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The 15 best free video recording software for Windows and Mac

Here will introduce you the 15 best free video recorders in detail, including their pros and cons. Pick one to record your onscreen videos according to your needs!

Aileena Ivy Updated on Jul 20, 2023 2:46 PM

Here are the 15 best free video capture software for you to choose from.

Video recording software has become an essential tool for content creators, educators and gamers who need to capture videos and share their work online. As the demand for recording video content continues to grow, so does the availability of free video recording software.

Today, there are a variety of best video recording apps available for users to record a video for free on their computers, with features ranging from basic screen capture to more advanced video editing tools.

And based on tests of recording features, editing capabilities, output formats and usability, this article has compiled the 15 best free video recorders for Windows and Mac that allow you to achieve the same video recording quality as paid video capture software without shelling out a lot of money. So, you can pick the best free one for your specific now!

But if you have trouble choosing or want to select the most comprehensive video capture app for Windows PC or Mac, we recommend AppGeeker Screen Recorder. It will enable you to easily record professional video, whether for how-to tutorials, software demonstration, presentations or Youtube videos.

The list of the 15 best free video recording software:

1. Screencast-O-Matic

Best free video recorder with video editing

OS: Windows, Mac

With its simple and intuitive interface, Screencast-O-Matic has become a popular free video recording software that makes it easy for users of all skill levels to record videos. Use it to capture desktop activity, camera and microphone to help you create tutorial-type video recording.

It is also configured with a collection of editing tools, including the ability to trim, cut, and add text or subtitles to videos. Users can also add transitions, animations, and other special effects to make their videos more engaging. On top of that, its built-in ability to manage team collaboration allows members to work together to modify and adjust video recordings.


  • With stock library
  • Many editing features available
  • Multiple export options: AVI, FLV, MP4, etc.
  • High security level with authorized access in cloud storage
  • Upload video to YouTube, Facebook and Google Drive
  • Support for Windows, Mac, iPhone, iPad, Android, and Chromebook


  • 4K video is not supported
  • Maximum recording time is 15 minutes
  • The free version does not support system audio recording
  • Watermark cannot be removed in the free version

2. OBS studio

Best free video recording software and streaming software

OS: Windows, Mac

You've probably seen this video recording app somewhere, if you're a livestreamer or someone who likes to watch live video. OBS studio is a free and open-source software that allows users to record video with audio from various sources, including their screen, webcam, microphone and system sound.

A notable feature of OBS Studio is its ability to stream live video to popular platforms like Twitch, YouTube and Facebook, delivering the ability to record live video while streaming. Unlike other screen recording software, this free video capture program packs the feature to add filters to your video recording.


  • Support various audio and video sources
  • Provide a range of plugins and add-ons
  • Freedom to choose what to record from multiple scenes
  • Allow multiple output formats
  • Record picture-in-picture video
  • Support HD live streaming


  • The interface is clumsy for someone
  • The possibility of experiencing lag or crash issues
  • Advanced editing features are not easy for beginners
  • Many detailed features need time to develop

3. ShareX

Best free video capture app for file sharing

OS: Windows

As one of the best free video recording software for Windows 10, ShareX can be used to record screen on Windows in a variety of formats, including MP4, GIF, WMV and AVI, and adjust the recording quality to meet your needs.

With a set of editing tools, it is possible to add annotations and obscure sensitive information in the video. What's more, you can upload the recorded video directly to popular video hosting sites like YouTube and Vimeo. Or you can save the video file in a specific URL and share it for others to access.

While this free video recorder has the ability to take screenshots and capture screen activity, its complicated to use interface seems tricky for those looking to do quick video tasks.


  • No recording time limit
  • Capture video and audio simultaneously
  • Video / audio codecs can be configured
  • Support scrolling screenshot and custom pattern capture
  • Equipped with color extraction and text recognition


  • Non-intuitive interface
  • Only available for Windows video recording
  • Cumbersome functional configuration
  • No specialized game capture or recording
  • Requires additional accessories to support the use of specific features

4. AppGeeker Screen Recorder

Best overall video capture software for recording HD tutorial video

OS: Windows, Mac

If you are looking for the best all-in-one video recording software that is compatible with both Windows and Mac, then AppGeeker Screen Recorder is the most recommended. In addition to offering personalized recording area options, including full screen or selective screen capturing, this tool also enables you to capture screen activities and the webcam at the same time, creating a picture-in-picture video with audio for tutorials or teaching.

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It allows you to add annotations during video recording, including arrows, text, pictures or other, to make your recordings more complete and richer, which is useful for creating instructional or narrative videos. Moreover, you are able to cut or modify any unsatisfactory parts with the powerful editing tools provided by this software.

With a minimalist design and covering a wide range of recording and editing features, AppGeeker Screen Recorder is an ideal video capture software for professionals and novices alike, letting you record high definition and quality videos easily and quickly.


