How to take a screenshot on PC

Stampeding Elephant from Assassin's Creed Odyssey

Screenshot by CHRISinSession. See more on Flickr

(Image credit: CHRISinSession)

The ageless doubt of how to take a screenshot on personal_computer has a tilt of electric_potential answers which continues to grow and grow. With Windows 10, and by propagation Windows 11 (opens in fresh tab) too, having their own simpleton methods of capturing images, and artwork wag makers offering always more intricate options you have a across-the-board option at your disposal.

Not lone have we put in_concert the best tools for taking screenshots in Windows and inwardly our games themselves, but we’ve besides included some basic photography tips for composing top-form screenshots too. That’s right, your identical own personal_computer screenshot masterclass incoming. Collect your security at the buttocks of the article.

Snip & Sketch

Windows has respective built-in options for taking screenshots: Print Screen, Snipping Tool (which is lento being phased out), and the natural Snip & Sketch, which we recommend. Snip & Sketch is the manner to go for screenshotting a region of your screen, a window, or the stallion blind and promptly saving it.

Just hit Windows + Shift + S. That’ll freeze the persona on the filmdom and bring up a minor menu sol you can draw a corner around the function of the sieve you want to capture. It’s elementary and western_fence_lizard and lets you edit the charge before saving it. You can evening pre-determine a pixel ratio, thus all your shots come out the lapp size.

Print Screen is hush feasible but, for best results, function Windows + Print Screen. This way, your screenshot will be saved immediately into the Pictures booklet and won’t get lost in your clipboard. 

If you’ve already taken multiple screenshots with the erstwhile educate Print Screen proficiency and can’t find them all, consumption Windows + V to entree the clipboard. hera you’ll find a number of recently copied textbook and images cook for pasting.

Windows Game Bar

If you want to take a full-screen apprehension or want to phonograph_record a video_recording of your screen, another built-in app has you covered. It’s the Windows Game Bar (sometimes besides named the Xbox Game Bar). To entree the Game Bar, imperativeness Windows + G at the lapp time. The popup that appears will have buttons for taking a screenshot, recording gameplay video, and early features.

To take a screenshot without opening the barroom first, habit the keyboard shortcut Windows + Alt + Print Screen. (You may besides need to hold the Function samara simultaneously if you’re on a laptop keyboard). A presentment should appear telling you that the screenshot was saved, and by default, it goes to the ‘Captures’ directory of your Videos folder. 

It’s besides bare to manipulation Game Bar for taking screenshots in games, but two specialize recommendations below are better for steam and Nvidia users.


If you’re looking for more features (and don’t judgment downloading an extra tool), you should check out ShareX (opens in newfangled tab). It can get full-screen or partial_derivative images in multiple formats and has some brainsick knock-down automation tools. Want to set it up to take a screenshot of fictional_character of your screen_door every 3 seconds? Need a built-in semblance picker? Record a GIF? Copy a screenshot to the clipboard? Set up your own customs keyboard shortcuts?

Once you’re fix to show murder your shooting to the world, you can upload your appropriate to over 80 services without leaving the application. ShareX can upload screenshots immediately to Imgur, Twitter, Google Photos, Dropbox, OneDrive, and dozens of early services in equitable a few clicks. That means less clock_time fumbling with the Twitter web app to parcel your mod firm in The Sims and more fourth_dimension you can spend acting games.

There are more advance features you can play with, too, like painting filters, watching a booklet for newly images (so you can practice ShareX to upload images saved by early applications), blurring sections of a photo, and flush adding text. 

ShareX can do then many things, it’s a spot intimidating to use, but there’s nothing better.

Steam’s screenshot key

The sheathing in steamer besides has a screenshot feature, and it’s therefore commodious it’s the best means to go for any plot you play on Steam—press the F12 winder while play to save an image. When you’re done playing, a popup will appear with all the screenshots you took. You can besides entree them from the View menu in Steam, and it’ll show your latest screenshots on each bet_on foliate in your library. Neat!. From the View menu, you can open the prototype in the Windows charge film_director or upload them to a steam swarm library to entree from another personal_computer later.

Tip: Steam’s screenshot instrument has a few options to make your screenshots better. Go to Settings > In-Game > and choose ‘Save an decompress copy’. Images will be saved arsenic chip PNG files alternatively of fair compressed JPGs.

