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How to Screen Record on Windows 11
Recording your computer screen is a handy way to create tutorials, product demos, how-to videos, and more. Windows 11 makes recording your screen easy with the built-in Xbox Game Bar. In just a few clicks, you can capture video and audio of your desktop.
This guide will walk you through the entire screen recording process on Windows 11, from setup to editing and exporting your videos. We’ll cover recording with both audio and webcam commentary, the best screen recording software for advanced users, and tips for optimizing quality. Let’s get started!
Accessing the Xbox Game Bar Screen Recorder
The Xbox Game Bar in Windows 11 allows you to record gameplay footage and screen captures. We can also use this gaming-centric bar to record standard desktop activity.
Here’s how to prepare the Xbox Game Bar for screen recording:
1. Open Settings > Gaming.
2. Under “Captures”, enable both options:
- Record in the background while I’m playing a game
- Record from my microphone
3. Under “Game Mode”, enable “Use Game Mode” for slight performance increases while recording intensive games. This isn’t necessary for simple desktop recording.
That covers the settings. Next, let’s open the Xbox Game Bar with the Windows key + G shortcut.
The bar will appear along the side of your display. Select the capture button (or hit Windows key + Alt + R) to begin recording your screen, microphone, and webcam if you have one connected. Hit the capture button again to finish recording.
Your screen recordings will be saved under Videos > Captures in File Explorer automatically.
Customizing Video Settings
Before you start capturing those pivotal gaming victories and genius How-To tutorials, let’s make sure your recordings are optimized for quality:
1. Open the Xbox Game Bar with Windows key + G.
2. Click on the settings cog.
3. Under “Captures”, you can configure:
Video quality – Higher = larger file size but better visuals
Audio quality – Higher captures more sound fidelity
Camera quality for webcams
4. Under “Recording options”:
- Microphone volume
- Party chat inclusion
- Cursor highlighting
- Recording length
- Recording location
I recommend 1080p resolution at 60FPS. Make sure your microphone audio sounds clear without peaking. Cursor highlights help viewers track mouse movements in tutorials.
Feel free to tweak those visual settings until you strike an optimal balance of high video quality and manageable file size for your internet upload speed.
Recording Your Windows 11 Screen
Now for the fun part: capturing your desktop! Follow along to record your screen on Windows 11:
1. Arrange your desktop how you want it to look in the video. Open the programs and files you want to demonstrate.
2. Display any notes you want to reference in the recording.
3. Open the Xbox Game Bar with the Windows key + G shortcut.
4. Click the capture button, or press Windows key + Alt + R.
5. A 3-second countdown will begin. Prepare what you’re going to demonstrate. Smile and speak loudly if recording microphone commentary.
6. Do your thing! Narrate and demonstrate whatever you had in mind for the video. Tap areas of interest on your screen and use natural hand gestures.
7. When you’re finished, tap the capture button again or reuse the Windows key + Alt + R shortcut.
8. The Xbox Game Bar will save your recording to Videos > Captures.
If anything went wrong, like microphone peaks or notifications interrupting the action, just delete that recording and try again. Quick tap-and-retry cycles are great for optimal tutorials and demo videos.
Some other tips for effective video:
- Scan over visuals slowly so viewers can digest information
- Don’t cover important areas with your mouse pointer accidentally
- Zoom web pages to 100% to avoid tiny text
- Speak clearly in full sentences to maximize searchability
Now let’s spice up these desktop video recordings…
Recording Webcam Commentary
Standard screen recordings demonstrate processes just fine. But webcam commentary grabs more attention! Viewers feel like they’re learning one-on-one from the host when a face is attached.
Here’s how to enable webcam footage inside your screen recordings:
1. Connect your webcam if you haven’t already and enable camera access for apps in Windows Privacy Settings.
2. Open the Xbox Game Bar with the Windows key + G shortcut.
3. Select the webcam button at the top to enable camera feeds. You can rearrange the webcam overlay location by dragging it around the window.
4. Follow the standard screen recording process above. Make sure you have strong lighting on your face! Speak clearly and appear enthusiastic on camera. Smiles and laughs go a long way.
5. Consider snazzing up your background with an engaging backdrop. You want viewers focusing on your commentary, not distracting clutter and colors.
And that’s it! Your face and voice are now a part of the tutorials. Stand out among the faceless how-to videos with this personal touch.
Using Third-Party Screen Recorders
The built-in Xbox Game Bar recorder in Windows 11 covers most users’ basic screen recording needs. But power users creating professional tutorials may desire advanced recording software with extra utility.
