2 DuckShot Toolbar
All DuckShot features are built into single toolbar. You can call out DuckShot toolbar anytime by pressing the Print Screen key, and you can minimize it to taskbar notification area by pressing the Escape key.
Each icon hosts a specific feature. Feature will be selected or executed immediately once you press on the icon. A marker will show which feature is currently selected. At the same time, all of the related settings of the selected feature will pop up on top or below of the toolbar. The content of the popup is rearranged automatically so that the most commonly used features are placed nearest to the toolbar (where you mouse cursor currently is).
Whenever you resize or reposition snip region, toolbar will automatically reposition itself to keep a comfortable access distance between toolbar and the snip region.
Icons that are related to drawing features will always show the current state of the drawing feature. For example, if you see a red rectangle icon. Then you will be drawing a red rectangle object on screen. The icon changes dynamically as you modify the drawing settings. On the other hand, if you select any drawing object on screen, feature of that particular drawing object will be selected automatically. At the same time, drawing settings of that particular drawing object will be loaded automatically so you can fine tune your settings straight away from its current state. All of your latest settings are preserved automatically.
All of these minute details in user control may seem trivial but they are designed specifically to create a truly intuitive user experience, developing a quick, easy, and effortless workflow.
This chapter will describe and go through all of the features one by one.
2.1 Capture Image of Snip Region
Once you press on this icon, your screen will be cropped and preserved as image based on the size and position of the snip region. You can set the rectangular snip region to crop any part of the screen, the entire screen, area across multiple screens, or even combinations of all of the screens (see Chapter 3 for more details). You may resize, rotate, invert colors or make gray-scale before persists the final result as an image file, copy it to clipboard or send it to a printer.
To make an image smaller, you can reduce the resize values in either percentages or pixels. In some cases, you may not get the exact percentage values you want. This is because percentage is a floating value and its precision is automatically adjusted to make sure we always get a round number in pixels.
Likewise, to make an image larger, increase the resize values. If the final image is larger than the viewbox, scrollbars will appear and you may drag the scrollbars to inspect the final result.
The two examples shown above resize image while maintaining the aspect ratio. You may resize the image width and height independently by removing the aspect radio lock.
You may also choose to view the final result in one-to-one scaling or fit it to the viewbox size. When the image is fitted to the viewbox, what you see within the viewbox is NOT the final result. The viewbox fitting feature is just there for your convenience to view the overall captured image. You would need to use one-to-one scaling option to inspect the quality of final result.
Besides resizing image, you may flip the image horizontally, vertically, or rotate the image clockwise and counter clockwise. All image orientations are possible with different combinations of flipping and rotations.
You may also change the image color to gray-scale or invert the color or combinations of both. In some cases, these options might save your printer ink.
After some image processing, you may choose to copy the final result to clipboard, persists it as an image file, or send it to printer.
To copy the final result to clipboard, press on the Copy to Clipboard button, or you may use CTRL + C hotkey combinations.
Upon copy to clipboard, you will see a notification window slides in at taskbar notification area saying that your image is ready in the clipboard.
You can then paste the image to any other applications like email apps, messaging apps, spreadsheets, slideshows, other image editors, etc. The availability of paste option depends on other applications and is not controlled by DuckShot. For most applications, simply right click and select paste, or use CTRL + V hotkey combinations to paste the image.
Besides copy to clipboard, another convenient feature is quick save. Quick save will persists the image in your disk space using the predefined image format and folder location set according to your preferences (see Chapter 2.14.3 for more details).
To quick save, press the Quick Save button, or you may use CTRL + S hotkey combinations.
Upon quick save, you will see a notification window slides in at taskbar notification area saying that hyperlink to the image has been generated in clipboard.
You may click on the notification window to open up the folder containing the image. For any file saved in disk space, DuckShot will always auto-generate a local hyperlink of that file. Local hyperlinks are particularly useful to create a well organized spreadsheet, so you do not have to stuff cluttering images in your spreadsheet. If you regularly need to generate hyperlink manually, this can really save your time and effort.
If you need to save your image using format that you do not commonly use or if you need to store your image to a specific location, you may use the Save As button.
This feature is exactly same as Quick Save except you have to manually define the image format and save location using a save file dialog.
