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How to record screencasts with Chrome

Screencasting tools have become quite common. A good tool with advanced recording features is likely to be paid with the exception of OBS which has every feature you can imagine and is still free. If you need a more general solution for recording your screen, you can use Chrome. Out of the box, you cannot record screencasts with Chrome but the feature can be added with an extension called Aperture – Simple Screen Video Recorder.

Screencasts with Chrome

Install Aperture – Simple Screen Video Recorder from the Chrome Web Store. The extension has three recording modes; full screen recording, app window, or a particular tab. Click the extension’s icon next to the URL bar and from the window that opens, select what you want to record. Click the ‘Share’ button to start recording.

The extension will not be sharing your screen anywhere. If you’re worried that it is, turn on Airplane mode and then use it.

Click Stop Sharing to end the recording.

Once the recording completes, the extension needs to finalize it. When it does, it will open a new tab where you can watch the screencast and save it. If you want to watch it right away, click the extension’s icon after completing a recording.

By default, the video is saved in WebM format and this isn’t a commonly supported format in popular video editors. Aperture – Simple Screen Video Recorder also supports saving in MP4 and it lets you choose the quality of the recording. To manage the recording settings, right-click the extension’s icon next to the URL bar and select Options from the context menu.

Aperture – Simple Screen Video Recorder can record in normal, high, or best quality. There’s no ‘low’ quality setting that you can choose. If you decide to record in the best quality that is available, your video’s size will be much larger and it will take longer to finalize.

While Aperture – Simple Screen Video Recorder is a browser based tool and will be less resource hungry than a desktop screencasting tool, it will nevertheless take a toll on your system. It doesn’t help that Chrome has become something of a sponge when it comes to RAM. If you have a particularly old system, you might be better off with a desktop solution instead of one that requires Chrome to work.

The extension works great otherwise. The screencasts do not include any audio so if you need to add it, you will have to do so in post production.

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