Voilà – Screen Capture for Mac

I was cruising the Mac app store over the weekend looking for a screen capture tool with more functionality than Skitch but at a more affordable price than SnagIt when I stumbled across Voilà – normally $29.99 but currently on sale for $9.99. The reviews were great and the price was right so I bought it.

What a delight! This isn’t just a screen capture tool, it’s also a screen recorder, an image editor and an organizer. The tools for capturing screen shots includes just about any size or shape imaginable along with timed captures for grabbing menus or popup boxes. Once you’ve captured something, it’s added into Voilà’s organizer/editor app. iPhoto users will be quite at home in this app for organizing and editing those screenshots.

Front and center is the current capture with previous screenshots displayed as thumbnails across the bottom. As with iPhoto, my captures can be organized by dragging them to the smart folders shown in the left sidebar. Not only can I create my own folders, there’s an information panel that can be displayed on the right to add metadata to each capture. Think how useful this can be for capturing screenshots from research sources.

At the top of the left sidebar are tabs for the Organizer, Tools and Effects. The annotation tools are delightful giving me plenty of options to select fonts, colors and sizes for lines, arrows and boxes. I was pleasantly surprised as I placed some annotations onto a screenshot to discover built-in placement tools to help align text items and boxes.

Once I’ve finished editing a screenshot, I then have tons of options for saving/sharing it. It is automatically saved within the Voilà library – filed and managed in much the same manner as iPhoto handles photographs. I can also send them to iPhoto, Mail, Flickr, YouTube (screen recordings) or an FTP location. Drag an item from the thumbnails at the bottom of the window to the desktop and it is automatically saved and ready to be uploaded to WordPress.

I know I’ve hardly scratched the surface of Voilà’s capabilities. I haven’t tried the screen recorder yet and even if I never use it, I’m very pleased with my purchase. Screen capture is an everyday tool in both my writing and research workflows. Voilà provides an impressive toolset at a very affordable price.

 

Awesome Screenshot

Awesome Screenshot in Safari
Awesome Screenshot in Safari

Are you looking for a quick and easy way to capture all or part of a web page? Then you need to check the Awesome Screenshot add-in available for Firefox, Chrome and Safari.

 

As you can see, the add-in appears in your toolbar as a camera lens. This example shows it in the Safari browser on a Mac computer. In other browsers, the icon appears in color and in a different location. Click on the icon and the capture menu appears. Now choose the type of selection you want to make.
Crop capture

Here I captured the visible area, then chose the crop tool. Notice that the tool also displays dimensions of the cropped area. Once I’ve got my selection the way I want it, I click the Crop button.

Annotation Tools

I can now use the annotation tools to add text and graphical highlights. There is even a blur tool to hide information you don’t want to share. When I’m ready, I click on Done.

Save image

From here, I can save the image on my desktop or share it via the Awesome Screenshot site.

If I choose to upload the file, I can then easily share it at any number of social sites.

Because it only captures web content, Awesome Screenshot can’t handle all your screen capture needs, but this free browser extension can sure make it easy to capture and share a bit of the web when you need it.

Oh, I forgot to mention . . . Awesome Screenshot comes from those awesome developers at Diigo.

Screen capture updates

A lot has been happening recently with screen capture apps for Mac. First, the Mac version of TechSmith’s fabulous Snagit app came out of beta with several nice new features. I’ve been a Snagit fan on the Windows side for a long time and was thrilled to see a Mac version released. Unfortunately, the updated version comes with a hefty price tag at $49.95.

I have very happily been using the Skitch alternative. It’s been around a lot longer than Snagit Mac and I found its one-click upload more useful than Snagit’s fancy editing tools. And, as it was also still a beta, it was still free to use. Well, this morning I was notified that there was an update for Skitch which also brings it out of beta status. And, after installing it I see there is also now a Pro version available. The free version has some interesting new features including more editing tools and more sharing options. The pro version ($14.95/year) offers even more tools and more features at the skitch.com sharing site. As much time as I spend grabbing screen shots, that low annual fee is a great deal for me. If you’d like to see what Skitch can do, check the quick video below.