For many years one of my favorite screen capture movie making apps on the Mac was iShowU. No, it wasn’t the cheapest (or most expensive), and it wasn’t graced with the longest list of features. It was popular with Mac users because it was easy to use, therefore, it got used more frequently.
Years later along came iShowU HD and HD Pro and iShowU Studio– all with ever more features and functions. More features do not always beget more usability because, you know, cluttered interface, complex tools, too many options. I’m a big fan of the Basic and Advanced interface in an app. Basic to get things done quickly. Advanced for heavy lifting if you need it or are willing to graduate. That’s what iShowU Instant is all about. Basic. And Advanced.
The Show Me State
The Miller family hails from the St. Louis, MO area, and you know what that means. Harry Truman. Baseball. As in Cardinals. And Budweiser. As in Busch. As in beer. And the Show Me State. A collection of plain talking but somewhat skeptical Midwest folk who are known for telling it like it is. Or was. Or, telling it like it should be.
iShowU was a much used and usable Mac video screen capture app back in the day. iShowU Instant brings Mac screen capture further into the 21st century by going back to the basics. Basics as in Basic and Advanced. What you get is a laundry list of basic screen capture features known the world around. Simple, uncluttered interface. Customizable settings. High resolution screen capture with picture-in-picture, timeliest, 60 frames per second, sharing options, even an animated GIF generator, configurable frame rate, scheduled recordings and more.
What’s not to like?
iShowU Instant works much like the original iShowU in that it’s still easy to setup and use without much of a learning curve, yet it has many of the screen capture features– schedule, 60fps, picture-in-picture– that show up in competitive apps.
What about Advanced?
This is where iShowU Instant really shines because once you’ve used an app for a few years and know most of the feature set you find yourself wanting a little more. Or, much more. Instant gives you Advanced settings and features. Instantly. Drop in text and image watermarks over the video with ease. Drop in graphic elements and edit the video and audio components on a standard timeline.
Oh, and speaking of audio, that sets Advanced apart because it comes with built-in dynamic,s equalizer, and compressor tools that help to sweeten and clean audio.
The Advanced tools also have new keypress and mouse click visualization options, including customizable colors, click descriptions, and much more. Not everyone needs a screen video capture tool with such features, but they’re available with a click.
One. More. Thing.
Since OS X Yosemite QuickTime has had an option to record the screen from a plugged in iPhone or iPad. That’s built-in to iShowU Instant, too, and includes the time-lapse and animated GIF export options. What’s missing is a visual button press for iOS. There’s really no need to move screen video captures into iMovie or sweeten in Garageband or go to the extra expensive of Final Cut Pro X because iShowU Instant gives you video edit controls on a traditional timeline, and audio controls on its own timeline.
iShowU Instant– which I will call Basic– has more features than the original yet is as easy to use. The Advanced features can be added from within the app (but they’re extra cost). One item that seems sorely missing in Advance is the option to bring in additional media– photos, audio clips, movie clips. Even something simple like freeze frame is missing from the Advanced suite.
Still, you’ll spend barely half of what the high end Mac screen video capture apps cost, and get most of the same functionality.