A webcam is a convenient and affordable way to get started with live streaming. Although webcams were once infamous for producing low-quality video, today there are plenty of amazing options that can produce very high-quality video at 1080p or even at 4k. But with so many different options to choose from, finding the right one for you can be an overwhelming task. This guide will review five of the best and most popular webcams available on the market in 2021:
MSRP: $130 [$80 on Amazon]
Logitech has always been a safe brand to buy and you’d be hard-pressed to find a webcam that provides better value than the Logitech C922 HD Pro. The best thing about this webcam is that you can stream in 1080p at 30 fps or 720p at 60 fps.
The C922 also has dual microphones for stereo audio, outstanding low light performance, and reasonable noise levels – making it a very competitive choice. However, the default saturation can make the scene look a little washed out; therefore, it is best to adjust your webcam to the best possible settings for your live stream setup.
The most significant disadvantage of using the Logitech C922 webcam is that you can't connect two of these cameras on the same PC without lots of constant tweaking, which can be quite a headache.
MSRP: $200 [$170 on Amazon]
The Logitech Streamcam is an entry-level webcam for those who are starting their live streaming journey. This webcam can output 1080p video at 60fps and can be used in either portrait or landscape mode. The Streamcam is designed to work with OBS, XSplit, and Streamlabs right out of the box. It has a very compact shape and comes with a sturdy mount that does not budge even when you shake your laptop or desk.
The camera provides a great feature set, including autofocus, autoexposure, and auto framing. It also boasts a face tracking feature that works really well for multiple guests on a stream. This webcam is a good option for live streamers who need advanced functionalities and don’t mind dishing out a bit more cash to get them.
Some minor drawbacks to this webcam include the absence of a privacy shutter and an incline cable that cannot be removed.
The Mevo Start is a more expensive webcam that offers great picture quality at 1080p and plenty of features, including wireless functionality. It has high-bandwidth WIFI that allows you to connect to a source up to 80 meters away and three internal microphones for excellent audio quality. The battery life on this little device is also very impressive, allowing you to run it for 6+ hours. It’s compatible with both ethernet and POE and allows you to easily stream on multiple platforms simultaneously.
This webcam also offers face detection, although this feature has received mixed reviews. Overall it’s an excellent webcam, although it does feel a tad overpriced.
MSRP: $100 [$86 on Amazon]
The Razer Kiyo is a very compact webcam that is capable of streaming 1080p video at 30 fps and 720p video at 60 fps. It features a built-in tripod mount and a ring light that is great for illuminating your stream.
The ring light is arguably the single best thing that makes the Razer Kiyo such a great buy. Lighting is important when you are putting your face on a stream. With the Kiyo, you don't need to invest in external lighting systems.
The Kiyo shoots 1080p videos, but it is limited to 30 fps; if you are shooting out a 60 fps stream and want your webcam to match, you have to drop your resolution to 720p. The biggest con of the Razer Kiyo is that it doesn't come with any companion software, therefore you have to rely on third-party apps. The autofocus is also easily triggered by small movements, so you might find your frame readjusting.
MSRP: $200 [$174 on Amazon]
The Logitech Brio webcam is a modern, clean and stylish webcam that offers all of the features of the Logitech C922 HD Pro but with improved specs. This camera can shoot a 4k Ultra HD, video scaling up to 4096 by 2160 pixels at 30 fps and 1080p at 60 fps.
The Logitech Brio lets you switch between the widescreen and standard aspect ratios and also provides HDR support. To stream in 4k you will need a USB 3 to USB C cable, which comes with the box. As soon as you plug in the webcam, the drivers are automatically installed, and you don't need to search for supporting software.
Although there are plenty of great webcam options out there these days, you need to be aware of what your requirements are before you can make a choice. Make sure that whatever webcam you end up choosing fits those requirements and is compatible with both your computer and your streaming software. In my opinion, the Logitech C922 is the best overall webcam due to its great set of features and very attractive price point.
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