How to record a screen with sound on a Mac

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Screen grabs and screenshots are useful for sharing information, of course. And sometimes, that is all we need. But there are other times when we need to talk to people, or record something so that someone else, maybe thousands of miles away, can easily understand what we need to say. 

How to record Mac screen with sound

To narrate what’s happening on your Mac, you oftentimes need to record your computer screen with audio. Macs don’t have the built-in tools for it so in this article, we explain how you can easily record desktop with voice over using a few third-party apps. 

A quick overview: We’ll explain how to use Apple’s native QuickTime, which many don't realize comes with the screen, video, and audio recording capabilities — so it’s not just an app for watching videos. If you’re here for a more advanced toolkit you could use to record voice-overs and edit videos, we’ll show how to do it with Capto, CleanShot X, and Dropshare.

Record your screen with audio on macOS

To record audio and screenshots or moving screen grabs at the same time, you can use a small app named Capto. Available from Setapp and easy-to-use. It has a whole range of capturing features to create a detailed and informative screen capture with blocks of text, highlights and even a FaceTime camera recording. 

If you are in a hurry and need to get something to a colleague or client quickly, but want it to look professional, record video what you need, give it a quick edit then email it across. Plus you’ve got the ability to mute, fade in, or fade out of the audio recording tracks to get professional sound without clicks and keyboard noise. 

How you record audio and screenshots using a screen recording app 

  1. Launch Capto or similar screen recorder and find Record button
  2. Check the boxes to make sure you are picking up audio and recording the screen (or portion of the screen) 
  3. Choose to record FaceTime camera, setup recording time limit, and choose the second menu (small dots below) to hide files on your desktop
  4. Hit the Record button 
  5. Once you are done, press the red button in the menu bar or shift + command + esc
  6. Edit as needed in the Video section, then upload as an attachment or publish online 

Screen recording options

It is as easy as that. And, if you have a little more time, use the controls on the left to tweak the sound, trim, add annotations, highlight specific areas, adjust the size and placement of the camera video, and make any other changes as needed. 

Make a voice over video of your screen

Another app that lets you create a narrated screencast is Dropshare. It was originally created as a super-easy cloud sharing app because sharing files is a chore. Dropshare solves it by instantly giving you secure links and drag-and-drop file uploads of ready screencasts.

Making a screen record with voice over

  1. Launch Dropshare (it's free with Setapp subscription).
  2. Click a circular icon in the menu bar to record the screen.
  3. Choose a microphone to record system audio and audio from your microphone.
  4. Hit the red button to start recording. 
  5. Hit it again to stop recording. 
  6. Pack up the file and send it anywhere.

Record screen with audio with Dropshare app

Other times, you may need to record calls made through your Mac. Either this is for training purposes, to demonstrate something to a colleague, or it is an interview that needs recording. 

Ultimate screen capturing on Mac

If you deal with screenshots and screen recordings often, you don’t want to be juggling different apps all the time. In this case, CleanShot X is pretty much all you need. This screen capturing app covers 50+ different features — from creating optimized GIFs to scrolling captures to video recordings. So if you’re looking for a universal thing, this is the right choice. 

The great thing is CleanShot X lets you tweak lots of small things while recording video. You get snappable resize controls, can choose to display recording time on a video, highlight mouse clicks, or disable notifications in a click. All the options are right at your fingertips. 

Here’s how to record screen with CleanShot X: 

  1. Click Record Screen in the menu bar 
  2. Pick whether you want to capture video or GIF 
  3. Drag to select a custom area on the screen 
  4. Enable/disable audio recording 
  5. Customize settings (area size, system notifs, mouse click highlighting, etc.) 
  6. Once you’re ready, hit the Record button
  7. Trim the recording outputs from the Overlay Menu in the end. 

Make a video recording of the entire screen or just a selected portion of it


How to record calls on your Mac

On a Mac, the three most popular ways to make calls are Skype, FaceTime - which comes with a handy feature that allows you to start a call on an iPhone and continue on a Mac (Handoff) - and WhatsApp. Here is how you record those calls using your Mac. 

How to record a Skype meetings

Skype, even before Microsoft bought it, has never included a native way to record audio and visuals when on a call. Making it somewhat of a nuisance when important information is being conveyed and you’ve got to make notes quickly or ask for an email follow-up to clarify points. 

For making screenshots during a call, you can use the following commonly-used Mac shortcuts : 

⌘ + Shift + 3 to grab the entire screen

⌘ + Shift + 4 to capture a selected area

⌘ + Shift + 4 + press Space to take a screenshot of a selected window.

To record your Skype calls with video and audio you could use Capto, or another third-party app, such as Dropshare that we mentioned earlier. Just make sure you get the permission of the person you want to record, to put you on the right side of the law and to be polite. If you are experiencing issues connecting to call, follow these tips to use Skype on a Mac desktop.

Screen record FaceTime and Handoff with audio

One of the most effective ways of recording a FaceTime call is using a QuickTime recorder. How to start recording your FaceTime calls: 

  1. Open QuickTime on your Mac 
  2. Click File in the Menu bar 
  3. Select New Screen Recording 
  4. Choose the Internal Microphone in the list of audio input options 
  5. Open FaceTime to make your call (or use Handoff to transition a call from an iPhone to your Mac) 
  6. Click the Record button and Screen to record the full screen, or click and drag the capture option to limit the recording to the call screen
  7. Once the call is over, press Stop to end the recording 
  8. Then go to File > Save

QuickTime recording options


How to record WhatsApp calls

Similar to FaceTime and Skype, you can make calls using WhatsApp on your Mac and record them using QuickTime, Capto or other third-party apps. 

Either download WhatsApp Video Call or use the WhatsApp Web application to make a call. Once you are ready, pick the app you are going to use to record the call. For a quick unedited audio recording, QuickTime should suffice. If you want the ability to record in more detail, and make edits, then Capto or Dropshare are ideal for that purpose. 

The default way of QuickTime recording doesn’t give you many options in terms of editing, captions, extra info, additional images, etc. Using Capto allows for a more complete experience if you need a bit more creative freedom with your call recordings. 

Plus, both Capto and Dropshare are available as a part of Setapp subscription. If you have Setapp, you get their full functionality + 170 more handy Mac utilities in one suite. There’s a 7-day free trial, so give it a go. Anyways, we hope this guide has been of help, have a lovely day!

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