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14 Best YouTube Recording Software for Capturing Content (2023)

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14 Best YouTube Recording Software for Capturing Content (2023)

There are several reasons why you might want to save a YouTube video for later. Maybe it’s a tutorial you want to come back to, a funny sketch you want to show your friends or just a video you want to be able to watch offline.

If you have a Premium account, the solution is simple: just click “Download” underneath the video in question. But if you don’t want to pay for Premium, you’ll need to use a screen recorder to record the video as it plays.

In this article, we’ll give you our list of top recommended recording apps and tools for capturing YouTube videos.

Is it Legal to Record a YouTube Video?

Technically, there’s nothing wrong with recording a YouTube video for your own use. Maybe you want to watch it yourself later or save it to your private video library—and that’s generally considered ethical.

The problem is when you want to profit off of someone else’s work

Copyright laws in most countries forbid posting or redistributing someone else’s artwork (including videos) without their permission. You don’t have to be selling it to violate copyright; simply by redistributing it, you’ll likely be in violation of copyright law.

Most countries have various copyright exceptions that allow you to use someone else’s work without their permission if you meet certain standards—for instance, adding your own commentary or review. This is why YouTube doesn’t usually take down or punish reaction videos.

That being said, we have no ability to provide legal advice about copyright law for your situation. If you want to record a YouTube video for the purpose of republishing it, and you’re not sure if you’ll be violating a copyright, we recommend consulting your attorney first.

14 Best YouTube Recording Software for All Devices in 2023

Below, let’s look at the best methods for recording YouTube videos, no matter whether you’re using Mac, Windows, or your mobile device.

Best Online Recording Software for YouTube

1. Riverside

Riverside YouTube recording software
Riverside

Price: Free for unlimited recording and editing up to 720p video and 44.1 kHz audio. Paid plans start at $15/month for up to 4K video and 48 kHz.

Riverside is the ideal tool for recording, editing and sharing video content—whether you’re recording YouTube videos or creating brand-new ones. The HD screen recording resolution means you can capture your screen without losing any audio or video quality from the original. 

With a few clicks, Riverside lets you customize your screen recordings, add custom backgrounds, and download separate audio and video files locally so that the end result isn’t affected by your internet connection.

The best thing about Riverside is its flexibility. Not only is it perfect for screen recording, but it’s also a powerful content creation suite—with the affordability and ease of use to be the perfect choice for users of any experience level or budget. It records within your browser, meaning you don’t have to download or install any software (and it works on any computer). It also features a mobile app to take your recording studio on the go.

And along with screen recording capabilities, Riverside offers a robust suite of tools including:

  • Live streaming straight to YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and more
  • Automated Editor for uploading a logo, customizing the session background, choosing a speaker layout, and exporting the file
  • Clips tool to repurpose long-form content into multiple pieces of short-form content for social media
  • Automated transcriptions to use for captions, SEO or repurposing videos into blog posts
  • Producer mode for easy control during recording

Pros: 

  • Localized, double-ender recording in up to 4K video and 48kHz WAV audio
  • Separate audio and video tracks for screen recording and each participant 
  • Automated editing, transcription, and clips tools to streamline the process 
  • Live editing features reduce time spent in post-production   
  • Remote recording with up to 8 guests
  • Guests can join with a link (no downloads required)

Cons:

  • No advanced editing tools
  • No screen annotation features

2. Apowersoft

Apowersoft
Apowersoft

Price: Free

Apowersoft is another browser-based platform that lets you record presentations, video tutorials, and more from your desktop. This free solution is a great basic choice for users who want to record their screen. Apowersoft makes it simple to upload files to social media platforms or save files to the cloud in MP4, WMV, AVI, or MOV files.

Key Features:

  • Record browser window, desktop activity, or from your webcam simultaneously
  • Record system sound and microphone with automatic synchronization 
  • Picture-in-picture mode for tutorials
  • Cloud video management platform

Pros: 

  • Free and unlimited recording
  • Easy to use
  • Integrates with Dropbox, Google Drive, YouTube, and Vimeo
  • Can record from your webcam as well as your screen

Cons:

  • Requires a plugin download 
  • Can’t record from secondary monitor screens 

Best YouTube Recorders for Both Mac and PC

While browser-based recorders are simplest, some users prefer desktop software. Below, we’ll look at software that’s available for download on both Windows and Apple operating systems.

3. Camtasia

TechSmith

Price: One-time purchase of $299.99.

Camtasia is a video recording and editing tool from TechSmith that’s quick to learn and easy to use. It allows users of all experience levels to create training videos, presentations, and webinars—and it’s especially popular with teachers because you can add interactive content like quizzes to supplement educational videos.

