If you’re not a technology guru , it can be difficult to know which webcam or microphone to buy for use with Skype. After all, there is a huge selection out there with different features to choose from. While most of them will probably do the job, which one will offer you the value for money that you’re looking for with the performance you need to keep in touch with your family and friends?
First of all, don’t fall into the trap of buying an HD webcam if your broadband is not quite up to the task. Your internet speed will have a huge impact on the quality of videos. If both you and your correspondents have lightning fast internet, then do choose HD, but most people will be just fine with buying an ordinary webcam for less money. If the video is going to look the same either way, you might as well choose the cheaper option.
On the other hand, if you plan to use your webcam to record web video and not just chat on Skype, it is actually worth buying the best model you can find. That’s because the output then will go straight to your PC and internet speed will no longer have an impact on your result. If you want to post vlogs on your blog, for example, a better webcam is an excellent investment because it’s cheaper than a camcorder and will give you video that’s almost as good.
If you have a laptop or a thin desktop monitor, a webcam that attaches to the top of your screen is always going to be the best choice for video calling. That’s because it focuses directly on your face, whereas a camera which is perched on the desk may provide an awkward or strange angle. It will look unnatural to the other person. There is also a great deal of convenience to having your webcam on the top of your screen; you never have to worry about storing it or removing it. It will usually be high enough not to block any content and if it stays connected, it will be very easy to access whenever you need it.
Most webcams will have a microphone attached, so before buying any extra headphones or microphones, give it a test run. If you hear extra noise from interference to the point that it disrupts your call, you should then look into purchasing a set of headphones. The best choices are headphones with a microphone attached; you might look a bit strange to your friends but they’ll appreciate the ability to hear you so clearly.
If you want to use Skype on the big screen, you can also get webcams for your television. They’re expensive, so not for the casual Skype user, and only certain high end TVs even support the function. But Skype’s mission as a company is to expand onto more devices and TVs are one of them, so if you’re not considering buying a webcam for your TV now, you might well be in the future.
Choosing the right webcam can enhance your Skype experience, but don’t stress too much about it. Skype can work with almost any webcam and what matters is your ability to chat with your family and friends, not the quality of your camera.