When should I use Presenter and when should I use Captivate?
That is a great question. But, the answer isn’t very clear. However there are some clear differences between the tools that we can use to isolate the best use case, and hopefully get building projects, instead of scratching your head.
Let’s start with Presenter, it is a simpler tool.
What is Adobe Presenter?
It is a plug-in to PowerPoint (2003-2010) that allows you to and add audio, video, flash and quiz functionality to a Power Point presentation. It will then output the presentation to a web-ready format to be delivered delivered with Adobe Connect or a web server. There are also additional output format – a PDF file, which displays the interactive portion in a single page PDF.
OK, great Captivate can do that too right? Yes and no.
Captivate can add audio, video, flash and quiz functionality to a Power Point, but some control and quality is lost.. Because Presenter is a plugin and work inside of PowerPoint, you can maintain control of the slides and changes, update and modifications are simple. Updates in captivate are a little more involved.
Presenter Point #1 : If your content is in PowerPoint, or can be easily created in PowerPoint, then use Presenter.
Think simple, don’t over-complicate the process. If the above statement applies to your eLearning project, then stick with Presenter, no if’s, and’s or but’s about it.
Presenter Point #2: Use simplicity to your advantage.
You can build text and image based presentations in Captivate, and I know groups that have walked away from PPT/Presenter to use Captivate exclusively so they only deal with one software application, but, honestly, it is easier in PPT and Presenter. Simplicity is Presenter’s main attraction to me.
Captivate is a wonderful and powerful tool for producing eLearning content. Captivate is a screen/workflow capture application that allows you to create interactive or non-interactive eLearning projects. This is where people can get themselves in trouble. Captivate can tempt users down a road of over-complication and update-nightmares. To simplify the concept - Captivate’s bread and butter functionality is the workflow capture.
Captivate Point #1: Do you need to show or simulate software? Yes? Use Captivate.
Sure, you could do it in PPT and Presenter. Think about all the screen shots and text you’d have to write and arrange. What could take you days in Presenter/PPT will take a few minutes in Captivate.
Captivate Point #2: Looking for more advanced animations, widgets, or branched scenarios? Use Captivate.
If you are looking for more robust animations, better video support, the ability to use widgets, or any of the many additional features that Captivate offers, don’t fight with Presenter, use Captivate.
Now, Presenter vs. Captivate isn’t the best way to think about these two tools. Using the tools together can enhance your eLearning content and make your life easier. Use both tools to save time, and create some top-notch content.
Are you interested in learning more? Do you need help creating content with these tools?
We provide expert training for both Presenter and Captivate or we can create your content for you. Contact Us for more info.
The other day a call came in from from a customer who had questions about Adobe Flash Media Server and if it would be the right software for their situation. After listening to their questions and exactly what their requirements were, I moved on from there.
As a product specialists, solutions engineers, developers, and trainers, the team here wear multiple hats. So in this case, I put on my solutions engineer hat, and began assessing their needs case.
Their initial inquiry was about streaming Flash based content within their Intranet. The customer was searching for a way to package internal asset videos and SCORM based training content together into one piece that could be uploaded to their proprietary Learning Management System (LMS). He had mentioned that they also had full motion videos, and that they too would like to be able to bring those recordings into the training piece. He asked about Adobe Captivate initially.
Seems easy enough, right? Give them Captivate.
Not so fast.
This Flash based content was quite complex and not as efficient as it could be. I recognized this as something I could use to minimize the clutter, and streamline the content from start to finish. The quick and easy route to a solution would have been to use Captivate and a couple other software applications. This would have worked, but it wasn’t the best solution. I’m a firm believer that less is more when it comes to software applications. The goal was to make it easier for end users to navigate and comprehend, as well as easier to manage for the content creators.
The solution actually turned out to be pretty simple – I had gathered all of the necessary information, the keywords of SCORM and LMS were a big help, from him and I decided that Adobe Presenter would be a better solution because of its simplicity. LIke any good customer, he questioned the solution & I explained it this way:
- Presenter has the ability to import the internal asset videos (already in .flv format).
- The full motion videos were already in .swf format, and Adobe Presenter can import those, as well.
- Presenter is a SCORM compliant eLearning content authoring tool, so you can leverage its quiz functionality to build the quiz, as well as deploy it to any LMS that utilizes SCORM as its reporting engine.
In the end, this was the solution that the customer ended up using. He appreciated the simplicity factor. And since he had really only been tasked with this project as a result of an employee leaving the company the simplicity was important to him since this wasn’t his primary role. A big win for the customer.
The point of this post is to emphasize just how important it really is to listen to all of the requirements before making any judgments and beginning to endeavor down that solution’s path. There are always multiple solutions to a problem. We help to determine the best solution.
The team at RealEyes excels at proposing the best solution for the situation. We take great pride in being an Adobe Solution Partner and Adobe Certified Instructors.
Looking for a solution to a problem? Contact Us!