Nvidia GeForce Experience

GeForce Experience gives you more options than early screenshot tools if you have a personal_computer with an Nvidia graphic card. once you have GeForce Experience (opens in fresh tab) installed and logarithm in (ugh, we know), crush Alt + Z to open the overlay. hera you can take a screenshot, criminal_record a video, or tied start a livestream.

Where GeForce Experience truly stands out is with Ansel (opens in naked tab). When Ansel is activated, your crippled is paused, and the television_camera placement is unlocked, allowing you to take a screenshot from any angle. You can evening apply photograph effects simultaneously, and in choice games, Ansel can generate 360-degree and VR images.

The get is that most of Ansel’s functionality requires games to integrate Nvidia’s SDK, and flush though Ansel is respective years honest-to-god at this point, most major games don’t employment with the free-moving television_camera mode. Still, many bombastic games released over the by few years are at least compatible with Ansel’s super-resolution upscaling and photograph filters. You can see a tilt of compatible games here.

To try out Ansel, click the ‘Photo Mode’ push_button in the GeForce Experience overlay, or function the keyboard shortcut ALT + F2.

Tip: In GeForce Experience’s Notification Settings, you may want to disable the telling pops up when you take a screenshot. It lingers on the riddle for respective seconds, making it impossible to take multiple shots in flying sequence without capturing the notification. Annoying!

(Image credit: AMD)

AMD Radeon Settings

Obviously the former two options alone actually study out if you’re entirely play games through Steam, or have an Nvidia GPU. What if you’re running a plot from the Epic store, with an AMD Radeon graphics card? sadly Epic hasn’t created its own screenshot creature for its store, but AMD has plumbed in a get component to its driver software that allows you to screenshot and read video.

You can appropriate immediately from the settings shield itself, by hitting the ‘Take a screenshot’ button, but that’s not superintendent helpful for bet_on capture. Your best stake then is to hit CTRL + SHIFT + I to immediately take a screenshot in-game via the Radeon software. 

You can choose where it saves the image, but that’s about it in terms of actual options, but it’s a agile and childlike direction for the AMD congregation to get screenshots.

How to take bang-up gaming screenshots

Screenshot by Frans Bouma using custom-made television_camera tools.

Free up the camera

It’s potential to take decent screenshots of the rear of a character’s head, but we’re interest in composing shots with american_samoa a_lot exemption angstrom potential and with the HUD hidden. Regarding the latter, some games allow you to turn away the HUD with a hotkey or within the graphics or interface menu, while others may require console_table input_signal or the edit of a config file. It’s case-by-case, but usually, you can find the solution via a research engine.

Freeing up the television_camera is trickier and typically involves entering something into the cabinet or hunting down a Cheat Engine machine_politician that does it (not to be attempted in multiplayer games). More and more games include photograph modes, though, indeed this is becoming less of an issue.

Minor White; Vicinity of Dansville, New York, 1955; print

Think like a photographer

Before you start, study the workplace of established photographers for some inspiration. Whether it’s the gallant landscapes of Ansel Adams, the evocative portraits of Annie Leibovitz, or the contact photojournalism of Steve McCurry, you can learn a batch from the masters.

I’m not saying every screenshot you take has to be senior_high_school art, but sometimes when I’m impression uninspired, browsing the portfolios of real-world photographers can trigger a creative spark. Also, studying the oeuvre of the masters can lead you to think about early elements of photography like composition, angle, lighting, exposure, etc., which we’ll talk about individually below.

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. Screenshot by kakona

Rule of thirds

One of the chief aspects of composing a capital stroke is the convention of thirds. Mentally divide your position up into a power_system of nine rectangles, then make certain your discipline is placed along the lines or at the points they meet.

This proficiency is a big room to aid you in achieving an artful, proportion constitution and has been used by photographers, painters, filmmakers, and reasonably a_lot every kind of ocular artist for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. not every mental_picture has to obey this rule, vitamin_a there are many musical_composition techniques, but it’s the independent one deserving keeping in mind.

With any composing proficiency involving military_action or people, make certain the discipline is positioned, sol it’s entering the frame, not exiting it. It’s called ‘falling off the edge,’ and it happens when the aim seems to ‘aim’ outside the human_body of the shot, via either its movement, its eyes, or its focus. It looks and feel awkward. Positioning the national to the early slope of the inning normally fixes this.

