Using the Quick recorder

The Quick recorder allows you to quickly make camera or screen recordings without the need to open the Descript editor. It has all of the functionality of the Editor recorder, with a couple of key differences:

  • The Quick Recorder will create a single file that includes both the audio and video tracks combined, whereas the Editor recorder will create separate video and audio files then group them within a multitrack sequence.
  • The Quick recorder uses system resources more efficiently than the Editor recorder.

Setting up Quick recorder

Before getting started

If this is your first recording, or you have reinstalled Descript, you'll will need to grant system permissions for the Quick recorder before recording.

To access the Quick recorder select the Descript icon in the notifications area at the bottom of your screen on Windows, or in the menu bar at the top of your screen on Mac.

Arrows pointing out the location of Quick Recorder on Windows and Mac

Once you've opened the Quick recorder panel, choose which type of recording you'd like to make and check your inputs.

Recording type

  • Camera — Record only your selected camera and audio device.
  • Screen — Record your computer desktop, with the option to also record a camera window and your selected audio device.

Audio and video inputs

  • Speaker icon. Computer audio — Record system audio from other applications playing in the background.
  • Camera input icon Camera — Record video from the selected video input device.
  • Display screen1.png Display screen — Available on screen recordings; click to switch to the camera type.
  • Microphone icon Microphone — Record audio directly from your selected audio input.

Enable or disable quick recorder inputs by clicking on the side icons.

Pick your drive

For users with access to multiple drives, you can set the drive where you want the recording to be stored by clicking the drop down menu at the top of the panel.

Quick Recorder panel with red circle around drive selection menu

Resizing the camera window for screen recordings

If you've enabled your camera for a screen recording, you'll see a preview window appear which you can drag around to adjust its position and size.

Adjusting the position and size of camera preview window

For screen recordings, you can also change the shape of your preview window from a square to a circle, or dismiss it completely by clicking the X button if you no longer wish to include your camera window in your recording.

Toolbar to change the screen recording preview window's shape, or dismiss the window.

Circles and resizing on Windows

Some preview adjustments are not yet available on Windows such as resizing or changing the shape of your camera preview window. Making your screen recording with the in-app recorder instead of the Quick recorder will allow you to record your screen and camera as separate videos. After you finish recording, you can reshape, resize, and crop your camera's video from the Canvas.

Additional recording settings

The Quick recorder also comes with a number of advanced configuration options which you can access by clicking on the Settings gear icon Settings button. Click here to learn more about quick recorder settings.

Recorder mode

You also have the option to select whether you would like to automatically publish your quick recording, or edit the recording upon completion.

Record and share or Record and edit with the Quick recorder

  • Record and share — Once the recording is completed, it will be automatically published to a share page and opened in your default browser.
  • Record and edit — Once the recording is completed, a Descript project for the recording with be created and stored in the Files Tab icon.png Recordings folder of your private workspace. This project will automatically open for you to edit.

When you're ready, press the blue record button to start your recording. A 3-second countdown timer will appear and then your recording will begin. You can disable this timer in recording settings.

During the recording

Camera recording

Once a recording begins the camera window will remain on the screen and you can continue to reposition and resize it. Resizing the camera window will not change the resolution of the resulting video file since resolution is governed by your camera's maximum recording resolution, as well as the "Default recording resolution" setting in the Quick recorder settings.

The preview window includes a recording toolbar at the bottom with a few options for managing the recording while it's in progress:

  • Recording timer — Shows the current duration of your recording.
  • Stop / Start buttons — Immediately end the recording; the start button is available only before a recording has begun.
  •  Pause / Play buttons — Temporarily stop the recording without ending the recording session, allowing you to resume the recording when you're ready. Not currently supported for Windows.
  • Cancel button — Immediately end the recording without saving.

View of the recording toolbar with duration timer, as well as stop, pause and cancel buttons.

Screen recording

If you are making a screen recording, you will first need to select the section of your display screen you want to record. You can either click the screen once to record the entire visible area, or click and drag your mouse to make a specific selection. Then press Start Recording when you're ready.

View of the screen pre-recording selection box.

After the screen recording begins, you can still change the shape of the preview window, or dismiss it completely by hovering over the window and clicking in the toolbar. Additionally you can reposition and resize your camera window (if enabled), however you will not be able to reposition the pre-selected screen recording area.

A recording toolbar will appear on the side of your screen allowing you to see the duration of the current recording, and either pause or stop the recording.

Once you're finished, click Stop, or click the Descript Descript icon in the menubar (macOS) or taskbar (Windows), to end the recording.

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