Before we start learning how to record video on PC with the Windows 10 operating system, you need to choose a screen capture app. However, this is not as easy as it sounds. There are numerous recording programs available that can make a screen capture video on Windows 10. How do you choose the best one?
The first thing you need to do is make sure that the program will record the screen in a format that your system is comfortable with. This way, you can make sure that you will not lose any data while you are working with your screen recorders.
Secondly, the software should be reliable, so it won’t cause any problems. Check the information about the developer before you download the app.
Thirdly, it should not cost you a lot of money. The perfect situation is when you can use a fully functional program for free.
Now let us make your life easier and give you our list of the 12 best screen recorders for Windows 10. We’ve split them into multiple categories – desktop programs, online services, and browser extensions.
At the end of the article, you’ll find a handy guide to how to record your computer screen for free.
Desktop Software to Record Screen on Windows 10
One of the best ways to record screens on Windows 10 is to use a desktop program. It provides high quality output and offers a wide range of recording features. You can record screen and audio simultaneously, which is convenient for making video tutorials and presentations.
Another advantage of this method is that you don’t need an internet connection to make a screen capture. This can be important for people who are used to working on the road and don’t always have access to stable or secure Wi-Fi.
On the other hand, the majority of desktop programs are paid programs. Although they may have free trial versions, you don’t get all the functions until you purchase a license.
One more disadvantage is a long launch process compared with online tools. Using a desktop recorder, you have to wait a little bit until the settings activation is complete. Here’s a list of the best recorders that capture video with sound.
Best for: recording separate streams
G2 rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars, 44 reviews
Movavi Screen Recorder is a simple yet powerful screen recording program. It captures your screen, system sounds from your laptop, voice from your microphone, and webcam images.
The app has a wide range of settings that will expand your options for creating educational videos. For example, you can highlight cursor clicks or display your keyboard. It’s useful for recording video tutorials on using specific programs.
You can also schedule your recordings. This is a favorite feature of anyone who frequently records webinars and streaming videos.
The recorder provides a wide choice of export formats such including MP4, AVI, MOV, MKV, GIF, MP3, PNG, BMP, and JPG.
Advantages of Movavi Screen Recorder:
- Simple interface
- Many output formats
- Useful settings for making video tutorials
Disadvantages of the program:
- There’s a watermark in the free version.
2. OBS Studio
Best for: creating professional video clips
Techradar rating: 4 out of 5 stars
OBS is free software that is highly regarded by professional video creators. It allows users to set up an unlimited number of scenarios and custom transitions to seamlessly link them. When it comes to audio, users can also benefit from the audio mixer that includes a number of per-source filters including noise suppression, noise gate, and gain.
If you ask about disadvantages of the program, the first thing that comes to mind is its challenging interface. Indeed, OBS has so many settings that you risk going crazy searching for the one you want. We would not recommend starting with this program if you don’t need to make a professional-grade video clip.
Another issue is a lack of technical support.
Advantages of OBS Studio:
- Advanced video editing tools
- Free to use
Disadvantages of the recorder:
- Difficult interface
- Poor customer support
3. The Built-in Game Bar
Best for: computer gameplay recording
To make a screen capture on Windows 10, you can use the Xbox Game Bar. It’s a built-in Windows tool that is designed for recording game streaming videos. But you can also use it as a simple screen recorder.
Note that using Game Bar, you can capture only a single app. It’s not possible to record the whole desktop or file explorer. You cannot customize the capture area. The length of recording is also limited.
The program does not include any editing tools.
Advantages of Game Bar:
- Requires no installation
- Simple to use
- Perfect for game recording on Windows
Disadvantages of the built-in app:
- Recording time is limited.
- No opportunity to customize the capture area size.
- No advanced recording tools.
Best for: branding your recordings
G2 rating: 4 out of 5 stars, 21 reviews
Icecream Screen Recorder is very simple to use. The interface may look a little old-fashioned, but the program has all necessary recording tools.
The unique thing is that you can add your own logo to the recordings – a useful attribute for screencast creators and video bloggers.The free version has strict limitations. For instance, you cannot convert the video into a different format, add a branded logo to the video, schedule a recording, and so on. The recording time
is also limited to 5 minutes.
Advantages of Icecream Screen Recorder:
- You can add your branded logo to the videos.
- You can select the capture area you used last time.
Disadvantages of the program:
- Old-fashioned interface interface
- Many limitations in the free version
Best for: advanced video editing
Techradar rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Flashback Express is not just a screen recorder. It’s a fully featured video editor. But compared to OBS Studio, it has a more user-friendly interface and clearer settings.
The program has high-rated user reviews because there’s no watermark on videos in the free version. The Pro version has more advanced features, but the price is reasonable.
In addition to video editing, you can record any part of your screen. You can customize the video resolution and limit the file size before saving.
Advantages of Flashback Express:
- User-friendly interface
- Many video editing tools
Disadvantages of software:
- Some tools are available only in the paid version.
