13 Free and Paid Screen Recording Software for Windows

Whether you are a beginner or an experienced screencast enthusiast, you will need the best and most suitable screen recording software if you want the best results achieved as easily as possible.

In order to make the choice of the best screen recording tool, we have done in-depth research on the best options on the market for 2021.

All of our top choices include the essential features and tools to look for in screen recording software, such as ease of use, price, and functionality such as cut and paste, video frame adjustability, unlimited screen recording time, and more.

Here is the list of the best screen recording programs that you can use for free and those which come in paid versions in 2021.

Free Screen Recording Software that Saves Money

If you are looking for an option for creating screen recordings without breaking the bank, then the good news is that there are many excellent screen recorders that are completely free, as well as some which are very reasonably priced and suitable for people on a tight budget.

We have tested numerous of these free programs and those which offer the best bang for the buck, and have chosen the best free screen recording software tools available, which do not have hidden fees or upsells, and which can easily compete with some of the premium programs for screen recording as well.

1. Free Cam

Free Cam is among the easiest to use free screen recorders you can find. It comes with a built-in video and audio editor with an easy-to-navigate and use interface.

The software is free to download for Windows 10, 8, and 7 and for 32 and 64 bit Windows.

You can use it to select a specific area or record the entire screen and record your voice-over for the lesson, the system sounds, and add highlights and sound to your mouse cursor as well.

Unlike other programs, which are advertised as free but have hidden catches, FreeCam doesn’t have any integrated branded watermarks or advertisements added to your recordings.

More importantly, Free Cam will not limit the video capture time you have, which means that you can create video files as long as you want for free.

Pros

  • No time limit, and no ads or watermarks added to the video file
  • Allows for record screen system and mouse sounds and voiceovers
  • You can select to record a certain part of the screen only as well as the full screen
  • Records in high-quality resolution
  • You can upload your video to YouTube or save it in a WMV format
  • The background noises are removed during the recording
  • You can delete certain frames and parts of the video easily
  • There are many audio effects you can choose from

Cons

  • It doesn’t offer webcam recording
  • The only format for saving the recordings is WMV

2. DVDVideoSoft’s Free Screen Video Recorder

The Free Screen Video Recorder by DVDVideoSoft is another completely free screen video recorder that is easy to use and doesn’t have hidden fees or upsells included.

The free screen recorder is small-sized and lightweight, so you can use it even on older Windows computers as well as on the latest Windows 10 ones.

It can be used to record online calls and conference calls on Skype and includes an editor with video editing features that will allow you to easily resize, rotate, crop, and otherwise tweak your video.

The app for Windows can be used to record all types of onscreen activities, including the movement of the mouse, and will also record the speech from your mic.

The recorded video files can be recorded in MP4, BMP, GIF, JPEG, PNG, and TGA formats.

It is safe to download and install without added adware or spyware, and you can set it up to start every time you power up your computer.

Pros

  • It has a nifty screenshot tool
  • There are different recording modes for video and audio that you can choose from
  • It is completely free, adware-free, and spyware-free
  • The program is available in 10+ languages
  • It is easy to set up
  • You can save the recordings in MP4, JPEG, BMP, PNG, TGA, PNG, or GIF formats

Cons

  • It  will not record the system sounds, but only the sounds in the microphone
  • There are ads
  • The audio can be recorded only in AVI format

3. ShareX

ShareX is another 100% free screen recording program that doesn’t have annoying ads and will allow you to record online lessons or any other activities on your computer screen

The open-source screen recording tool offers multiple capture methods of the full screen or specific windows and areas or movements. It also has editing tools, which will allow you to edit and save your recording or screenshot.

The capture can be made in different shapes and with added effects, text, and more.

The recordings can be saved or uploaded instantly and easily via the drag and drop interface.

Pros

  • It has some of the most advanced recording, editing, and uploading tools among all free screen recording tools
  • There are hotkeys for fast and easy navigation and use
  • You can use it to record the entire screen, monitor, a window, a certain part of the screen, the scrolling or freehand
  • It can be used for uploading the video to a wide variety of URL sharing platforms and services
  • You can use it to import your existing music, videos, or photos
  • You can add color effects, watermarks, and many more video editing features

Cons

  • It may be too complicated for beginners
  • There is no webcam recording
  • It does not do so good when recording gameplay or handling larger files

4. CamStudio

CamStudio is a simple screen capture and recording program that is perfect if you want a small-sized and easy-to-use recorder for one-time or occasional use only.

