The amazing PlayClaw video capture tool gives customers incredible power! PlayClaw has been designed to make full use of multi-core processors, which ensures the outstanding quality of the output with a minimal impact on system performance.
User reviews: Mostly Positive (164 reviews)
Release Date: Sep 10, 2013

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Recommended By Curators

"f you are looking for game recording software and don't already own FRAPS I can highly recommend this recording software."
Read the full review here.

About This Software

The amazing PlayClaw video capture tool gives customers incredible power!

PlayClaw has been designed to make full use of multi-core processors, which ensures the outstanding quality of the output with a minimal impact on system performance. PlayClaw will record full HD videos of your gameplay with high frame rates with your audio commentary with minimal possible performance hit!

The other nifty feature is PlayClaw’s ability to render helpful overlays over game screen. PlayClaw will show you who's speaking in games using Ventrilo or Teamspeak, leading to better teamwork. Check your GPU/CPU load and temperatures right in game with PlayClaw's overlays. Overlays are fully compatible with the latest versions of Windows and graphics engines.

At A Glance:
  • Capture game video with optional recording game audio
  • H.264 encoding with hardware acceleration (Intel QuickSync, NVidia Encoder, AMD VCE encoder)
  • Special capture desktop mode in Windows 7, 8 and 8.1
  • Adjustable video recording frame rate and size
  • Up to 16 audio sources
  • Unique pre-recording feature
  • Output in multiple formats (AVI, MP4, MKV)
  • Capture screenshots
  • Various overlays: voice overlays for teamspeak 3, FPS, CPU/GPU statistics, timers, etc.
  • Webcam overlay support
  • Support for 3rd party overlays via plugins system.
  • Multithreaded compression code
  • Realtime audio preprocessing engine
  • Profile-based settings
  • Auto-screenshots
  • Compatible with PunkBuster & Valve Anti Cheat

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows Vista SP1
    • Processor: 2-cores CPU with SSE support
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Intel/AMD/NVidia graphics card
    • DirectX: Version 8.0
    • Additional Notes: Administrator rights to run software are mandatory.
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7
    • Processor: Intel 4-cores CPU (starting from SandyBridge)
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: AMD/NVidia graphics card
    • DirectX: Version 8.0
    • Additional Notes: Administrator rights to run software are mandatory.
Helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.5 hrs on record
Posted: September 8
Legit work in progress! Now that streaming has been implemented and released into the retail PlayClaw there will be much more improvements etc..

This Dev or Dev team is very active in the steam community forums and is really nice person.

Hi5 to the makers and publishers of PlayClaw and Dev team!

What to let folks know that there computer setup may effect PlayClaw Positively or Negitively so keep that in mind. If you having bad frame drops etc.. might be a bottle neck a number of things generally HD can be CPU or GPU or not enough ram etc.. do your research!

Download install and launch PlawClaw and easy to configure, to configure for twitch streaming goto your twitch.tv/dyingjedi account and then on the left when logged in click dashboard, then clisk streaming key then click the link that says reveal streaming key and attach that to the PlayClaw and your all set back out with it enabled and your closes servers and Walla your ready to stream!

Overlays are fun and going to be re-worked and your gonna have cool changes here shortly but as of this release they are useful and fully function without issues so far.

Justin Cram
DyingJedi :d2involker:
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.3 hrs on record
Posted: September 13
Ok so this is my first review and off the bat i am going to say that this recording software is by far the easiest and most effective i have ever used.

It allows easy overlaying such as your webcam or teamspeak. You can output in different formats, qualities, and even split the audio and video into two different files.

Also, they just updated it allowing you to stream to Twitch and other websites.

