30 Windows
Mac OS X
GPL v3 Yes
ShareX GitHub 9.0.0 2014-05-16 Windows GPL v3 Yes
SimpleScreenRecorder maartenbaert 0.0.7-1 2013-06-02 Linux GPL v3 Yes
FFmpeg 2.2.2 2014-05-05 Linux[1] OS supporting X11Windows LGPL Yes



Comparison by features

The following table compares features of screencasting software. The table has seven fields, as follows:

  1. Name: Product’s name; sometime includes edition if a certain edition is targeted
  2. Audio: Specifies whether the product supports recording audio commentary on the video
  3. Entire desktop: Specifies whether product supports recording the entire desktop
  4. OpenGL: Specifies whether the product supports recording from video games and software that employ OpenGL to render digital image
  5. DirectX: Specifies whether the product supports recording from video games or software that employ DirectX (particularly Direct 3D) to render digital image
  6. Editing: Specifies whether the product supports editing recorded video at least to some small extent, such as cropping, trimming or splitting
  7. Output: Specifies the file format in which the software saves the final video (Non-video output types are omitted)
Product name Audio Entire
OpenGL DirectX Editing Output
ActivePresenter[2] Yes Yes No No Yes AVIFLVMP4SWFHTMLWebMWMV
ActivePresenter free edition[2] Yes Yes No No Yes AVIMP4WebMWMV
Adobe Captivate[3] Yes Yes ? ? Yes SWFEXEMP4HTML5
Bandicam Yes Yes Yes Yes No
BB FlashBack Yes Yes ? ? Yes
BB FlashBack express Yes Yes ? ? No
CamStudio Yes Yes ? ? Yes AVISWF
Camtasia Studio Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes .camrec, AVI
Camtasia for Mac Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Capture Fox Yes Yes ? ? No Motion JPEG or Xvid in AVI
Epiplex500 Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Motion JPEG or Xvid in AVI
FFmpeg Yes Yes Yes ? Yes Many
Fraps Yes Yes Yes Yes No FPS1 in AVI
Freeseer Yes Yes ? ? No Ogg
HyperCam Yes Yes ? ? No AVIWMV
Jing Yes Yes ? ? No SWF
Microsoft Expression Encoder Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Nero Vision Yes ? ? ? Yes
Pixetell Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
QuickTime X Yes Yes ? ? No
RecordMyDesktop Yes Yes ? N/A No Theora in Ogg
Screencam Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
ScreenFlow Yes Yes Yes N/A Yes
ShareX Yes Yes No No No AVIMP4GIF
SimpleScreenRecorder Yes Yes Yes N/A No Formats supported by libavformat
SmartPixel Yes Yes ? ? Yes FLVAVIMP4GIF
Snagit Yes Yes Yes Yes No MP4
Snapz Pro X Yes Yes ? ? No
VirtualDub Yes ? ? ? Yes
VLC Yes Yes Yes ? Yes
Windows Media Encoder Yes Yes ? ? No
Wink Yes Yes ? No Yes SWFPDF
XVidCap Yes ? ? N/A No

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