SMRecorder 1.2 - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com

SMRecorder

CNET Editors' review

SMRecorder is a simple desktop audio/video recorder that not only captures desktop video and audio but also camera and microphone inputs. You can add onscreen annotation and narration to create clips for presentations, tutorials, and embedded media. It's freeware, too.

During the installation process, we were given the choice between standard and custom installation options. We chose the custom option, which let us deselect some extras like toolbars that we didn't want. SMRecorder's main interface is more or less a minimized media player, with six buttons and a counter. Three buttons access recording tasks, and start, pause, or stop the recording process; another two access the Screen Image Annotation tool and the save function. The last button opened a Web-based manual with plenty of screenshots. We could access the same documentation directly at the program's Web site. SMRecorder keeps its interface small and neat by using dialogs for the heavy lifting, such as the Screen Image Annotation tool and the program's main settings page, the New Recording Task box. We opened this box and started by selecting Capture Type on the General tab. Our choices were Desktop Video, Camera Video, or Desktop/Microphone Sound. We chose desktop video capture, full desktop, and normal resolution, and then set the duration (5 minutes to unlimited) and the Save Path. On the Video Settings tab, we could set the video compression quality, capture frame rate, synchronization interval, and other choices. The Audio tab let us set the recording volume level, channels, delay, and the digital audio sample frequency and bit rate. We could also deselect the Record Audio check box to force the program to record video without sound.

SMRecorder minimized to the system tray while recording video. We dragged the cursor around the desktop, highlighting a few items. When we stopped recording, the program saved it in our destination as an AVI. We opened it in our favorite media player, and it played normally, showing our cursor motion and other desktop activity. This is a handy tool to keep on the desktop, and great for making demonstration videos.

Publisher's Description

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All User Reviews
  • All versions:

    3.3 stars

    out of 95 votes

    • 5 star: 43
    • 4 star: 6
    • 3 star: 10
    • 2 star: 10
    • 1 star: 26
  • Current version:

    3.2 stars

    out of 18 votes

    • 5 star: 7
    • 4 star: 1
    • 3 star: 3
    • 2 star: 3
    • 1 star: 4
  • My rating:

    0 stars

    Write review

Results 1-10 of 18

  • 3.0 stars

    "good video but no audio ??"

    August 24, 2011  |   By SteaknEggs95973

    Version: SMRecorder 1.2

    Pros

    good video but no audio ??

    Cons

    good video but no audio ??

    Summary

    I have "Record Audio" checked, as it came by default, but NO SOUND. Any suggestions?

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  • 5.0 stars

    "the best video capture software"

    August 14, 2011  |   By katnip3

    Version: SMRecorder 1.2

    Pros

    Free, no unnecessary features

    Cons

    I was a little confused on how to do a partial screen capture, but I got it working now.

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  • 3.0 stars

    "Nice enough for price. READ INSTALLER OPTIONS CAREFULLY"

    July 25, 2011  |   By lmruhland

    Version: SMRecorder 1.2

    Pros

    Fairly light program. Good audio/video sync. Nicer video quality than I expected from free program.

    Cons

    Installer includes problematic add-ons by default. GUI could be labeled better.

    Summary

    I'm happy with this program, but I've only used it to record with my webcam. It does what it needs to do with a minimum of extras.
    I can't speak to its desktop recording capabilities.

    No malicious software was installed on my Windows 7 machine, HOWEVER, the installer tries to shove in a bunch of browser extras by default. Just selecting "custom installation" and un-checking all the additional options seems to have left my PC and all browsers unscathed, but it's VERY easy to miss that. I almost did. That discouraged me when installing.

    After that, though, I've been very happy to replace the software that came with my webcam with this. I mostly use it to record myself playing ukulele, so the excellent audio/video synchronization compared to Live! Cam Center is a big plus for me. That may be a product of it requiring fewer system resources.

    All in all, it delivers on the features I expect. The inclusion of the potential malware in the installer was a HUGE turn-off, but the program itself is utilitarian and easy to use, just what I needed.