If you are a video maker like me, or just want to show off some cool footage, this program will do so with ease.
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6 of 8 people (75%) found this review helpful
8.7 hrs on record
Posted: October 19
Excellent software. Its so simple to use and does a great job of recording very good quality game footage without sacrificing too many FPS, it blows the likes of FRAPS and Bandicam as well as other free alternatives away in that respect.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.9 hrs on record
Posted: July 12
If you need a PC screen recorder, I recommend this one. Much better than FRAPS. (I can't comment on Dxtory, however.)
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: August 30
Used this software a lot to record my gameplay, then upload it to youtube. This is better than Frap because it uses multiple cores on the processor.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: August 31
It's good software i've used it for quite awhile on several different PC's but sometimes it glitches up like webcam freezes, so record webcam separately in a different program because Playclaw freezes webcam.
but it runs great way better than hypercam, lots of features, t's great.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.5 hrs on record
Posted: July 24
This is one of the best game capture programs out there, and is definitely worth $40.00. I constantly use it for my YouTube channel, and it hasn't failed me yet. I would purchase it over again.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
0.5 hrs on record
Posted: August 23
Love it.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 31
I liked the software at first but started having issues with audio sync being off, and it would be okay if it was just out of sync but it is sections of audio that are behind; I'd have to cut and sync audio after finding each section (and I have). Choose the Intel driver for recording, choose seperate audio streams. That should help some. If they fix these issues the software will be great again. Until then I've moved on to OBS.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 28
... I can not complain or a bit while starting to learn it and not much. It gives what it says
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3 of 6 people (50%) found this review helpful
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
This is the great recording software for game recording.
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2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: September 26
Very Very good screen capture program! Many of useful feature and smooth recording!
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81 of 97 people (84%) found this review helpful
11.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 27, 2013
The marketplace for screen capture tools is starting to get quite crowded, but PlayClaw stands out as it strikes a great balance between ease of use and quality. The main competitors are Bandicam, Fraps, and Dxtory. PlayClaw beats Bandicam and Fraps as it is much less resources intensive, and produces higher quality ouput in most cases. Using PlayClaw usually results in nothing more than a 1 to 5 frame rate decrease and very few dropped frames. Dxtory, coupled with the Lagarith codec produces slightly better results, and is even less resource intensive, but takes a bit more effort to set it up; in contrast the PlayClaw UI is very easy to navigate.

The main features are: Record in-game footage. Record the desktop. Buffer a period of footage. Take screenshots. Configure input from multiple audio sources.

Recording desktop / in-game and activating recording to capture the buffered footage never show any interuption or performance hit. I have tried streaming to a 10,000prm HDD, and also 5400. As with all capture tools the faster the hard drive the better, but footage was still OK on the slower drive. Being able to define the number of CPU threads the software utilises really helps performance. Other essential options are the ability to define frame rate for capture and resolution.

Taking screenshots produces a nice overlay effect - it really lets you know a shot has been taken without being intrusive. Other overlays can be configured to show frame rate, recording duration, buffer, a clock and many other features.

The main area where PlayClaw could improve is around the MJPEG codec. It appears they use their own custom codec and many have found it can be a pain finding editing software to support it. (Protip - If you have problems opening the files in your editor, try installing the free version of Bandicam - this will install / update the codecs - it certainly worked for Sony Movie Studio 12). It spoils what is otherwise a very easy to use application. It would be nice if they supported advanced options that allowed the user to install their own codecs.

Overall PlayClaw is a great piece of software. I am using it exclusively to capture footage. it does a great job.
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83 of 106 people (78%) found this review helpful
131.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 17, 2013
The first few days I used Playclaw everything worked fine, I was able to record for more than an hour in 1080p without much lag or frame drops... Then things started to get messy when I tried it on various games and started playing with the settings. The software gives error messages right from the start and it doesn't work with every game, while Fraps does.

Sure, Fraps has a higher impact on performance but overall you can record anything (including the desktop) without having to worry about the result. Playclaw is far from perfect as of now, so for the price (and the fact that the Steam license will not be updated anymore after X years, as read in the official forums) I don't think this software is worth it. I'd recommend Fraps for now if you have a configuration that can handle the CPU/GPU stress. Playclaw has its pros (webcam display, separating audio files for editing,... and much more!) but it's way too unstable/unpredictable.
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72 of 93 people (77%) found this review helpful
1.4 hrs on record
Posted: December 1, 2013
I have mixed feelings on this one. tl;dr I ended up buying Fraps to get my game captures.

About me: I make a lot of fragshow/machinima movies and have about 10 years experience. This program didn't work out so well for that purpose. I also did some research on YouTube for reviews prior to my purchase, but unfortunately my mileage varied quite a bit.

