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How to record video on Mac, iMac, MacBook

Recording yourself on video can be easy with one of these methods - as long as your camera and microphone are configured correctly on your Mac machines.

Elena Spencer Updated on Feb 24, 2023 11:54 AM

Important Points - Self-Recording Video on Mac

  • Apple has official ways to record a video on a Mac to film yourself with the camera: QuickTime Player, Photo Booth app.
  • You can record movie or video by using Mac's built-in camera or a plugged-in external video camera, as well as an internal or external microphone.
  • Install the third-party Screen Recorder on your Mac should you record the video and make it look and sound your best. It can also record your face and Mac's screen at the same time.

Before recording yourself, make sure that your computer's built-in camera and microphone are working properly.

Knowing how to record a video on Mac computers or MacBooks can come in handy, whether you're recording yourself doing something through a camera or webcam, like teaching a craft, singing, doing a presentation, or talking in a newly-learned language.

Luckily, taking videos on Mac is a native capability that Apple includes with QuickTime Player app and Photo Booth app, and all you need is the built-in camera on your MacBook & iMac or an external camera if you're an owner of Mac Mini or Mac Pro.

Below will guide you through the process of using the camera on Mac for video recording yourself and make a recording with high-end video and audio quality.

Table of Contents

How to use your Mac's camera to record a video in QuickTime

The most obvious app to make your Mac record video via the built-in camera is QuickTime Player - though it's often known with its full-featured media player and convenient recording of screen and audio.

Create high-quality videos by recording yourself on QuickTime with the integrated microphone on Mac for free. You can capture or film anything right into the QuickTime and save as a playable .mov file. It only requires a few simple steps to get started with QuickTime Player New Movie Recording and take a video on a Mac.

Step 1- Choose File > New Movie Recording in QuickTime

First, start your Mac and open QuickTime Player for recording a movie.

From its menu bar, click File > New Movie Recording to proceed. You can press Shift + Command + N to trigger the New Movie Recording.

Use QuickTime app on your Mac for recording videos directly with a camera and microphone.

Step 2- Choose the built-in microphone and camera of your Mac

If there's no built-in camera comes with your Mac computer, make sure to first connect an external camera to it.

Recording controls window will open with internal camera as default, but you need to confirm this by clicking Options recognized as an inverted triangle, and from its drop-down recording options:

  • Camera- Select the built-in camera in your Mac. You can opt for the stock camera or the external one that's attached to the computer.
  • Microphone- Choose the microphone comes included with your Mac. You can also use an external mic to record the video with sound.
  • Quality- Selecting "High" will get a decent video to record from the Mac camera in H.264 with 44100Hz AAC audio. Make sure your Mac has considerable disk space for saving the recorded video file.

Activate the built-in computer's camera to record a movie of yourself in the QuickTime Player.

Step 3- Adjust the recording volume

Use the Volume Control on the left and drag it to a comfortable volume level.

Step 4- Hit Record button to start recording yourself on a video

After setting up your camera and microphone, click the Record button to launch a new recording to your Mac of what the camera sees.

When done with recording from the selected camera, click the Stop button from menu bar.

As soon as QuickTime begins recording, perform any actions on camera that you're wanting to capture

Step 5- Save the recording to Mac

You're able to see what's being recorded within QuickTime Player.

To export the video, click File > Save, then name the file and pick a location for it.

Don't Miss: How to Screen Record YouTube Videos on Mac

Use iOS device camera to record videos into Mac QuickTime

If you have an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch and want the actual recording taken place on the Mac instead of the device considering that Mac has much more memory to record long videos, then check out the steps below that can help making a movie in QuickTime Player using the camera to record to the Mac.

You just need to apply QuickTime's Record New Movie feature to activate and recognize the iPhone as an external camera, and then use the controls on your Mac screen, not iPhone screen, to start and stop recording.

Connect your iPhone to Mac as computer's video camera. In QuickTime, select File > New Movie Recording. Click arrow icon next to Record button and choose your connected iPhone as both Camera (or Screen) and Microphone. After that, hit the Record button to begin recording yourself. When you stop recording you can save what you recorded as a movie to your Mac by clicking File > Save.

Recording video from your awesome iPhone camera straight into QuickTime on macOS system is useful if you're not just recording the video on the iPhone and then transferring the file. Related: How to Transfer Video from PC to iPhone

How to record a video of yourself in Photo Booth with built-in camera

As useful as QuickTime Player is, Photo Booth can record video using the Mac's internal camera or an external video camera you connect to your Mac.

You can get the computer's built-in camera or an external webcam to record video onto Mac.

