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Camtasia Recorder and PowerPoint

If you haven't installed Camtasia yet, look here...

With Recorder, you can record any Microsoft PowerPoint presentation and convert it into an AVI or Streaming Media file. As a standalone video, it can be distributed via CD-ROM, web or e-mail and played back on standard media players. The presentation runs unattended, but delivers the full content of a live event. No special PowerPoint viewer is needed by your audience.

Recorder records all of the PowerPoint animation and slide transitions. Plus, the slide show video can be narrated, modified and edited and such become even more valuable to your audience. Additionally, you can:

  • Record ScreenDraw objects or ScreenPad objects
  • Mix the slides with other screen recordings or video content.
  • Add single video frames as still images (BMP, GIF, JPEG).
  • Seamlessly join a sequence of PowerPoint presentations to a single one.
  • Embed a Camtasia screen video into a PowerPoint slide. Computer simulations, CAD designs, software applications come to life, and your presentation will not only look more professional, but also at the same time it will be more entertaining and informative.
  • Save a single PowerPoint slide as a still image (BMP, GIF, JPEG) and import it into Camtasia Producer to become part of a narrated video.

The following tables gives you some basic guidelines for embedding different Camtasia Studio video formats.

File Type Things to Consider about Delivery
AVI AVIs are typically large files, but have high quality -- which is important when you need to convey precise details. Embedding an AVI can quickly increase the file size of your PowerPoint. Embedding AVIs in your presentation is not recommended when planning to share via the Web unless you know your viewers all have high bandwidth connections to the Internet. TechSmith recommends distribution via CD-ROM or corporate intranet.
AVI encoded w/ TSCC Codec This is the best video choice when embedding videos of screen activity. Because of TSCC compression, your PowerPoint file size will not increase significantly when embedding this type of video file. Remember that anyone who views your presentation needs to have TSCC installed on their desktop. TechSmith recommends distribution via CD-ROM, Pack and Show, and via the Web.
WMV This video type can be produced for specific bandwidths, and the quality and file size of your video will reflect those settings. Choose this video type when you want to share or playback your presentation on desktops that have Windows Media Player installed.
MOV This video type can be produced for specific bandwidths, and the qualify and file size of your video will reflect those settings. Because QuickTime Player is available for both Windows and MacIntosh, TechSmith recommends this video type when you know you want to share or playback your presentation to an audience with different operating systems.
Animated GIF This file type is preferred if you are concerned with keeping your PowerPoint presentation file very small, especially for delivery via the Internet. If you want to embed a short video clip where precise detail is not important, TechSmith recommends choosing animated GIF.

Record a PowerPoint Presentation

  1. In Microsoft's PowerPoint, open the PowerPoint presentation you would like to record.
  2. In o Recorder, go to Capture > Input > Screen.
  3. In PowerPoint, go to the "Slide Show view " by selecting menu options View > Slide Show or by pressing the Slide Show View hotkey, F5.
  4. Begin recording by pressing Camtasia Recorder's record hotkey (default is F9).
    Note: You won't see the Recorder window on your screen, because PowerPoint's slideshow will be playing.
  5. In PowerPoint, move through your slide show.
  6. Stop recording by pressing Recorder's stop hotkey (default is F10).
  7. Save your capture. Note that it is saved as an AVI file.
  8. You can now use Camtasia Producer to edit, or narrate your PowerPoint video. You can also use Camtasia Effects to add annotations such as arrows or callouts to the video.

Embed a Camtasia Video in Your PowerPoint Presentation

Note: You can use Camtasia Player to playback AVIs in your PowerPoint presentations. When embedding AVIs into PowerPoint the quality of the video can be degraded due to scaling. This problem can easily be resolved by using Camtasia Player to display your videos from the PowerPoint Presentation. For more information, see
  1. In Microsoft's PowerPoint, open the PowerPoint presentation you would like to embed the video in.
  2. Move to the slide of your presentation where you would like to add your video.
  3. Select menu options Insert > Video and Sounds > Video From File.... PowerPoint's Insert Video dialog appears.
  4. Use the Insert Video dialog to browse through your desktop's files and folders. Highlight the video you would like to embed and click OK. A PowerPoint dialog will pop up and ask you if you would like your video to play automatically in the slide show. Select Yes if you would like your video to play automatically. Select No if you want the video to start in the slide show only after you click it.
  5. The first frame of your Camtasia video should appear on the slide you chose to embed your video on. If you right-click over your embedded video file and select menu option Edit Video File you can edit play options such as looping and rewind.
Tip! If you right-click over your embedded video file and select menu option Edit Movie File you can edit play options such as looping and rewind.

Embed an Animated GIF in Your PowerPoint Presentation

In Microsoft's PowerPoint, open the PowerPoint presentation you would like to embed the animated GIF in.
  1. In Microsoft's PowerPoint, open the PowerPoint presentation you would like to embed the video in.
  2. Move to the slide of your presentation where you would like to add your animated GIF.
  3. Select menu options Insert > Picture > From File. The Insert Picture dialog box displays.
  4. Browse through your desktop's files and folders. Highlight the animated GIF you would like to embed and click OK.
  5. To preview how the animated GIF picture will appear in the slide show, click Slide Show at the lower left of the Microsoft PowerPoint window.

Save a PowerPoint Slide as a Still Image

  1. Display the slide you want to save as a picture.
  2. Choose File > Save As.
  3. In the Save as type dialog box, select the file format (BMP, GIF, JPEG).
Note: Drawing objects in your presentation are automatically converted to GIF files when you save your presentation in HTML format.

Use Camtasia Player to Playback Videos in Your PowerPoint Presentation

You can use Camtasia Player to playback AVIs in your PowerPoint presentations. When embedding AVIs into PowerPoint the quality of the video can be degraded due to scaling. This problem can easily be resolved by using Camtasia Player to display your videos from the PowerPoint Presentation. Camtasia Player will not scale your AVIs and will always display them perfectly, so that you don't have to worry about them looking poor in your PowerPoint presentation.

To use the Camtasia Player as your video player in PowerPoint, you must make a button that will call Camtasia Player, with the necessary command line arguments, so that it will play your video. To create a button in PowerPoint you must do the following.

  1. Create a shape in your presentation, then right mouse click on that shape, and select Action Settings.
  2. In the Action Settings, select the Run Program action. This will allow you to call Camplay.EXE, which is the executable of Camtasia Player.
  3. Enter Camplay.exe in the Run Program field. In order for this to work properly you must save your PowerPoint presentation in the same folder as Camplay.exe and your AVI, otherwise PowerPoint won't be able to find and run Camplay.exe.
  4. Enter any desired command line arguments. After the command line arguments, you have to also enter the name of your video. Lets say your video is named myvideoAVI. This means that you will need to enter this into your Run Program field:
    Camplay.exe /F /E myvideoAVI
    This will call Camtasia Player to run full screen, exit when finished, and play myvideoAVI.
  5. Click OK in the Action Settings dialog box.

You will now have a button that will call Camtasia Player to play your video.

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