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free screen recording tools

There are plenty of commercial screen recording tools on the market today. Besides video capturing, they offer lots of other functions, including but not limited to simultaneous web cam recording, video and audio editing, and adding video effects. Luckily, there are some good free apps for both Windows and Mac that incorporate most of these features. (Well, at least the most vital ones, those that an eLearning content developer uses in the process of creation.) Besides, not all of them have a paid version, which means you will be free of constant reminders to upgrade for a small fee, which is definitely a plus. So, if you are not ready to pay a pretty penny for a top-notch solution just yet, do try these tools.

iSpring Free Cam

iSpring Free Cam is a screen recording solution with a sleek interface and all the necessary features including up to 1080p HD screen capture with both system sounds and user’s audio narration, plus a video editor with trimming, noise removal and volume adjustment options. However, no webcam recording is possible here. Available for Windows.

Screenshot of iSpring Cam interface

What we like:

  • simple and easy-to-use interface
  • built-in video editor
  • simultaneous external and internal sound recording
  • saving as an .wmv file or direct uploading to YouTube
  • no time limits, no ads, no watermark


ShareX is a lightweight screenshotting and screen recording app with the widest range of uploading features, although screen recording is more like a sidekick to screenshotting in this app. Video editing is not possible here altogether, just uploading. Available for Windows.

Screenshot of ShareX interface

What we like:

  • no time limits, no ads, no watermark
  • GIF recordings
  • incorporates useful hotkeys


Ezvid is a powerful tool for creating screen recordings to be later uploaded exclusively to YouTube with a 45-minute limit and no system sounds capture. It offers numerous options for editing your videos: speed adjustments, video cutting and rearrangement, screen drawing, adding stamps and highly customizable text slides, and voice synthesis, but can’t remove selected parts of footage. Available for Windows.

Screenshot of Ezvid interface

What we like:

  • video editor with lots of features
  • webcam recording
  • no ads, no watermark
  • direct uploading to YouTube


Jing is an offering from TechSmith, the creators of Camtasia, which provides the most basic screen recording features – 5 minutes long videos, no editing, no system sounds recording, saving only as a .swf file. Available for Windows and Mac.

Screenshot of Jing interface

What we like:

  • user friendly minimal interface
  • no ads, no watermark


Monosnap is a simple means of screenshotting and screen recording with an editor for the former. Screen recording, however, does not allow setting a specific resolution or a full-screen capture and lacks further editing features, though you can highlight and draw simple things in the process of recording. Available for Windows and Mac.

Screenshot of Monosnap interface

What we like:

  • simultaneous external and internal sound recording
  • webcam recording
  • saving as an .mp4 file
  • no time limits, no ads, no watermark
App OS Time limit Output format Video editor Audio accompaniment
(System / Mic)
iSpring Cam Windows No Limit .mp4 or YouTube + +/+
ShareX Windows No Limit .mp4 +/+
Ezvid Windows 45 min YouTube only + -/+
Jing Windows / Mac 5 min .swf -/+
Monosnap Windows / Mac No Limit .mp4 +/+

In conclusion

Summing it up, all the programs have their advantages, although none can fully substitute a commercial solution. But if you keep your screen recording needs simple, you are sure to be satisfied with something from the list. Just choose according to your priorities.

If you are ready to spend some money on a more advanced screen recording solution, take a look at the list of top free screen recording tools here. The second half of it has some commercial variants which offer progressive functionality and performance.

dashaDasha is devoted to exploring the world of e-Learning technologies in order to provide content authors with the most relevant information that can help them implement their ideas effectively. She writes about presentation tips and tricks, software comparisons and more for the iSpring blog, as well as other educational websites. Dasha finds inspiration meeting students and professors in Bologna, the home of the oldest university in the world.

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