Camtasia Studio 4

By Jim Rapoza  |  Posted 2006-11-13 Print this article Print
When we reviewed Camtasia Studio 3.1 less than a year ago, we found it to be one of the easiest software demo tools that we had seen at that time. Adobes Captivate 2 may have stolen some of Camtasia Studio 4s usability thunder, but the TechSmith product continues to be a very good option. And, at $299, Camtasia Studio 4 has a lower starting price point than Captivate 2.

On the audio side, Camtasia Studio 4 includes multiple features to improve the creation, editing and quality of audio that is added to demonstrations and presentations. In addition, Camtasia Studio 4 can output to formats supported by Apple Computers iPod video devices and gives users the option to export demos and presentations to TechSmiths service. Camtasia Studio 4 also supports Flash, Flash video, QuickTime, Windows Media and MP3 (the latter for audio-only options).

As with the previous version of Camtasia Studio, Version 4 made it very easy to record an application, create and edit a demo, and add navigational aids and call-outs to the demo.

A new normalization option equalizes audio volume across the presentation, and Camtasia Studio 4 has added the ability to remove background hisses and noises from an audio track.

On the presentation editing side, Camtasia Studio 4 adds a couple of nice touches for testing the quality of a simulation or demo, including the ability to do 30-second previews before outputting content.

Camtasia Studio 4, which was released in October, also includes many prebuilt skins and theme options for controlling the look and feel of output content.

While the testing and learning management features in Camtasia Studio are still fairly basic, they have been boosted somewhat in this version with improved survey and feedback options.

Evaluation Shortlist

OnDemand Softwares Personal Navigator

A powerful e-learning and training platform for building complex simulations for complex applications (

OutStarts SoftSim

Geared for high-end training and e-learning tasks, SoftSim lets businesses build a wide variety of customizations into simulations (

Qarbons ViewletBuilder

A simple-to-use but surprisingly capable tool for recording and annotating application demos (

Jim Rapoza, Chief Technology Analyst, eWEEK.For nearly fifteen years, Jim Rapoza has evaluated products and technologies in almost every technology category for eWEEK. Mr Rapoza's current technology focus is on all categories of emerging information technology though he continues to focus on core technology areas that include: content management systems, portal applications, Web publishing tools and security. Mr. Rapoza has coordinated several evaluations at enterprise organizations, including USA Today and The Prudential, to measure the capability of products and services under real-world conditions and against real-world criteria. Jim Rapoza's award-winning weekly column, Tech Directions, delves into all areas of technologies and the challenges of managing and deploying technology today.

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