What's up with Camtasia and YouTube?

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  • Updated 2 years ago
I've read older posts about Camtasia display quality on YouTube.  This seems a long standing problem, and it confuses me.  I have also posted this to tech support, though I'm not sure if a free trial user will get very high priority.

I am a long time user of Snagit 13 to support my Photography Tutorial Blog (http://glenbarrington.blogspot.com/). I have been interested in moving to video tutorials. I am testing BOTH Camtasia and ACDSee's Video Studio 2. The ACDSee product is nowhere NEAR the editor that Camtasia is. Camtasia blows VS2 out of the water when it comes to editing tools, this should be a no brainer. BUT!!!!

I am unable to get a decent upload to YouTube with Camtasia no matter what settings I use! It is soft and fuzzy at full screen, and being photography tutorials, I NEED the sharpest full screen image from YouTube possible. I have no problem getting this level of YouTube reproduction quality from Video Studio 2 using the guidelines found in the YouTube Help files at the following link: https://support.google.com/youtube/answer/7126552?hl=en&ref_topic=2888648

What is REALLY weird with Camtasia is that the display quality appears very high when the videos are displayed locally from the hard drive. The image is VERY sharp there. IS this a problem with your upload process? a problem with your finishing process? If I were testing JUST Camtasia, and I ran into this problem, I would assume that video is just too damn hard and I'd quit. But I'm getting the display results I want from a different product, so I don't THINK it is me.

Here is what I've done:

  • Made sure I'm recording at 1920X1080
  • Tried every option in the Camtasia Share menu
  • Did internet searches and tried every hair brained suggestion I could find.
  • Uploaded to Google Drive to see if THAT was any better, it wasn't, maybe a bit worse than YouTube.

In terms of editing capabilities, Camtasia is the product I want. But in terms of providing the functionality for the things I want to use it for, not so much. It's almost as if Camtasia was designed to operate ONLY in a special walled garden, and Google is NOT a part of that garden, but that seems . . . odd in today's world.

Can someone help? AM I doing something wrong?


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Glen Barrington

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Posted 2 years ago

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Fred Grover, Champion

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Hello Glen. My questions are when you are recording at 1920x1080 are you producing your videos at the same resolution as you did not share a link to a YouTube Video for us to look at to see what you are seeing or if it looks the same for us here. I upload my HD Videos to YouTube but have not done so recently and need too. I do know that YouTube will have an Automatic Resolution that a users video will playback at based on their internet connection. That setting can be changed by the user either in their settings when logged into YouTube or while watching by using the little Gear Icon in the bottom right of the video to set the playback resolution.

For example: I live in the country and use a Wireless Internet Connection and it shows mine most times at the lowest resolution which makes the video(s) I watch look blurry/fuzzy/ out of focus so I change the resolution and may have to wait for it to buffer then have no issues with the clarity of most videos if the user created and produced them with the same resolutions. Not sure if this is what may be happening or not with your videos but it is a suggestion for you to think about. If possible can you post a link to one of your videos for us all to see and report back with the results or what we had to do and how it looks ?

Sorry for your inconvenience and hope we can get it figured out for you. I hope this information helps a little bit as I do not think it is on TechSmith's Camtasia End and I have also used the videos produced with SnagIt 13 to YouTube in the same way with no issues knock on wood.

Also, wanted to ask if you are using the latest version of Camtasia 9 and SnagIt if it applies. And wanted to say that TechSmith Support will respond to questions whether or not you have the Trial Version or Full Purchased Version but, they take care of the users who have purchased the Maintenance Agreement as they take priority but still are great in my opinion about getting back with all users. If you do not hear back from them by Wednesday or so let us know that also. Thanks.

Thanks for posting and looking forward to hearing back from you and hope you like the information and suggestion I have provided and find it useful. Have a great day/night.

Best Regards ~ Fred.
(Edited)
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Dustin Smith

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Here's a link to a video that's part of a group I have up on youtube.  https://youtu.be/PvfDEIlVhXA . I  produced this at 1280 x 720 so I expect it should look  sharp at that resolution... for me it is always a compromise between file size and  resolution... I can record and produce at 1920 x 1080 if I want to but the file sizes can get inconvenient. so I always record at a scale proportional to 1280 x 720 and produce at that resolution...  Take a look and see what you think.... and keep in mind that HD on youtube is only 720P ... they don't want monster files out there either
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Glen Barrington

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To Fred and Dustin. Thanks for your replies !I think what I'll do tomorrow is prepare two Fresh samples of the same thing, one produced with Camtasia and one produced with ACDSee and then provide you guys some links both on youtube and maybe on screencast (not sure if I can get the ACDSee version to Screencast, we'll see!)  At any rate, I think having both available to compare and contrast would be useful.

Dustin, that 720p version is pretty soft at full screen for a video about photography.  All the detail is lost in a demo of an editing technique.  I know some REALLY sharp videos about photography can get made and posted on YouTube, I've seen them.  I wonder what the other photobloggers use?  Any photography bloggers out there?
(Edited)
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Fred Grover, Champion

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Glen thanks for responding back and yes it will be nice to see your results when you post them to screencast and YouTube so we can see them and give feedback. I am not sure if screencast.com will let you save or upload the video made by/with ACDSee or not but try it anyway and if it works great and if not let us know. Thanks for posting and have a great day/night.