  • User-friendly and simple interface
  • Can do scheduled recording
  • Record microphone voice and system sound
  • Multiple editing and trimming functions
  • Output video in various formats such as WMV, MP4, MOV, F4V, etc.
  • Record various types of videos like games, meetings and web pages
  • Allow you to adjust the video quality and output a lossless HD video


  • The free trial version has limited features
  • Too many features are a burden to the minimalist

5. Flashback Express

Best free video capture tool with intelligent export tool

OS: Windows

FlashBack Express, a free video recording software version, makes it intuitive to achieve many video recording features that would be complex in FlashBack Pro. You can use it to record on-screen video accompanied by the webcam and external sound.

The outstanding features of this free Windows video recorder is it equips with a unique feature called "Smart Export," which analyzes the recorded video and exports it to your Windows 10 PC using the optimal file size.


  • Customizable recording area
  • No watermark
  • Do scheduled recording
  • Upload videos to YouTube
  • Custom FPS for games
  • Files can be saved to computer or online cloud like Google drive and DropBox


  • Free version only supports 720p export
  • Lack of advanced post-editing features
  • Only a single track can be recorded
  • The free version only outputs Flash and AVI. formats

6. CamStudio

Best free video recording program for making compressed videos

OS: Windows

CamStudio is one of the best free video recording software for Windows. And CamStudio is a lightweight but practical screen video capture app, even if it doesn't have too many video editing features and video recording settings, it's an excellent option for users who only have the simplest requirements to record videos in AVI format.


  • Record screen activity and audio
  • Export video to AVI files or SWF files
  • Add annotation to recorded videos
  • Ability to balance file size for compression


  • Lack of technical support
  • Poor compatibility
  • No video editing options
  • Download unnecessary software

7. Debut Video Capture

Best free video recording software for background removal effect

OS: Windows, Mac

A more advanced way to record effortlessly is to use Debut Video Capture developed by NCH Software, one of the best free video recorders. It not only captures, records and saves video, pictures and audio on Mac and Windows, but also offers background removal, making it possible for you to replace your video backgrounds with solid colors, images and videos.

All in all, Debut Video Capture becomes an ideal choice for those who want to record videos with AI green screen effects.


  • Some optional VFX
  • Add caption or custom watermarks
  • Support most popular video file formats
  • Adjust color settings and add filter effects
  • Capture video footage from external devices like webcam and VSR
  • Unlimited recording time


8. Snagit

Best free video recorder for inserting image editing tools

OS: Windows, Mac

Snagit, available in multiple languages, is able to record and take screenshots of specific areas on the screen due to its flexibility and ease of use. Snagit has an integrated GIF maker that renders scrolling screenshots as moving pictures.

This video recorder also provides special effects such as grayscale, arrows or text to be applied to images and composite videos. Besides, its powerful library of editing tools enables users to trim the video, add annotations or use stamps.


  • With OCR function
  • Support 4K recording
  • Ability to create preset templates
  • Cloud sharing file function
  • Can blur video or images
  • Take screenshots and merge images
  • Pre-made stamps can be searched and browsed


  • Saving large files may get stuck
  • Snagit will take up more system resources
  • Additional video editing software needs to be installed

9. Camtasia

Best free video capture program for combining videos

OS: Windows, Mac

Camtasia isn't for the novice, but rather for professional users who want or need to record video clips on Windows 10 and combine them together, creating the best video recording with many interactive animated transitions and effects. With this free video recording software, you can record videos without any time limit and share them to YouTube.


  • Technical Support
  • Import slides for recording
  • Seamless scene switching
  • Zoom in / out or pan video
  • Self-contained music library
  • Connect to mobile devices for file transfer


  • No free upgrade services
  • High computer performance requirements
  • Struggle to process large vides files

10. Bandicam

Best free Windows video recording software for high-quality game recording

OS: Windows

Bandicam gives you a lot of flexibility in using the free video recorder for Windows. Not only does it offer a series of technologies compatible with your hardware to reduce the impact on gaming performance, it also can perform other types of video recording, enabling people to capture videos playing on their screens and share them with others.


  • Share videos to social media
  • Support HDMI recording mode
  • Trim, cut and combine videos
  • Specialized game recording modes and settings
  • Record audio from microphone or webcam
  • Webcam and external capture device compatibility


  • Limited video editing capabilities
  • Game mode cannot record PC screen or other apps
  • There are certain requirements for computer hardware
  • Recording time can only be up to 10 minutes in free version

11. Loom

Best free video capture application as Chrome extension

OS: Windows, Mac

Loom is an online video recording program available as a Chrome extension that, while not the most perfect and all-around one, has a free version with basic recording capabilities, making it appealing to those who want to perform a quick online video recording for free.

Recorded videos are automatically saved in the cloud and do not take up computer memory. Additionally, this software offers cloud-based storage and collaboration features that enable users to easily share video recordings with others. As a video recording tool, loom can be used on your Windows, Mac, iOS and Android devices by downloading the standalone app.


