Has Camtasia crashed on you one too many times? Uncomfortable downloading your video editing and screen recording software when everything else you use is SaaS?
Maybe it’s time to check out some Camtasia alternatives.
Camtasia is a jack-of-all-video-trades. Over the last 20 years (20 years! 😱) it’s been through loads of versions, with new bits and pieces being tacked on regularly.
But during that time, video tools dedicated to and perfected for specific workflows have sprung up and thrived - making “jack-of-all-trades” sound like “master-of-none”.
In this blog, we’ll put Techsmith’s veteran tool up against a range of Camtasia alternatives that challenge for supremacy in particular areas and use cases.
Best Camtasia Alternatives
- Camtasia offers powerful editing tools and it keeps providing new features year on year. It’s also prone to bugs and crashing, and you have to pay for upgrades
- Sendspark is ideal for producing and sharing screen recordings for sales, marketing, and customer success. However, it doesn’t offer editing.
- OBS is a powerful, free, open-source option that developers like - but is difficult for non-technical folks to use
- Bandicam is the gamers’ choice with good reason - just make sure you have Windows!
- Veed brings meaningful video editing to SaaS, but it doesn’t match Camtasia there - or Sendspark’s messaging capabilities
Quick Overview of Camtasia
Camtasia is produced by Techsmith, and it consists of a downloadable software suite that combines screen recording and video editing functionality.
So what’s good? And what’s not so good?
Advantages of Camtasia
Camtasia Advantage #1: Cost-effective, powerful editing
While it’s not in the same league as - say - Adobe Premiere Pro, Camtasia has an impressive range of video editing options, including:
- Video and audio effects
- Options to zoom and pan camera
- Overlay animations
- Scene transitions
- Loads of video canvas and format options
- Alter frame rates from 25 to 60 fps
There’s also a compatible mobile app called Techsmith Capture, which allows you to transfer footage captured on your phone straight to the Camtasia desktop editor.
Camtasia Advantage #2: Well-designed and easy to use
Where Camtasia beats Premiere Pro hands-down is in ease of use.
Yes, the UI is crowded, but smart onboarding walkthroughs help new users get started quickly. Once you’ve got the hang of it, even Camtasia’s most advanced workflows are intuitive and quick to learn. But if you get stuck, a license includes access to loads of video training content.
Camtasia Advantage #3: Interactivity
Every year, the new edition of Camtasia adds a bunch of new features, and 2021 saw some really good ones - especially in the area of interactivity.
You can now add quizzes (for example) into your recordings in post-production - great for making presentations more engaging.
Shortcomings of Camtasia
Camtasia Shortcoming #1: Crashes and bugs
Camtasia Shortcoming #2: Pay for upgrades
There’s no web version of Camtasia. If you want it, you’re going to have to download it - and that requires 1.28 GB of space.
One consideration that irritates a lot of Camtasia users is that, when new features are released, current customers have to pay extra charges to upgrade to the latest version. This will come as a bit of a shock to the SaaS generation, who are used to getting new feature releases as standard and without reinstallation.
Camtasia Shortcoming #3: Sharing is limited
Want to share the videos you’ve produced? You’re going to have to download them first. Or share directly to a third-party destination (eg YouTube, Vimeo, or Techsmith’s own Screencast.com platform).
That means Camtasia is of minimal use for realizing the enormous benefits that using video as a messaging medium has generated for those businesses that do it well.
Check out this guide if you’re new to the video marketing revolution!
Camtasia isn’t cheap, with a price tag of $249/£200 per download (limited to one device). Remember though, your access to future upgrades is limited. Eventually, you’ll have to pay extra to stay up to date.
There’s no free version, but you can get your money back within 30 days if you try Camtasia and decide it’s not for you.
Let's compare Camtasia to Sendspark
Sendspark is a SaaS app for recording, sharing, sending, and requesting videos, that has been designed for marketing, sales, and customer success use cases.
Advantages of Sendspark
Sendspark Advantage #1 - Best-in-class messaging
If you want to send your recordings directly to contacts, customers, and colleagues, Sendspark is the perfect tool.
