There are many reasons you might need to record your screen. But most screen recorders are so resource-hungry that it makes it hard if you don’t have the latest PC or Mac. Let’s take a look at the best screen recorder for a low-end PC.
Capturing high-quality videos of video calls, conferences, and virtual events and presentations
Recording screen activity for free on a Windows 8.1 or later PC
All-in-one recording program
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Best recording software for a low-end PC
Movavi Screen Recorder
Best for: capturing high-resolution videos of video calls, online video conferences, and virtual events and presentations
OS: Windows 7/8/10/11, macOS X 10.13 or higher
Price: free trial, $42.95/year or $59.95/lifetime
G2 rating: 4.5 out of 5, 49 reviews
Movavi Screen Recorder is one of the best screen recorders for low-end PCs on the market today. Its user-friendly interface makes it a top pick for video streamers and content creators who need to capture high-quality video from their computer screens quickly and easily. Unlike some other screen recorders, Movavi doesn’t put a time limit on recordings, and output videos won’t include a watermark on the paid version. The software offers a free download to allow users to try out without committing to a purchase. And users also have the option to pay for an annual license or make a one-time purchase and use the software indefinitely.
Webcam recording capabilities, including simultaneous recording of screen and webcam footage
Capture system sound and microphone audio
Can record two streams at once
User-friendly for beginners and pros
Multiple options for export file formats
Instant sharing to YouTube
Includes video editing features for quick edits to captured videos
The free version has limitations
Best for: recording screens for free on a Windows 8.1 or later PC
OS: Windows 8.1/10/11, macOS X 10.13 or higher, Linux
TechRadar rating: 4 out of 5
OBS Studio is an open-source screen recorder that enables users to record their screens and stream live videos for free. Its greatest strength is the ability to capture and record multiple scenes at once. Basically, users can select multiple windows or screen areas (or multiple monitors) and record simultaneous activity across them. It’s also possible to record from your webcam and add an overlay, too. However, figuring out how to do all that isn’t the easiest, as OBS Studio’s interface is somewhat clunky and not altogether intuitive.
Unlimited simultaneous multi-scene recording capabilities
Includes webcam overlay feature
Modular, customizable “dock” interface
No watermark on output videos
High-quality export recordings
Highly customizable with a wide array of configuration options
Not compatible with Windows 7 or 8
Users report difficulties recording from a microphone
User interface is not intuitive for beginners
Aiseesoft Screen Recorder
Best for: all-in-one recording program
OS: Windows, Mac
Price: free trial version, $62.45 for the full version
G2 rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Aiseesoft Screen Recorder is a powerful yet lightweight screen recorder that can capture your activity on Windows and Mac computers. It works to record online lectures, webinars, videos, videoconferences, or even games. You can capture the whole screen or customize the recording parameters to better suit your needs.
Choose to record microphone, system audio, or both
Capture your gameplay with no quality loss
Edit your recordings
Many available video and audio formats
Limited recording time of 3 minutes for the trial version
Best for: recording gameplay and videos on a PC, Xbox, or mobile device
OS: Windows XP/Vista/7/10
G2 rating: 4.3 out of 5, 32 reviews
Bandicam is a paid game recorder for low end PCs that’s compatible with versions of Windows dating back as far as XP and Vista. While its price is reasonable, and it does offer a free download to try out the software, this is probably not the best free screen recorder for a low-end PC without a watermark. Also, if you’re looking for recording software that doesn’t lower the FPS of your screen, this may not be the best option for users with low-end PCs. Bandicam does, however, empower users to record from their PC screen, webcam, or from a gaming system or mobile device.
Webcam overlay capability
Real-time drawing and mouse effects capabilities while recording a screen
Simultaneous system and microphone audio
Chroma key features allow presenters to overlay their webcam footage on their screen in real time
Includes convenient scheduled recording options
Not compatible with macOS or Linux
Lowers FPS for slow computers
Action! Screen Recorder
Best for: video and gaming recording and streaming
OS: Windows Vista/7/8/8.1/10
G2 rating: 4.8 out of 5, 12 reviews
Action! Screen Recorder is a Windows screen recorder by Mirillis. It has HD recording capabilities and comes with a 30-day free trial. During the trial period, output videos will have a watermark, but all of the functionalities of the paid version are included to give users a better feel for the software. You can capture videos from your webcam, screen, web player, and/or a specific section of the screen. It also comes with a free Android app that lets you control your recording while it’s in progress without touching your computer.
