Your Mac comes with some handy options for taking a quick screen grab, but sometimes you need a bit more. Most Mac users will recognize the Command-Shift-3 keystroke to take a screenshot of the whole screen or Command-Shift-4 to capture a selected area of your screen. But often you'll want to tell a story with that screenshot, and that's where popular image capture app Snagit comes in.
Snagit for Mac just had a major upgrade to version 2.0, and while it still hasn't reached feature parity with the Windows version, it's clear the folks at TechSmith are slowly ramping up the effort.
Snagit for Mac 2.0 is available now, adding new features to bring it closer to the Windows version. For those new to Snagit, it offers an elegant drawerlike interface that lets you mouse over a small tab on the side of your screen and quickly get to the screen capture tools you need. Before you capture your image, you get several options for how you want the capture to look (an entire scrollable Web page or just a region of the screen, as examples).
Once you have captured the information you want, you can switch to the main interface window, which offers tools for adding arrows to point out specific pieces, speech balloons, line- and shape-drawing tools, and highlighters. You can choose from a huge library of "Stamps," an assortment of small stylized graphics to give your screen captures more character and call out the action in a fun and visually pleasing way. When you want to add even more style to your finished product, you can use the Effects tab to add effects to your captures that give your image an interesting border or even create a 3D-looking image using the perspective effect. Snagit also makes it easy to browse through past captures with a scrollable navigation area across the bottom of the interface.
New major features in Snagit 2.0 include video captures, a missing feature set many Mac users complained about in the initial 1.0 launch. Now you'll be able to capture a video of the action on your screen for demos, presentations, or instructional videos. Snagit 2.0 also now offers Webcam captures, so you can add your face to the image. New Stamps have been added with more image variations to spice up your work. Color filters let you invert your image, or add common effects like sepia or grayscale. You also can now rotate your images in 3D space, to give the capture perspective in your presentation.
When you're done, version 2.0 offers new sharing options, letting you send your finished images via e-mail, Facebook, or Twitter, and your video captures to YouTube, Camtasia for further editing, or directly to FTP to upload to your Web site.
We use Snagit a lot at Download.com for quick screenshots, and these changes will definitely add to the program's usefulness. But I still have a hard time with the price of the software at $49.95--it just seems a bit steep for what you get. Still, if you're looking for a way to capture images and video, and add effects, arrows, and other presentation tools, then share to social networking sites, Snagit is very hard to beat on the Mac.