Comparable: Camtasia Studio, Screencast-O-Matic, ScreenFlow, BB FlashBack Pro
The Microsoft Expression Encoder is a screen capturing tool that allows the user to record portions or all of the screen, accompanying audio, and export it into an editable video. Expression Encoder is very similar in features to the PC version of Camtasia Studio. Unlike Camtasia, Expression Encoder is only available for Windows.
There are two components to Expression Encoder. The first is the “Screen Capture” application, which sets the user up to record the screen. Options include recording with a microphone for narration, recording a webcam with the screen, and selecting the area you want to record. Once the recording is complete the result is handed off to the second component titled “Expression Encoder.” In the Encoder, the user can edit the video in a timeline layout. The user can add the webcam as a picture-in-picture, set it to full screen, turn it off, or vary between the three in the end result of the production. The Encoder also allows the user to add background audio, insert other video clips, and rearrange content.
One difficulty with using the Expression Encoder is that it prefers to export video in the proprietary WMV (Windows Media Video) format. This format does not read well across platforms (mac and linux) and does not work well with websites. Changing formats can be a difficult procedure without the right software.
The free version of Expression Encoder is available at no cost, but it does have a recording limit of 10 minutes.