Best for: making work projects
G2 rating: 4 out of 5 stars, 40 reviews
Screencast-O-Matic is a handy program for team collaboration. You can share work projects in just a few clicks. It also includes a built-in stock library to help you make more engaging content. There’s also ad-free cloud hosting where you can store your recordings and videos.
You can try Screencast-O-Matic for free but be aware that you’ll miss the majority of advanced features. To get cloud hosting or secure file backup, you have to purchase the program.
Advantages of Screencast-O-Matic:
- Tools for team collaboration
- Ad-free cloud hosting and secure file backup in the paid version
Disadvantages of the recorder:
- Limited functionality in the trial version
- Huge watermark on videos in the free version
Online Video Captures on Windows 10
Now let’s talk about online video grabbers. They became popular in recent years because they don’t require installation on your computer.
It’s quick to launch an online recorder. You just need to open the recorder web page, click the Start Recording button and get your video.
But the danger of capturing screens online is that many recording services scan your browser data, which could be seen as a security risk. Of course, this does not apply to all online recorders. We mention this point just to warn you that security breaches have happened. That’s why we recommend using only recommended services.
Here’s our top list of online screen recorders. Choose any one of these and you can be sure nobody will steal your data!
Best for: online video editing
Techradar rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
The service from Apowersoft is a simple yet functional online recorder. It’s free of charge, and there’s no watermark on videos.
Many users like its online video editing tools. You can make a screen capture and highlight the most important information in real time. It’s a valuable feature for students who make video summaries and record educational webinars.
The only inconvenience is the need to install a special launcher to activate the recorder. But you only need to install it once, then you can use the app without limits.
Advantages of Apowersoft Screen Recorder:
- Online video editing tools
- Absolutely free to use
Disadvantages of the service:
- Long launch processr
Best for: secure recording
Trustpilot rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars, 75 reviews
Screen Capture has a simple interface and clear settings. It’s suitable even for inexperienced users because it’s obvious how to use it.
You can record any tab on your screen, including windows on your desktop. If you want to record your voice on a webcam, you can do this separately from the screen recording. This function is often used by bloggers and performers.
Screen Capture can be used in Incognito mode if you have privacy concerns. But the service guarantees that all your recordings are secure. Nobody can see your videos until you share them yourself.
The only thing you may not like about Screen Capture is the watermark on videos in the free version. To remove the watermark, you can buy a subscription which is very reasonably priced.
Advantages of Screen Capture:
- Secure recording
- Quick start to the recording process
- Webcam can be recorded separately from screen recording
Disadvantages of the online tool:
- Small watermark in the free version
Best for: short video recording
Screenapp has a minimalist interface that is easy to understand. You can capture the screen in three ways – the entire screen, an application window, or a browser tab. It’s also possible to trim the recording before downloading to your computer.
The service has several pricing plans – basic, standard, and premium. Using the basic plan, you can capture the screen for free but there are limitations. You cannot make more than 10 recordings and 10 saves to your media library. If you want to share the video, the length cannot be more than 15 minutes.
Standard and premium plans don’t have these limitations but they are chargeable.
Advantages of Screenapp:
- Minimalist interface
- Quick launch
Disadvantages of the service:
- Free version has significant limitations
- No choice of capture area size
Browser Extensions to Make a Video Screen Capture on Windows 10
In addition to desktop programs and online services, there is another popular screen recording method. We’re talking about browser extensions, of course.
You can pin the extension icon in the top right corner of your browser and the recorder will always be available. You don’t need to open a special web page or launch desktop software.
This is very convenient when you need to make a quick screen capture and share it as fast as possible. That’s why browser extensions are so popular among remote workers. You don’t need to write emails with long explanations – just record your screen and demonstrate what you want to say.
But the significant disadvantage of all extensions is that they have more crashes and bugs than desktop and online programs. This is related to constant browser updates and changes in operating systems requirements.
Additionally, the majority of extensions have many fewer recording features than desktop programs.
Here are some extensions that come highly recommended by users.
Best for: online drawing on videos
Google Web Store rating: 4 out of 5 stars, 11,500+ reviews
Screencastify captures your desktop, browser tab, and webcam video. You can also add voice narratives and comments on the video. In the preview window, there are simple editing tools such as trimming, merging, and cropping recordings.
But the really unique feature is an online drawing tool. You can activate the pen tool during the recording process!
Screencastify provides convenient sharing and exporting options such as uploading to cloud storage, publishing to YouTube, sharing videos via Google classroom, or saving to the desktop in MP4, GIF, or MP3.
But many users have complained that they cannot log into their account and download recordings. Another issue is that Screencastify requests private Google Drive access that could be a security concern for some people.
Advantages of Screencastify:
- Fully featured recording app
- Online drawing capability
Disadvantages of the extension:
- Failures when trying to log into your account
Best for: online team collaboration
Google Web Store rating: 4.7 out of 5 stars, 10,000+ reviews
Loom enables users to get a shareable link to the recording and send it right to their work messenger. It has integrations with the most popular services for team collaboration, including Gmail, Slack, Jira, and others. That’s why businesses prefer to use this extension.
