How to record video of your Google Earth actions

We often get emails asking how to record video of your actions in Google Earth to share with others. There are a number ways to do it, and we’ll show you a few of them here.
Google Earth Pro
It comes with a price tag of $399/year, but Google Earth Pro offers some great features. Not only does it allow you to export movies, it gives you quite a few other data and visualization tools. Please note that it does not provide newer or better imagery — simply better tools to use when exploring that imagery.
My favorite tool for recording Google Earth is Fraps, as it does a great job and only costs $37. They even offer a trial version (which includes an ugly watermark) so you can try it out and make sure it works before you shell out the money.


Most of the videos I’ve created on the site, as well as other places like the Google Earth section on A Brighter Web, were created using Fraps.
I use Jing many times every day for sharing screenshots and short tutorials with clients. Jing tends to capture a lower framerate than Fraps in Google Earth, so I typically use Fraps for those kinds of projects. However, Jing certainly has some awesome features and is well worth trying out.
Ultimately, any screen capture tool will be able to help you capture video in Google Earth, but the tools listed above are great ones to try out.
All of that said, you need to watch out for copyright issues when posting video from Google Earth. Use the handy Geo Guidelines Permissions Tool to make sure your use of Google Earth imagery is acceptable with them.
Have you made any great videos using Google Earth? Share them in the comments below.

About Mickey Mellen

Mickey has been using Google Earth since it was released in 2005, and has created a variety of geo-related sites including Google Earth Hacks. He runs a web design firm in Marietta, GA, where he lives with his wife and two kids.


  1. Working with Idaho Rivers United I used the Google Earth Pro “Movie Maker” to record a 1920 x 1080 Image Stream sequence for this “Wild Boise River” video uploaded to YouTube.

  2. Fraps is great and well worth the small price, but the main benefit with the GE Pro Movie Maker over Fraps is that it allows you to render a tour in non-realtime. Even with a powerful machine a tour with a lot of models or geometry will stutter a bit recorded playing in realtime – with Movie Maker you’ll get perfect smooth framerate.
    (it also lets you get the full 1920×1080 frame, GE doesn’t maximize to the whole screen so Fraps will get a slightly smaller frame)

  3. Jacek Radzikowski says:

    For a research project I’ve been working on, I made a visualization of movement of protesters during Day of Action in NYC on 2011-11-17 using locations of tweets they sent during the event. The tweet markers have temporal attribute attached, so it is possible to see only tweets sent during specific period of time. Selected tweets are shown at the bottom of the screen. Markers can be clicked revealing contents of the tweet.
    To record the footage from GE I use QuickTime on Mac and qt-recordMyDesktop on Linux.

  4. I have uploaded 80 videos to YouTube, all made with Google Earth Pro Movie Maker. Some are 60 fps and some 30fps, mostly 1920 x 1080. See them all my YouTube channel Perspective3d.

  5. Current Google Earth Pro video of interest to Olympic fans showing in great detail the London 2012 Olympic Marathon course through London’s iconic landmarks.The women’s race ran on the 5th August 2012 and the men’s is to be run this Sunday 12th August 2012.

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