The Eyeball 2.0 from Blue Microphones is squarely aimed at those who want improved video conferencing, or want to record better quality YouTube uploads, with a focus on superior audio performance.
First, let's get the aesthetics out of the way. Take one look at the Eyeball 2.0 and the focus on audio becomes glaringly obvious. While the camera is nestled away – almost apologetically – in the retractable side appendage, the Eyeball's mic is a bulbous adornment that simply shouts 'I'm all about the audio!'.
Before we even get into the camera's performance, this could well be an issue for the more style-conscious among you. It just looks really weird! But looks aren't everything.
To get started with your Mac, all you need to do is hang the camera from the top of your monitor, and plug it in via USB. The camera is auto-detected, and there's no need for third-party software.
This initial setup couldn't be simpler. Be warned, though; there are issues with iMovie. You first have to record videos using Photo Booth and then import them into your iMovie project – an irritating additional step for some.
At 640x480, the iSight camera built in to most Macs doesn't take much beating, and though the Eyeball boasts a sharper, more contrasted picture (1600x1200), there's some serious image noise and blurring with movement.
Audio's a different story, though, with the Eyeball trumping a built-in mic for pick-up, bass, and pretty much every aspect of audio quality. But this is a webcam, not a mic!
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