What is Fraps?
Fraps derived from Frames per second is a benchmarking, screen capture, and real-time video capture utility for DirectX and OpenGL applications. It is commonly used to determine a computer's performance with a game, as well as record gaming footage. The program is very popular in the making of amateur machinima films.
The visually lossless Fraps codec allows decoding of Fraps-encoded videos or transcoding to other video formats. The Fraps video codec manages to capture videos with minimal impact on game performance, as it has been optimized to achieve compression higher than uncompressed RGB, resulting in smaller filesizes, though the visually lossless format is considerably less space-efficient than more heavily compressed lossy video formats such as DivX. This is because encoding on-the-fly to a high-compression format such as DivX would have a large negative impact on game performance and only a very fast hard drive could record the immense amount of data produced in using uncompressed video. The Fraps format is a compromise of the two.
The freeware version of Fraps is identical to the registered version of Fraps but places an unremovable Fraps watermark at the top of every video, and each recorded video is limited to 30 seconds in length. Screenshots are not watermarked in the free version but can only be taken in the BMP format.
Fraps can be used to record video at resolutions up to 2560x1600 in size. Custom recording speeds can be specified anywhere from 10 fps up to 100 fps, although at higher resolutions a reduced frame rate should be used to ensure the video can be played back in realtime. While the game is being recorded the frame rate of the game will be limited to the speed of the movie. Fraps is designed to be able to record video at HD resolutions on modern computers, including 720p (1280x720 @ 60 fps) and 1080p (1920x1080 @ 30 fps).
Fraps can take screenshots in various formats: BMP, TGA, JPEG, and PNG.
In order for Fraps to take pictures or capture videos onto their system, users must first be using a program that uses DirectX or OpenGL as a core runtime system. Programs that run in Windows without DirectX or OpenGL are not supported, and therefore Fraps cannot capture desktop applications under Windows 2000 and XP. In Windows Vista the Aero desktop runs through DirectX and can be captured by Fraps.
Unless disabled by the user, Fraps displays a frame/s count in the corner of the screen while it is active. This number display does not show up in the recorded video (but for videos captured while fraps is running, a yellow number display showing the framerate of the video reappears when the video is paused in certain video players, such as windows media player classic), and shows as yellow when not recording and red when recording. It also flashes to black text-on-white background for screen captures for the single frame that was captured. Fraps runs in the background, recording is activated by a user-defined key combination, and can be similarly interrupted. The frame/s count can be disabled within the control panel or be used with a keyboard shortcut.
Starting from version 2.9.0, Fraps supports DirectX 10, and generally is significantly more compatible with Windows Vista than previous versions.