Here are the best third-party screen recorders for Windows 11:
Open Broadcasting Software Studio is the professional live streaming and recording standard used by YouTubers everywhere. It’s packed with real-time editing tools, chroma key green screen effects, scene switching, and infinite customization of your footage. OBS does have a higher learning curve. But it’s worth learning if you’re serious about recording high-quality, pro-tier videos.
FlashBack Express offers webcam reaction recording similar to the Xbox Game Bar built into Windows. But you also gain basic editing tools, GIF creation, and video annotations for highlighting areas of interest. The free version leaves a faint watermark. But overall FlashBack remains feature-rich freeware.
TinyTake excels at fast capture of snippets and GIFs rather than lengthy tutorials. Quickly record short processes under 60 seconds. Draw attention to mouse movements. Then export sections of interest without wasting time editing a larger video file. TinyTake would suit software testers and quick process documenters perfectly with its simplicity.
Movavi encapsulates the full screen recording production pipeline. Capture desktop videos with system audio, microphone commentary, webcam footage, and mobile device feeds. Then utilize Movavi’s editing suite to transform raw footage into polished YouTube-worthy tutorials complete with transitions, effects, titles, background music, and color adjustments. The free trial lets you test drive Movavi’s exports before paying.
ActivePresenter is another end-to-end screen recorder and video editor. What sets ActivePresenter apart is its dedicated focus on software demonstrations and video tutorials. Record your desktop, webcam, mobile screens, and microphone in high fidelity. Edit videos quickly with autocaptions, interactive quizzes, and preset layouts tailored specifically for tutorials. The free edition is functionality limited but still powerful for new YouTubers.
Hopefully this selection gives you a taste of advanced screen recording possibilities beyond the easy built-in Windows Game Bar. Find the tool that best matches your use case and take your productions up a level!
Screen Recording Tips
Let’s recap some universal best practices to maximize your video tutorial quality:
- Frame shots tightly on the areas of focus with minimal surroundings
- Speak slowly and clearly. Enunciate words fully
- Smile and use natural enthusiastic expressions
- Adjust microphone levels so audio doesn’t peak or flatten
- Use multiple light sources to brightly illuminate your face
- Cut out unnecessary pauses and mistakes with video editing
- Zoom text to at least 100% so viewers can read content
- Verbally describe navigation (e.g. “I’ll click the upload button”)
- Apply captions and subtitles for accessibility
Follow those guidelines and your DIY desktop recordings will instantly appear more professional!
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the basic requirements to screen record on Windows 11?
You need a Windows 11 PC with a discrete graphics card or integrated GPU that supports DirectX 11 for Xbox Game Bar compatibility. An internet connection for software updates is also recommended.
Can I record gameplay on Windows 11 like a PC game streamer?
Yes! Open the Xbox Game Bar while playing any game and utilize the same screen recording process to capture gameplay footage. Configure the Xbox settings first to enable background recording.
How do I show clicks and key presses in my video?
Under Xbox Game Bar > Settings > Recording options, enable “Record mouse cursor” to visualize clicks in videos. Windows 11 doesn’t natively show animated key presses during recording, so you’ll have to verbally call out actions.
Why does my webcam have a green hue when mixed with the desktop capture feed?
This likely means you haven’t properly calibrated the lighting. Make sure your face is evenly lit from the front to overpower any green screen effects from the background. Adjust webcam brightness/contrast if issues persist.
Can I edit videos saved by the Xbox Game Bar?
Yes, Windows 11 saves videos in common MP4 and AVI formats. You can edit Game Bar recordings just like any other desktop footage in free software like Shotcut or OpenShot. Or utilize the Xbox Game Bar’s built-in Trim tool.
And that wraps up our complete guide to recording your screen on Windows 11! Follow this process to easily capture engaging footage of your desktop, microphone commentary, webcam reactions, and PC gameplay.
Windows 11 makes content creation accessible to everyone with the integrated Xbox Game Bar. Configure the capture options to your needs, set up good lighting, practice enthusiastic commentary, edit out mistakes, and share your knowledge with the world!
You now have all the tools to record professional on-screen videos for tutorials, gameplay highlights, video calls, customer service reps, and more personal & business use cases. Just tap Windows key + G and transform into a YouTube phenom. Have fun producing your breakthrough hits!
Legal Disclaimer: Usage of screen recording software may be subject to local laws. Ensure you have full permission before capturing any confidential, proprietary, or copyrighted content.