  • No ads and watermark
  • Record screen, audio, camera, web tab
  • Strong video interaction and sharing ability
  • Built-in online team collaboration capabilities
  • Automatically generated video transcripts
  • Supports any major browser as a browser extension
  • Highly customizable options, including shortcuts, video quality, etc.


  • High reliance on network stability
  • Limited editing features without upgrading plan
  • Only support 25 video recording per person
  • Only five minutes long per video under free plan Videos are public by default

12. Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder

Best free online video recording tool without installation

OS: Windows, Mac

Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder first got our attention as a web-based free video recording software, and then reinforced its impression by using the features to record screen, window, webcam, and web tabs to quickly complete video recording. After you finish recording the video, this online software also let you preview the effect before downloading the recording.


  • Works with all browsers
  • Record camera and screen at the same time
  • No need to download third-party video recorders
  • Record your voice and the sound of your computer system
  • Can crop and trim video


  • No editing tools
  • Download videos in WEBM format only
  • Need the stability of the network

13. TinyTake

Best free video recorder with annotation tool

OS: Windows, Mac

Though less well known than the others, TinyTake is also a free video recording software many users have had success with. It combines the video capture and video editing power that makes it a fantastic option for both beginners and professionals who need to record video. Users can record their computer screen, webcam or both to create high-quality videos with just a few clicks.

Additionally, this free video capture software comes with a cloud-based online gallery that allows you to save recorded video files in the cloud and share the video recording with others.


  • Make annotations and text / graphic descriptions
  • Use shortcut keys
  • Intuitive and user-friendly interface
  • Cloud storage and sharing
  • Capture screenshots and videos
  • Various recording types: full screen, window, selected area, webcam


  • Add watermark on recordings
  • Limited video formats
  • The free version has only five minutes of recording time
  • Only 2GB of storage space for free users

14. QuickTime Player

Free video recording app for Mac without requiring download

OS: macOS X and later

Mac computer have its native video capture software, called QuickTime player, which includes the ability to capture video, audio and movies. QuickTime Player enables users to record video and audio for free directly from the Mac's built-in camera and microphone, or from an external camera or audio device.

Being a free video recording software for Mac, it also supports screen recording, letting you create presentations or other types of video recordings.

  • Pre-installed on all Mac systems
  • Simple and easy-to-use interface
  • Support a wide range of video and audio formats
  • Allow for recording of video, audio, and screen capture


  • Limited sharing options for recorded videos
  • Lack advanced video recording and editing features
  • Unable to record internal audio from computer

15. VLC Media Player

Best free video recording software for playing and capturing videos

OS: Windows, Mac

You can try VLC, a free open-source media player, to play or record video on Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS and Android. It is a video capture software compatible with computers and phones.

In terms of audio playback, you can use its built-in equalizer to adjust the sound effects. And it also has real-time video recording and powerful codec support to play videos in various formats. Overall, VLC is a good media video player that also doubles as a free video capture software.


  • Support various audio and video codecs
  • Applicable to a wide range of platforms
  • Capture both screen activity and webcam footage
  • Support the playback of various multimedia formats
  • Lossless conversion of video or audio formats


  • Limited editing tools
  • User interface may not be polished and intuitive
  • Poor media library management capabilities.

Tips for choosing the best free video recording software for Windows 10 or Mac

If you want to know which free video recording program is the best for your needs, here are some tips to help you make the right choice.

Recording: Consider what types of recordings are available on the free video recorder and whether it can record full screen, custom regions, windows, webcam or audio.

Editing: Not all video recorders have editing functions, and some only come with basic editing functions. So, consider if the video recording software supports advanced editing functions.

Output: If you need to save your recording files in multiple video formats, make sure the video recording app you choose meets this requirement.

Performance: Comprehensively consider the performance of the software, whether there are problems such as lag, low-definition video recording, and difficulty in use.

Compatibility: Check that the video capture software is well-matched with your computer's operating system. Some software only works on certain platforms, such as Windows or Mac.


1. What is the best free video capture software for Windows 10?

Based on the overall performance, you can pick the following more versatile Windows 10 video recording software:

  • AppGeeker Screen Recorder
  • CamStudio
  • Bandicam
  • Flashback Express
  • ShareX

2. What is the best video recording software for Mac?

If you want to record video on your Mac accompanied by internal computer sound, then AppGeeker Screen Recorder can be the best choice for you. Also, you can try video recording software like OBS, Debut Video Capture, Screencast-O-Matic.

3. How to record video on Windows 10?

Windows comes with a free screen recorder called Xbox Game Bar. To quickly record a video on Windows 10, you can start recording by pressing Windows + G + R directly on your keyboard.

Or you can press Win + G to open the Game Bar and find the Capture widget, then click on Start Recording to begin your recording task. When you finish recording, hit Stop Recording in the recording status bar.

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