Pinterest Stumbleupon Whatsapp
Ads by Google

record desktop videoSharing video or audio with friends and perfect strangers is easier than ever before thanks to the Internet and the wide array of social websites. Actually recording that video and/or audio, however, can still be a pain.

One solution to this problem is SMRecorder, a versatile free recording program for Windows. SMRecorder can record audio, video (from a webcam) or your desktop, and it provides a number of setup options for each choice. Let’s take a look at why this lightweight recording software kicks butt.

Starting A Recording

record desktop video

SMRecorder opens as a small window with a few buttons on it that aren’t labeled by text. To start recording you first need to click the button to the very left, which looks like the new file icon found in Microsoft Word.

This will bring up the New Recording Task window, which is where the meat of your options appear. There are three recording modes available with SMRecorder, and they are listed in the Capture Type drop-down menu at the top of the window.

Ads by Google
  • Desktop Video – Records the activity taking place on your Windows desktop.
  • Camera Video – Records from any attached webcam.
  • Desktop/Microphone Sound – Records from a microphone.

The options that are available in the remainder of the New Recording Task window are dependent on the Capture Type you choose, so let’s take a look at each option in turn.

Desktop Video Recording

desktop record software

Selecting desktop video recording will let you record whatever is taking place on your desktop. It’s the perfect way to make tutorial videos to put up on YouTube, but could also be used to record a game or video you want to make a commentary on. There’s just one limitation that will put a barrier on how you use this program – the desktop video option does not record desktop audio, but rather audio from your microphone.

The main options to change can be found in the General tab. Audio Input needs to be set to the appropriate source, of course, and it should default to whatever audio recording device you typically use with Windows. Capture Size is also very important, as it determines what part of your desktop will be recorded. You can record your entire desktop, or just a small section. The size of the capture area will impact performance, so keep that in mind if your computer seems to become unbearably sluggish while recording. Finally, the Duration tab lets you choose the maximum length of your recording in minutes.

desktop record softwareThe Video and Audio tabs also have a number of options. The default setting are fine, but will result in slightly choppy video. You can reduce this by increasing the frame capture rate, and you can also improve overall quality by upping the compression quality. Similar things can be said of the options in the Audio tab. They’re fine by default, but can be improved if you desire. Remember however that the file size of your desktop video will become larger.

When you are ready to record you simply press the OK button. The SMRecorder window will disappear, but can be brought back by pressing CTRL-P. This will pause the video. You can then continue the recording or, if you feel that you’re finished, stop and save the recording.

Video Recording & Audio Recording

desktop record software

The Camera Video recording options are simple. The main options to concern yourself with are the Video Input and Audio Input, as they need to be properly configured in order to record video. If you have a default webcam ManyCam - Do More Things With Your Webcam ManyCam - Do More Things With Your Webcam Read More and microphone installed, they should be selected by the program automatically, so you likely won’t have to configure anything at all.

You can also mess with the duration in order to limit the length of the video. The Audio Settings tab only has one option available, and that’s adjustment of the volume.

record desktop video

Audio recording is also simple. You must select your input device, and you can set a length limit. The Audio Settings Tab also lets you adjust the Sample Frequency and the MP3 Encoding Rate. Choosing a higher encoding rate will improve audio quality, but will increase file size. The default option of 128 bit/s is fine for recording a podcast, particularly if you don’t have a great microphone.

Conclusion

SMRecorder is a great piece of free recording software. It’s very lightweight, so it should have no problem running on computers with limited processing power, and its ability to record desktop video is excellent. I can see myself using this to record video tutorials in the future – but what would you do with it?  Let us know in the comments.

  1. Lover of All Things LIT
    October 26, 2015 at 12:07 am

    Is there any way to make the playback less jerky and choppy?

  2. Pduvall516
    January 21, 2011 at 5:09 pm

    can you use this to record 6-8 hours of audio & video?

    • M.S. Smith
      January 21, 2011 at 7:47 pm

      I haven't actually tried 6-8 hours of audio personally. But I don't see why not. The main limitation might end up being your hard drive capacity depending on resolution.

  3. Aibek
    January 9, 2011 at 12:18 pm
  4. Aibek
    January 9, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    here is another link, http://www.brothersoft.com/smr...

  5. Buffet
    January 8, 2011 at 11:08 pm

    The bloody link is no good!

  6. Osama
    January 7, 2011 at 12:02 pm

    I don't like this portion "There’s just one limitation that will put a barrier on how you use this program – the desktop video option does not record desktop audio, but rather audio from your microphone."
    Is there a way to record audio as well from desktop video ?

