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How to Record on the Nintendo Switch

Two Ways to Record Video on Nintendo Switch

need to know

  • press and hold capture button To save the last 30 seconds of the game.
  • Individual video recordings are limited to 30 seconds.
  • To record or stream longer videos, you need a capture card.

This article explains how to record video on Nintendo Switch, including the original Switch and Switch Lite.

How does screen recording work on Nintendo Switch?

The Switch’s built-in video recorder works the same on the original Switch and Switch Lite. Allows you to save 30 seconds of gameplay and turns off when you are not in the game. To record longer videos, you need to use an external video capture device. This method only works with the original Switch, as the Switch Lite cannot stream video over HDMI.

How to Record Video on Nintendo Switch

Nintendo Switch and Switch Lite include a capture button, which is a square button with a circular indentation in the middle. The capture button has two functions: tap to take a screenshot and hold to save.

This method works on both Switch and Switch Lite.

Here’s how to record video on Nintendo Switch:

Install and play a Switch game.

When you have something you want to protect, press and hold the button. capture button.

A left joy-con with the screenshot button on the right highlighted

A rotating save icon will appear on the screen.

Video recording icon on key.

When the capture is complete, a message will appear on the screen.

The video successfully saved the message to a Switch.

The Switch can only play 30 seconds of gameplay using the built-in screen recorder. If you want a longer recording, try shooting multiple clips, transferring them to your computer, and combining them with video editing software. Nintendo may allow longer clips in the future.

How to View, Edit, and Share Video Clips on Nintendo Switch

While the Nintendo Switch is quite limited in terms of video clip length, it does offer a few options for editing and sharing clips after they’ve been recorded.

Here’s how to view, edit, and share your clips:

On the Transition main screen, select . Album.

The album icon highlighted on the Nintendo Switch home screen.

use to select a video clip. d-padand bass one to open.

A featured music video on Switch.

You can distinguish the clips from the screenshots, as they all have “30s” in the lower right corner of the thumbnail.

During video playback, press the button. one To access the options menu

A music video playing in Key, with Share & Edit highlighted

Choose one of the following options:

  • Publish: Upload the video to social media. Requires connecting a Twitter or Facebook account.
  • send to smartphone: Sends the video to your phone for easy sharing or transfer to computer and uses a QR code for easy connection.
  • Floor: Edit the length of the video if you want to share only part of it. Use the d-pad to select the start and end points and save the trimmed video.
  • copy: Makes a copy of the video so you can edit it without destroying the original.
  • To delete: remove the video if you don’t want it anymore.

Video clip options on Switch.

How to record screen and record longer videos in one key

Nintendo may increase the maximum video recording length in the future, but recordings longer than 30 seconds require external hardware. To record your key screen or record videos longer than 30 seconds, you need a standalone video capture device or a capture card connected to the computer.

This method only works with the original Nintendo Switch. The Switch Lite cannot output video at all, so there is no way to use an external video capture device with this hardware version.

Here’s how to record your Switch screen using a capture device:

Connect your Switch to the Dock.

Connecting a Nintendo Switch to the Dock.

Jeremy Laukkonen

Connect an HDMI cable to your dock if it isn’t already connected.

An HDMI cable connects to the Switch slot.

Jeremy Laukkonen

Connect the output of the dock to the HDMI input of your capture device.

An HDMI cable connected to the input of a video capture device.

Jeremy Laukkonen

Connect an HDMI cable to your monitor or TV.

An HDMI cable connected to a monitor.

Jeremy Laukkonen

Connect the other end of the HDMI cable to the HDMI output port on your capture device.

Connecting to the HDMI output port on a video capture device.

Jeremy Laukkonen

Connect the capture device to a computer or insert your storage media.

Connecting a USB flash drive to a capture device.

Jeremy Laukkonen

Launch the Switch game you want to save.

Starting a Switch game with a controller.

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Enable the recording feature of your capture device.

Enabling the recording feature of a capture device.

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You can record the home screen, menus, and some applications using this method, while the built-in recording feature on the home screen and menus is disabled.

Keep playing your game.

Capture of a Nintendo Switch game.

Jeremy Laukkonen

The game you play will be saved by your device or sent to your computer for recording or streaming.