- Simple, intuitive sharing to email and social channels from one control panel
- Create branded landing pages to host your recordings on, giving you access to click and view analytics, control over the entire viewing experience, the opportunity to drive follow-up actions, and removing any need to send hefty attachments that could get your messages sent to junk mail
- Sendspark even helps your contacts send you video messages. With the Request Video feature, you can send a link to a contact, which launches the screen recorder when clicked - without any software to download - and sends you a notification when you have a new video to watch
Sendspark Advantage #2 - Ease of use
Sendspark is really easy and intuitive to use. The vast majority of functions are always just one or two clicks away, and the whole package feels well-designed as a coherent, integrated toolkit.
For example, the workflows for sending messages via different channels are all accessed from the same panel. Customizing your landing pages is equally straightforward, with all your options shown immediately on-screen - nothing is tucked away in hard-to-spot toolbars.
Sendspark Advantage #3 - Fast, robust, and constantly updated
Unlike Camtasia, which makes you wait a year for new features and then pay for them, Sendspark is constantly upgrading!
And as a SaaS product running in your browser, Sendspark has been designed for massively distributed usage - making it highly robust, lightweight on system resources, and extremely quick.
Shortcomings of Sendspark
Sendspark Shortcoming #1 - No editing
You can’t edit your recordings in Sendspark. At all.
So why include it in a list of alternatives to Camtasia, you may ask? Simple - Camtasia positions itself as a screen recording and messaging suite, as well as an editing package. It’s best known for the latter, but Sendspark outperforms it on those other functions, which are the lead use cases for growing numbers of people and businesses.
Sendspark Shortcoming #2 - Online only
Sendspark is a web app so you need to be online to use it. If you want to record when you’re offline, Sendspark is not the tool for you.
Sendspark’s Pro package costs just $15 per month ($180 per year) per user, making it by far the most cost-effective tool for video messaging on this list - as well as the most well-optimized.
This gives you the ability to brand your video landing pages, include calls-to-action on landing pages, and a whole raft of advanced analytics capabilities.
Let's compare Camtasia to OBS Studio
OBS (Open Broadcaster Software) Studio is a screencasting, live streaming, screen recording, and video editing tool that runs on Windows, macOS, Linux, and more.
In terms of what it can do, it’s not too dissimilar to Camtasia. But it approaches its tasks from a completely different angle.
Advantages of OBS Studio
OBS Studio Advantage #1 - It’s free!
OBS is free to download.
Not only that, but the code is open source - meaning that there’s a whole community of OBS fans working away improving it, creating new plug-ins, and patching problems day in, day out.
OBS Studio Advantage #2 - Versatility
OBS runs on every major OS, it lets you compose video from multiple sources, mix your audio, customize hotkeys, automate certain workflows, and customize your setup to a huge degree.
You can do an almost limitless number of things with OBS.
Shortcomings of OBS Studio
OBS Studio Shortcoming #1 - Not user friendly
It’s not easy to make the most of OBS. The UI is confusing, complicated, and old-fashioned.
OBS is pretty much a “DIY” platform: before you can record anything, you have to configure each source (browser, webcam, audio input) individually. Compare that to the “plug and play” simplicity of some of the other Camtasia alternatives.
OBS Studio Shortcoming #2 - No customer support
As is usually the case with open-source software, there’s no customer support - although there is an active and supportive community that can answer most questions and has workarounds for most problems.
Major updates to OBS are rare: as the code gradually evolves, bugs and performance issues are rarely dealt with in full.
OBS Studio Shortcoming #3 - Dodgy versions and plugins
Many different sites are offer OBS downloads, plus a massive range of plugins that users have developed themselves can be found. These are not regulated or vetted in any way - and some of them will cause performance and security problems.
So be careful!
OBS Studio Pricing
Like, we said: OBS is free. What else is there to say?😉
Bandicam Screen Recorder - Camtasia alternative for gamers
Bandican is yet another desktop screen recorder tool that’s been designed for recording gaming footage in particular. It’s been very popular with YouTubers and the gaming community for years.
Let's compare Camtasia to Bandicam Screen Recorder
Bandicam Screen Recorder Advantage #1 - Up to 480 fps
Why do gamers love Bandicam? Because it claims to be able to capture up to 480 frames per second, which helps capture all the on-screen action in high definition.
Compare that to Camtasia’s maximum of 60fps and it’s clear why it’s not even in the running.
Bandicam Screen Recorder Advantage #2 - In-recording effects
Bandicam has a nice selection of in-recording effects: different mouse effects, combining chroma key background with screen capture, drawing effects.
These are great for livening up a video, but you need a lot of dexterity to use them while you record!
Shortcomings of Bandicam Screen Recorder
Bandicam Screen Recorder Shortcoming #1 - Windows only
Got a Mac? Or run your machine on Linux? Well, move along! Bandicam only works on Windows.
Bandicam Screen Recorder Shortcoming #2 - No editing
While Bandicam has some cool in-recording effects, it doesn’t let you trim footage or add the effects afterwards.
It’s one-take or nothing!
Bandicam Screen Recorder Shortcoming #3 - Watermarks on the free version
It’s great that Bandicam offers a free version of the screen recorder, but its value is undermined somewhat by a time limit of just ten minutes and watermarks across all videos.
Bandicam Screen Recorder Pricing
At $39.95 for a single download license, Bandicam is much, much cheaper than Camtasia.
Great for the screen recording side, but if you want to edit footage after recording you’ll need to get Bandicut as well: you can get a bundle of the two programs for $60.95. Still a lot cheaper!
Let's compare Camtasia to Veed
Veed is a SaaS screen recorder and editing tool in one. It has many more editing and customization options than Loom, Vidyard, Sendspark etc - which is why we’re pitting it up against Camtasia!
Advantages of Veed - Fun to use
Veed Advantage #1 - Fun UI
Video editors are often ugly-looking, hard to use, and feel forbidding to new users. That’s not true of Veed. It’s super simple to get to grips with, and with the wide range of preset effects available, it’s a lot of fun to use.
You can add effects during and after recording, clean audio tracks and add sound effects, perform scene transitions. And with loads of tips and how-to documents on the website, you’ll never run out of ideas.
Veed Advantage #2 - Significant editing in a web app
Most tools that provide video editing capabilities are downloadable desktop apps. That is sometimes a plus (you can use them offline, for example) but it does create issues around space and system resources, plus giving rise to the problem of upgrades. Veed is a web app that has more editing capabilities in the browser than most of the competition.
Veed Advantage #3 - Automatic subtitling and translation
On the Pro package, Veed provides automatic subtitling and translation of the audio track into a host of different languages.
The results are…not always perfect… but they’ve very easy to edit, so if you need to transcribe or translate a voiceover or dialogue, this functionality is going to save you a huge amount of time.
Shortcomings of Veed
Veed Shortcoming #1 - It’s a compromise
The functionality of the editing capabilities does not measure up to Camtasia’s. Veed is great for knocking together top-quality, striking “amateur” videos - but it’s not good enough for “professional” use.
Maybe that’s a flipside negative of Veed being a web app? Veed gives you the power to be creative - but on rails. Camtasia and other pro tools take those training wheels off.
Veed Shortcoming #2 - Weak messaging capabilities
Veed’s messaging capabilities feel like they’ve been ported in from a different product. They’re not very intuitive (slightly different workflows for each channel) and social shares omit preview images.
While you can email links to videos, Veed doesn’t create any kind of preview image or GIF of the sort that Sendspark excels in - and which are proven to increase open and clickthrough rates.
At £18 ($25) per month when billed annually, a year of Pro Veed is more expensive than Camtasia ($300 versus $249). And of course, your Camtasia license is permanent.
There is a free version, but it has a lot of restrictions (10 mins per video, watermarked footage, max storage of 2GB, 720p maximum export quality). It’s definitely worth having a play on the free version, but when it comes time to upgrade, you’ll need to think carefully about what you’re going to use Veed for.
The Bottom Line - When to Choose Which Camtasia Alternative
Let’s recap! Camtasia has a lot going for it, but it’s not ideal for every video use case. These Camtasia alternatives fit the following bills:
- Sendspark - If you need video recording and best-in-class messaging capabilities, for sales, marketing, and customer service
- OBS - If you’re a developer, an open-source devotee, or you have zero budget
- Bandicam - If gaming video is your main interest, and you have a Windows machine
- Veed - If you want a fun, SaaS-based experience, but video sharing is not a priority
Sendspark makes it easy to create or import videos and distribute them across email, social, and the web. Sign up now if you want to start recording and sharing videos for free.