    • M.S. Smith
      January 7, 2011 at 6:49 pm

      Well, I know FRAPS does it. But FRAPS will only record a limited amount of video for free - something like 30 or 60 seconds, I believe. I bought FRAPS because it's so great, but it's not a freeware solution.

    • Random EXE file
      January 17, 2011 at 7:42 pm

      Stereo Mix is available in Windows XP, Vista, and 7. You need Realtek Audio installed for it to become available. If you already have it, XP has a sound effects icon in your taskbar, and Vista and 7 allow you to search "sound" in your start menu. For vista and 7, go to Recording, right-click an empty space in the items display, then "Show disabled devices". Stereo Mix should appear.

  7. Osama
    January 7, 2011 at 1:02 pm

    I don't like this portion "There’s just one limitation that will put a barrier on how you use this program – the desktop video option does not record desktop audio, but rather audio from your microphone."
    Is there a way to record audio as well from desktop video ?

  8. mstephen
    January 7, 2011 at 2:57 am

    Why do I installed wrong?
    stephen

  9. B Sdf
    January 5, 2011 at 1:49 am

    Wonderful.

    Share a website with you ,

    put this url in google sirch

    ( .aamall.us )

    Believe you will love it.

    We accept any form of payment

  10. Paul Mindolovich
    January 5, 2011 at 2:53 am

    My bad. To be fair, the installer gives the option to NOT install the plugin that makes google.apsolo.com the default search. I'm installing it now to test it out.

  11. Vivekbarun
    January 4, 2011 at 7:11 pm

    Lol. No link. Looks like a post written in real hurry. :)
    Anyways. google it guys.

  12. Paul Mindolovich
    January 4, 2011 at 6:35 pm

    Fairly bad reviews about this software at Cnet Downloads: http://download.cnet.com/SMRecorder/3000-13633_4-75327069.html?tag=mncol;pop#rateit

    "...Pros: not worth it. Cons: changed my homescreen with a plugin. can't change it back (change it, but it changes back to google.apsolo.com). Can't uninstall plugin. plugin deleted, but still changes homescreen. Summary: changes homescreen. won't uninstall.

  13. Vivekbarun
    January 4, 2011 at 8:11 pm

    Lol. No link. Looks like a post written in real hurry. :)
    Anyways. google it guys.

  14. Paul Mindolovich
    January 4, 2011 at 7:35 pm

    Fairly bad reviews about this software at Cnet Downloads: http://download.cnet.com/SMRec...

    "...Pros: not worth it. Cons: changed my homescreen with a plugin. can't change it back (change it, but it changes back to google.apsolo.com). Can't uninstall plugin. plugin deleted, but still changes homescreen. Summary: changes homescreen. won't uninstall.

  15. Paul Mindolovich
    January 4, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    Read the reviews at its Cnet Downloads page: http://download.cnet.com/SMRec...

    "...Cons: changed my homescreen with a plugin. can't change it back (change it, but it changes back to google.apsolo.com). Can't uninstall plugin. plugin deleted, but still changes homescreen."

  16. Paul Mindolovich
    January 4, 2011 at 5:23 pm

    Read the reviews at its Cnet Downloads page: http://download.cnet.com/SMRecorder/3640-13633_4-75327069.html?tag=contentBody;userReviews

    "...Cons: changed my homescreen with a plugin. can't change it back (change it, but it changes back to google.apsolo.com). Can't uninstall plugin. plugin deleted, but still changes homescreen."

    • Paul Mindolovich
      January 5, 2011 at 1:52 am

      My bad. To be fair, the installer gives the option to NOT install the plugin that makes google.apsolo.com the default search. I'm installing it now to test it out.

      • M.S. Smith
        January 7, 2011 at 6:54 pm

        I installed the program and nothing is changed, except that I have SMRecorder installed.

  17. TYUIOFGHJVGBNTY
    January 4, 2011 at 6:10 pm

    google search :)

    http://www.video2down.com/inde...
    or
    http://download.cnet.com/SMRec...

    after a quick test i must say it's the best free screen recorder that i have come across

  18. Sorans
    January 4, 2011 at 4:01 pm

    No you're not ! He really forgot :D

  19. Sajniho
    January 4, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    Am I hallucinating or the author has forgot to add the link of SMRecorder's web / download page?

    • Mark O'Neill
      January 4, 2011 at 7:00 pm

      Thanks for your comment. Link has been added.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *