12 Best Snipping Tool Alternatives for Mac Users in 2024 (Free and Paid)

Lauren Funaro
January 10, 2023
min read
January 11, 2024
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Snipping tool software captures screenshots of your desktop or any part of your screen.
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Whether you’re sharing knowledge, documenting processes or providing step-by-step instructions, screenshots can help you communicate clearly. They also save time and effort.

If you find Mac’s built-in snipping tool lacking, you might want to consider an alternative.

There are a ton of snipping tools out there for macOS. However, not all of them are created equal. Some prioritize user-friendliness. Some are loaded with features. And some fall somewhere in between.

Need help choosing the snipping tool that best meets your needs as an Apple user? We’ve compiled a list of Mac's best premium and free snipping tools.

Top snipping tools for Mac (free & paid)

Here’s a list of all the snipping tools we’ll explore: 

  1. Scribe.
  2. TinyTake.
  3. Flameshot.
  4. Markup Hero.
  5. Zight.
  6. Lightshot.
  7. Screencastify.
  8. Monosnap.
  9. Shottr.
  10. Greenshot.
  11. Loom.
  12. Snagit.

Should you use the built-in Mac snipping tool?

The Mac snipping tool is free and pre-installed, so why not?

Besides, in terms of performing basic screen captures, the tool gets the job done. And quickly, too (if you know the basic keyboard shortcuts).

What’s more, the tool allows you to capture your screen and add basic annotations and take timed screen captures and recordings.

How to use the snipping tool on Mac

Here’s how to use Mac’s built-in snipping tool:

  1. Press Shift + Command + 5 to open the snipping tool’s control panel. 
  2. Once the control panel pops up on the bottom of the screen, you’ll see the following capture options (from left to right).
  • Capture the entire screen.
  • Capture an active window.
  • Capture a specific part of the screen.
  • Capture a video recording of the entire screen.
  • Capture a video recording of a specific part of the screen.

Alternatively, you can perform screenshot functions without bringing up the control panel.

In that case, you may use the following shortcut commands.

  • Shift + Command + 3 to capture the entire Mac screen.
  • Shift + Command + 4 to capture a specific part of your Mac screen.

What is snipping tool software?

Snipping tool software is an application that lets you capture screenshots or screen recordings on your computer.

A “snip” can be a full-screen capture, a specific window or a portion of your screen. It works like the "PrtScn" key on your keyboard but with added functionality.

Why do you need snipping tool software?

Because when you’re communicating on the web, it’s always better to show than tell. 

By using snipping tool software to share visual information from your screen, you’re not only communicating your message more clearly, you’re also doing it in less time.

The basic features of snipping tool software include:

  • Screenshot capture
  • Annotation tools
  • Basic editing
  • Clipboard integration
  • Save and share

Alternative snipping tools for Mac: Top features

While Mac’s built-in snipping tool is intuitive, it can be limiting in terms of features and functionalities. So, you may need to find an alternative snipping tool for complex use cases.

For companies, Scribe, for instance, can be a good choice, as the custom software has more advanced functions like creating visual step-by-step guides with screenshots.

Here are other features and functionalities you might find in alternative Mac snipping tools. 

  • Advanced annotation options: Some snipping tools offer more advanced annotation options (e.g., pixelate, blur and custom annotations) than Mac, enabling you to convey your ideas more effectively.
  • More capture modes: Some snipping tools include various capture modes, such as scrolling capture, freeform snips and menu snips (i.e., the ability to capture menu drop-down lists).
  • File sharing: Some snipping tools enable you to share files with team members through links or embeds. This ensures seamless collaboration on projects that rely heavily on visual communication and process documentation.
  • Automated walkthroughs: Advanced alternatives like Scribe let you turn screenshots into step-by-step visual walkthroughs.
  • Voice-overs and webcam recordings: Certain snipping tools for Mac support voice-overs and webcam recordings, so you can create interactive and personalized presentations.
  • Cloud storage: Some snipping tools enable you to save screenshots and recordings in the cloud. With this feature, those files become valuable digital assets you can reuse to scale your processes.

Best snipping tools for Mac

Ready to get started?  

Here are the 12 best snipping tools for Mac users.

1. Scribe

Scribe is a powerful snipping tool that converts screenshots into step-by-step guides.

G2 rating: 4.8/5 stars

Capterra rating: 4.9/5 stars

Pricing: Free plan available. Paid plans start at $23/seat/month.

Scribe does more than capture screenshots and screen recordings. This software documentation tool automatically converts screenshots into how-to guides in seconds.

Just turn on the tool (via the browser extension or the desktop app) and the AI-powered tool will start documenting everything you do on your computer. This tool breaks complex processes into bite-sized visual steps your teammates and customers can easily follow. 

