So, you’ve got the right Samsung phone and you’re sitting patiently for your new Gear VR—currently available for pre-order from Best Buy—which is bound to come any day now, right? There’s loads of fun virtual reality apps to download once you get it, but how are you going share your virtual experiences with the world?

Following these instructions (and putting in a little elbow grease) you’ll be able to capture near perfect videos—720p resolution at 60 frames per second—headache free and with minimal investment.

samsung gear vr consumer version (2)

Things You’ll Need

  • Samsung’s Gear VR headset and compatible phone. There’s three generations of the headset released so far, each with different phone compatibility.
  • Recordable – a screen recording app available on Google Play for $3.50. There is also a free version with an unsightly watermark. No root is required to use either app.
  • USB to micro USB cable – If you’re like me, you have at least three in your immediate vicinity
  • 3.5mm ‘male to male’ stereo cable (like these) for capturing in-game audio – at least a meter in length
  • A PC to record audio and process video
  • Audacity – or any other audio mixing software you’re comfortable using. Audacity is free and easy to use.
  • Windows Movie Maker – or any video editing software you have lying around. Movie Maker is also free and easy to use.

Getting the Right Settings

The list above may sound daunting, but that’s only because there’s no official Gear VR app yet for easily recording in-game video and audio. All screen recording apps (without root) record audio directly from the microphone, which is good for commentary and making audible sighs of frustration, but not so ideal for capturing system audio itself. Our workaround is one of the best methods we know for getting a good capture of both.

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recordableRecordable is the best screen recording app currently on Google Play for capturing in-game video simply because of the number of toggles you can use to dial in on a relatively judder free recording session. Below is a quick guide, thanks to Dee from eVRyday VR, of what settings you’ll need to get an optimal recording with Recordable.

  • Start: Immediately
  • Countdown: None
  • Stop: On return to Recordable app
  • Stealth: Hide notifications (checked)
  • Frame rate limit: No limit
  • Scale: Half screen width and height
  • Quality: High definition (6400kbits/s)
  • Use Hardware: Hardware accelerated encoding
  • Hardware Mode: RGB (fast)
  • Limit resolution: Use display size (1440×2560) (unchecked)
  • Swap red and blue: Not swapped (unchecked)
  • Audio: Record: unchecked if you don’t want to record your voice
  • Gestures: Draw: unchecked

Some phones require that you download a companion app for PC/Mac/Linux to ‘activate’ Recordable via USB cable. Click here to download the companion app.

Recording Audio from Gear VR

You have Recordable set up, and you’re ready to jump into a brand new world of VR apps, but what about audio? Technically you can check the ‘Audio: Record’ setting and crank up the volume on your speaker so that your microphone can pick up the sound and be on your merry way, but everyone will hate you forever. Really. It sounds bad and you should feel bad for doing it.

audacity gear vr recording
Recording with Audacity

To get a quality audio capture you’ll need to plug the 3.5mm ‘male to male’ cable into a computer (or portable recording device like a Zoom H4N) while you play. Recording audio with Audacity is relatively pain free, but if you’re in need of some quick hints, head over to the official Audacity help guide for tutorials and in depth explanations.

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Depending upon your PC’s audio card, you may end up with some buzz on the recording. Toying with the phone’s own volume level as well as any line-in amplification on the PC’s end may help reduce this. Audacity also has a useful tool for noise reduction.

Be sure to export and save your recording. We’ll need to merge it later with the video capture.

Recording Audio Commentary on Gear VR

If you want to comment during your video, you can easily check the ‘Record’ box in Recordable’s audio settings. This will record your phone’s microphone audio into the video file while the game and system sounds from the phone will be captured through Audacity

To hear in-game audio while you record, just plug in a pair of headphones to your computer and check the ‘Listen to this device’ box:

We’ll come back to audio in the ‘Post Processing’ section of the article in a bit.

Continue Reading on Next Page – Making Your First Recording & Post Processing

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Well before the first modern XR products hit the market, Scott recognized the potential of the technology and set out to understand and document its growth. He has been professionally reporting on the space for nearly a decade as Editor at Road to VR, authoring more than 3,500 articles on the topic. Scott brings that seasoned insight to his reporting from major industry events across the globe.
  • Mat

    Thanks, but doesn’t work with the S6.

    • benz145

      Which part of this doesn’t work with the S6?

      • Mat

        Right now, S6 with Android 5 is not able to record video at all. Even mirroring via Chromecast and the likes isn’t working. It probably has something to do with Samsung reserving all CPU power for Gear VR. I tried basically all recording apps available, they all stop as soon as Gear VRs Interface boots.

