How To Screen Record On A Mac

Screen Recording on Mac: A Step-by-Step Guide

Are you looking for an effective way to share your computer screen with others, or perhaps want to capture a tutorial or demo? Screen recording is the solution! On your Mac, you can easily record your screen using built-in software and third-party tools. In this article, we’ll dive into the details of how to screen record on a Mac, covering various methods and best practices.

Method 1: Built-in QuickTime Player

Apple’s built-in QuickTime Player is an easy-to-use tool for capturing your screen activity. Here’s how:

  1. Launch the Applications folder by clicking the “Finder” icon in the Dock or using Spotlight search.
  2. In the Finder window, click on Utilities to open its contents.
  3. Look for and launch “QuickTime Player.”
  4. Click on File > New Screen Recording (or press ⌘ + Shift + 5).
  5. Your Mac’s screen will flash momentarily, signaling that recording has started.

To stop the recording:

  1. Go back to QuickTime Player by clicking in its window.
  2. Click on Window > Show Toolbar or press ⌘ + Shift + 4.
  3. In the toolbar, click on “Stop” (or press spacebar).

Tips and Variations

  • To record a specific region of your screen instead of the entire display, click and drag the camera icon within QuickTime Player’s window while creating a recent recording.
  • For better video quality or higher frame rates, go to Edit > Preferences in QuickTime Player. In the “Screen Recording” section, adjust settings like “Quality,” “Frame rate,” and more.

Method 2: Built-in Screen Recordings (macOS Mojave and Later)

In macOS 10.14 (Mojave) or later versions, you can create screen recordings directly from the built-in screenshot menu:

  1. Press ⌘ + Shift + 5.
  2. A small window will appear asking if you want to record your screen for up to one minute. If not satisfied with this time limit, click on “Record” and then “Stop Recording.”
  3. To pause or resume a recording: press the spacebar (pause) or ⌘ + Shift + 5 again.

Method 3: Third-Party Screen Recording Software

While Apple’s built-in solutions are reliable options, third-party software can offer additional features and flexibility. Some popular alternatives include:

  • Camtasia for Mac
  • OBS Studio

In this example, we’ll use OBS Studio as it provides more advanced recording capabiliteis and supports multiple video formats.

  1. Download and install OBS Studio from its official website.
  2. Launch the app by clicking its icon in your Applications folder or Spotlight search.
  3. Click on Settings > Video (tab) to adjust settings like resolution, frame rate, bitrate, etc.
  4. Create a new recording:

a. Click + (the plus sign) at the bottom left corner of OBS Studio’s main window.

b. In the “Create New” dialog box:

i. Set your desired display and region.

ii. Select video format from options like MP4, MOV, or more.

iii. Adjust audio settings if necessary.
5. To start recording: click on the Start Recording button in OBS Studio’s interface (or press ⌘ + Shift + R).

Stopping the Recording

To stop an ongoing screen capture:

  1. Click “Stop” within OBS Studio’s interface.

  2. You can also use the ⌃ + Q hotkey to pause and resume or Ctrl+R for stopping a recording, if set up in your preferences.

Tips and Best Practices

  • Regularly update both QuickTime Player (for built-in methods) as well as any third-party software you may be using.
  • In case of technical issues during the capture process, feel free to pause or stop the recording at will. No one is watching!


Screen recording on your Mac has become an essential skill in today’s digital age. Whether you’re creating tutorials, demos for clients, sharing presentations with team members or simply want to save memories by capturing life moments – understanding these three methods should help guide your screen capture endeavors.

Before proceeding further: are there specific needs that we’ve not addressed? Do any other related topics need addressing?