Telling it like it is for the Mac20Q viewers and readers
In one of my recent videos I did a review of the latest version of ScreenFlow . When I do a review of an application for the first time, I think an important way to go about it is to do one that is based on first impressions. A review of this type shows up how intuitive and application is and in the case of an upgrade, like with ScreenFlow screencast software, it highlights changes and also what is broken. With Mac20Q I like to provide service to my viewers to highlight the not so good along with the good points of an application. It wouldn’t be very useful to you the viewer, if all I did was to just gush about how much I loved the application that I was reviewing and didn’t bother with the let downs experienced. I also said what I thought about DragonDictate .
Changed functionality in ScreenFlow version 4
In this review of ScreenFlow version 4, I complained about a difference with the interface that had completely changed from the previous version. In version 3 was able to select a video clip on the timeline, then go to the viewing window and use the fingers on the trackpad to resize the video within the viewing window. This has been changed in version 4 so that when I move my fingers on the trackpad as before, all that is changed is the size of the viewing window. I really don’t like it when features that I use are taken away so that I’m forced to use other slower methods of doing what did before. It is still possible to change the size of the video clip, but you have to do it either by using the slider, or grabbing and moving one of the corners in the window, or you can do it by putting in a number in the control panel on the right-hand side. I doubt if they are going to change it back again, so I’ll probably have to get used to the new way of doing it. The amount of zoom on the viewing window really only needs to be set once when you start working on a project and doesn’t need the new changeability that it has been given to this screencasting software.
The new green screen capability in ScreenFlow – Mac Screencast software
While it is nice that green screen has been added to ScreenFlow , I found that it is missing the ability to adjust how it works on the edges of the subject. I found that I had a line around the edge of my subject in the video, me, that was not possible to get rid of by changing any settings. I determined that it would be better for me to do my green screen in Final Cut Pro X . If you don’t have an application like Final Cut Pro, then the additional green screen in ScreenFlow could still be useful for you. It is also quite probable that at some point in time Telestream will improve the functionality of this new feature. Another possibility with the video and green screen is that with another video clip with the subject wearing a different colour, the problem might not be so obvious or not there at all.
Imported video clips not playing properly in ScreenFlow 4
The video clip that are used within ScreenFlow to test the green screen plays perfectly in QuickTime or in video editing software like Final Cut Pro X , but did not play properly in ScreenFlow 4. So unless I am prepared to do a video conversion of the video clip before bringing it into ScreenFlow, there is another reason why I will do the green screen either in Final Cut Pro or Motion 5 . When I played the video in ScreenFlow both the audio and the video played back very choppy and was unusable in editing mode. I did export out of the project and the finished video did play okay.
Whether to get ScreenFlow or not – should I upgrade?
To a certain extent, it really depends upon what you do with ScreenFlow, if you have it already, as to whether you should upgrade or not. All of the basic features within ScreenFlow version 3 work great and it is an application well worth having and using. As far as I’m concerned ScreenFlow is still the best screen casting application available, and I have tried a few. If you don’t need the extra facilities that have been added to the ScreenFlow version 4, then you might as well stay with version 3 of ScreenFlow.
If you look at all of the added extras with the latest version of ScreenFlow and decide that you need some of them or all of them, then the upgrade is not terribly expensive and worth doing. The ability to have nested clips is good for keeping things tidy when you have a lot of clips in the timeline. There are a few more tools in the media library for organising your video and audio clips.
When the files are now exported out, they are exported out in a different format, previously you would get a .MOV file and now your movie is exported out as an MPEG 4. There are now a number of video filters that you can apply to your video clips, although not that many of them are particular useful. You do now get access to the audio filters that are available within the OS X system and this might make it so that you will have less need to go out to other applications, like Amadeus Pro or Garageband . When you are starting up a document you are also now given the choice for the size of canvas you want to work with.
The Mac20Q verdict on ScreenFlow 4
Despite some of my complaints, ScreenFlow is still the best screencast software out there. If you are a new user or purchaser, then you will be getting the latest version and I think you will be generally happy with using the application. Users of ScreenFlow version 3, that have no need of the extra features, could be as well to stay on version 3. It really does depend upon the individual and the usage requirements for the ScreenFlow application. Now that I’ve got ScreenFlow 4, I have already laid out the cash to buy it, I will probably stick with it. In any case, I still have access to the old version in my applications folder.
Telestream got snotty
I have made a small amount of money from affiliate sales of ScreenFlow over the years by promoting it on the Mac20Q website. Despite the email that I got from Telestream to end the participation in the affiliate program, because I was too honest with my comments and first impressions of ScreenFlow 4, I will still recommend ScreenFlow to the fans of Mac20Q. Not only that, I will still tell it like I see it when I review any applications for either Mac or for the iPad.