        • Gosu

          Same issue on the S6 edge. It stops streaming/recording on both the innovator and consumer gear vr. I tried chromecast, mirrorop, recordable, and even the wireless display preview app on the xbox one

          • Hans Vaessen

            Same problem here. I read somewhere that ‘recordable’ should work but that needs some installation from PC. However: the S6 is not found when I try that. Anyone tried recordable on S6?

          • Jay Wallace

            yes. and it doe the same thing… I have noticed if I take the headset off and put it back on the recording picks up 2 seconds of motion and freezes.

    • Natoone

      It does work with the S6, you just have to have different settings than the ones described above. here’s what I use.
      Start: Immediately
      Stop: On return to Recordable app
      Stealth: hide notifications, box checked
      pause: dont pause
      Frame rate limit< no limit
      Resolution: 480 ( you can go higher, but frame rate suffers.)
      Quality: high
      Use Hardware: unchecked
      Limit resolution: leave unchecked
      leave the rest unchecked.. unless you want to record sound. click the record audio box.. but its not that great.. only records half of the speakers, and quality is low no matter the setting. so, do what they say in the article for recording sound.

      • Jeremiah

        I’ve tried it on these settings, but I keep on receiving an error message saying “unsupported video codec”. It didn’t work for me very well on the default settings, but I did manage to get a little bit of video – interspersed with a black screen. On the settings that you recommend though, I’m afraid that “Recordable” simply doesn’t work at all on my phone – it doesn’t even matter if I’m using VR. I’ve tried recording my phone’s home screen for a few seconds on those settings, and I’ve received the same error message: “Unsupported video codec”.

        Admittedly though, I don’t see any option for setting the frame rate to “no limit”. So maybe I’m doing something wrong.

        • Natoone

          And your using an Galaxy s6!?

          • Jeremiah

            Yes, I’m using the S6, and I downloaded the app through my computer. Thanks for all of the suggestions, but it turns out that the problem was simply due to a dumb mistake on my part. It turns out that I never set the resolution to 480. Since you said that we could try higher, I decided to leave that one alone. But when the app failed to work with that resolution, I guess I forgot to lower it. It would certainly be nice to record videos of the Gear VR on higher resolution, but other than that, the app is actually working perfectly now!

            So thank you! Sorry for the trouble!

          • Natoone

            No problem! Happy to help.

        • Natoone

          There are other factors as well.. low memory, or apps that kill running programs in the background. Or even anti-virus programs.. or.. you missed a very important step with setting up the app.. did you go to the website and download the program that properly sets up your phone to use the app.. you can’t just start the app, and push the start screen recording. It’s deceiving cause that pops up first thing. Start up the app, then push not now. Goto the website, download the program to your computer. Run it, then connect phone to the computer. It will set everything up. Then when you start the app, you will go to the main screen.. use the settings above. Should work my good fellow.

      • Golagha11

        Even with this settings I didn’t manage to record from Oculus. I have a black screen in my recordings from the moment I dock the phone. I also have tried several casting app as well, without any luck. Any suggestion to cast/broadcast from Gear VR(Oculus) to any other device?

        • Natoone

          Try this.. I Read This Post The Other day, And It Works For me. And many others.. best of luck to

          • Golagha11

            Don’t know how to thank you(and the person behind the original post). I have spent several hours, tested most of the screenrecorders in Android Marked, searched the internet and too many forums, but the trick in Simulate secondary displays, from your link, did just the trick. I even tried With a higher resolution. I had a Blanck screen in the Gear VR, but as fas as I had live VR video on my PC(Samsung SideSync), which I could record, I was damn sattisfied. Thanks M8

          • Natoone

            No problem! Glad I could help. :)

          • Derek Brinkman

            Natoone, you rule. I spent hours of frustration with tons of screen capture apps until seeing this. It worked perfectly on 1st try with secondary display simulated. Sincere thanks!

          • Natoone

            No problem! But.. I’m about to blow your mind again… if you hold down the back button and go to the gear vr submenu.. look to your far right. There’s a new option, utilities. Click on that, and you will see screen capture. It’s the smoothest most wonderful footage you have ever seen. It dosent work with all apps though.. still can’t get it to record drift game play.. and no audio. So you will have to get creative for that. (I use a separate digital recorder, and plug earbuds to it to hear the gameplay while I’m recording. ) happy recording!

  • PF

    The best way to record audio for VR is using ambisonics. I think that these guys are working on a very practical solution for adding 3D audio to VR:

  • Recordable doesn´t work for me, installed the pro version, but it always records 1MB only regardless of how long I record. Tried the workaround for the gear vr, doesn´t help either, but I think the first mentioned issue is the cause of it.Any suggestions ? UPDATE: Ok restarted now it´s at least recording longer than 1MB, BUT it still ends recording when I launch Oculus with my Gear VR on my S7