You can customize your guide via text and image elements using the tool’s intuitive drag-and-drop editor. Once you’re happy with your Scribe, you can save it as an image or video file on your computer or online. =

What’s more, you can edit and share all the guides and documents you create. You can also embed them with your favorite tools, including content management systems (CMSs), knowledge base systems and learning management systems. 

Scribe is a great choice if you want an advanced capture tool that aids collaboration and helps your team scale your business.

2. TinyTake

TinyTake lets you take screenshots and recordings with minimal effort.

G2 rating: 4.3/5 stars

Capterra rating: 4.6/5 stars

Pricing: Free plan available. Paid plans start at $29.95/year.

TinyTake is a great option if you need a free snipping tool for Mac that lets you take screenshots and recordings with a few taps of your keyboard.

There’s no shortage of capture modes on TinyTake. You can capture a selected portion of your screen, your chosen window or an entire screen. You can even capture images and videos from your webcam.

Better yet, the free version gives you 2 GB of cloud storage space, allowing you to save your screen captures and video recordings and share them with others using any device. 

If you sign up for TinyTake’s Jumbo plan, you’ll gain access to a wide range of annotation options to help you communicate more effectively.  

3. Flameshot

Flameshot is an open-source snipping tool with advanced customization features.

G2 rating: N/A

Capterra rating: N/A

Pricing: Free

Flameshot is a free and open-source snipping tool that’s simple to use but still packs a punch feature-wise. 

While it lacks a video capture feature, Flameshot has a lot to offer in terms of customization. You can customize the tool’s interface, keyboard shortcuts, button configurations and save settings. 

Flameshot allows you to add text, draw figures, highlight text and blur sections of your screenshots. You can also make annotations, select portions of the screen and save files with ease. 

What’s more, you can save your screen captures in the cloud, which allows for easy sharing. You can even upload them as an Imgur link and share them with others in one click.

4. Markup Hero

Markup Hero is a web-based screenshot software that sends real-time notifications via email.

G2 rating: 4.5/5 stars

Capterra rating: 4.7/5 stars

Pricing: Free plan available. Paid plans start at $4/month.

Markup Hero is a web-based screenshot and annotation tool that enables you to capture,  upload and annotate screenshots within seconds. The tool lets you add multiple pages, so you can even annotate images in bulk.

For a web-based snipping tool, Markup Hero offers a ton of features. It lets you upload images, paste links (i.e., markup, image or webpage) or start with a blank canvas. Its drag-and-drop/paste feature also makes it easy to edit screenshots on the fly. 

Real-time email alerts notify you every time someone views, duplicates or edits your markups. And you get even more control once you’ve learned the keyboard shortcuts for the software’s annotation tools and canvas functions.

5. Zight

Zight is a Mac snipping tool that facilitates collaboration.

G2 rating: 4.6/5 stars.

Capterra rating: 4.6/5 stars.

Pricing: Free plan available. Paid plans start at $9.95/month.

Zight (formerly CloudApp) is a Mac snipping tool packed with features that foster collaboration.

The tool’s menu bar utility makes it easy to take screenshots and video recordings. Moreover, you can improve your speed and efficiency by customizing its keyboard shortcuts.

Zight offers advanced annotation tools (like text boxes, arrows, emojis and shapes) to help you communicate clearly. You can even add voice-overs to your recordings.

With Zight, collaboration is a breeze. You can share screenshots and recordings with your colleagues in one click. 

6. Lightshot

Lightshot is an intuitive screenshot software that prioritizes simplicity over functionality.

G2 rating: 4.7/5 stars.

Capterra rating: 4.8/5 stars.

Pricing: Free.

If you value simplicity and want to capture screenshots with less effort and time, Lightshot is a Mac snipping tool that ticks all the right boxes.

With Lightshot’s intuitive interface, you can capture, save and highlight screenshots in a few clicks. Editing your screenshots is just as easy. You can add annotations or text boxes right after the capture or with the image editor. 

Despite its bare-bones approach, Lightshot has a unique and useful feature called a “similar image search.” It comes in handy when you’re looking for variations of an image you’ve captured on your screen.

If you want a snipping tool that prioritizes simplicity over functionality, Lightshot is worth considering.

7. Screencastify

Screencastify is a snipping tool that enables you to create educational content.

G2 rating: 4.6/5 stars

Capterra rating: 4.5/5 stars

Pricing: Free plan available. Paid plans start at $7/user/month.

Screencastify is a screen recording tool that lets you create educational materials for customers and colleagues. This Google Chrome extension enables you to record videos through your browser tab, webcam and entire desktop.

The tool’s free version lets you create screencasts lasting up to 30 minutes. After each recording, the videos are automatically saved to your Google Drive. 

You can edit each screen recording directly from the Chrome browser. Screencastify offers a ton of editing tools and features, allowing you to merge videos, add overlay text and rearrange clips. These advanced features enable you to create educational materials tailored to the needs of your audience. 

8. Monosnap

Monosnap allows you to securely upload your screenshots to the cloud.

