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I'm not sure my question is related to this forum or Graphic Design forum. But I guess here is more suitable than there. I see many GIFs screens captures in StackExchange communities and forums that (mostly) have good quality with low size (e.g a gif screenshot with 1000 by 700 dimensions, is about 200 to 400 KB). It's okay, especially with those people who use the low-speed connections to save or watch GIFs screen captures online. I tried to record some GIF screen captures with 1000 by 700 pixels, but every time I recorded and capture those gifs from the screen, I got a gif with a bigger size (3,5,9 MBs! or more). I don't why it happens to my GIFs.

I use Snagit on Windows 10 for capturing my screen captures, but this is the first time I decided to record GIFs screen captures to put on StackExchange forums for my personal questions or other forums to give more explanations about my questions, but I failed!

While I write this question here, I started to record a GIF screen capture from this text box with 744px by 376px which takes 14 seconds for time. The looping option is on. Frame Rate is set to 10 by default, finally hit the Create button. The result size is about 9 MB that is too big for a GIF screen capture to upload.

At what point I committed mistakes that caused this big size for a GIF screen capture that just takes 14 seconds with low dimensions? Should I use other software and methods to create and get good quality GIF screen captures with low size (less than 1 MB)? What software or methods you use for creating GIFs screen captures? My hardware is weak (4 GB Ram, CPU: Athlon X2) and I prefer to use light programs to generate GIF screen captures.

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    For a screenshot, I am using PicPick software and I am happy with that. However, I did not use it in the same context and I don't know if it fulfills your needs. To reduce the size of an image, if needed, I am using convert from imageMagick package. Again, I didn't test it in your context – Damien Nov 26 '20 at 10:04
  • @Damien, As I found out and try PicPick, it just takes images and it's cool and light for use. But it can't record desktop to record and then generate animated GIFs file for the thing I asked about it. – Masoud Moghaddam Nov 26 '20 at 11:23
  • My personal pick is Premier Pro by Adobe, however that's quite expensive. – Zaxoosh Dec 1 '20 at 14:42
  • @Zaxoosh, Not only Adobe Premier is expensive, it won't install on my super weak machine, but the old versions. As I described in my question, I just an output gif for forums with low size that alomst free programs can do for me. I don't know Adobe Premier can generate gif or not, but I'd like to know if it generates high-quality gif with at least sizes or not? Of course I know we should import gif video into int and then generate and export a gif. Maybe it's good for those who need many gifs, not for me. – Masoud Moghaddam Dec 2 '20 at 9:18
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+50

GIF is a terrible format when it comes to compression, so I'm afraid to say that you're already close to the limits. If there is much going on in your GIF, 9 MB is not much for a 744x376 GIF that runs 14 seconds with 10 FPS.

There are a bunch of good recorders suggested here, here and here.

EDIT: If these don't help, there is an alternate more complicated way:

  1. Record your screen as video using one of the available screen capture programs

  2. Convert the video into a GIF using an image editing software that supports video import and GIF export. This will allow you to take more control about the outcome, such as limited color palette, dimension, FPS and more. Check this tutorial video to see how it's done in Photoshop.

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  • Thank you @Martin for the useful links, I found a cool recorder from the links, It is "LICEcap" ( cockos.com/licecap ) and tried the same dimensions that I experienced before and asked in my question (1000 x 700) and then recorded. The result size is too low (600 kb!). In my opinion, it's an acceptable size for sharing in forums or like this. I tried it with its default FPS (8). It's really light (Size: 226 kb), but no features, unfortunately, just a simple window to set FPS and size of the recording. I haven't tried with high FPS, but the default is enough for my needs as I see. – Masoud Moghaddam Nov 26 '20 at 11:59
  • For compressing GIFs, this is useful and gave me low GIFs without losing quality: "GIFmicro" ( romeolight.com/products/gifmicro ). Or this website ( iloveimg.com/compress-image ), to browse your Gif and get a lighter version. – Masoud Moghaddam Nov 26 '20 at 12:07
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    @MasoudMoghaddam I'm glad that my answer helped you and I'm kinda impressed by LICEcap at this point. I know I used it in the past, but I never knew it was that good on compression. You are very welcome! :) – Martin Braun Nov 26 '20 at 20:54
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    @MasoudMoghaddam Oh that's sad, I thought it must be better if they charge money for it. I removed my suggestion regarding EasyUS RecExperts to avoid misleading others. Depending on its use, you should really consider to use a short mp4 or webm video instead. Loop it and remove the controls in its presentation, like Imgur's gifv approach to create the illusion of a gif. If you have to use a gif and quality decreases won't help, you can only cut the FPS or downscale the GIF. It's unfortunate. – Martin Braun Nov 29 '20 at 19:54
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    You could also limit the colors of the GIF to reduce size. I'm not aware of any program that can do that in full extend, but you could do it yourself with a video. Please check my updated answer. – Martin Braun Nov 29 '20 at 20:07

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