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Tutorial: Producing Screencams on Mobile Devices with TechSmith Camtasia

If you have Camtasia for Mac 2.9 or later, a Mac running OS 10.10 or later, and an iOS device running 8.0 and later with a Lighting connector, you can record screencams of operations on your iOS device. This tutorial will show you how.

A lot more work is being performed on mobile devices these days, which translates to an increased need to demonstrate programs and other operations on mobile devices. Fortunately, TechSmith, the developer of Camtasia, has got you covered, at least for iOS devices. Specifically, if you have Camtasia for Mac 2.9 or later, a Mac running OS 10.10 or later, and an iOS device running 8.0 and later with a Lighting connector, you can record screencams of operations on your iOS device. In this tutorial, I’ll show you how.

By way of background, Camtasia is one of the leading screen capture programs available, and one that I use for almost all of my screencam work. I just recorded a screencam of Teradek’s Live:Air iPad video mixer, which is my first iOS screencam project. There are plenty of Camtasia demos that show basic operation, so I’ll focus solely on iOS recording herein.

Note that there are two steps in the workflow: capture and annotation. That is, first you capture the video, and then, because viewers can’t follow your tapping, pinching, and dragging like they can on a regular computer with a mouse, you can simulate these actions with effects dragged into the video within the Camtasia editor.

Not surprisingly, TechSmith has a video tutorial showing this operation that you can view here. You might want to view that, and return here for the step-by-step instruction.

Here are the steps.


To begin, turn on your Mac and iOS device and connect them with the Lightning connector.

Run Camtasia, and open the Recorder. In the Recorder capture selection drop-down, choose the iOS device. (This was a loaner iPad from Teradek, which is why it says David’s iPad in Figure 1, below.) In my tests with the iPad and my own iPhone, choosing the device opened the Image Capture App that opens every time I connect my iOS device to my Mac. This didn’t harm anything but was distracting. Just close the Image Capture App and move to the next step.

Figure 1. Choosing the iPad to capture from.

Once you’ve selected the device, Camtasia will preview it in the recorder, as you can see at the top of Figure 2 (below). Open the app you’ll be recording and get the device oriented--landscape or portrait--because it may distort your video if you switch while recording.

Figure 2. Here’s a preview of the Teradek app. On the bottom I’m choosing the mic to use for my recording.

Choose the mic you’ll use for your narration (bottom, Figure 2).

Click the bottom narration button to include system audio from the connected device (Figure 3, below). If you choose this option, the audio will flow through your Mac’s sound system, so use a headset to avoid distraction and potential feedback and echo.

Figure 3. Decide whether you want to capture audio from the device.

Click the red rec button to start recording (Figure 4, below).

Figure 4. Starting the recording.

Once complete, click the black square to stop the recording (Figure 5, below).

Figure 5. Stopping the recording.

If this is the first video you’re captured within the project, Camtasia will load it into the media bin and insert the video into the timeline (Figure 6). If not, you’ll have to drag it into the timeline youself.