I originally discovered Screen Monkey while searching for software to use for seamless multimedia presentations that included videos, images, audio, PowerPoint presentations, Flash movies, etc. Rather than bounce around to various software applications or browser tabs during the presentation, I wanted one application that would run all the files I was presenting. I found that Screen Monkey would do most of that and more.
While Screen Monkey is essentially what I needed, I nearly scrapped it at first due to its lack of an intuitive user interface. But I promise you, if you stick with it and use the support information, you will be able to master the basics of Screen Monkey. The free version offers everything I need to run a multimedia presentation. The professional version is $250, but unless you are a true DJ/VJ with all the equipment, you don’t need it.
I was really sold on Screen Monkey when our high school purchased a basketball scorer’s table with a built-in 50 inch television. I immediately laid claim to operating it, although I don’t think anyone else really wanted to anyway! My plan was to create various multimedia files to show for the starting lineups and during timeouts. Screen Monkey is the perfect FREE software for running my videos, audio, and graphics.
Screen Monkey utilizes layers, so I usually put an image on layer one and run my videos and animations on top of the layer using one of the three remaining layers. I can fade layers in and out for a nice effect, and I sometimes put a transparent image on top of a video or animated background. I am having a blast using Screen Monkey!
Below are links to two video explanations of how I use Screen Monkey. They are not tutorials, but should give you a brief understanding of how Screen Monkey works.
Screen Monkey Part 1
Screen Monkey Part 2
Screen Monkey has four layers for multimedia files and a fifth layer for just audio files. It has its own visual effects, some of which have transparent backgrounds and can be overlaid on top of another layer. You can also create your own effects. Screen Monkey also provides an unlimited amount of pages for organizing various categories of multimedia. For example, I put all my 30-second timeout graphics on one page and the 60-second timeouts on another. I also have pages that categorize the graphics by their use, such as pump up videos/music, files to play when the team is “on a roll” or “needs encouragement” and more. And of course, Screen Monkey supports an external monitor (in our case a TV) which will show only the multimedia files while you are viewing the dashboard, which acts as the control panel for the show. The dashboard can be configured to show various controls and monitors. Using a VGA splitter, I also connect a small second monitor for my viewing so I can be assured the show is playing properly on the main external monitor. I could also view the show within the dashboard, but the screen real estate is limited. I run Screen Monkey on a Windows 7 laptop.
Clips (Screen Monkey's term for all files) are placed in a grid on a page. The number of clips on a page and their thumbnail sizes can be customized. Each clip needs to be given a layer designation, except audio clips which automatically are placed on the audio layer.
The free version supports the following types of clips:
Images (jpeg, png, static gif)
Live web browser
Screen Monkey effects
The current version (3.7) was last updated in July, 2012.
Version 3.7 does not support:
PowerPoint 10 or higher
Flash movies (if using Windows 7 64 bit)
Moving files from one page to another is tedious
The page order cannot be changed.
Overall, I highly recommend Screen Monkey for your multimedia presentations.