I will quickly describe how to create HD quality screencasts for the web. The key to creating screencasts that end up looking great all depends on how you started to create your videos.
I recommend to use Camtasia for all video screencasts, it’s an amazing piece of software and very easy to get the hang of it in a short period of time with minimal investment.
Recording your Video:
You will want to record your video at a capture resolution of 1280×720 pixels. So first open up Camtasia recorder. First, we want to make sure we are capturing at 30 frames per second. So click on the tools menu link and select options. Then select the inputs tab and select “Screen Capture frame rate” and set to 30. Depending on your version the location might be slightly different, but you should be able to find it.
Now let’s edit the audio settings. Select the PCM and 44,100khz with 16 bit stereo.
Now you are set with your frame rate and audio. Now just specify the capture size as 1280×720 and begin capturing video.
After you have completed your capture you will want to edit this video in Camtasia studio. Seeing that you will probably host this video on youtube and most viewers will view it in a 640 resolution or lower, you will want to add some zoom and pan settings throughout your video so that the users can see what you are doing during your video capture. I RECOMMEND NOT TO use Camtasia’s auto zoom and pan, it’s horrible. Manually add it as you go through editing your video.
When you have completed editing you will want to produce your video. I recommend to use the following settings:
export using mpeg4 or .mov with h.264 codec.
If you want to do additional video editing work with other more advanced video manipulation software like Sony Vegas or Adobe Premiere, you can just produce your video with the highest quality settings and then compress it later using Sony Vegas. Just save the video as the same resolution you recorded in and as an AVI file. Depending on what you recorded I recommend the following codecs when you produce the video to be further edited in another software.
If only screen video was captured: Use the TechSmith screen capture codec.
If screen and video (i.e. from a webcam) were both captured I would use the XviD or mpeg4 codec.
These concepts can be applied to any video editing software, so even if you are not using Camtasia Studio you should be able to apply these same concepts. Good luck!