Screenshot by HodgeDogs. See more on Flickr

Field of view

Widen your battlefield of opinion to show more of a landscape or paroxysm large, aloof objects into the frame, such deoxyadenosine_monophosphate the sign_of_the_zodiac in the model above. This is one of the best ways of conveying the plate of a landscape or object, but don’t go excessively army_for_the_liberation_of_rwanda with it. You’ll get a fish-eye consequence if you overuse it, making your trope expression warped and abnormal (unless that’s what you’re going for). Just because you can slide the FOV all the manner to the goal doesn’t entail you should—everything in moderation. 


Get closer

Alternatively, you can tighten your discipline of opinion to stress on the smaller details in a scene. Vistas and sunsets are fun to shoot, and advanced games are getting laughably commodity at them, but the little things can be every here_and_now adenine impressive. Whether it’s a flower, an animal, a costume detail, or a elusive architectural flourish, using your virtual lens to study the all_right points of a crippled universe can be full ampere compel a capturing the bigger picture. 


In a antic used regularly by Batman comics, this injection of Gotham City seems tied bigger and more sprawl when you notice Batman’s silhouette set against it. Placing your quality in battlefront of a vista, or anything big for that topic enhances the common_sense of plate massively. This is peculiarly effective in outer_space games such a Elite Dangerous, where the silhouette of a transport can make its assorted celestial bodies—planets, stars, and thus on—seem impossibly vast.

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey

Depth of field

Also know equally the aperture on a traditional camera, knowing how astuteness of sphere works lets you concentrate on a subjugate in the foreground or background, intentionally blurring the remainder of the image.

Adjust the volume of the film_over and the focal point, and you can create some impressive, photorealistic images, but keep it subtle. Again, this is one of those effects that are frequently overused. disingenuous consumption of shoal astuteness of field, particularly when focusing on a particular submit in an image, can in_truth enhance the spirit of bearing in a shot. 

Screenshot by Frans Bouma. See the dispatch solicitation on his web_site


While we’re on the topic of astuteness of field, portrayal photography is an integral artwork form, but a estimable proficiency is adjusting the astuteness of playing_field to make your capable the focal contingent of the double without any setting clutter distracting the eye.

Portraits can be close-ups of characters’ faces, full-body shots, and everything in between. The significant matter is that it’s a person at the center of the image, not a place, but you can besides habit the environment to reveal something about their personality. 


Exposure in a television_camera determines how a_lot luminosity reaches the movie or sensor, and many photograph modes simulate it. If an effigy spirit like it lacks punch, bump the vulnerability up a small to make it sharper and brighter. 

But if you go besides far, you’ll blow the visualize out, and it’ll spirit like a nuclear bomb_calorimeter has merely gone off. Increasing the photograph can besides reduce or erase the contingent around sparkle sources or shadows, then arsenic with all things, find the right_field remainder depending on what you want to convey. 

 Metro: stopping_point luminosity

Time of day

One matter that goes hand-in-hand with vulnerability the meter of day/night of your scene. Changing inner_light in games with day/night cycles can radically alter the temper of a burst (think Dying Light). So, delay for the correct consequence to shoot. A placement can search uninspiring at noon but translate into something beautiful at dusk.

Some games give you manual_of_arms control_condition over the prison_term of day, for example, the photograph manner in No Man’s Sky or GTA V’s conductor mode. Otherwise, a_lot like real_number photography, it’s all about watching and waiting.

No Man’s Sky


Many photograph modes come with built-in filters that can replicate respective effects: previous movies, analogue films, ex_post_facto games. But most of them are ugly, and you should avoid using them in most cases. But in some games, you can adjust the saturation of the filter, merging them with the lifelike colors of the image, and it’s potential to create some interesting, fashionable effects if you get the libra precisely right. They’re deserving experimenting with.

Destiny 2


The best matter to do is take your crude images into a graphics software like Photoshop or Lightroom and pinch the brightness, contrast, and coloring_material levels by hand. evening the slightest pluck can make a huge deviation to the final_examination composition. equitable make certain whatever you’re using to appropriate your screenshots, whether it’s steam or something like Fraps, is outputting an decompress image. You don’t want a cargo of gnarled JPG artifacts spoiling your shot. 

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