As you might know, taking screenshots is a big part of my daily work. Whether it’s taking screen captures of applications, games, skins, etc., having the ability to easily take these screenshots is a must. The old “print screen” button works just fine for taking screenshots every once and a while, but if you want to take it to the next level then you need to grab a copy of SnagIt 9 from TechSmith. Even if you are a previous user of SnagIt, the upgrade is a must-have, and new users will be hooked on all the features it has.
Let me start off by showing what is new in version 9.
- New User Interface. The interface and workflow has undergone a complete makeover. It’s a huge difference than previous versions, but it takes not time at all to become familiar with this one.
- Auto-storing. When you take a screen capture, SnagIt automatically saves it until you decide on what to actually do with it. Perfect for when you need to take several screenshots, and you don’t have to worry about saving each one until you are done.
- Combine images. This is one of my favorite new features. The SnagIt Editor just became even more powerful, so now I can do editing right in SnagIt that I once had to use an external image editor for. You can now take multiple captures, and combine them by simple drag and drop
- Search and Organize. SnagIt 9 has a great integrated visual search and tagging/flag features to make organizing and finding your screen captures as simple as can be.
There are just a ton of options and configurations for SnagIt regarding captures and outputs, but they are easy to understand and configure. There are a bunch of capture profiles included. Some of these include taking screen captures of regions, full screen, scrolling windows, webpages, and more. SnagIt also allows you to create your own personal capture profiles to easily tailor the capture to your specific needs.
You can also select a profile from the system tray, along with quick access to other common functions. Once you are ready to take your screen capture, you can do it via a configurable hotkey setup, through the system tray, or through the main interface. The hotkey option is definitely the best way to go.
After you capture is done, you can either take more or use the SnagIt Editor to do a variety of things with the images. The SnagIt Editor is a very powerful tool, and TechSmith really poured some extra effort into making it a full fledged image editor. I have actually found myself turning to the SnagIt Editor instead of higher-end graphics applications when needing to edit an image. The Editor has a ribbon-like interface, with tabs which give you quick access to the many editing features that are available.
A brief overview of the functions of the tabs:
- The Draw tab allows you to get access to the clipboard, drawing tools such as adding text, callouts, shapes, arrows, etc.
- The Image tab gives you tools like crop, resize, rotate, etc. It also has an ‘image style’ section where you can apply a variety of edge effects, shadows, and other image styles. This section also gives you the options to add blur, color effects, filters, and much more.
- The Hotspots tab lets you add hotlinks, tooltips, and flash popups to your images.
- The Tags tab lets you add keywords to your images, set flags for the images, and gives you a detailed description of the captured image.
- The View tab gives you control over zooming, windows arrangement, and help/training sections.
- The Send tab is where you can take your finished image, and send it to a huge variety of outputs like e-mail, FTP, applications like Word, and even upload directly to Flickr.
I just wanted to focus on a couple of my favorite features which I use regularly. When I take a screenshot of say an application or website, I often need to make ‘notes’ about a specific part of the captured image. I used to have to break out Photoshop and add some arrows and text boxes, but no more. I can do this in seconds with SnagIt. All I have to do is select a Callout image, add my text, and then add an arrow. It can’t get much easier than that!
Once I have my image ready, now I can tag with some keywords, so if I need to find it later, I can find it via the search pane either through keywords, websites, date, and more.
When everything is done, I just now need to figure out where to send it to. You can of course just save it as an image file, but there’s so much more you can do with it if needed. If you need to send it to an application like Word, Excel, or Powerpoint, you can do that with a simple click. E-mail and FTP uploads are just as easy, and you can visit the SnagIt Accessory page for more outputs that can be downloaded. My favorite option is the ability to upload the images directly to my Flickr account. Uploading through SnagIt saves a bunch of time on my part, and it’s a welcomed feature.
I could really go on and on about all the features, but the bottom line is SnagIt is worth every cent. If you need to take screen captures of any type, then there is no substitute, SnagIt is the way to go.
You can find more information, and a free trial download at http://www.techsmith.com/screen-capture.asp.