CNet.com hosts various animated fireplace screen savers, including a Windows screen saver called 3D Realistic Fireplace Screen Saver, which includes several animated 3D fireplaces. This app has a five-star review from the CNet editors, but mixed reviews from users. The Mac App Store provides several fireplace options, including Fireplace Live HD Free that plays video footage of real fireplaces, and Fireplace 3D Lite, which uses 3D models. Both apps have excellent average user ratings, as of December 2015.
One complaint from users of the 3D Realistic Fireplace Screen Saver is that the free version of the program is severely limited and also includes a nag screen. However, there is an upgrade option for $14.85 that removes all limitations. Alternatives are available on CNet, but most have even lower user ratings or provide abstract flame effects rather than a traditional fireplace setting. The user reviews on Version 2.5 of the Fireplace Live HD Free app praise the use of real fireplace video footage as highly realistic and relaxing, and praise the variety of eight different video options.
For users not satisfied with existing fireplace screen saver apps, customized video-based screen savers can be created online for free. Videos of roaring fireplaces on YouTube can be looped using a Web service such as InfiniteLooper.com. Setting a looped video in full-screen mode achieves almost the same effect as the Fireplace Live HD Free app.