Live audio commentary capabilities
Simultaneous webcam and screen recording
Livestreaming capabilities for YouTube and Twitch
Includes audio and video editing features
Strong livestreaming support
Record up to 8K resolution
No way to adjust a video’s bitrate
No customizability for frame rate
Limited output video formats
Best for: recording video presentations and lectures
Price: free trial version, $11.84 for the full version
Softpedia rating: 4.2 out of 5 stars
Recordzilla is a screen recorder that allows you to capture videos, audio, or take screenshots on your Windows computer. While recording, you can add text, images, or time stamps on your video. Other than that, you can highlight your mouse cursor and draw on screen to focus your viewers’ attention on what’s important. After you’ve finished, you can save the result in AVI, WMV, SWF, or FLV format.
Create presentations and training videos
Annotations on video
Adjustable video resolution
Trial version allows you to do only 9 recordings
Best for: recording screen activity on older, low-end PCs
OS: Windows XP/2003/Vista/7/8/8.1/10/11
G2 rating: 4.2 out of 5, 46 reviews
Fraps is a universal Windows screen recorder. In other words, whether you have a newer low-end PC or an older Windows machine, you should have no trouble running Fraps for your screen recording needs. With that in mind, the user interface for this software feels a bit dated and is not always the most intuitive. It does, however, allow users to customize their output videos’ frame rates. If your system is powerful enough to support it, you can record video up to 7680 × 4800 with between 1 and 120 FPS. Fraps also allows users to choose their audio source, and you can record both system audio and microphone audio at the same time – making it a workable solution for live streaming video creators.
Custom frame rate capabilities
One-click screenshots while recording
Versatile options to improve screen recording quality on low-end PCs
Compatible with almost any Windows computer
Includes free trial download
Not compatible with macOS or Linux
Interface is a bit clunky
FBX Game Recorder
Best for: free screen recording and editing for users who don’t mind a watermark
OS: Windows 7/8/10
Price: $19/year or $49/lifetime
FBX Game Recorder offers a free version with a watermark, or users can opt to pay annually or purchase a lifetime license. The software offers a fair amount of versatility, including the ability to capture short videos and images while recording a longer video from your screen. It also features rapid set-up capabilities to start streaming quickly if you need to go live on the fly. It’s compatible with Windows 7 and newer, but it’s not compatible with any other OS.
Capabilities to record short video clips during screen recording via hotkeys
High-resolution screenshot capabilities while recording
Rapid streaming set-up to easily and quickly go live
Adjusts to users’ bandwidth for smoother streaming videos
Editing tools include GIFs, stickers, captions, and some effects
Watermark on the free version
Only compatible with Windows
Best for: recording video of DirectX and OpenGL applications
OS: Windows XP/7/8/8.1/10
Price: 3800 JPY ($29.58 at time of writing)
CNET rating: 3 out of 5, 5 reviews
Dxtory is among the best recording software for low-end PCs because it utilizes s surface memory buffer that reduces the load on the computer while maintaining the speed of the recording. The software’s codec records your screen’s original pixel data to get the most lossless video possible, and it’s capable of recording from multiple audio sources, as well, making it a strong contender for gaming streamers. It’s also of note that Dxtory’s pricing is in Japanese yen and therefore may vary for buyers in the U.S., depending on exchange rates.
High-speed video capture for DirectX and OpenGL applications
Original pixel data recording
Record from multiple audio sources
Allows screenshots while recording
Lossless video output
Supports multiple video codecs
Not very user-friendly and has a steep learning curve
Price may vary with exchange rates
Xbox Game Bar
Best for: recording or streaming gameplay on Xbox and Windows 10 computers
OS: Windows 10 or higher
PCWorld rating: 3.5 out of 5
Xbox Game Bar is a built-in app that comes with Windows 10. In addition to screen recording and sharing, Xbox Game Bar has features that allow users to connect and chat with other players on PC and Xbox games, and stream gaming videos instantly while playing. It’s compatible with most PC games, but it does have limitations for users with lower-end or older PCs. While it’s a useful screen recorder that’s included with Windows 10, it’s not compatible with older versions of Windows and may lag when running on less powerful desktops or laptops. It also limits users to recording one app at a time, making it impossible to record the entire desktop screen.
