A couple of days back, I mentioned some videos I’ve produced for Microsoft. There are various technical requirements for the way in which these videos are produced, one of which is that I have to use TechSmith Camtasia Studio 5 (which seems pretty flaky at times – in fact, it’s the only application ever to have caused a blue screen of death on my Windows Server 2008 workstation – and that was the first BSOD I’ve seen with a non-beta version of Windows in a long while).
When I’m recording these videos, I tend to capture the video on my external monitor whilst I have Camtasia Studio and any applications related to the demonstration running on my main display (then I move them to the recording area as required). Today, I was really struggling to make anything run at a decent speed whilst I was recording and the capture rate dropped to a measly 0.5 frames per second (on a computer with a 2.2GHz Intel Core2Duo CPU and 4GB of RAM).
Last time I’d recorded anything, I’d dropped my monitor resolution to 1024×768 but this time I was using it at full (1680×1050) resolution and Camtasia was just recording a 1024×768 region of the screen. As soon as I reduced the monitor resolution, performance was back to it’s normal level (encoding video on a machine with integrated graphics is always going to hit the CPU hard).
So, if you have to use Camtasia Studio (I blogged an alternative method using nothing but Windows software a while back) and you are experiencing performance issues, try adjusting the monitor resolution.