DuckShot supports 6 types of image file formats:
GIF (single frame) (see Chapter 2.2 for more details on animated GIF)
Similar to Quick Save, hyperlink to your save file will be generated automatically.
If you need to print out a hard copy of your image, or save your image as PDF file, you may use the Print button or use CTRL + P hotkey combinations.
A print dialog will show up. You may select a physical printer or a PDF printer, and configure your preferences before print out your screenshot.
Based on the selected paper size and print layout, DuckShot will always center your image within single page and provide a safe margin to accommodate most printers.
If you do not need image processing, you may use hotkeys to execute the above mentioned features straight away. There is no need to press the Capture Image icon in the first place. For example, by pressing CTRL + C, image will be snipped and being copied to clipboard immediately. Similarly, by pressing CTRL + S, image will be snipped and quick saved, and hyperlink will be generated instantly.
2.2 Capture Video or GIF
Once you press on this icon, video related settings will pop up.
DuckShot supports 2 video output formats:
DuckShot uses FFmpeg to grab live video and audio sources from your device. DuckShot uses VP8 video codec along with Vorbis and Opus audio codec, and incorporate video and audio sources into Matroska container format (commonly known as MKV). MKV is one of the most popular multimedia container formats that is accepted worldwide and is supported by most of the media players. WebM is a subset of MKV which is supported by most of the modern web browsers. To accommodate most common use cases, DuckShot automatically adjusts VP8 encoding parameters based on target resolutions.
You can choose to record audio stream from either speaker or microphone or both simultaneously. However, you should record both audio sources simultaneously only if necessary. DuckShot will detect the volume level of the different audio streams and optimize the audio levels accordingly before mix the audio sources. However, the result may not be ideal in some cases since it is dependent on various factors, including environment noise level and audio hardware device.
DuckShot supports any video input resolutions. The upper limit is the total of the display resolutions of all of your monitors. For your convenience, DuckShot lists down the most commonly used resolutions.
DuckShot captures video based on the size and location of snip region. When you set the source resolution, what you did is actually sizing the snip region. Since you can adjust the size and location of the region any way you want, that means you can actually capture video of any resolutions from any location from your screens. However, usually you will want to keep your video resolution to the standards that are commonly used.
Similar to image resize, you can resize your output video to a different resolutions or even change its width to height aspect ratio. Sizing down video resolutions will result in a smaller file size, but it comes with a cost of losing video quality. In some cases this might actually be an ideal case if the target resolution, or what you need is actually smaller than what your source resolution is.
The following shows an example of video that is captured without resizing:
The following shows an example of video that is resized without maintaining aspect ratio:
Resizing is particularly useful when it comes to GIF. GIF is normally very large in file size and one of the most effective ways to reduce its file size is by resizing. GIF is normally used to show short animations over a small area. GIF is very popular among social media networks, and often used as emojis, stickers, or memes. In order to make the file size small, normally you will want to keep your source resolutions as small as possible, and size down the output resolutions as deemed appropriate.
Another useful feature in video or GIF capturing is delay timer. You can set to an appropriate delay value so you can get prepared before the capturing starts. If you want to start the recording immediately, you can just turn off the delay timer.
All of the video features are the same as GIF, except GIF does not have audio source settings and GIF has a frame delay settings. Settings of video and GIF will switch automatically when you switch the output format in between MKV, WEBM and GIF.
Delay time between GIF frames is measured in one-hundredths (1/100) of a second. Smaller values generally means smoother animations. Most modern browsers support up to 2/100 of a second delay. Generally we want to increase the delay in order to reduce the file size, without compromising too much in the animation quality. In most cases, 6/100 should be sufficient to produce an animation that is marginally smooth enough.
DuckShot always create an auto-loop GIF. Although DuckShot does not restrict duration of GIF recording but it is recommended to keep GIF duration under 15 seconds. If you need to record your screen for a long duration or want to capture a large area on your screen, you might want to consider video instead of GIF.
To start recording either video or GIF, press on the REC button.
Once recording is started, DuckShot icon at the taskbar notification area will flashes in between yellow and red to indicate recording in progress. To stop recording, right click on the DuckShot icon and select Stop Recording, or you may use the SHIFT + Print Screen hotkey combinations to stop recording immediately.
GIF encoding usually takes much longer time compared to video encoding. You will need to wait for previous encoding to finish before you can record next video or GIF.