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Mac OS X has been rewritten from the ground up, and Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard New Features highlights all of the most important and user-relevant aspects of this release. Experienced instructor and lifelong Mac user Garrick Chow introduces current Mac users to the improvements in the latest OS. While not a complete overhaul of the operating system, this update does address a fair number of internal systems and external user features. Garrick explores all of these updates, including enhancements to the Finder and the Dock and a completely revamped QuickTime player. He shows the wealth of improvements to built-in applications like Safari, Preview, iChat, and Mail, and explains the updated 64-bit support within Snow Leopard.
In the previous movie, we saw how the ability to record video and audio are now available for free in the QuickTime X Player while they were previously only available in the paid version of QuickTime Pro 7. But QuickTime X also offers a new recording option not found in any previous version of QuickTime and that's the ability to make a screen recording. A screen recording is essentially a recording of everything that's happening on your Mac's screen along with the option of recording your voice as a narration or explanation of what's happening, which is exactly what you are watching me do right now, only I am not using QuickTime to record the movie you are watching at the moment.
But with this feature you can become your own budding computer trainer and use it anytime you need to demonstrate or explain something on your Mac. If you are watching this tutorial, you'll probably agree that there are some things that are much easier to explain through a video than through writing or verbal explanation. So to create a new screen recording in QuickTime X Player, choose File > New Screen Recording. Here we just get a single Record button. We do have the Arrow button, which again gives you some options. If you want to record your voice or some other audio source to go along with the screen recording, you can choose the Source from under the Microphone settings.
I am going to leave mine set to None for now, and you can also select the quality of the video, either Medium or High. You can see that it's telling me that with medium quality it's going to use the JPEG video compression codec, and for High it uses H.264. Again, you can choose the location of where you want the movie saved and I'll just leave it set to Desktop. So let's try creating a screen recording. And this is going to be a little weird for me because I am currently recording a screen recording of me showing how to record a screen recording. I hope this doesn't destroy the universe or something. So I am going to hit Record.
Next we get this message asking if we are sure we want to record. It's also letting us know that this window is going to disappear while we are recording. To stop the recording, you can click the Stop button in the menu bar which you can see has appeared in the upper right-hand corner. Just in case you don't know where the menu bar is, you can click Show Me, and it can't make it much clearer than that. Now that might seem a bit unnecessary or silly, but if someone were to start recording and not know how to stop it the movie could start filling up the hard drive fairly quickly. Note that you can also press Command+Ctrl+Esc to stop the recording as well.
All right. Let's give this a try. I will hit Start Recording. You can see the icon has now appeared on my Desktop, and that actually might be a good reason to not record to your Desktop if you don't want to see the icon for the movie you are recording. Well, I'll open a window here. Toggle a couple of folders. Good enough. That's my screen recording, and I will click Stop. And there it is. Now it opens up in full size. Note that you can only record your entire screen, and it will record at whatever your display resolution happens to be.
My monitor is setup for 1280x800 right now, so that's the resolution of my movie. Again, we do have different view options in which we could Fit to Screen, or I could just hit Command+Minus sign to reduce the size of the movie, but if I play that back now, you will see that's where the icon appeared on screen. And then here's where I opened the Exercise Files. I know it was a very exciting movie. Notice you can see the Stop Recording button in the menu bar when you are recording.
Alright. So there is my screen recording. I think this is great free built-in feature to have in Snow Leopard. I could very easily see myself using this feature to quickly create a small tutorial for my parents on how to use their Macs, or to send a video of a software bug to tech support. The possibilities really are endless. Again, we'll talk more about how to send these files out into the world a little bit later, but next we'll take a look at another QuickTime feature which gives us new editing capabilities.
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