How to Record a Desktop Video in 2024

Try Movavi Screen Recorder:

  • Capture every detail, even keystrokes and button clicks

  • Capture video in HD and 4K

  • Use drawing tools to make clear explanations in your video

Edited by Ben Jacklin

In this guide, we discuss how to record your desktop video using Movavi Screen Recorder, including options such as scheduling or recording part of the screen, plus annotating your videos.

How to record your desktop screen

Movavi Screen Recorder was made specifically for screen recording and has some excellent features, such as trimming and annotation, and the option to capture a video from your desktop on your PC as well as multiple other sources.

The interface is easy, so even beginners who want to know how to record video desktop activity can use Movavi Screen Recorder to great effect. It is even possible to record videos by scheduling recordings, for instance, if you can’t make it to a seminar or a meeting.

Here’s how to record your desktop screen with Movavi Screen Recorder:

Step 1. Download and install Movavi Screen Recorder

Download the correct version for your computer. You then need to install the software and double-click the icon from your applications to launch Movavi Screen Recorder.

Step 2. Adjust the settings

Click Preferences, which you can find on the sidebar, and you’ll see a lot of different options. 

To choose a different output folder, go to the Files tab. If you want to change cursor settings, you can do this in the Effects tab.

Next, click the Screen recording button, and use your mouse to draw the frame where you want to capture a desktop video. The recording panel will then appear, allowing you to start recording a desktop video. Before you start, click System audio to set up the audio-recording settings. Turn off your webcam or mic if you don’t want to record from these sources.

Step 3. Start the screen capture

Click the REC button to record the screen on a desktop. You can hit Pause during the recording if you need to. When you’re finished recording, click the Stop button.

Step 4. Edit and save the video

To trim the video to size, move the cursor at the edge of the unwanted segment and click Cut. Repeat as needed at the end of the video, select the part you want to remove and hit Delete fragment to trim this to size.

Next, click Export. A dialog box will open giving you options regarding output format, file name, and folder. When all the necessary changes have been made, click Save.

How to record a video on a desktop with audio

We’ve briefly covered how to record desktop video but one of the crucial aspects of this is to make sure you are also recording audio. There are very few instances where you will want to record a desktop video without audio. You may need to record the original audio, for instance, if you are viewing a lecture for college, or you are on a video call and need to record what somebody else is saying.

Pretty much every type of video has some form of audio, which can be crucial to understanding the video. For instance, if you are recording gameplay footage on your desktop, then you will want to ensure you are recording the sounds of the game. If you are recording an important virtual meeting, then the audio may even be more important than the video. 

It is also possible that you might need to capture audio from your microphone or other sources. For example, it is possible that you might want to know how to screen-record on a desktop while capturing video and audio from your external microphone and webcam. This is something that is possible with Movavi Screen Recorder, making it easy to do things like gaming commentary videos.

For audio and video capture on a desktop, click the System audio and Microphone icons to choose to record the system audio as well as capturing from an external microphone.

Hotkeys for recording a desktop video

When learning the best way to record a desktop video, you may need to be quick to ensure that you capture the important moments. For instance, if you need to record a meeting or stop recording at a specific time, then it can be distracting to use your mouse or complicated controls.

Luckily, Movavi Screen Recorder has hotkeys that allow you to start and stop the recording. This makes it quick and easy to make the recordings just by hitting a couple of keys, rather than having to navigate through menus.

Start recording

  • Windows: F10
  • macOS: Option + Command + 2

Pause recording

  • Windows: F9
  • macOS: Option + Command + 1

Stop recording

  • Windows: F10
  • macOS: Option + Command + 2

Tips on recording a desktop video

There are a few tips that can help you to ensure that you are getting the best possible results when recording a video:

  • Make sure you have tweaked your preferences and settings. This is where users can change the inputs, the resolution of the video, and where it saves afterward.
  • Make sure you do a practice run-through. There’s a lot more chance that something will go wrong the very first time you make a recording, so record something random first to make sure you understand the controls. This is especially true if you are using advanced features such as scheduling. 
  • Keep your software updated. Updates may help with things like bugs and ensure that you have all the latest features.
  • Learn the shortcuts. If you need to make changes and adjustments in a way that is quick and easy, then it is often easier with shortcuts.
  • Only record what you need. You don’t want to spend a long time making edits and adjustments afterward, so try not to record too much more than you need.
  • Close additional windows. You don’t want other windows in the back of your desktop display that could appear in your recording and cause an issue. 
  • Turn off notifications that could interrupt your recording. If you have alerts and notifications that might pop up during the video, make sure you have turned them off. These could ruin the screen recording, especially if it is an event that will only happen once, such as a video conference call.
  • Learn how to use annotation tools. Movavi Screen Recorder has annotation tools that mean you can point things out on the screen, this can be very useful for future reference and for keeping notes of things that happen on your desktop recording.
  • Check that you have plenty of space for the recording on your hard drive. Video recordings can sometimes be stored in large files, especially if it is HD.


We’ve covered a few methods for those wondering how to screen-record on a desktop. There are many different software options for this, but Movavi Screen Recorder provides you with a simple and effective method with a super simple interface and even hotkeys to keep things quick and easy.

Movavi Screen Recorder

The perfect way to record anything from your screen

Disclaimer: Please be aware that Movavi Screen Recorder does not allow capture of copy-protected video and audio streams.

Movavi Screen Recorder

Frequently asked questions

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