It is a lightweight free software tool, which can capture screen recordings in AVI format and can convert them to SWF files if needed.

As mentioned earlier, it is a very simple tool with little or no technical support, so it may not be the best option for users who will be using it constantly or who need guidance.

Pros

  • You can create small screen videos to send via email
  • There is a picture in picture option for adding a video of yourself to the video
  • You can burn top-quality videos on CDs or DVDs
  • There is a custom cursor
  • There is an option to add captions instead of recording your voice

Cons

  • The output is in AVI format only and has a conversion to Flash, which is no longer supported
  • The audio is not always synced with the picture
  • No advanced features to enhance the video

5. Ezvid

Ezvid is the screen capture software that is advertised as the quickest and easiest one to use.

Our tests show that this is true, as this free program allows for recording and uploading videos on your Windows computer screen in a matter of minutes.

The user-friendly interface is suitable for beginners, and you can create all types of videos of games, desktop screen capture, or browser use with a click of a button.

It is a top preferred option among gamers and also among movie fans looking for the best easy to use and efficient free screen recorder.

Pros

  • It has a built-in computer-generated speech which you can use instead of your own voice
  • An automatic high-quality HD resolution
  • You can control the video output  speed
  • Easy to navigate interface
  • You can upload your ready video to YouTube instantly
  • You can add music tracks to your videos

Cons

  • There have been issues with background noise with the video recording software
  • There is no option for full-screen gameplay recording and video

6. TinyTake

TinyTake is a free screen recorder that will allow you to capture the whole or part of the screen, add annotations and comments and then share the ready video with anybody.

All of this can be completed hassle-free and in a manner of minutes.

The free software provides access to a gallery based on the cloud, which you can use to store your videos and screenshots.

Pros

  • It offers bulk file sharing and cloud-based storage
  • You will get a public URL to share your videos instantly
  • There is an integrated file viewer where you can find and access your videos, images, and other documents
  • There are customizable hotkeys for fast and easy use
  • It has a video player that is compatible with smartphones and other mobile devices

Cons

  • The free version has a limit of up to 5 minutes per video, while the paid one has a 120-minute limit
  • The video editing tools and features are not very advanced
  • The videos are saved in MP4 format only

7. OBS Studio

OBS Studio is open-source software for the best screen recording, which is available for free for Windows, MAC, and Linux.

It is an excellent choice for users who want to live stream or record their gameplay, online lessons, and others.

The OBS Studio tool has a built-in editor, which you can use to customize the screen captures, images, webcams, text, windows, and more.

It is among the most advanced free screen recording tools, which may be overkill for those of you looking for one of the best quick and simple screen capture software programs.

Pros

  • You can add various scenes using different resources
  • There are integrated audio mixer and added filters
  • There are no watermarks or ads
  • It has some of the most advanced configurations and video editing features
  • There are no video files time limits
  • It supports a wide variety of streaming platforms and services

Cons

  • It has a steep learning curve, not suitable for newbies
  • The interface may not be as user friendly as others

Paid Screen Recording Software That We Love

If you prefer to use a more reliable paid screen recording tool, then don’t fret because there are some excellent options available that are reasonably priced and offer the best value for money.

The main benefit of using a paid screen recorder software is that the good ones come with reliable tech support, have more advanced tools, and offer more record screen and video output options than the free ones.

Here are our top picks when it comes to paid best screen recording software in 2021.

8. iSpring Suite

iSpring Suite is a fast toolkit for creating video lessons and for eLearning as a whole.

The suite includes a pro range video editing and recording studio and additional tools that you can use for online lessons and training. Some of these tools are an authoring tool for the online course, an interaction editor, a conversation simulator, a quiz creator, and many more.

With the video recorder’s editing features, you can create professional-looking video lessons and tutorials, screencasts with added voiceovers, videos with notes and comments, presenter videos, and more.

The videos can be edited easily, and you can remove certain parts, insert media and annotations, and add transitions, and more.

