A good screenshot app is an essential part of your Windows toolkit. With screenshots, you can capture funny moments and important information, or document problems to show others.
But what is the best screenshot tool for Windows? Let's take a look at some of the key screengrab options and find out which ones are best for your needs.
1. The best basic screenshot tool: Snipping Tool / Snip & Sketch
If you're using a computer that you can't download software on or just need a simple screenshot, Windows has two built-in screenshot tools that do you good service.
The snipping tool, which is available from Windows 7, is the classic version. You can take screenshots in different modes and provide some simple markup tools.
On Windows 10, we recommend using the newer Snip & Sketch tool, which can be accessed anywhere thanks to a keyboard shortcut. It also offers some improvements over the snipping tool. For more information on mastering these two apps, see our snipping tool guide.
If you rarely take screenshots, these may be enough for you. For frequent use, especially when you need to tag your recordings after recording, we strongly recommend using a better screen capture tool.
2. The best free screen capture tool for most people: PicPick
PicPick is an excellent choice for anyone who needs more than the snipping tool can offer. It is free for personal use and contains various functions to improve your screenshot process.
The PicPick user interface is similar to Microsoft Office apps and is therefore known to all users of the Office suite. It includes more screen capture options than Snip & Sketch.
For example, Scroll window This option allows you to capture long web pages at once, instead of having to merge multiple shots.
After taking a picture, PicPick shines with its picture editor. The Impact The menu contains quick access to pixelation, watermarks, contrast settings and the like. The Stamps You can quickly add arrows and numbered bubbles in the menu to illustrate the steps.
You can add highlights, text, and shapes in any color. The editor has tabs that allow you to edit multiple images at the same time.
After you have finished editing, the share The tab allows you to upload to Imgur, cloud storage or social media sites. You can also email your picture directly from this menu.
Combine this practical range of functions with additional graphic tools such as a magnifying glass and a crosshair to determine the screen coordinates. PicPick offers an attractive package for most people.
We recommend trying it if you are new to screenshots and then using one of the following tools if it doesn't suit your needs.
Download: PicPick (free for home use)
3. The most powerful screen capture tool: ShareX
If you're a screenshot enthusiast looking for an app that can do pretty much anything, ShareX is the answer. It's completely free and offers an impressive array of features that you would normally expect to find in paid tools.
In addition to the usual capture modes, you can choose any app window from a list to capture it instantly. With ShareX you can also take simple screen captures in GIF format Scrolling Function like PicPick.
This is just the beginning of what ShareX has to offer. After taking a screenshot, it includes an image editor with simple options for blurring, cropping, highlighting, adding a mouse pointer icon, and more. It's not quite as clean as PicPick, but it's still easy to use.
After editing is complete, you can use ShareX to upload to many image hosting services
The 7 best Imgur alternatives for uploading and sharing images
, including Imgur, Flickr and Google Photos. It also supports adding photos to cloud storage like Dropbox and OneDrive.
For maximum efficiency, you can define custom tasks that run every time you take a screenshot.
For example, you can save the screenshot, copy it to your clipboard and open it in the ShareX editor. You can also define steps that are performed automatically after the image is uploaded. You can therefore shorten the URL and copy it to your clipboard.
ShareX has much more to offer, including tools such as color selection and ruler, as well as countless settings and hotkeys to customize. It might overwhelm people who only take screenshots occasionally, but you can't expect much more for free.
Download: ShareX (free)
4. The best premium screenshot tool: Snagit
Snagit is the luxury option in the screenshot tool world. Although the $ 50 price seems too high compared to the free options above, the investment is worth it for anyone who regularly uses screenshots.
The impressive list of Snagit features is too long to detail here. However, some of the salient features are:
- The LibraryAll of your captured images are stored here and divided by the app or website from which you captured them.
- A Simplify Tool that you can use to remove unnecessary information from a screenshot. It automatically generates shapes and symbols with colors that are drawn from the picture.
- OCR that allows you to retrieve text from an image and use it elsewhere. You can also select text and use it edit text Option to change the wording in a screenshot.
- Video recording that is great for creating short screencasts when a screenshot is not enough.
- A huge library of stamps to add common operating system elements like loading symbols, toggle switches and much more.
- An excellent support library that will help you learn how to use the software and get help if something goes wrong.
Snagit has a really amazing amount of features and it just keeps getting better. But if you don't work with screenshots all the time, that's probably an exaggeration for you.
After a free trial, with the first purchase of $ 49.95, you can use the current version of Snagit for as long as you want. You can add one year of maintenance for $ 12.49, which guarantees that you'll get the next major version of Snagit at launch and get some other benefits.
Download: Snagit ($ 49.95, free trial available)
What about greenshot?
Greenshot has long been the preferred Windows screenshot tool by many. It offered simple capture tools, a convenient and straightforward editor, and a variety of sharing options. At the time of writing, however, Greenshot hasn't seen an update since August 2017.
While you can still use Greenshot if you really like it, we don't recommend using apps that have been abandoned for years. All of the above options are updated regularly and are therefore more secure and contain more features.
What is your favorite clipping tool for Windows?
We looked at several free screen capture tools for Windows and Snagit as a premium option. There is a chance that one of them will fit your needs well, whether you just need something basic or want advanced sharing options.
Of course, there are many other screenshot programs out there, but most offer functions similar to those mentioned above. The best test is to incorporate them into your workflow for a while so you can fully explore their functions.
In the meantime, if you want to capture video from your desktop, check out the best screencasting apps
Record your desktop with these 12 great screencasting apps
Photo credit: Greg Brave / Shutterstock