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Dxtory game recording guide


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6 replies to this topic

#1 Mister Maf

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 02:05 AM

Everyone knows about Fraps, the screen recorder most commonly associated with gaming. It works by simply copying what's on your screen and encoding it into a video. This is inefficient and very heavy on your computer.

Forget about Fraps.

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This is Dxtory.

Dxtory is a screen capture program developed by a Japanese software team with a poor English translator. As such, their website looks kind of sketchy, but don't fear - it and the program are legit. Unlike Fraps and other screen recorders, Dxtory hooks right into DirectX and OpenGL and captures video as the media is rendered. As such, unless your computer is too poor to be dealing with recording things anyway, the bottleneck (the thing holding back your performance) is actually usually the write speed on your hard drive (luck you, SSD owners). Because it captures directly from DX and OGL, it only works with things that use those - the most common, of course, being games!

Dxtory can be purchased from its website, or you can download the trial. Alternatively, you can get a full copy of the software somewhere else. Ask me via PM or Steam for help on this.

I made the video below recording with Dxtory. Check out the framerate at the top left.



Bam, now you know how to rocketjump in 720p in a game you've probably never played.

How to set up

Here I will go over the most important tabs and settings.

Overlay

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This tab is pretty straightforward. It lets you configure the overlay that appears on your screen reading out your framerate and recording status, but the defaults are good.

Write folder

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This is where you set up the file location for Dxtory to save your recordings/screenshots to. You must do this for the program to work. To add a video destination folder, click the icon displaying a Folder+ and navigate to the location you want to save to. Clicking the speedometer icon will perform a hard drive write speed test to give you a better idea of what to set your file write speed to.

Hotkeys

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This tab is also straightforward. Here you set your keybindings for the various functions. The only one I care about is toggling video recording, so I have that bound to the Home key and everything else unbound.

Video

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The big one. This tab is where you configure how exactly your video will be recorded.

The default Dxtory codec that comes with the program is very high-quality and also produces massive files. Make sure you have a lot of hard drive space for extended recording sessions, and beware of making files over 4 GB if your hard drive format is FAT32 (FAT32 cannot recognize files that large - check the Properties of your disk in My Computer and look for "File System" - if your computer is any kind of recent, it should be NTFS). The codec you see me using here is different and I'm also trying to figure out if it's even any better, so just ignore it. The pen icon adjacent to the codec dropdown lets you change codec settings - with the Dxtory codec, it just lets you choose quality (I recommend High, because while True produces lossless-quality video, the files will be unbelievably huge).

YouTube displays videos at 30 FPS, so recording above 30/29.97 is purposeless if YT is your target. You should try to avoid recording below 25 for fast-paced games or 20 for slower ones. Note that this is only the framerate that the video is recorded at, not a cap on your ingame framerate. Your ingame FPS will obviously be lower if your recording FPS is higher.

Make sure the File Output box is checked to tell Dxtory that you want it to save the video to your disk. DirectShow Output is for feeding the video live into other programs and unneeded for basic recording. Your file format should be AVI for the most compatibility.

Finally, you should set the recording resolution. The simplest thing to do is choose one of the resolutions displayed on YouTube (listed here). Again, the greater the size, the bigger the toll on your hardware but also obviously the better the quality.

Audio

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The Audio tab is just as self-descriptive as the Video tab. Dxtory is capable of recording multiple audio sources in parallel (i.e. your speakers and microphone) and encoding them into the video. To add an audio source, click the + icon and choose from the dropdown menu.

Advanced

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I would be lying if I said I knew what most of these did, and so would most other people who use the program. This is probably the biggest area where the poor English translations become an issue, as the hover tooltips are of very little help. What I can say is that the multi-GPU box is good for people using multiple GPUs, the CPU processing box is good for if your CPU is powerful enough to handle extra load to let your GPU work more on the game, and the thread count dropdown is for people with multicore CPUs. You're on your own for the rest.

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Once you have all that configured, you should go into a simple game to test it out. Dxtory requires the game to be running in fullscreen mode, so make sure you aren't windowed/borderless windowed if you don't see the FPS overlay. Check out your framerate while recording during idle and gameplay and also check the sizes of the files produced. Tweak your settings as you see fit, but rest assured that no matter what settings you may have to lower, you're still getting a damn better performance than out of just about any other recorder. Also remember that you can turn down the game's graphical settings to improve your FPS without sacrificing video recording quality. The audience will very much prefer a crisp smooth video of aliased blocky models to a choppy blurry video of slick graphics that they can't really see anyway.

Note that it will create a new settings 'profile' (the dropdown at the top) when you use the program with a new game. I happened to notice that my advanced settings were different on many of them because I changed some after they were created but not others. It is nice to have, though - for example, I have the Force CPU Processing advanced option turned off in strategy games because those use a lot of CPU power.

My tip for getting the video files into practical sizes is to churn them through Windows Movie Maker or other video editing program before you upload them. This will get them into an acceptable file size without visibly sacrificing quality.

I can't wait to see what you guys come up with if you want to give this a go. Give me a jingle if you want to get your hands on a copy of Dxtory to try out to see if you want to buy it. ;)
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#2 Holmboy

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 08:27 AM

Cool, thanks for the guide. I'll check out the trial and see if I want to get into recording gameplay videos.

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#3 THE RED DRAGON

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 09:04 AM

Mafia you ought to make a tutorial video


#4 Mister Maf

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 10:38 AM

There are actually a ton of them on YT already.
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#5 Alpine gremlin

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 08:52 PM

Any idea as to how I can remove the big `ole DXTORY.COM off the screen? :Tounge:

EDIT: Never mind. I registered it.

Dayuum. I made my first commentary. It`s such a large file but I managed to shrink it in Windows Movie Maker. Should be on YT soon.

Edited by Alpine gremlin, 27 August 2012 - 10:32 AM.

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#6 Mister Maf

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 03:18 PM

Any idea as to how I can remove the big `ole DXTORY.COM off the screen? :Tounge:

EDIT: Never mind. I registered it.

Dayuum. I made my first commentary. It`s such a large file but I managed to shrink it in Windows Movie Maker. Should be on YT soon.

Yeah, lol. The watermark is for unregistered trials. The files with the default codec are indeed massive, but the quality is fabulous and churning them through WMM is an easy way to scale them down for upload.
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#7 Alpine gremlin

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 04:06 PM

So apparently Dxtory got an update, but now I have the unregistered version of it. It`s making me buy a license and won`t take the one I used for the previous version.

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