Bear in mind that you need to connect your external video camera using a USB cable if you tend to use it to record in Photo Booth, and make sure it's turn on. Then follow these steps within the app in a way of getting your Mac record yourself in a video.

  • Launch Photo Booth app on your Mac, and you should see yourself in the camera or webcam frame.
  • Click the "Record a movie clip" icon at the lower left corner to get the red Record Video button at the middle, which means that Photo Booth app is in Video mode for making a movie.
  • Hit the Record Video button to start doing the recording on camera.
  • Click the Stop button when you complete recording.
  • When done, you can click the Share icon at the bottom right corner of the screen, and save the video to Photo app, or share it via AirDrop, Messages, or Mail.

How to record your camera and microphone in a video with a third-party tool

If you're unimpressed with the Apple apps recording videos, then now it's the time to resort to something powerful: Screen Recorder. The easy-to-use video recorder Mac service offers you full-featured sets you can access if you find yourself needing to recording high-quality video of yourself.

With your microphone enabled and the built-in FaceTime HD camera positioned at a suitable angle with your face in the frame, you can kick off recording your video instantly. The cameras with which to capture video directly in macOS can be the external video cameras like your connected iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, webcam, or camcorder. During Mac video recording, you're able to use the Screen Capture button take a photo of the footage from the camera.

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Guide on recording video on Mac

1. Download Screen Recorder software and install it onto your macOS system.

2. Open up the tool and choose Webcam Recorder tab. In case you want to record your computer's screen and webcam simultaneously, click Screen Recorder tab instead; click here to see how to do that.

3. The software brings up the capture window with the internal FaceTime HD Camera selected.

To use an external camera to record the video, you need to connect the camera to the Mac properly so the program recognizes it. Then select it from the drop-down menu from the lower left corner.

4. Turn on the microphone by clicking the Microphone icon at the bottom of the screen.

5. When you are ready, click the REC button. The software will begin recording yourself in camera with Mac, rendering your new video in high quality.

6. When you have finished filming, click the Stop button.

You can then view the recording, and clip it into your desired length. Click Save button to access the file in the recording list. From there, you can locate the video recording on Mac system, rename the file, or share it over. The camera recorded video files are saved as MOV files.

After recording a video yourself on the Mac

  • Edit your video. Add visual effects, subtitles, or inserting music can make the raw footage look better. You can use a professional video editor to achieve this.
  • Save the recorded video on Mac at the right format for sharing or transferring.
  • Share your video to social media platforms, like YouTube.

Mac video recording tips

Here are some major essentials of recording yourself in video on any Mac computer:

1- CAMERA. All iMacs and MacBooks have camera built-in. To video recording on Mac mini or Mac Pro, an external webcam is required. Read: How to Record Videos on MacBook

2- FRAMING & ANGLE. Put yourself in the video frame so the camera can see you. You also need to position your phone as the video camera or other webcam at the right angle.

2- MICROPHONE. Mac's built-in mic is good enough for use in a video recording with sound. You'd better pick a quiet spot with not so much echo.

3- LIGHTING & BACKGROUND. Film yourself in daylight as well as pick a non-distracting background so you can get a better video quality.

4- RELIABLE RECORDING SOFTWARE. A good video recorder could streamline the process of making movies on a Mac, and enable you to monitor and control your recordings. QuickTime Player, Photo Booth, and third-party Screen Recorder are your best bets to do a short or long video recording with cam.

Bonus: How to record yourself in screen recording with audio on Mac

There might be times you need to record yourself talking and embed the video into the screen recording. Thanks to Apple QuickTime Screen Recording options for Mac, getting a video embedded within screen recording becomes easier. Here's how to record screen and camera at the same time.

1. Open any macOS application or window you want to screen record.

2. From the menu bar of QuickTime Player, click File > New Movie Recording. This will open a camera window, which records yourself in the video.

3. Click View > Float on Top to make the camera window always appear above any application you open and record. You can resize the floating camera window and drag it to anywhere on the screen.

4. Return to QuickTime Play and select New Screen Recording from the File menu.

5. Click the down arrow next to red Record button and choose Internal Microphone.

6. Click the Record button to start recording screen, your face and audio simultaneously.

If QuickTime route doesn't appeal to you because the video won't record audio coming from Mac system, consider trying AppGeeker Screen Recorder. With it, you're able to record computer screen and screen sound as well as camera in one same video within a few simple clicks.

Once you start up the software, click Video Recorder tab. Then on the next windows that appears, enable the toggles for Camera, System Sound and Microphone. Now the camera window with you in it should display on the app you want to record. Hit the REC button to let the software get the job done with yourself captured in the Mac video recording.

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