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Microsoft LifeCam Studio Review: Video calls made easy


Microsoft LifeCam Studio comes with LifeCam 3.0 software which is simple and easy to use. The LifeCam 3.0 offers many fun effects such as afro-hairdo and cowboy hat which you can apply for your own personalized image.

The software also allows you to set the image resolutions as well as adjustments such as brightness, contrast and colors. Unfortunately, we noticed that with the Microsoft software, you can only record video at 720p (1280×720) resolution, or capture images at 1080p; the software does offer the option of taking image (only) at up to 8 megapixel (3840×2160) interpolated.


Despite its limitation of capturing videos only at 720p HD resolution, the Lifecam Studio performed much better than we expected. It managed to maintain vibrant colours even under poorly-lit conditions. We also noticed that the video frame rate drops significantly if the ambient lighting becomes dimmer. Unlike most webcam, the Microsoft uses wide-angle lens which makes video call with multiple people in the picture possible without the need to move further away from the computer. However, one complaint is that the sensitive microphone lacks noise-cancellation and this causes it to pick up background sound easily which would make the video call experience not as ideal. Microsoft has also improve the auto-focusing on the LifeCam Studio unlike its older LifeCam HD5000 which requires refocusing constantly to each and every movement.

Lastly, 720p HD video calling is only possible on the Windows Live Messenger Beta althought that greatly depends on one's connection speed. If you use other applications such as Yahoo! Messenger or Skype, you can only do video calls at VGA (640×480) or lower resolutions.


Priced at US$99.95, the Lifecam Studio is one of the most expensive webcams in the market. Although it is capable of recording videos up to 720p HD resolution, it does so impressively even under poor lighting. As the Lifecam Studio can be mounted on a tripod, it will be great for bloggers or users who want to do live streaming. The microphone, on the other hand, could have been much better if it had noise-cancellation. On the whole, the Microsoft LifeCam Studio is a great webcam if you are looking to get one to do HD video recording and video calling.

Pros Cons
Sturdy construction Pricey
Great video performance Poor audio performance.
Easy to use


Microsoft LifeCam Studio

Retail Price: US$99.95


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