Broadcast & capture widget allows users to start recording by holding Win + G
Customizable user interface
Chat capabilities while recording
Free with Windows 10
Easy instant streaming capabilities
Access to multiple useful widget integrations, including podcasting and streaming applications
Not compatible with older versions of Windows
Only capable of recording one window or app at a time
4-hour maximum video length
iTop Screen Recorder
Best for: recording audio-only or HD videos on a PC
OS: Windows 7/8/10/11
iTop Screen Recorder gives users the ability to record their full screen or a selected window, webcam footage, and it has the functionality to record audio without video as well. It specializes in capturing high-resolution videos and claims to have no lag with high-quality output. With multiple output and conversion formats, iTop Screen Recorder also includes some basic editing capabilities. The free trial includes a watermark on all output videos.
Basic editing, including trimming and filters
HD game recording capabilities
Multiple output formats
User-friendly for beginners and advanced users
No ads on the free trial version
Little to no lag on HD recordings
No hot-key options for recording on the fly
Editing functions are very basic
No screenshot feature while recording
Best for: streaming gameplay to Twitch
OS: Windows XP/Vista/7/8/8.1/10
AlternativeTo rating: 4.5 out of 5, 13 reviews
D3DGear is specifically designed to record gameplay on your PC, though it also has capabilities to record gameplay on an Oculus Rift VR device. It excels with low-to-no lag livestreaming during gameplay, and it’s capable of recording up to 4K video resolution. If you want to record your screen for anything but gaming, though, you’ll need to opt for a different screen recorder.
Lag-free livestreaming to Twitch
Constant Frame Rate (CFR) capabilities
Screenshot capabilities while recording
Minimal impact on gaming performance and speed
Capable of recording Oculus Rift VR gameplay
4K video output
Only records games, no other videos
No integration with YouTube for streaming
Tips for choosing a lightweight screen recorder
With our detailed reviews of the top screen recorders for low-end PCs, you should hopefully have the info you need to choose the best one for your needs. While all of these programs have their pros and cons, there are a few things you should take into account as you make your decision, including:
User interface: how user-friendly is the program? Are you a beginner who needs a little more support and an intuitive interface? Are you an advanced user who’s used to seeing features and tools in a specific format? Take a look at the functionality of each program and see which one will be easiest to learn and most convenient to use.
Features and capabilities: if you need to edit your output videos and you don’t want to buy a separate video editing program, you should consider an option with editing capabilities, like Movavi Screen Recorder. Will you need to record high-definition videos? Are you going to be streaming to Twitch or YouTube? Dive in and take a look at the key features for each of your choices to see which will do the best job.
Price: shop around and compare prices. The cheapest program may not be the best option if it doesn’t have all the features and functionalities you need, but you don’t want to just assume that the top-dollar option will be the best – it’s not always the case!
In the article above, we’ve reviewed some of the best recorders for low-end PCs and listed their main features. Keep these considerations in mind as you shop for a screen recorder that will work well with your PC. And, while you’re looking, why not try out Movavi Screen Recorder?
Movavi Screen Recorder
Frequently asked questions
Does screen recording software slow down your computer?
Screen recording requires many system resources, such as CPU, RAM, GPU, etc. If your PC doesn’t have sufficient resources or there are too many programs running at once, your computer will slow down. There are a few solutions to this situation:
Close as many programs running in the background as possible – it should free some of the system resources for recording.
Set the recording parameters such as bitrate, frame rate, and resolution to the lowest quality that is acceptable to you.
Try plugging the GPU into the primary slot.
Update your CPU, RAM, and graphics card.
What is the best screen recorder for a low-end PC?
Based on our reviews, our top five choices for the best screen recorder for a low-end PC are:
Movavi Screen Recorder
We based our rating on versatility, price, user experience, and available features. Movavi is our top pick because it allows users to record a wide range of videos and presentations, make edits to create professional-level output videos, and streaming is easy too. With that in mind, new software hits the market every day, and we highly recommend taking some time to learn about all the options available today.
What is the best no-lag screen recorder?
Here’s a list of some of the best options:
Movavi Screen Recorder
AceThinker Screen Grabber Pro
BB FlashBack Express
Follow the link below to learn more about no-lag recorders:
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