Pros

  • It can be used for recording a screencast and webcam video simultaneously
  • There is a video editing multi-track timeline feature
  • You can add captions, visual hints, images, infographics, and more via the video editor
  • The suite includes everything you need for online tutorials and learning
  • There are no time limits for the videos recorded
  • There is a 14-day free trial

Cons

  • Only MP4 video format is supported
  • The starting price is $970 for a year

9. Camtasia

Camtasia is another superb paid screen recorder and video editor which is packed with features suitable for advanced users.

You can use the Camtasia software for creating videos and recording audio, and then editing the results to your liking. There are added features like overlays, animations, and more.

One nifty feature offered by Camtasia is that you can use it to add interactive elements and quizzes to your videos, if you want to record audio and video tutorials.

Pros

  • It allows for whole screen recording and lets you record webcam as well
  • All of the tracks recorded (video, audio, and mouse cursor) can be edited and customized separately
  • You can use Camtasia to import videos, images, audio files, and PowerPoint slides
  • You can add callouts, captions, and quizzes to the videos via the editing options
  • It allows for editing frame by frame for precise customization
  • It has a built-in library with free music and sounds
  • It comes with a free 30-day trial – one of the longest trial versions

Cons

  • It is among the most expensive of all products on our list
  • The multi-track interface may be complicated and confusing to some users

10. Filmora Scrn

Wondershare Filmora Scrn is a reputable screen capture and recording software that will allow you to capture your screen and to share fast-paced onscreen scene recordings, making it an excellent choice for gamers. At the same time, the screen recorder allows for webcam video capture.

Filmora Scrn has a video editor that will allow you to improve the way your video looks and to add other features to it.

Pros

  • An option to record the screen and make a webcam recording at the same time
  • A picture-in-picture mode
  • Suitable for fast-paced gameplay and other video recordings of 15 to 120 FPS
  • Supports the highest resolution outputs of up to 4K
  • Its price starts at $19.99 for a year and costs a one-off $29.99 for a lifetime license making it one of the least expensive of the paid screen recorders on our list

Cons

  • There are not as many advanced editing features as in other paid screen recorders
  • It may freeze and lag when editing large files

11. Movavi Screen Recorder

Movavi Screen Recorder is another easy-to-use screen recorder suitable for newbies and for people who don’t want to toggle with complicated tools and options.

It allows for easy and quick recording of screen videos, webcam videos, and audio, take screenshots and saving and uploading them directly to YouTube or Google Drive or on social media platforms.

Pros

  • It can be used for HD screen and webcam video recording
  • You can record video and audio together or separately
  • Supports a wide variety of formats and export options, including MP4, AVI, MKV, and MOV
  • You can use it for taking screenshots and for editing them
  • You can set it up to record the onscreen activity on a set schedule
  • The mouse cursor can be recorded as well
  • There is a free 7-day trial

Cons

  • There is no built-in video editor
  • The trial version limits the screen recording time to just 5 minutes

12. My Screen Recorder Pro

My Screen Recorder Pro is a screen capturing program with a lot of features that will allow you to record all types of videos of your computer screen, webcam, or both simultaneously.

Pros

  • You can use it to record your screen and webcam separately or simultaneously
  • It supports AVI, MP4, WMV, and even WebM video formats
  • You can record on schedule
  • You can easily upload the recorded videos to an FTP account or set up the upload to automatic mode
  • There is a hidden mode, which will allow you to monitor the desktop screen
  • There is a free trial, and the one-off price is $129.95

Cons

  • The editing features are somewhat limited

13. FlashBack

FlashBack is one of the most popular screen recorders and editors on the market. You can use the software to shoot videos of your screen, of your webcam and mic, and of both. After that, you can edit and customize the video to your liking. You can use it to record video calls, games, create lessons, and more, and add effects, text, and others.

Pros

  • You can use it for recording multiple monitors
  • It offers webcam and mic recording
  • You can add customized watermarks
  • You can use it to upload your videos to YouTube or export them as AVI, MP4, WMV, GIF, QuickTime, and other files
  • There are zooming and a panning option for professional-looking videos

Cons

  • The built-in demos are hard to modify
  • The paid option is a one-time $49 but is for use on 1 PC only
  • You will need to pay $12.25 if you want access to premium support

Conclusion

With any of these screen recording software tools, you can easily create personal or professional-related videos of your onscreen activities.

Some of them are simpler and suitable for occasional use and fun, while others are more advanced and are a better option if you will be using the software on a day-to-day basis and use it for work.

Good luck with your screen recording and with the choice of the best software for your needs!

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