How Do You Record a Live Webcast

Webcasts can be an incredibly valuable resource in more ways than one. They can be a source of rich information and insight that can help people learn about the latest advancements and best practices in their chosen fields. Unfortunately, for many people, watching live webcasts when they stream in real time is extremely difficult.

Due to lack of time or scheduling conflicts, many people might miss important webcasts that they had planned to watch. The solution, of course, is to record the webcast and watch it later at a convenient time. But how do you record a live webcast? Let’s take a look.

What is a webcast?

A webcast is a broadcast over the internet. Usually the webcast captures a live event. Webcasts can have a great diversity of content, including meetings, workshops, training sessions, and more. You can broadcast the audio-visual feed over the internet using streaming media technology.

Webcasts can be live or on-demand, depending on the choices made by the creator. If you find yourself unable to attend a live webcast, getting it recorded gives you the option to watch it later according to your convenience.

How do you record a live webcast?

There are different ways to record a live webcast. Here, we discuss two of the most easily doable and convenient options. You can choose either technique according to your needs.

  1. Built-in screen capture tools

    How do you record a live webcast without purchasing any additional software? Recording a live webcast is a great use case for some of the built-in tools that designers included in most modern operating systems. Both Windows and MacOS have screen capture tools built directly within that can come in very handy when recording a webcast. You can start the webcast on a particular window and set your screen capture tool to record the output from that window.

    In Windows 10, you can accomplish this using the game bar. This includes a tool that captures live gaming footage, but you can easily repurpose it to suit your needs. All you have to do is open the game bar and click the ‘start recording’ button. It will start recording the active window and stop when you click the record button again. You can then navigate to your recorded video clip if you want to edit or view it. For previous versions of Windows, you can create the same effect by using a browser extension like ScreenCastify.

    On Apple systems, you can look for the recording app or press Shift-Command-5 to show the recording panel. You can even drag around a particular area on the screen if you just want to capture part of the video. Follow a similar process to toggle recording and view your video file in the end.
  2. Dedicated webcast screen-recording software

    If you want additional control over the recording process and attributes like file formats, quality, and resolution, the best solution is to use a dedicated webcast screen-recording software. Plethoras of software solutions come with screen recording capabilities; some of the most popular solutions are OBS Studio and Camtasia.

    These types of software will allow you a lot more control over the entire process. For example, you will select an active window to capture exclusively. You can also set the video quality and bandwidth along with the target video resolution for your recording, along with any upscaling or downscaling you might want to do. If you want to preserve high quality, you can choose a higher bitrate and resolution while decreasing these parameters can give you smaller file sizes for your finished recordings.

    You also have complete control over the video codec (compresses and decompresses data) and file formats. Formats like mp4, mkv and avi are versatile and allow you to choose from multiple codecs. As for codecs, choosing something efficient yet quality-focused like x264 or H.264 can really help balance smaller files without compromising quality. You should also be able to control separate settings for the audio stream, including choosing between formats like WAV, FLAC, AAC, and MP3.

    Finally, you can start recording. After the recording is complete, the software will automatically transcode your files if needed according to your settings. These solutions are often more powerful and efficient if you have a graphics card in the system that supports hardware video encoding algorithms such as NVENC.
Watch your webcasts anytime, anywhere

So, how do you record a live webcast? You can choose from the above methods depending on how much control you want over the process. If you want a simple solution, you can just use the built-in features of your operating system.

If you want more control, it certainly pays to check out a more advanced option like OBS Studio for your needs. Whichever way you go, you should be able to end up with a complete recording of your favorite webcast in a video file that you can watch at your leisure anytime.

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