Change the default editing dimension in Camtasia

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I really would like Camtasia to chose "Recording dimension" as the default editing dimension instead of the default "640x480" when recording Power Point. Who uses 640x480 today? If I want it smaller then I do it when I produce it.
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Peter Mattsson

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Posted 9 years ago

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Cameron Flint

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Hi Peter,

Thanks for your feedback. Unfortunately it doesn't look like we have a way to change the default dimension suggestion as of now. I agree that that is something we should have, though.

I believe -- though I could be mistaken -- that the rationale for giving a preset preference over recording dimensions is to avoid encouraging production to odd dimensions (for example, if the user recorded at a custom dimension by selecting a region on the screen). Producing to standard dimensions instead, in that case, is theoretically meant to allow easier viewing of the produced video across a variety of devices.
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Peter Mattsson

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We always record Power Point in 4:3 so if our users chose 640 x 480 the aspect ratio will be ok. The problem is when/if they add callouts. The callouts have their witdth and hight and placement by pixel dimensions. If we produce the lecture in say 1024 x 768 the Power Point will look good but all the callouts are out of order which is frustrating ...
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Cameron Flint

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I see -- so if you change the editing dimensions just before producing, but after a bunch of edits have been made to the timeline, things have to be manually adjusted again. And you're saying that by allowing the default dimension suggestion to be saved, you could minimize the risk that you would click past the dimensions dialog without realizing that the dimensions are not the same as those you recorded at and/or what you would like to produce with. Is that right?

Thanks for explaining your workflow! It helps us understand the context for the feature request.
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Peter Mattsson

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Yes that's right. The problem isn't that I miss this thing but there are hundred of employees in our university that uses Camtasia to record their lectures. I'm the one who produces them and put them on the web. A lot of our employees miss this step even if I told them to use recording dimension.
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Brad, Camtasia Studio QA

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Hi Peter,

I'm curious if our latest release (Camtasia Studio 8.0.0) might alleviate this issue for you slightly?

1. In version 8 we have something called Grouping, so if you get into a situation like this where you need to change editing dimensions, you can do so and then group all of the media on the timeline via Ctrl+G and then resize the group in the preview window to the new editing dimensions. This keeps everything in sync and turns what used to be a lot of work into potentially a single step.

Here's a short demo of the proposed workflow

2. In version 8 if you change the video dimensions via the production wizard, you can set the video at the dimensions you want and none of your callouts will get out of sync like they do in Editing Dimensions.

We have a free 30 day trial of Camtasia Studio version 8.0.0 if you'd like to try it out and see if it solves your issue or at least makes it a little less cumbersome.

Brad
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Ralf Steinhaeusser

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@brad: I just tried your suggestions with the latest version of Camtasia.
I have a screencast where the editing dimensions were set to 640x480 (so I didn't change the defaults).

But I'd like to produce it with 900x720 or even higher. The source material is very good so that shouldn't be a problem. My problem are not the callouts but the zooms. If I change the editing dimensions then there's a big black border around the video.

1:) To your suggestion Nr. 1 (imho the better way): If I group everything, then change the dimensions, then the window for fitting in the material is huge, as it covers all video snippets, also those where I zoomed in on before. I have to play around because the lower right sizing handle is not visible, but with a bit patience it works.
However, If I ungroup the items afterwards the video is a complete mess.

2.) Your 2nd suggestion is not so satisfactory as it seems the videos are first shrinked to 640x480 and then enlarged again. In other words: Even though I have a high video resolution the video quality is terrible, nobody can read anything there.

Ralf
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Brad, Camtasia Studio QA

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Hi Ralf,

To your first point, I'm glad you were able to get it to work eventually. You mentioned the right sizing handle wasn't visible, depending on your situation it's possible that zooming out in the canvas (scroll wheel or the zoom dialog at the top left of the canvas can accomplish this) would help. Ungrouping will drop all of the media back to their original size before you grouped (as you found out) so you can either leave them grouped or if having the group bothers you, you could produce it out to an MP4 and bring it back in as a single MP4. However you won't be able to make additional edits to the content in the MP4 once you produce the group out.

For your second point, you are correct. It's always better to keep the same dimensions from source to production. So recording in 1280x720, editing in 1280x720 and producing to 1280x720 (or less if need be for production) as an example. Once you start scaling things up from their original resolution you will certainly lose quality. I apologize for not mentioning that caveat in my original post. Thanks for pointing that out!

Brad

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