The best webcams are a hot commodity once again. It’s not just game streamers and vloggers that are appreciating their use these days. One unintended result of the pandemic and subsequent shutdown is that people now need more tools to communicate remotely more than ever, whether to stay in touch with loved ones, to hold meetings with colleagues or to join online classes.
While laptop or all-in-one computer owners are already well-equipped for such purposes, many desktop users need to purchase a webcam separately. Even those with portables with built-in cameras might need to upgrade to a much more robust option. The best webcams are just the ticket, and with a selection of models at different budgets and resolutions, there are a few nice options to choose from.
We’ve collected our picks for the best webcams available right now. Whether you want to take business meetings or calls, getting that face time with clients through video conferencing, or producing video content, not to mention keeping in touch with family across the country or even just isolating at home, these peripherals are vital once again. Take your pick below.
Best webcams on Black Friday
With Black Friday deals coming soon, the best webcams are expected to get some massive price cuts, much like the previous year. This means that you might be able to take an excellent webcam home for much less, saving you more money to use for something else on your shopping list.
Whether you’re buying one of the best webcams to add to your PC setup or planning on gifting one during the holiday season, it would be wise to wait until these major deal events of the year. Luckily, with Black Friday and Cyber Monday rolling around the end of November, you won’t have to wait for long.
Our top pick for the best webcams is more than just a webcam. The Logitech StreamCam won’t just have your back when you’re video conferencing, video chatting with families and friends, and live streaming your games. This feature-rich 1080p webcam has many tools to offer for your content creation needs as well, including auto-focusing, smart exposure, facial tracking, up to 60fps frame rate, and a flippable design so you can take photos and videos in 9:16 format. You can even mount it on a tripod, and it uses USB Type-C for fast and more efficient video transfer speeds.
The Microsoft LifeCam Studio is one of the best webcams out there. Aimed at pro users with large displays, it features a familiar configuration of 1080p recording and 720p live video calling. It rotates 360 degrees, and can be mounted on a tripod with autofocus. The wideband mic delivers crystal clear audio, and Microsoft’s TrueColor system will shift the exposure dynamically to keep you well lit, making it a great choice for business conferencing and presentations.
The Razer Kiyo might look weird, a testament to Razer’s unique designs, but it’s still one of the best webcams out there for streaming – which is unbelievably popular in this day and age. With the Razer Kiyo, Razer has stripped away a lot of the bells and whistles that more premium webcams offer, focusing instead on what matters most to game streamers and YouTube vloggers – good image quality and lighting through a “Light Ring”. You don’t need to spend a ton of time configuring the stream – just plug in the Razer Kiyo and get to work.
The Logitech G922 Pro Stream features the same classy design as its predecessor, the C920, but it’s especially interesting for gamers this time around. The C922 still boasts excellent 1080p video quality, great for hosting video calls, and its automatic low-light correction makes it a fantastic cam for streaming with the lights off. It also supports background removal, making it ideal for budding YouTubers.
If you’re an aspiring journalist, or even if you’re just trying to capture footage in the wild, Mevo might be one of the best webcams for you. Either the Mevo or Mevo Plus will allow you to capture footage live, no matter where you are in the world – as long as you can connect to a mobile network. Plus, because Mevo is small and inconspicuous, it won’t distract your subject during an interview.
It isn’t the most attractive webcam, but the LifeCam Studio isn’t really designed to be attractive. Instead, it’s made for business conferencing and presentations, with its 1080p recording, 720p live video calling and wideband mic to deliver crystal clear sound. This is a serious peripheral – one that requires a powerful PC for max settings – but that doesn’t mean it’s lacking bells and whistles. For instance, it comes with 360-degree rotating capabilities and Microsoft’s TrueColor system, which will shift the exposure dynamically to keep you well lit.
Read the full review: Microsoft LifeCam Studio
Have you ever looked at a webcam in disgust because it just can’t hold up to your smartphone? Well, the Logitech Brio might be the webcam you’ve been looking for. With a 4K UHD resolution and HDR, the Logitech Brio has brought high fidelity to the world of the best webcams. If that wasn’t enough, it also boasts Windows Hello functionality and an easy to use stand, which will let you position it to capture your best side.
Creative may not be the first company that comes to mind when you’re in the market for the best webcams, but with the Creative Labs Senz3D, that’s clearly changed. This space-age webcam has more features than you can imagine, and the high-tech 3D scanner and facial tracking tech promises to lead to some intriguing things in both AR functionality and even gaming. It isn’t exactly cheap, but you’re getting all the bells and whistles with this offering from Creative.
The C930e claims to be Logitech's most advanced HD webcam yet, so it isn’t surprising that it's also one of Logitech’s most expensive offerings. However, unlike traditional webcams, which rely on the PC for all the heavy lifting, this unit does the video encoding itself, which should in turn result in better video quality. The wide, 90-degree field of view means it’s well-suited to business video conferencing and presentations. And of course, it’s Skype-certified for PC and Mac.
If you’re looking for a full HD webcam without that hefty price tag, this may be one of the best webcams for you. Boasting resolutions of up to 1080p HD while supporting 12MP stills, a noise-cancelling microphone and low-light compensation, this camera is feature-rich. There’s no autofocus, and you don’t get a big bundle of software, but that bargain price more than makes up for any shortcomings, which is why it’s earned a place on our best webcams list.
Bill Thomas has also contributed to this article
- This product is only available in the US and UK at the time of this writing. Australian readers: check out a fine alternative in the Microsoft LifeCam Studio