Webcams have become a staple in the world of remote working and online learning. People also use them for leisure and entertainment, such as virtual hangouts, streaming, and vlogging. This caused a webcam shortage at the beginning of the pandemic, with some people waiting for months before getting their hands on a unit. To meet demands, big companies like Logitech have been working overtime while also reporting resellers that take advantage of the low supply to overprice the webcams. Fortunately, the situation has eased, and people now have more options when searching for a webcam. Below are the best webcams that 2021 has to offer, regardless of your budget:
Logitech C920S Pro HD
The Logitech C920S Pro HD is an easy-to-use plug-and-play webcam that results in clear audio and video. Its design is similar to the C920, but with the addition of a privacy cover. Priced at around £44, this webcam has Logitech’s RightLight2 technology — which supports autofocus and automatic light adjustment so you won’t have to tweak settings. But if you still want to fine-tune things, such as changing frame rate and manually setting focus, you can do so with Logitech’s Capture software. The C920S can record up to 1080p at 30fps. Good lighting results in impressive colour accuracy and crisp images. This is a webcam that can be used right out of the box, but still offers options for those who want to tweak settings.
Microsoft LifeCam Studio
Another option in the lower price range is the Microsoft LifeCam Studio, priced at around £44. It has a maximum resolution of 1080p and comes with great features, such as the TrueColor technology, which automatically subtly changes lighting and colour to improve the quality of your footage regardless of the lighting situation. It does this by tracking your facial movement before adjusting the exposure accordingly. If you’re doing a live video, you can also add fun video effects and augmented reality objects. The LifeCam Studio has a high precision glass element lens that results in sharp image quality by correcting distortions. It also comes with a wideband mic that produces clear sound. This camera is a great high-definition webcam you can use for personal or professional needs.
Razer Kiyo Pro
The Razer Kiyo Pro is a high-end webcam, costing almost £148. But with its 1080p at 60fps, HDR setting, and low-light capabilities, it’s absolutely worth it. Its high speed design ensures that there will always be no delay or distortion, resulting in clear and smooth footage. Some software, like Google Meets, will restrict the quality to 720p, but the Kiyo Pro will still be able to give you sharp visuals and vivid colours. If you want to make adjustments to the camera settings, there’s a downloadable driver through the Razer Synapse software which allows you to make changes to the field of view and saturation, among other things. Packed with all these powerful features, the Kiyo Pro probably isn’t for the casual user. It’s best for those who video conferencing, streaming, and vlogging.
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If you’re looking for a webcam dedicated to streaming and video recording, then the Elgato Facecam is something to be considered. With a £150 price tag, you can expect it to be packed with great features. It can record 1080p at 60fps and it’s equipped with a Sony STARVIS CMOS sensor — a kind of sensor normally used in high-quality security cameras that allow them to reduce noise while recording in low-light conditions. Another impressive feature is that the Facecam has eight built-in lenses, each with a different purpose. For instance, the IR cut filter prevents infrared light from disrupting the sensor. Meanwhile, the low dispersion glass enhances contrast, tonality, and sharpness. The webcam also comes with supporting software: the Camera Hub. This software allows you to change saturation, contrast, and shutter speed, to name a few functions. The Elgato Facecam was made for streamers, so if you are one, then this is for you.
The pandemic has caused various changes, which includes webcams becoming essential for activities ranging from remote working to streaming. There are many available options on the market where anyone can choose the right one for their needs. For more tech news and updates, check our blog.