Logitech QuickCam Pro for Notebooks
Web Cameras |
Sun 23 Mar 2008
Quick to React
For some, a webcam makes a whole lot of difference when it comes to keeping your friends and family in touch. To this end, Logitech's latest QuickCam Pro throws in a few more bells and whistles such as a Carl Zeiss lens, auto focus, and facial tracking amongst others to make the experience even better.
The Quick Deal
The QuickCam Pro has an average thumb-sized build, and is designed much like any standard mobile webcam with its lens and microphone on the front, and USB port plus clipping mechanism at the back. The clip should allow you to attach the webcam onto most notebooks, while desktop users get a separate vertical stand approximately 12-inches in height to hold the QuickCam Pro, which certainly felt robust and durable beyond its plastic encasing.
Basic installation is a little quirky as the QuickCam Pro is one of those USB devices that require you to install its software and drivers first, before plugging the device in. If you install the device first, and software second, the drivers won't be able to detect the QuickCam Pro.
Logitech bundles additional software that works in tandem with the QuickCam Pro to fully utilize its functionality. These include popular IM and voice-chat applications such as Windows Live Messenger, Skype, AIM, Yahoo Messenger, and also photo editing software such as HP Photosmart Essential. No doubt, most of these applications are free to download, we feel that such packaged applications would still save consumers a load of hassle when it comes to initial installation, especially for new PC setups. Still, Logitech could have added more value with a better bundle.
The QuickCam Pro does what it was designed to do with aplomb, but it goes further than your average webcam device with the advanced technology built in. As mentioned, you get a Carl Zeiss lens on the QuickCam Pro. With a 2-megapixel sensor, video resolution is very clear and sharp going up to 960 x 720 in HD view mode. Lighting isn't much of an issue either with Logitech's Rightlight 2 technology that can dynamically adjust image brightness. In truth, the lighting boost from the RightLight 2 feature does adds more clarity to the video feed as tested in our workstation's slightly lackluster fluorescent lighting.
Facial tracking is also a nice little feature that retains window focus on you, leaving your hands free for all the gesturing you may be saving for your conversation. Coupled with auto focus, you rarely have to adjust the camera while shifting around. However, there are limitation to how far you can move around; the QuickCam Pro is still a static webcam.
In short, Logitech has done itself proud with the QuickCam Pro for Notebooks. Its ease of use and top notch image quality all add up to provide an excellent online experience. Though some might find that S$189 may be a little steep to part with for a webcam, discerning users will agree that its superior imaging is an acceptable investment trade off.
- Focusing: Auto-focus
- Sensor: 2.0-megapixel sensor with RightLight2 Technology
- Video capture: Up to 1600 x 1200 pixels (HD quality), HD Video at 960 x 720 pixels
- Frame rate: Up to 30 frames per seconds
- Still image capture: 8 million pixels (with software enhancement)
- Voice recording: Built-in microphone with RightSound Technology
- OS compatibility: Windows 2000/XP/Vista
- Package contents: Eye-level desktop stand, travel case, USB cable (3 feet), QuickCam Software CD (includes Logitech QuickCam applications, applications for Windows and bonus software – HP Photosmart Essential), Quick Start guide