You can also use it as an individual. But note that the free plan has limitations, like recording length, number of videos and screenshots, and number of content creators. To remove the restrictions, you need to buy a subscription.
Advantages of Loom:
- Opportunities for team collaboration
Disadvantages of the extension:
- Laggy audio recording
- Restrictions in the free plan
- Many crashes during internal audio recording
Best for: making branded videos online
Google Web Store rating: 4.6 out of 5 stars, 14,000+ reviews
We earlier recommended Icecream Screen Recorder if you want to brand your recordings. But that was the desktop app. Nimbus’s extension offers the same opportunity – you can add your logo to the recordings.
This extension is really powerful. It has many advanced settings that even some desktop programs don’t have. You can record from screen and webcam, take screenshots, convert videos into MP4 or GIF, make recordings in different resolutions (HD, FullHD, 4K), edit your creations, and share them in one click.
But the majority of the most advanced functions are available in the Premium package only. Free users enjoy just a basic range of features.
Advantages of Nimbus Screenshot and Screen Video Recorder:
- Powerful screenshot and screen recording tool
- High rating
Disadvantages of the extension:
- Many of the most interesting features are chargeable.
How to Record Video on Windows 10: A Step-by-Step Guide
As we promised at the beginning, we’ll show you how to record screens on Windows 10. Here’s a quick guide to how to use the online recorder but the approach is almost the same for all programs – desktop, online, or browser extension. Only the launch process differs from app to app.
Step 1. Open the Screen Capture Web Page
Open the tab with the online recorder.
Step 2. Choose the Capture Parameters
Decide what you want to grab. To record just screen activity without any sound, disable Microphone, Webcam, and Sound. If you're going to record your voice, enable the microphone.
If you want to grab live audio, activate the Sound button.
Click the Start Recording button. Allow access to your webcam and microphone.
Step 3. Record Your Computer Screen
Choose the tab to start recording. The recorder will capture everything that happens on your PC. You can freely switch between tabs.
Notice that the recorder works in Full Screen mode, so it grabs the whole screen. To record just one particular part of your laptop screen, you’ll need to install the desktop version.
Step 4. Save the Recording
Stop recording and save the file to your computer. The quality of the video will be much better than if you use the built-in Windows recorder.
The online recorder works with multiple Windows versions.
Compare Screen Recorders for Windows 10 and Choose the Best One
Here’s a summary table with all the programs covered in the article. Check the pros and cons and make your final decision.
|Movavi Screen Recorder||Making video tutorials||Simple interface. Many output formats. Handy settings for making video tutorials.||Watermark in the free version.|
|OBS Studio||Creating professional video clips||Advanced video editing tools. Free to use.||Difficult interface. Poor customer support.|
|The Built-in Game Bar||Computer game recording||Requires no installation.||Limited recording time. No opportunity to customize the capture area size. No advanced recording tools.|
|Icecream Screen Recorder||Branding your recordings||You can add your branded logo to videos.||Strict limitations in the free version.|
|Flashback Express||Advanced video editing||Many video editing tools.||Some tools are available only in the paid version.|
|Screencast-O-Matic||Making work projects||Tools for team collaboration. Ad-free cloud hosting.||Limited functionality in the trial version. Huge watermark on videos.|
|Screen Capture||Secure recording||Quick start of recording process. Webcam can be recorded separately from screen recording.||Small watermark in the free version.|
|Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder||Online video editing||Online video editing tools. Absolutely free to use.||Long launching process.|
|Screenapp||Short video recording||Minimalist interface. Quick launch.||Free version has significant limitations.|
|Loom||Online team collaboration||Opportunities for team collaboration.||Laggy audio recording. Restrictions in the free plan.|
|Screencastify||Online drawing on videos||Fully featured recording app. Online drawing is accessible.||Failures when trying to log into your account.|
|Nimbus Screenshot and Screen Video Recorder||Making branded videos online||Powerful screenshot and screen recording tool.||The coolest functions are chargeable.|
Frequently Asked Questions
What's the best screen recorder for PC?
Here’s a list of the 12 best screen recorders for PC:
- Movavi Screen Recorder
- Windows Game Bar
- Icecream Screen Recorder
- Flashback Express
- Screen Capture
- Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder
- Nimbus Screenshot and Screen Video Recorder
Does Windows 10 have a screen recorder?
Yes, there's a built-in screen recorder. Open the Start menu and search for the Game bar app. If you can’t find it, try the Windows + G shortcut.
How can I record my screen on Windows 10 for free?
To record your screen on Windows 10 for free and save the file in high resolution, follow these steps.
Step 1: Open the free online recorder
Step 2: Set the recording parameters
Step 3: Start recording your screen activity
Step 4: Save the file to your computer