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How to record your screen using VLC

Reading Time: 3 min

Tags:  Applications

VLC, the popular media player, has a lot of features in addition to simple media playback. One of those features is the ability to record your screen.


Screen recording in VLC is very easy. It has the added advantage that you probably already have VLC installed on your computer. But simplicity also means fewer features. If you want more features and are willing to live with the extra complexity, OBS should be your choice.


Step1: From the Media menu choose Open Capture Device or press Ctrl+C

VLC Media Menu

Step2: For Capture Mode choose Desktop.

Step3: Set the desired frame rate. A higher frame rate gives more fluent video, but you will have to reduce the frame rate if your computer cannot handle high frame rates. Some of the most commonly used framerates are 24, 30, and 60; but you can set any frame rate you like. High frame rates are important if you are recording some kind of video playback, gameplay, etc. But for recording normal computer tasks like opening windows, accessing menus, typing text, etc lower framerates should be sufficient.

Step4: Instead of Play choose Convert.

Capture Device


Step 5: Choose a video profile. H264 + MP3 (MP4) is probably the most popular option. You might have to experiment to see which profile works better for you. We will see how to customize profiles later.

Step 6: Choose a Destination file.

Step 7: Click the start button. This starts the recording.

VLC Convert

Step 8: To stop the recording, click the stop button on the main VLC window.

Stop Recording

Edit recording profiles

To edit a recording profile, click on the wrench to the right of the profile.

VLC Edit Profile

For example, to change the audio from MP3 to AAC: Click wrench icon ➾ Profile Edition ➾ Audio Codec ➾ Choose AAC as audio codec ➾ click save.

If you want to make a large number of changes to the profile; creating your own profile is better than editing an existing profile. See the next section for details.

Create your own recording profile

To create your own recording profile, click on the create a new profile button on the extreme right of profile.

VLC create new profile button

Choose an appropriate name for the profile. There are four tabs for tweaking the profile settings.

VLC profile editor


Encapsulation: Encapsulation refers to the container used to hold the audio and video. This will have to be adjusted based on the video and audio codecs chosen since containers tend to support only a select set of codecs.

Video Codec: Here you can choose the video codec and its settings. Additionally, you can specify the resolution of the video and video filters. The resolution is relative to the resolution of the monitor.

Audio Codec: Here you can choose the audio codec and audio filters.