Nintendo Switch and HDCP

Nintendo Switch supports HDCP, but only when certain apps are active. This means you can use a video capture device with your Switch while navigating menus and playing games, but not when using apps that require HDCP due to copyright reasons, such as Netflix and Hulu. If you launch an application that requires HDCP, Switch will display a blank screen to the screen recorder. The only way to circumvent HDCP is to use a device that separates HDCP between the Switch and the recorder.

How to Increase Storage on Nintendo Switch


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How to Record on the Nintendo Switch

Two ways to record video on a Nintendo Switch

What to Know
Press and hold the capture button to record the last 30 seconds of gameplay.
Individual video recordings are limited to 30 seconds.
To record longer videos or stream them, you need a capture card.

This article explains how to screen record video on the Nintendo Switch, including the original Switch and Switch Lite.

How Does Screen Recording Work on Nintendo Switch?

The Switch’s built-in video recorder works the same on both the original Switch and the Switch Lite. It allows you to record 30 seconds of gameplay, and it’s disabled when you aren’t in a game. To record longer videos, you need to use an external video capture device. Since the Switch Lite can’t output video via HDMI, that method only works with the original Switch.

How to Record Video On a Nintendo Switch

The Nintendo Switch and Switch Lite both include a capture button, which is a square button with a circular indent in the middle. The capture button has two functions: tap for a screenshot and hold for recording.

This method works on both the Switch and Switch Lite.

Here’s how to record a video on a Nintendo Switch:

Load up a Switch game and play it.

When something happens you want to preserve, press and hold the capture button.

A spinning saving icon will appear on the screen.

When the capture is complete, a message will appear on the screen.

The Switch can only capture 30 seconds of gameplay using the built-in screen recorder. If you want a more extended recording, try taking several clips, transferring them to your computer, and splicing them together with video editing software. Nintendo may allow longer clips in the future.
How to View, Edit, and Share Nintendo Switch Video Clips

While the Nintendo Switch is quite limited in terms of video clip length, it does give you some options for editing and sharing clips once you’ve recorded them.

Here’s how to view, edit, and share your clips:

From the Switch home screen, select Album.

Select a video clip with the d-pad, and press A to open it.

You can differentiate clips from screenshots as they all have “30s” in the thumbnail’s lower right corner.

While the video is playing, press A to access the options menu.

Select from the following options:

Post: Sends the video to social media. Requires linking a Twitter or Facebook account.
Send to Smartphone: Sends the video to your phone for easy sharing or transfer to a computer and uses a QR code for easy connectivity.
Trim: Edit the video for length if you only want to share part of it. Use the d-pad to select start and endpoints, then save the trimmed video.
Copy: Makes a copy of the video, so you can edit it without destroying the original.
Delete: Removes the video if you don’t want it anymore.

How to Screen Record and Take Longer Videos on a Switch

Nintendo may increase the maximum length of video recordings in the future, but recording anything longer than 30 seconds requires external hardware. To screen record your Switch or take videos longer than 30 seconds, you need a standalone video capture device or a capture card connected to a computer.

This method only works with the original Nintendo Switch. The Switch Lite can’t output video in any way, so there’s no way to use an external video capture device with that version of the hardware.

Here’s how to screen record your Switch using a capture device:

Connect your Switch to its Dock.

 Jeremy Laukkonen
Connect an HDMI cable to your dock if one isn’t already connected.

Jeremy Laukkonen 
Connect the output of the Dock to the HDMI input of your capture device.

 Jeremy Laukkonen
Connect an HDMI cable to your monitor or TV.

 Jeremy Laukkonen
Connect the other end of the HDMI cable to the HDMI output port on your capture device.

 Jeremy Laukkonen
Connect the capture device to a computer, or insert your storage medium.

 Jeremy Laukkonen
Launch the Switch game you want to record.

 Jeremy Laukkonen
Activate the recording feature of your capture device.

Jeremy LaukkonenWhile the built-in recording feature is disabled on the home screen and menus, you can record the home screen, menus, and some apps using this method.

Continue playing your game.

 Jeremy Laukkonen
Your gameplay will be captured by your device or sent to your computer for recording or broadcast.

The Nintendo Switch and HDCP

The Nintendo Switch supports HDCP, but only when certain apps are active. That means you can use a video capture device with your Switch when navigating the menus and playing games, but not when using apps like Netflix and Hulu, which, for copyright reasons, require HDCP. If you start an app that requires HDCP, the Switch will output a blank screen to your screen recorder. The only way around HDCP is to use a device that strips HDCP between the Switch and your recording device.

How to Increase Storage on Nintendo Switch

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