Dustin thanks for sharing your video and I viewed it on YouTube and by default it was at 140 most likely because YouTube reads my internet automatically and I have to change that but once I changed it to 720p it was clear and easy to see in Full Screen Mode on my laptop. Just wanted to give you some feedback with my findings. Thanks for posting and have a great day/night.

Cheers ~ Fred.
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Dustin Smith

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The test would be to record and produce at maximum resolution and post it up to screencast which doesn't compress the file and see what it looks like... then post the same video to youtube and see what their compression algorithms do to it... make sure when you post to youtube that you tell it that you want the highest resolution.
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Glen Barrington

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Where would that setting be in YouTube?  I was under the impression that the conversion after upload was not user controllable?  I wonder if this is the source of my issues?
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Glen Barrington

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AHHH!  I think I'm getting somewhere! When I play the video and make sure the video plays BACK at the highest settings.  Things look MUCH better!   I'm still going to create and post that test video, but I'm also going to mess around with it tomorrow when I create that test video to see if my exhaustion isn't playing games on me.  I've been messing with this issue all day, and I'm not sure I trust my perceptions and judgement at this point!

I don't know why, but I assumed that the play back in private mode  automatically played back at the highest quality since it was encoded in highest quality!    YouTube is a byzantine mess when it comes to explaining stuff.  Maybe, TechSmith needs to write a book on surviving the video upload sites.  It might rescue some sales lost to frustration.
(Edited)
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Fred Grover, Champion

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Glen not sure if this link will help you or not but it does give some insight on YouTube and Vimeo Uploading. Make sure to read the comments too as they have some great feedback in them from others. A book or Guideline would be nice that shows comparisons on the Compression, Encoding Methods, Etc. that are used between the 3 places like YouTUbe, Vimeo and screencast.com

I hope this sheds some more light to help you get an understanding as all of this in depth methods and learning about it all can be a huge task. I would just keep to the basics and that is what I do but I find it interesting to do some research work too and learn more and find what is best for myself. Anyway the link is below:

YouTube vs. Vimeo, What’s the Difference?

Thanks again for your feedback and response and keep us updated. Hope you find this useful and like the information given. Have a great day/night.

Best Regards ~ Fred.
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Dustin Smith

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you are spot on about you.tube and incomprehensible processes for everything... just proof that free or almost free suffers total lack of common sense and organizational structure, not to mention decent instructions on how to do anything.
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Glen Barrington

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I THINK I've got this figured out  Though I still have some confusion.  

But let me get the house keeping out of the way:

ScreenCast address for the Video Studio 2 file: https://www.screencast.com/t/CpYWRqVytO
ScreenCast address for the Camtasia file: https://www.screencast.com/t/vwJblKVTvjB

I was unable to figure out how to get the Auto loaded YouTube files to ScreenCast.  But happily, SC did not choke on an MP4  file produced with a non TechSmith software.

YouTube addresses for auto load and manual load of the two software brands:
Auto Camtasia: https://youtu.be/dejdm1oPPCo
Manual Camtasia: https://youtu.be/nNw-reCkZJw
Auto Video Studio: https://youtu.be/BBdJeDnT0_0
Manual Video Studio: https://youtu.be/3KDFHsDeyvA

It APPEARS that Video Studio always creates a file that always automatically plays in the highest display quality possible, BUT Camtasia seems to require some setting to be triggered, and sometimes you need to manually select the highest display quality.  It isn't consistent, and I'm not sure how to track down which parameter is the key to this feature.  I THINK I'm doing it the same way every time, but last night I couldn't get this feature to work (all fuzzy, all the time), while this morning, both products are sharp as a tack.

If anyone can help me figure this out, I'd appreciate it.
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Bill.Wandersleben

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Not sure this will help but I had a problem making movies that I have of still photos. I have a high res camera 36mp and the jpg files that i was using were to high a resolution for Camtasia to handle in the editor. Transitions were a problem and switching from frame was also a problem in the editor. Camtasia should down sample these when creating an mp4 but I question how much they can handle. The solution from Tech Support was to down sample the jpg files first. The RAW converter will allow me to produce a jpg with the long edge res set to 1920. This seems to be the ticket to get the editor working well. May help when you send to YouTube. I post FaceBook and see a difference. FB down samples when you post so my guess YT does the same.
Hope this helps,
Bill
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Glen Barrington

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Just a quick note to say thanks to those who graciously took the time to help a newbie.  

After a dialog with Nate, from tech support, I believe that the problem (If it is a problem, after thinking about it, it might be a design feature!) is at the YouTube end.  It seems to be how YouTube perceives the quality and speed of your internet connection that controls much of this.  Plus, I had an instance where a Video Studio 2 produced video did NOT replay at the highest quality.  Comcast might be the culprit here!

At any rate, the quality of the user's forum help you guys provided, the timely and appropriate tech support Nate provided, and the consistently positive formal reviews, and the comments from third party elearning forum threads, convinced me that Camtasia, in spite of its price,  really IS the product with the most favorable cost/benefit ratio.

Thanks again for your help.