Screencasting tools?

This is a question for the community: what screen casting tools do you use and which would you recommend?

The context for this is that as a teacher of computer things, I watch a lot of how-to videos that are made available as screencasts, and I’ve even add a go at producing some myself (e.g. see this set from one of my lecture courses). I’d like to do more both in my teaching and also for my Blackboard Tips articles in my other blog.

The tool that I first used what was Wink, but though free, it’s a tool that’s a bit clunky. I’ve also tried Jing, but that’s a tool that limits screencasts to 5 minutes (presumably because its big brother is Camtasia). So is it worth shelling out $299 of my department’s money to buy Camtasia or is there a free or open source alternative that will do the job? I am stuck in Windows, so no Mac suggestions (or jibes) please!


  1. I use Camtasia Studio 3 for all the on line videos that I create. I also use FastStone Capture gor capturing screenshots and then adding comments. I then use Camtasia to link these screenshots to create a simple tutorial or ‘How to’ instruction.
    As I understand it Camtasia 5 is the commercial offering and Camtasia 3 is free to download.

  2. I did some quick Google research and discovered that Camtasia Studio 3 was made available on various PC magazines. Details of the offer seems to have leaked and the offer of a free licence has been withdrawn. I think I’ll try the free trial of Camptasia Student 5.1 anyway. Academic pricing is $120 dollars cheaper than the standard $299, so if I get hooked, it might still be affordable.

  3. Apologies Chris, also just did a serach and found that TechSmith have removed the free offer for Camtasia 3.
    I do think it is well worth a trial. There was talk about getting some licences locally…tba

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