Most helpful critical review
83 of 85 people found the following review helpful
Decent Webcam for the Price
on January 4, 2009
This is a decent webcam for the price, but it cannot be compared with higher-end cameras. Overall the installation and configuration is quite simple; load in the drivers, plug in the camera and you're all set. The camera comes with a small program that allows you to adjust certain settings on the camera, such as brightness and hue, and the software also allows for still-picture and video capture. While still pictures can be 1.3 megapixel, unfortunately the highest resolution allows for recording a movie (as distinguished from video chatting) is 640x480. I don't know the reason for this, but it seems to be exclusively to limit users of lower-priced cameras. The software also has some extras, such as the ability to use "filters" that create effects on the image for when you're chatting or recording video. These are pretty useless, but I suppose they're free so there's no sense in complaining. Advanced features like the ability to have avatars instead of your face, or to add digital accessories to your image are limited to the higher-end cameras and can not be used on this device.
The picture quality goes from good (not great) to horrible based, as near as I can tell, on the lighting. With good light, the image does not lag much or get blurry, and it is perfectly adequate for video chatting. As the lighting decreases, so does the image quality, to the point of being almost unusable. If you don't have good lighting in the room where you expect to be using this camera, you're going to have to get a light source or you'll be sorely disappointed with the quality of this camera.
As for the audio quality of the microphone, I've been pretty impressed. The software allows configuration of the microphone, which is very nice - you don't feel like you need to shout to be heard, and conversations are very natural.
Overall it's a decent cam, but it's worth spending the extra money for better equipment if you're serious about either recording anything (i.e. YouTube monologues or video mail) or making sure that your friends get the best picture of you when you cam.