I found I had to alt tab a few times to get the overlays to appear - like it wouldn't select the open game for a while. Then, even when turning all overlays off in the settings, they still appeared in my recordings.. and yes, i had turned the overlay off from the active game prior to recording!

Another problem I had was that I had to close and reopen the program a lot, and relaunch my games so PlayClaw would show up, which caused steam to go "hold the phone! we're closing or opening something" all the time [black Steam box in middle of screen.] I'd also get "failed to launch app" as PlayClaw or its "hook" which displays/hooks into games would get frozen in the background. I'd have to restart my games, steam and eventually my PC to try to get things going.

Can't blame the dev for that though, as it appears to be how Steam handles licensing. However, I can blame the dev for this: I emailed explaining my issue, and asked for a license for the non-steam version (which is feature-same, does not have new features) and was refused saying to try the new beta.

I don't want to try new betas. I want to have working software delivered through Steam if thats how I purchase it. But if one of my core issues is that I'm having problems LAUNCHING the app, I should be given a key for the non steam version as I had requested.

I can see this argument.. if you buy a game on steam, and it has issues, would you get given a normal CD key for the game AS WELL? well, no. But this is a piece of software designed to run alongside games, and maybe Steam isn't built for that.

The program also always prompts for admin rights (Win 8.1 x64) which, if you're reopening it multiple times, becomes quite the annoyance. Also each time I quit the program it would display a variable error.

Then comes the quality. I found recording the same footage in Fraps vs in PlayClaw resulted in about a 60% smaller file in PlayClaw. Maybe this is good for some people, but it wasn't good for me as I wanted to retain as much quality as possible using this type of recording method.. meaning the reds got junked up a bit due to compression.

I guess I'll close in saying that PlayClaw seems to have some cool features which I'll try to use eventually since I paid for it but it has some problems - which all software does. What wasn't cool for me was the developer refusing to let me use a non-steam version of the program I had bought a license for.

If we buy on Steam, we shouldn't have to manually install things. In my opinion If we opt to do that, we should be granted the privilege.
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68 of 89 people (76%) found this review helpful
1.3 hrs on record
Posted: April 13
Sir Faulty's Scorecard

Personal Rating: "Worth purchasing"
Traditional Rating: 8.5 out of 10
Genre: Recording Software

A good robust piece of recording software well worth investing in

I purchased this on a whim during the autumn sale but was heading out that evening so I didn't bother installing it thinking I would get to that when I got home or possibly do it over the weekend. What I did was promptly forget about it (I had a lot of work pressures on the mind not being helped by the fact I was also prepping and studying for exams). I also have a bad habit of never remembering what I purchase during Steam sales because I seem to go into a frenzied, rabid mode where all logic and reason get left behind at the start of the sale only to be picked up again as the sale door slams shut and boots me back to reality. To be honest, I have lost count the amount of times I have gotten as giddy as a schoolboy for a game I already own of which I had no idea I already owned.

http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=349050351
I am not what you would call an expert at this sort of stuff and quite frankly I don't aim to be so FRAPS, when introduced to me, did everything and more I could expect from software of this nature. PlayClaw 5 has made me aware that I could have been expecting a bit more - but just a bit since we are not talking Great Expectations here.

I initially had teething problems with FRAPS playing and recording on the same drive. There where some significant hits to game performance even on beefy i7 systems but that all changed when I purchased my latest gaming laptop (MSI GT70 i7-3630 with 16 RAM, 256GB SSD and 750Gb internal drive). Having FRAPS installed on the SSD and writing to the internal drive solved all my issues. I decided to install PlayClaw 5 in exactly the same manner as I did want these insanely large video files clogging up my SDD which would have had a hard time anyway of keeping more than two videos of 30 mins of gameplay before running out of space.