G2 rating: 4.1/5 stars

Capterra rating: N/A

Pricing: Free plan available. Paid plan starts at $2.50/month.

Monosnap, as the name suggests, enables you to take screenshots and recordings in one click. By using the tool’s hotkeys, you can capture images and clips (including GIFs) of your full screen, a selected area or a window. 

The tool’s drag-and-drop editor makes it easy to edit images and add annotations. Another unique feature is the 8x magnifier, which enables you to create “pixel-perfect” screenshots. 

You can securely upload your screenshots and recordings to the cloud. Or you can save them to your local folder or clipboard. 

If you’re taking screenshots and recordings for personal use, the free version should suffice. But if you work in a team, sign up for the Commercial plan for access to a centralized cloud system.

9. Shottr

Shottr is a screenshot tool that captures long webpages for free.

G2 rating: N/A

Capterra rating: N/A

Pricing: Free plan available. Paid version starts at $8 (a one-time fee).

If you need a free screenshot tool with robust customization features, Shottr deserves a look.

Shottr’s best feature is its ability to capture long webpages via scrolling screenshots. This is a big deal since only a few snipping tools offer that feature for free.

It offers unique functionalities you can’t find in most screenshot tools. These include text recognition, semi-transparent overlays, and markup and pinned screenshots. Shottr also comes with customizable hotkeys, so you can effortlessly take screenshots in any mode.

10. Greenshot

ALT: Greenshot is an affordable snipping software with excellent annotation tools.
G2 rating: 4.8/5 stars

Capterra rating: 5/5 stars

Pricing: Free for Windows users. $1.99 one-time payment for Mac users.

Greenshot is a free (for Windows users) screen capture tool known for its simplicity and ease of use. 

With Greenshot, you can perform a range of screen capture functions (e.g., capture region, capture window and capture full screen) using hotkeys. It also lets you capture long Internet Explorer webpages via scrolling. However, it doesn’t allow screen recording.

Greenshot also makes it easy for you to make annotations. Whether drawing shapes, adding text, highlighting or obfuscating image elements, the intuitive image editor enables you to enhance your screen captures for clarity and precision.

You can save your screen captures in different formats (e.g., BMP, GIF, JPEG, PNG and TIFF). You can also share them via email, social media or other platforms and drag and drop them into other applications or documents, such as Imgur, Word, PowerPoint or Microsoft Paint.

Greenshot is a good option if you’re looking for lightweight screenshot software with excellent annotating tools. 

11. Loom

ALT: Looms is a video recording software with video messaging and screen capturing capabilities.
G2 rating: 4.7/5 stars.

Capterra rating: 4.7/5 stars.

Pricing: Free plans available. Paid plan starts at $12.50/creator/month.

Loom is a video messaging, screen capture and Mac screen recorder rolled into one. With Loom, you can record your screen in one click and share it with others as a link. 

Receivers can respond to your videos with emojis, comments or their own videos. 

These combined features make Loom an efficient tool for asynchronous communication. Whether you’re creating pitch decks, tutorials or product demos, you can get your team (remote or otherwise) on the same page.

Loom’s free plan lets you record up to 25 videos, each lasting up to five minutes. If you want to record an unlimited number of videos with unlimited length, you’ll need to sign up for the Business plan.

See more Loom alternatives here.

12. Snagit

Snagit is a screen capture tool that’s easy to use and packed with advanced features.
G2 rating: 4.6/5 stars.

Capterra rating: 4.8/5 stars.

Pricing: Free trial available. Paid version starts at $62.99 (one-time fee).=

While Snagit isn't free, its comprehensive feature set makes it a popular choice among professionals, educators and anyone who frequently needs to capture and edit screen content.

With Snagit, you can capture screenshots, screen recordings and even webcam footage. You’ll also find every annotation and editing feature you could hope for, including the ability to rearrange user interface (UI) elements.

What makes Snagit stand out is its ability to recognize text, allowing you to fix typos, adjust the wording and even change the typeface. 

What’s more, saving and sharing your captures is easy, thanks to the tool’s integrations with cloud platforms like Slack, Google Drive, Dropbox and Evernote.

Read more about Snagit alternatives.

Final thoughts: 12 best snipping tools for Mac — the ultimate guide

Make no mistake — Mac’s built-in snipping tool has a lot to offer as a screenshot maker and editor. But if you believe that effective visual communication is key to creative and innovative breakthroughs, you’ll need a snipping tool alternative to start making a real impact. 

Each alternative snipping tool for Mac in this guide has its distinct strengths and caters to specific needs and requirements. You could give each tool here a try to see which option best meets your individual and business needs.=

But if you want to create step-by-step guides in minutes, Scribe is your best bet. Create a free Scribe account today.

Ready to try Scribe?

Scribe automatically generates how-to guides and serves them to your team when they need them most. Save time, stay focused, help others.