There is no limit to how far technology can go when it comes to improving communication. From letters to mobile phones and now we have webcams. It is undoubtedly one of the most innovative technologies available today.
But what is a webcam?
In simple words, a webcam is nothing more than a video camera that streams videos or images in real-time via a computer and an internet connection. Typically they are small video cameras that are placed on top of a desktop and they come in-built in most of the laptops today.
There are several uses to a webcam, you can use it to communicate with your friends or family, you can use it for communicating with multiple people. It is also used for video conferencing and also to conduct distance education classes.
Apart from capturing videos and transmitting them in real-time, they also capture and transmit audio in real-time.
As mentioned earlier, most laptops come equipped with a good enough webcam, but they are not the best kind and have their own limitations, mobility being one of them. You cannot place the webcam in the angle you require or place it anywhere else. It is quite evident that you cannot do much when the webcam is attached to the laptop.
But on the other hand, using an external webcam offers you more options to make your video look great and also sound great.
There are quite a lot of things that you should know before buying a webcam, but before we get into that you should also know about the different types of webcam that are available. Bear in mind that you should always perform a webcam test before you buy one.
Types of Webcams
Listed below are the different types of webcams that you can use according to your needs and requirements.
Most of the portable computer devices like laptops and palmtops which are designed for easy transport come equipped with an in-built webcam, these are called are integrated or embedded webcams and are placed on top of the screen. Though you can video call using these integrated webcams, the quality they offer is not the very best. There are a few models that also provide you with a dual camera, where you can use one to make video calls and the other one to take photographs. Though integrated webcams are meant for convenience, they cannot do much when it comes to the quality of the images or videos captured.
These webcams have been in existence for a long time and they are also referred to as external webcams, you can connect these webcams to your laptops or desktops with the help of a USB cable or any other cable the comes along with it. They give the users the ability to place the webcam wherever they want and also can offer better quality images and videos (that usually depends on the model you choose).
Sometimes not having an in-built webcam may be inconvenient but the important thing is the quality it has to offer.
The newer models also come equipped with an in-built microphone. This implies that you won’t have to invest in external microphones.
But with that being said, investing in a headphone for the same purpose is not a bad idea, it gives you the ability to move around and talk. With an in-built microphone, you will have to be within a certain for the audio to be captured.
They are similar to traditional webcams but they transfer data through ethernet or wireless connections. They are often utilized for closed-circuit security TVs, they also work excellently with top-end video conferencing set-ups. Network webcams usually cost more than conventional webcams and also require a really good internet connection to work smoothly.
Choosing A Webcam
Like it was mentioned earlier in the article there are quite a few things you should know before you purchase a webcam.
Frames Per Second (FPS)
This is an important factor to consider when you’re purchasing a webcam as Frames Per Second (FPS) is the main determining factor of the speed at which the images on the screen move.
The minimum Frames Per Second is 15fps but it is recommended that you choose 30fps if you want the images on the screen to move at a more naturalistic pace.
If you do get 30fps, make sure you have a good internet connection, or else it would be of no use.
Again one of the most important factors to consider when purchasing a webcam is megapixels, as this is the determining factor when it comes to the quality of the video being captured and transferred.
Webcams with 320 x 240 pixels or 640 x 480 pixels are pretty good but in order to get better quality images and videos, it recommended that you choose a webcam with 1280 x 720 resolution or 4K resolution.
This one of the most important factors that people overlook when they are purchasing webcam, they tend to pay attention to the quality of the video, but they forget that the audio the at corresponds with the video is equally important.
Remember, when you are on a video conference call your audio matters, so be sure to do a mic test before you buy a webcam.
But as mentioned before, you can also use gaming headphones to capture and transmit audio and they work very well, it is recommended that you actually make that extra purchase of a gaming headphone for the best experience.