First Look Review: Camtasia Studio 430 Nov, 2006 By: Ron LaFon
Digital video recording and editing software.
Camtasia Studio 4 from TechSmith is ideal for creating and publishing both online and CD-based training, demonstrations and presentations.
You can easily record screen videos and publish them in various file formats. PowerPoint presentations can be recorded—a handy toolbar appears directly in PowerPoint—and you can add narration to elaborate your presentation. New in this release is support for screencasts for iPod mobile media devices.
Camtasia Studio 4 is well conceived and achieves the difficult task of providing great depth of functionality while remaining easy to use. In addition to creating custom Web and CD-ROM menus, you can also use a second audio track to add a layer of music to the narration of a presentation. Camtasia Studio 4 includes a one-month subscription to Screencast.com, a hosting solution for professionals who want to share multimedia content on the Internet. You can publish videos directly from Camtasia Studio 4 to Screencast.com and then send viewers to the site for the presentation. If you prefer, you can automatically deliver content using Screencast.com's built-in RSS and iTunes capability. An excellent online help system, balloon help and access to Web-based video tutorials provide assistance with any questions that arise.
Camtasia Studio 4
System requirements for Camtasia Studio 4 for Windows include a 1GHz processor (2.5GHz is strongly recommended for PowerPoint recordings), at least 256MB of RAM (2GB recommended), a Windows-compatible sound card, microphone and speakers (recommended). Program installation takes up 40MB of hard-disk space. Camtasia Studio supports Microsoft Windows 2000/XP with Microsoft DirectX 9 or later. The Camtasia Studio add-in for PowerPoint requires Office 2000/XP or later. For an up-to-date listing of system requirements, visit the TechSmith Web site at www.techsmith.com. Camtasia Studio 4 has far more significant features than I can cover in this brief review, so a visit to this Web site is worthwhile.
Camtasia Studio is a complete solution for recording and editing high-quality training videos, presentations and screencasts to share on the Internet, CD-ROM and portable media devices, including the iPod.
At the Web site, you can also download a trial version of Camtasia Studio 4 or other TechSmith software and see videos showing various features as well as examples of how the application can be used. Single-user licenses of Camtasia Studio 4 cost $299, and five-user license packs are $1,195, a 20% saving. Optional maintenance agreements cost 25% of the current purchase price of the total installation.
TechSmith has clearly invested a substantial amount of time and energy in Camtasia Studio 4 to make it easy to use. It enables a substantial amount of flexibility and supports a variety of industry-standard file formats. The end result is an application that is powerful and capable, easily earning the Cadalyst Labs Highly Recommended rating.
About the Author: Ron LaFon
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