Your Guide to Choosing A Web Cam

What are the important features you need to check when buying a webcam? What are the main specifications differentiating between them?

Different types, sizes, designs, and colors of webcam in the market, but there are important specifications you need to know!

Buying a webcam for you desktop computer or laptop may not seem like a hard task, but there are some features and specifications you need to ask about when you go to buy one. We wrote this article to guide you when you go to get a webcam to avoid making a wrong decision.

If you have a laptop or tablet and you do not need a high definition camera then this article may not benefit you because laptops and tablets have a built-in camera. However, if you need a webcam to make important video calls or capture pictures, then this article by will give you the important features!

The most important specifications and features you need to consider when getting a new webcam is: picture resolution, video resolution, frame rate, built in microphone, and many other features.

The world has come a long way because of the technological revolution, and thanks to internet and connectivity the world became like a small village. That is true, communicating with other people, regardless of where they are, became easier and faster and it does not cost a lot of money. Webcams are one of the bridges of this communication since it can receive and transmit live video signals through various chatting platforms.

Webcams also are purchased by corporations and companies that conduct meetings in different regions around the world through video conference calls. The price of a webcam is directly linked to its cameras resolution, frame rate, auto autofocus, camera lens, built-in microphone (most new webcams have this feature), recording option, and its design.


 Corporates and companies use webcams

Picture or video resolution is one of the most important specifications you need to check before buying a webcam. That is because it guarantees the transmission and receiving of a clear high definition image, and webcams can be divided into the following when it comes to resolution:

Standard Definition Webcams: Usually webcams have a normal resolution of 480 pixels for the vertical lines, or a full resolution of 480x640 pixels.

High Definition Webcams: high definition webcams can also be divided into two types: the first is 720 pixels (720x1280 pixels), and the second is 1080 pixels (1080x1920 pixels); it is referred to as the Full HD webcams because of the longitudinal lines. The camera and video resolution increases as the number of pixels increase; meaning: the higher the resolution, the higher the image quality.

You only need to check the resolution number which is usually written on the webcam’s box so make sure you read it before making a purchase.

We must point that if you have a webcam with a high resolution but you are transmitting the image to someone who does not have a similar screen resolution on their computer, then the image will not be displayed in the quality you have but it will not affect the video you are seeing on your screen. If you want a webcam to make video calls, make sure you get one with a resolution of 720x1280 pixels.

Frame Rate

The second important specification is frame rate which is: the number of images captured by the camera consecutively per second to send it in a video format. A good webcam has an average of 30 frames per second. Buying a webcam with a lower frame rate will surely lead to sending unclear and pixilated videos.

Webcams are available in many different options when talking about frame rate. The higher the frame rate the better the webcam, so make sure you check this specification before making a purchase and remember not to get one with less than 30 frames per second.

Camera Lens

Image and video resolution also relies on the lens quality, and so the better the lens, the higher the quality of sent images.

Webcam lenses can be divided into: glass lens and plastic lens. Glass lens has a better quality than plastic lens, and webcams with low specifications and qualities usually have a plastic lens.

The webcams lens main task is to capture light and its reflection off of objects and convert it to images. Good quality glasses capture more light to send brighter and clearer images and videos and Carl Zeiss lenses may be one of the best webcam lenses.

Make sure you get a glass webcam lens from a well-known brand.

Built-in Microphone

 Built-in Microphone

Having a webcam with a built-in microphone will save you the hassle of wearing an earphone or talking through a separate microphone. That is beneficial all the time especially during long video talks. Having a built-in microphone will allow you more freedom to move instead of being in front of the screen the whole time.

Most new webcams have this feature but we must point that built-in microphones are not efficient for recording high quality audio but are suitable for video calls.

Shape and Design

 Clip-on and freestanding webcams

Regardless of the color and size of webcams, when it comes to the design, they are divided into two main shapes: the first comes with a base that can be placed on any straight surface, and the second is a clip-on that can be placed on top of the screen.

Here, you must choose which is more suitable for you. If you have a slim flat screen, then a clip-on webcam will be better for you (like laptops and tablets).

We must point that webcams with a base might need some space to be placed at but it is easier to adjust and move.

It all depends on your screen and preference; you might have a thin screen but prefer a webcam with a base. Our advice here is to choose what you prefer.

 Clip-on webcam


There are many companies that manufacture webcams, and the brand is the last specification you need to check since the ones we mentioned above are much more important! Nonetheless, here are the most famous webcam brands: Logitech, Microsoft, HP, Creative, Gear Head, Sony, Apple, and Toshiba.

Famous brands are the ones that manufacture webcams with high specifications, features, and resolutions; however, you still need to check the specifications regardless of the brand you are purchasing to make sure you are getting what you need.

Summary, Are There Any Other Specifications and Features?

Some of the other important features you need to consider are autofocus, recording, sensors, and connectivity:

  • Autofocus: this feature guarantees the maintenance of a good resolution when movement is detected on video, as it will autofocus the lens. This feature is important to people who move during video calls.
  • Recording: Some webcams can record voice, videos, and images. This feature is suitable for people who want to upload videos online.
  • Sensors: Sensors determine the sharpness of images, and so it is linked to image quality, and it is available in two options: the first is CMOS which are fast and affordable sensors and it is available in most webcams, the second is CDD and these work on noise reduction during videos but are slow when transmitting data.
  • Connectivity: Most webcams can be connected to computers through a USB 2.0 but there are some wireless webcams as well! Connecting the webcam by a USB is easy, but if you need full mobility for the webcam and the ability to place in anywhere, then a wireless webcam will be better. These webcams are perfect who might use webcams as surveillance cameras around the house.
  • There are many options when it comes to choosing a webcam, and through this article helped you minimize your options to make it easier on you! The specifications you need to check are the following: resolution, frame rate, lens type, design, built-in microphones, and then other features can be determined.  It is important to remember to choose what you need and what is within your budget.

Be smart before making a purchase.

Last update