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Good program but hijacks your browsers - DO NOT INSTALL"

    July 19, 2011  |   By tcisine

    Version: SMRecorder 1.2

    Pros

    Works fairly well sand does what it says it does easily

    Cons

    Hijacks your browsers

    Summary

    Even though this is "spyware free", it will hijack your browsers including Firefox, IE, etc. I am still working on it to see what other damage this program has caused.

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  • 2.0 stars

    "It works but needs improvement."

    July 10, 2011  |   By Danial54

    Version: SMRecorder 1.2

    Pros

    Easier than some to use. Too technical for others to use.

    Cons

    Difficult to use. Captured image is poor.

    Summary

    Lots of room to make improvements, but it beats nothing and it's free.

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  • 5.0 stars

    "Works Great!!!!"

    June 21, 2011  |   By kulmansam

    Version: SMRecorder 1.2

    Pros

    Allows for recording upto 36fps!! That is great, most paid versions only offer upto 30fps

    Cons

    IF you do not want to install all the other stuff (which make this program free), just select advanced while installing and uncheck all boxes...no browser take over will occur

    Summary

    I have used 5 different FREE sreen capture programs, I love this from the get go. I will come back in 7 days or 20 days or 3 months IF this program forces me to upgrade. Intil then, I highly recommend it

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  • 5.0 stars

    "Love it! Better than my expensive apps, and truly free"

    June 13, 2011  |   By dawnknits

    Version: SMRecorder 1.2

    Pros

    SM breaks down the various parts of a complete recording, converting and editing system. I use it to record streaming video. By breaking down a suite into small parts, the CPU usage is greatly reduced.

    Cons

    Bit confusing. Read the web help pages, and it will make sense. Also, leave the defaults on the first few times unless you are an expert. I really thought I knew what I was doing, and I ended up rerecording stuff that just wouldn't convert.

    Summary

    My PC was new and very, very fast 2 years ago. Now, it produces choppy recorded streamed video when I use a pricey video suite. The SM products actually work better because I only run one small program at a time and better utilize my PCs resources. The programs are free, but I'm sold!

    One more note: I cruise a ----load of "free" and "freeware" programs that just weren't. All had video time limits, 7 day time limits, or were watermarked until you paid. Most were $40 or more. This suite is actually free. I have spent 20+ hours looking for something cheap or free that works, so I hope this info helps someone.

    Updated on Jun 13, 2011

    Additional tip: When you are installing, use the "Custom or Advanced" option. You can opt out of the toolbar and changed homepages you don't want. It is the only difference.

    Updated on Jun 13, 2011

    Additional tip: When you are installing, use the "Custom or Advanced" option. You can opt out of the toolbar and changed homepages you don't want. It is the only difference.

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  • 2.0 stars

    "Does not work for video games"

    June 12, 2011  |   By Dcooney07

    Version: SMRecorder 1.2

    Pros

    Unsure, ceased use promptly.

    Cons

    Did not record a full screen video game for me. Even after uninstalling, left an exe on my computer which I manually removed.

    Summary

    Worthless to me and perhaps dangerous to others.

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  • 1.0 stars

    "avast anti-virus software warned me Zugo is included"

    May 30, 2011  |   By Freekee

    Version: SMRecorder 1.2

    Pros

    Never found out what SMRecorder is like since I didn't feel like taking a
    chance after my avast anti-virus software warned me about Zugo being
    included with the download.

    Cons

    Didn't find out if it has any cons since I never used it.

    Summary

    SMRecorder,
    Get rid of Zugo in your download.

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  • 5.0 stars

    "Fantastic!"

    May 29, 2011  |   By kiranand1964

    Version: SMRecorder 1.2

    Pros

    Easy to use and understand - Simple - no aggressive takeover of browser

    Cons

    None that I could tell.

    Summary

    I used Google Chrome and did not see any homepage take over or other aggressive stuff that most free software providers do. I am using this software to record video lectures and it works great for that. File gets automatically saved and it can be played via VLC. Great stuff!

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Results 1-10 of 18

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