Want to capture videos of iPad and iPhone gameplay, without jailbreaking your iOS device? Read on for our iPad video capture tutorial.
Infinity Blade 3 is a visually arresting iPad game, so why not record your skills and share them with friends?
Gamers are a boastful lot, and many like to post videos of their gameplay exploits on YouTube and other video sites. But what about iPad and iPhone gamers? Don't worry - it's simple to display iPad gameplay on your Mac, and record videos for posterity.
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How to record gameplay videos from iPad and iPhone: Turn your Mac into an AirPlay receiver
Our first method is the simplest, although you may find that the video quality isn't as good as in the techniques below. We're going to use Apple's AirPlay wireless technology to mirror everything that's on the iPad (or iPhone) screen on the screen of your Mac.
First, however, you need to turn your Mac into an AirPlay receiver. For this we're going to use some software called Reflector. Download it from www.airsquirrels.com/reflector and fire it up. (Reflector costs $12.99 - about £8 - but you can run it in trial mode for 10 minutes to see if it's what you're after.)
When Reflector starts up, there won't be any windows onscreen, but don't be fooled - it's working passively. Switch on your iPad (or iPhone), make sure it's on the same wireless network as the Mac, and (assuming you're running iOS 7) bring up the Control Centre by swiping upwards from the bottom of the screen. Since there's now an AirPlay display within range, the AirPlay icon should appear, next to the AirDrop option (if your iOS device is advanced enough to use that).
Click the AirPlay button and select the Mac as your output, and the screen of the iPad or iPhone will promptly be mirrored on the Mac in a suitably shaped window of its own. (If the AirPlay icon doesn't appear, it's can't detect an AirPlay receiver. Check the Mac and iDevice aren't experiencing wireless problems.)
It's just occurred to me that using the same desktop wallpaper on my Mac and iPad is potentially confusing here. But no, that mirrored iPad isn't transparent, it's displaying its normal Home screen in a special window on the Mac
Anything you do on the iPad will be mirrored on the Mac's screen, including gameplay.
Now we're playing a terrific little puzzle platform game called Stealth Inc.
But now you want to record it as a video - what's the best method? The easiest is probably to start up QuickTime Player (which is installed as part of Mac OS X - find it in Applications if it's not in your dock already) and select File > New Screen Recording (or use the shortcut Shift + Apple + N) and hit record.
In later versions of QuickTime Player it will give you the option of dragging across the area of the screen you want to record, whereas earlier versions can only record the Mac's screen as a whole. But either way you'll soon have a video of your iPad gameplay.
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How to record gameplay videos from iPad and iPhone: Use game capture hardware
If you want higher-quality results and aren't afraid to spend a bit more money, you can get a proper game-capture product; the one we've been using is the Elgato Game Capture HD, which you can pick up for £149.95 from the Apple Store but may be available cheaper if you shop around.
The Game Capture HD is designed for recording video from games consoles, but it works fine with the iPad - except that you'll need an adaptor to connect it to the iPad. The Apple AV Adaptor costs £40 for the Lightning version (for the iPad 4 and later, and the iPhone 5 and later), and £35 for the older 30-pin-compatible adaptor. No, that's not cheap.
Plug the iPad into the Game Capture HD device using the adaptor and the bundled HDMI cable, and plug the Game Capture HD into your Mac using its mini-USB to USB cable. Download the (free) Game Capture HD software from Elgato's website and start it up. Then it's just a case of adjusting the settings, hitting record and playing the game.
Afterwards, the Game Capture HD can edit the video you recorded.
How to record gameplay videos from iPad and iPhone: Jailbreaking options
We've shown how to record what's on your iPad and iPhone screen without resorting to jailbreaking, but for the sake of completeness we'll now briefly mention some of your options if you are willing to jailbreak, or have already done so.
Once you've jailbroken your iPad or iPhone (we have instructions for jailbreaking an iPhone or iPad, but would warn first that you are likely to invalidate your warranty if you have one - see also Should you jailbreak your iPhone?) you can access the Cydia app store, where you can find and buy apps that haven't been authorised by Apple. (If your eyes are lighting up, bear in mind that Apple's relatively strict app approval process helps to weed out a lot of ripoff and scam apps, so be careful out there.)
One app you could try is called Display Recorder, although this has the downside of not recording audio. Writing for iMore, Allyson Kazmucha suggests recording audio separately using voice memos or an external microphone, and then editing audio and video together afterwards.