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Computer Equipment and Screen Recording Revisited

It has been about 3 years since my primary hardware machine has been upgraded. I already had 16GB of RAM, two 1920 x 1200 monitors, a Filco mechanical keyboard, and a graphics tablet. OK, I admit that the CPU is showing a little age, but it was an AMD Phenom II X4 965 quad-core processor, and that still has some life left in it.

So I decided to update my graphics card, which was an Nvidia GeForce 440. I do run the Nvidia graphics binary driver (and I'll be delighted to switch to the Nouveau driver when it gets close to equivalent performance). Now, my primary system runs Kubuntu Saucy, with KDE 4.12.3, so a graphics card update should make sense. I'm Not made of money, so cost was definitely a factor.

In fact, I wanted to upgrade to Nvidia's GeForce GTX 780 (TI) card, but at 500-760 US dollars (depending upon configuration), it was just too much.

While I was wrestling with the cost vs benefit ratio, the Nvidia GeForce GTX 750 TI card came out. Priced at $150 US, it seemed like a good deal. But my research indicated the performance of that card wasn't that much above my GeForce 440 card.

So, I opted for the GeForce GTX 770 card, at $330 US. The performance benefit was all I'd hoped for. Recommended.

I've been screen recording some "using Ruby videos". I've blogged here about some screen recorders in the past, and I've used DemoRecorder, which is a commercial product priced at $247.00 US. And I've messed around with ffmpeg, Istanbul, Recorditnow, Recordmydesktop, and Kazam as Open Source and free screen recorder options.

But, I've finally landed on Simple Screen Recorder (SSR) as the best combination of ease of use, configuration, and video and sound quality. The web site is

Along with this, I've recorded also under Microsoft Windows 7. The leading screen recorder there is Camtasia Studio at $299.00. Well, I've spent too much money, and I don't want to buy it (and, I rarely use MS Windows and don't want to invest in that system). So, I've experimented with low cost screen recorder systems under Windows, but haven't found the perfect software for my needs.

Believe me when I say that you can get equivalent or better quality under Linux when screen recording. And far more cheaply.

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gtk-recordmydesktop, which is simply to set up and use, has worked quite well for me. Provided you have a good microphone you can produce good screencasts with it.

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