My Screencasting Setup

Tim Abell · March 17, 2018

Reading time: 1 minute

I just made a video to demo schema explorer.

I did this in one take with no post-production work. I figure practice will improve my selection and delivery of the content.

Behind the scenes I used the following:


  • Dell XPS 13 - (9350 model), using the built-in webcam (up-nose view, camera in bottom left of lid for some reason), good enough for tiny pic in corner.
  • Snowball usb mic (great sound quality, no worrying about analogue stuff), sat on a folded towel on my desk to deaden vibrations through the mini-tripod. The snowball has 3 settings on a switch at the back, had it on 3 - omni directional, I tested all three modes beforehand.
  • Supplied stand didn’t actually fit properly, so bought an ammoon mini tripod instead which is lovely (importantly it has the right screw thread for the mic).
  • A quiet room after everyone is in bed to avoid interruptions, and did the recording between rain storms!


  • Linux Mint 18.3 Cinnamon
  • Vokoscreen 2.4.0 - this handles screen recording & the picture-in-picture from the webcam

I recorded the entire screen at 1920x1080 (seeing as even phones are HD now). and uploaded it to youtube. (drag-n-drop, simplez!)


Control panel > sound > input > snowball > about 130% input volume


fullscreen capture, display 2, 1920x1080

Screenshot from 2018-03-17 18-27-39.png

pulse / blue-snowball selected

Screenshot from 2018-03-17 18-27-55.png

mpeg4, mp3, avi, 25fps

vokoscreen 2.4.0_180

Default config apart from save path “videopath”

vokoscreen 2.4.0_181.png

Webcam switched on

vokoscreen 2.4.0_182.png

Other attempts

I spent ages finding the right software and doing test takes to get sound levels etc right.

I started off with Kazaam for recording and mplayer for the webcam onscreen video.

I got mplayer to show a borderless webcam video picture on screen that I could then use with any screen recorder, but had problems with dual screen behaviour so even though I could zoom in better I gave up on that once I’d discovered vokoscreen.

You might also want to look at which I hear is very good.

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Suggest improvements: page source on github

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