So for the relative newcomer to game recording how does PlayClaw 5 stack up against FRAPS, its similarly priced cousin? I have yet to try out Dxtory - which is significantly cheaper than both - but PlayClaw 5 comes with a host of options not available to FRAPS users. You can select a codec (granted you can only choose between fast, MJEPG, H.264 Intel Quicksync and the Nvidia codec if you have an Nvidia card like I do) but as mentioned above to a novice user of software of this nature I am really fine with this. Where FRAPS can be quite resource intensive, PlayClaw 5 is very much lighter on the system. FRAPS also has an annoying habit of loosing frames even though you are recording at 30fps but your systems experiences a drop in fps that is still well above the threshold limit. An example would be recording a game video at 30fps with the game running at 60fps occasionally dropping to 50/55 or lower which in turn would still show up in your recordings. Not so with PlayClaw 5 as long as your game doesn't drop below the threshold set in the options menu as this will immediately drop the recording to 15fps but anything higher will not appear which I really like. PlayClaw 5 also outputs smaller video files depending on what codec you use and I found that using the Nvidia Codec (with a few tweaks here and there in the Playclaw options menu) resulted in the qualty recordings at decent sizes for posting. I also found it useful that you can specify in the options how much of the CPU you want to use for recording.

http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=349050884
PlayClaw 5 also has an overlay that can show a host of options to you (set in the overlay tab of the software). I found displaying the GPU temperature and usage as well as the systems CPU core temperature and usage to the screen in a non-intrusive way to be very useful. You can also display information such as write speed to drive and file size of recording (if you want to keep track of the video sizes you are recording). It will also record your webcam (displayed in the corner) should you set this in the overlay as well as Teamspeak, if so required. PlayClaw 5 can apparently record up to 16 different audio devices but I could not really test this one out. It seemed to record the game sounds and my microphone perfectly so I was a happy camper. You are also even given the option to record audio in a separate audio file. PlayClaw 5 also comes with a screenshot capturing tool which you can set to take snapshots at intervals you set or when you press the desired key pressing. Nothing new here and what I would have expected. A recent update to PlayClaw5 also added streaming games to twitch in the options menu if you prefer to stream your games (which seems to be all the rage at the moment).

The only downside I can see if you do this professionally is that the software does not allow you to select your own codec for recording that isn't already listed but neither did FRAPS (well not to my knowledge but maybe I missed something). Comparing recording quality I would have to say that PlayClaw 5 seems to have the edge but only slightly but It's not massively noticeable anyway.

http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=349051309
Conclusion

If you are looking for game recording software and don't already own FRAPS (or even if you do and still want to see what PlayClaw 5 has to offer) I can highly recommend you pick up this software. Try and catch it when it goes on a sale (I got it for $12 dollars during the Spring/Autumn sale) or better yet if you can't really wait - head on over to the developers website http://www.playclaw.com/ and purchase your Steam key there for $34 instead of the $49 its going for on the Steam Storefront.
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56 of 76 people (74%) found this review helpful
2.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 26, 2013
as a noob youtube playthrough person i enjoy using this software. Its so CPU and RAM light even though its packed with so much.
10/10 I dare anyone not to like this. Files are saved as AVI but compressed in MJPEG (Moving Jpeg) so for my Half-Life 2 sries. 30 mins at 1080p is 10-15gb. Compress it to 720p in Sony Vegas and bang >1gb
For Assassins Creed 4 its more like 20GB but its Jpeg formatted so obviously the mpre colours used the bigger the file. Still... Its an EPIC peice of software. GET IT IF YOU PLAN ON RECORDING YOUTUBE VIDS!
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28 of 36 people (78%) found this review helpful
72.4 hrs on record
Posted: April 25
PlayClaw has it right, everything you need in a handy package. Now if we could just get some Live Streaming abilities in there :)
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24 of 32 people (75%) found this review helpful
15.7 hrs on record
Posted: May 28
I love this software
Tons of bells and whistles , make a regular recorder look like crap, use this for YouTube , its very light and way more options and settings (but not scary and user frendly ) than those out there on the market. GET IT

9/10
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17 of 21 people (81%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 26
This software will allow you to record in-game and include overlays such as footage from your webcam, teamspeak data and other customizable information. It also includes the ability to record the desktop. Other screen recording software can have trouble syncing video and audio but this application does not have that problem. Also the ability to have this program create separate files for each audio source is very helpful for editing.

I highly recommend this software for in-game or desktop recording.
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