Key Features:

  • Screen recording 
  • Build-in video editor lets you drag and drop effects, text, transitions, and more
  • Easy uploads to YouTube, Vimeo, Screencast, or online video course
  • Comes with video templates and themes, or you can create your own
  • Transitions and annotations
  • Interactive quizzes
  • Library of royalty-free music

Pros

  • Integrates with PowerPoint
  • Capture screen and webcam 
  • Fully customizable intro and outros 
  • 30-day free trial period 

Cons:

  • Expensive to get started
  • Can take up a lot of system resources when running 

4. OBS Studio

OBS YouTube recording software
OBS

Price: Free

OBS Studio is a popular screen recorder for a reason: it’s a free, open-source platform that lets you record your screen in high quality and in full-screen mode. Gamers like to use OBS Studio to live stream their gameplay to Twitch and other social sharing networks—but you can also easily use it to record YouTube videos. Keep in mind, though, that the software isn’t very intuitive. It comes with a steep learning curve, but there are quite a few online resources available to teach you how to record with OBS.

Key Features:

  • Create scenes from multiple sources (browser windows, webcam, capture card, images, etc.)
  • Custom transitions for switching between scenes
  • Intuitive audio mixer
  • Modular “Dock” UI lets you customize your recording layout

Pros: 

  • Highly customizable
  • High-quality audio and video recording
  • Can record in full-screen
  • No recording length restrictions 

Cons:

  • No native video editing tools; have to download a separate program
  • Has a steep learning curve
  • Designed and optimized for gamers, so many features and settings may not be right for YouTube screen recording
  • Can’t record multiple input sources at the same time 

5. Wondershare Demo Creator

Wondershare Demo Creator
Wondershare

Price: Plans start at $45/year for individuals.

Wondershare is an all-in-one recording and editing tool that’s an affordable alternative to Camtasia. The tool is easy to use and delivers high-quality results, and it offers extensive editing features to turn your recording into a sleek presentation.

Key Features:

  • Virtual webcam with effects
  • Support for live gaming streams from Roblox, Genshin, Among Us, Minecraft, and more
  • Customizable recording shortcuts
  • Screen drawing tool
  • Scheduled recording

Pros: 

  • Capture multiple computer screens, webcam, and audio
  • Separate audio and video tracks
  • User-friendly interface

Cons:

  • Can slow down your computer while in use
  • Watermark included in trial version

6. Movavi

Movavi YouTube recorder
Movavi

Price: Free for watermarked videos; $42.95/year for the paid subscription.

Movavi Screen Recorder lets you capture video from your screen or webcam and audio from your computer and/or external mic. The tool is easy to use while delivering high-quality video—however, it doesn’t come with any editing features beyond clipping a file.

Key Features:

  • Customizable capture area
  • Scheduled recording
  • Option to show keystrokes and mouse movements
  • Screen annotation

Pros: 

  • Easy and intuitive to use
  • High-quality video and audio
  • Several file type exporting options 

Cons:

  • Limited webcam recording options
  • Must purchase additional Movavi software to edit videos  

Best YouTube Recording Software for Mac

Mac computers come with two ways to record your screen without having to download any third-party software. We’ll cover both options below.

7. Built-in Screen Recorder for Mac

If you’re running macOS Mojave or higher, you can use the built-in screen recorder to capture YouTube videos. Just hold down Command + Shift + 5 on your keyboard to get started.

Mac screen recorder for YouTube videos
Apple

Next, select whether you want to take a screenshot or a video, and if you want to record the entire screen or just a portion.

When you’re finished recording, click Stop. A thumbnail will appear in the lower right corner of your screen; click it to choose where to save the video.

8. QuickTime

Quicktime Youtube Recorder
Apple

Price: Free

QuickTime is another built-in tool for Mac users who want to record their screen or from their device’s camera. It should come pre-installed on your computer, so all you need to do is open the software and start recording. You can also use QuickTime to record your own videos and do basic editing.

Key Features:

  • Record your entire screen or a selected portion
  • Trim, rearrange, and rotate video
  • Easily split a recording into multiple clips
  • Available for iPhone and iPad 

Pros:

  • Records in up to 4K video
  • Easy to use
  • Free
  • Basic editing features

Cons:

  • Limited recording and editing options compared to others on this list

Best YouTube Recorders for Windows PCs

Below, we’ll look at three screen recording options for Windows users.

9. Built-In Xbox Game Bar 

Windows X Bar screen recorder for YouTube
Digitional

Unlike Macs, Windows systems don’t have a dedicated built-in screen recorder. However, most Windows PCs come with an Xbox Game Bar that can capture your computer’s screen.

To get started using your Xbox app, open the window you want to record. Open Xbox Game Bar from your Start Menu (or hold down the Windows key + G on your keyboard). Click Record.

When you’ve finished recording, click Stop. The file will be saved to your computer’s Videos folder.

