Since this is my first review of Captivate, I won't be comparing it to other versions except to say that the interface has been fully redesigned to better integrate with other Adobe products. Since there are a number of new features from prior versions, I will list the top new features according to the Adobe Captivate 5 website.

This program, like Presenter 7, integrates with eLearning systems and leading SCORM and AICC-compliant Learning Management Systems to deliver content virtually anywhere. It can be purchased as part of the Acrobat X Suite or the eLearning Suite. I am reviewing it as part of the Acrobat X Suite. A full version of Captivate 5 retails by itself for US $799.00 and for an upgrade price of $299.00.

System requirements



Language version

This product is available in the following languages:

The code has been completely rewritten for Captivate 5 and a new interface created to complement programs such as Adobe Photoshop and Flash, etc.

Since I had just reviewed Presenter 7, I decided to see how a PowerPoint slide show would work using Captivate 5. It was so very simple to do it. This example will give some ideas of the wonderful number of controls there are in the program. I was impressed with how I could take a PowerPoint slide show and customize it and add so much effectivity to it. I will show some screen captures of the types of controls available. These can, also, demonstrate how using Captivate 5 as an authoring tool can add so much to presentations, quizzes, eLearning, etc. This walk through should give you an ideas of how easily and well this component of Captivate 5 works.

The tutorials highlighted on the Splash screen by the red arrow are excellent to help you get up to speed in Captivate 5.

This screen capture shows how easy it is to convert a PowerPoint presentation into one in Captivate 5.

Here is the interface when working with PowerPoint. It is the Classic workspace. You can choose other workspaces such as Navigation or customize one of your own.

I love the text-to speech. However, when I first installed the program, I only got a Microsoft Anna narrator. There are other people available. Go to the download area for Captivate 5 on the Adobe website and download the 2 executable files for the text-to-speech add-ons - Loquendo and Neospeech. If after installing you don't see it appear in the drop down menu called Speech Agent, go to the add-on folder (C:\Users\Owner\Desktop\Adobe Captivate 5 Content) and click the exe file for both installers.

When you are ready to publish your work, the Publish command offers many options both in the Preferences menu

and in the Publish menu.

I prepared this slide show for this demonstration. To each slide, I added a different voice: Anna, Kate, Paul, Juliette, Simon, and Stephen so you could get an idea of the variations and languages available. Here is the dock.pdf. The file size is 1.14 MB.

As I stated, Captivate 5 does a lot of things. One is to capture what you are doing on your computer screen, called Software Simulation. I will describe this next. Once again, it is so easy to create a tutorial or any type of learning experience using Captivate 5. Here I decided to just record some steps when working on an image in Photoshop. As I mentioned in the beginning, at the bottom of the Splash screen are listed "tutorials." These are very useful. To start capturing on screen activity, I chose to Record a New Project from the File menu. I had already opened Photoshop and minimized it. For this demo I didn't choose to narrate it.

Next, I chose the settings I wanted.

Below is an example of the screen once I finished recording this session. I can move the captions to other parts of the screen. I think I will be writing tutorials very differently now from how I did them in the past. This is fantastic and so incredibly easy.

You can combine projects to create an Aggregator project. Within this you can also compile a TOC of the different projects. These can be output as .SWF files, Windows or MAC Executables, PDFs, or HTMLs. For example you can create a number of Photoshop tutorials and publish them as SWF files. Then you can combine these in one set or aggregate file with a TOC.

If you notice the caption "Click the OK button" in a previous slide, it has a style. Object styles are now available in Captivate 5 so you can keep the theme and look consistent over one project or many.

So much in Captivate 5 cab be customized and edited; for example, when I insert an image, I can scale it and modify it. If I don't like the way it appears, I don't have to go outside the program to accomplish this. This feature saves a lot of time and can eliminate confusion.

Captivate 5 contains a quiz workspace. Creating quizzes can be as varied as the training you are conducting.

The questions can be graded questions or survey questions. The results of the questions can be reported.

If I were to go into all the options available for creating quizzes, I could write another review. Below is part of the screen that shows the start of a multiple choice test. If you look at the Quiz Properties screen, you will see a number of variables such as how many answers to include. You can report answers

and analyze results using the Captivate Quiz Results Analyzer which is part of Captivate 5.

If you refer back to the Splash screen, you will realize that there are even more options and parts to Captivate 5. This is a powerful and varied program that allows for the creation of many types of training materials. It is an amazing authoring tool that is easy to learn and use. I have just touched on some of the many and easy to use features. If you are curious, take it for a trial run. I believe you will be glad you have. Also, for more information on Adobe products, go to