Recording videos with Camstudio+Movie Maker for YouTube

Here are the settings and techniques I use.

CamStudio (v2)

Download and install CamStudio.

Set Fixed Region to a 16:9 Fixed size - e.g. 1024x576 (or if you need a larger area use 1280x720)

Use settings of CamStudio Video Lossless Compression and best compression + auto adjust

MS MovieMaker

Use K-Lite Codec MegaPack - see external links page for download link. You can then directly use the Lossless Compression AVIs in MovieMaker.

Set Screen format to WideScreen 16:9 in MovieMaker.

How to fix jerky preview playback whilst recording narration

If you use x4 or greater speed settings on some of your video clips, you may find that Movie Maker preview playback is jerky. This occurs even I use an SSD hard disk for all my video files and all the source video files are contiguous, so it is not due to any hard disk I/O limitation - it is probably due to video and CPU performance issues. This problem makes overdubbing with narration very difficult as you cannot synchronise the narration with the video if the video is delayed and jerky.

Note: If you are not going to add narration then you don't need to do this as the final video, when saved, will not be jerky.

I use the following steps to prepare a YouTube movie to avoid this issue:

1. Use Movie Maker to make the complete video portion but do not add any Titles or captions. Do not add any music or narration - i.e. just pure video footage.

If any parts of the video need speeding up or slowing down then split it up and adjust the speed of each segment now. Check the speed is correct and if you are going to add narration, try speaking as the video plays to ensure you have the timing correct.

Tip: Err on the side of caution as you can usually speed up the video by x2 later on, without causing any jerkiness. So if you think x8 is as fast as you will ever need, use x4 if you are not quite sure.

Save the project.

2. Ensure the movie is now playing at the correct speed (or at least within 1/2 to x2 of the correct speed) and then Save the Movie as mpeg4 and then Exit Movie Maker - see below for the 'Save movie' settings.

3. Make a new Project and add the new saved movie into the new project.

4. Now add your titles and captions, narration and music. You can still speed up portions of the video by x2 if you need to without causing a problem.

Note: If you need to use x4 or greater again and it is causing jerkiness again, then you can either adjust the original project (in step 1) and re-save and re-load it into your new project, or just use movie maker to speed up the original video file and save it as a videox4 movie and then add that to your project.

To boost the audio levels and reduce the file size

Use Handbrake (free) to load the mp4 video. Change Audio - Gain from 0 to 10 (max 20). If the audio level is very low, you can repeat the process on the new file to boost the volume again.

Converting using HandBrake also has the side-affect of reducing the size of the mp4 file - e.g. 170MB file produced by MovieMaker -> 39MB produce by Handbrake after conversion.

To publish to YouTube

Configure MovieMaker for 16:9 format

Accept the 'recommended' resolution option. This is usually 1280x720 or 1920x1080 if you used the 1280x720 to record with.

If in doubt, always accept the recommended resolution.

Royalty Free Music

Remember to credit the site at the end of the video.