10. CamStudio

CamStudio YouTube recorder
SourceForge

Price: Free

CamStudio is a free, open-source recording tool that’s easy to use for beginners. If you’re a more advanced user, you can also take advantage of the customizable features and multiple program extensions that are available. The software is highly versatile, making it easy to record audio and video separately, as well as pick and choose which recording and editing features to download.

Key Features:

  • Separate audio and video tracks
  • Built-in SWF producer to format videos 
  • Video annotation feature
  • Picture-in-picture capabilities

Pros: 

  • Free and easy to use
  • High-quality, lossless audio and video
  • No recording time limits
  • Video compression options for sharing

Cons:

  • Limited export file types
  • Open-source nature means there are some software security concerns 

11. ShareX

Share X YouTube recorder
ShareX

Price: Free

ShareX is a free, open-source screenshot tool for Windows. It offers advanced customization options and lets you take screenshots, screen recordings, scroll capture of web pages, and more. After recording, you can use the tool to make edits to audio and video files and integrate with over 50 apps to share your content.

Key Features:

  • Capture the entire screen, region, window, or scrolling capture
  • Schedule recordings
  • GIF recording
  • Supports over 80 export destinations
  • Customizable after-capture workflow

Pros: 

  • Lightweight and doesn’t take up much of your system resources 
  • Free
  • Very customizable  

Cons:

  • Steep learning curve and old-fashioned interface
  • No full-screen mode for recording games

Best Mobile App for YouTube Video Recording

What if you want to record YouTube videos as you watch them on your phone? 

We’ve got you covered.

In this section, we’ll show you how to use the built-in screen recorders for iOS and Android, as well as a third-party app that works well on mobile.

12. Built-in iOS Screen Recorder

If you’re using iOS 14 or later, your iPhone supports native screen recording. Keep in mind, however, that you can’t use the screen recording feature while also using screen mirroring—and some apps might not let you record with audio.

To screen record on your iPhone, go to Settings and choose Control Center. Tap the + icon next to Screen Recording.

From there, you’ll see that the Screen Recording icon has been added to your Control Center. From any app, you can swipe down from the top right to access the Control Center and begin recording your screen.

Apple

To stop recording, hit the Record button again. You can access your screen recording in the Photos app.

13. Built-in Android Screen Recorder

If you have an Android 11 or newer, you can use your phone’s built-in recording features. Simply swipe down from the top of the screen twice to access your Quick Settings. Swipe right through the options until you see the screen recorder toggle.

​​

Android screen recorder for YouTube

You can adjust the settings based on which audio you want to record, and whether you want to record touches on your screen. Tap Start Recording when you’re ready.

When you’re done recording, press Stop. You can access your recording in the Gallery or your Photos App.

Read more: How to Screen Record on Any Device (Desktop, Mobile, Tablet)

14. Screencast-O-Matic

Screencast-O-Matic YouTube recorder
Screencast-O-Matic

Price: Free plan available. Paid plans start at $4/month for unlimited recording and a full video editor.

Screencast-O-Matic is a popular online screen recorder and editor. The tool works in your browser and also offers great mobile functionality with apps for iOS and Android. The free version only allows recordings up to 15 minutes, but if you’re willing to pay at least $4/month, the app is a simple and easy-to-use option. 

Key features:

  • Capture screen or webcam
  • Screen annotations
  • Video editor included for adding overlays, animations, and effects
  • ScreenPal feature for adding video messages to emails, project management apps, etc.
  • Screenshot tool
  • Cloud hosting (paid plans only)

Pros: 

  • Record, share, and host unlimited videos
  • Easy sharing with unique URLs, as well as direct integration with platforms like YouTube and Facebook
  • Easy to use
  • Works on all devices

Cons:

  • Very limited free plan
  • Video hosting only available on a paid plan 
  • No remote recording capabilities

Best Free YouTube Recording Software

There are many excellent free screen recorders available that let you capture YouTube videos. You may even have build-in screen recording on your device—but if you need a third-party screen recorder app, we recommend the following from our list:

  • Riverside for an all-in-one recording app
  • OBS Studio if you prefer open-source software and also want to record gaming
  • Screencast-O-Matic for use on your mobile device

What software do YouTubers use to record?

What about YouTube creators—what apps do they use to create their videos in the first place?

To record HD content for YouTube, many content creators turn to popular apps like:

  • Riverside
  • OBS studio
  • Apowersoft
  • Ecamm Call Recorder
  • TinyTake
  • Screencast-O-Matic

Whether you’re looking for the same high-quality tool for your second-hand screen recording, or you’re thinking about creating your own video content, we recommend turning to Riverside. Our powerful all-in-one recording and editing tool can meet your needs no matter your goals, with professional-quality audio and video, a seamless and intuitive interface with no downloads required, and bonus features like live streaming and automated editing.

To learn more about getting started creating YouTube videos for yourself, check out these resources from our blog:

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