First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
Creative Labs Vista Pro
- Cheap, Snapshot button located on camera, helpful software
- USB 1.1, CMOS sensor, only 15 fps at 640 x 480, grainy image
A cheap no-frills webcam, useful for simple video conferencing.
Price$ 69.00 (AUD)
Buy now (Selling at 34 stores)
Creative have an extensive range of webcams, including the high end (and not to mention expensive) Live! Ultra, capable of capturing 640x480 video at a full 30 frames per second (fps) - all the way down to the no-frills Vista series of webcams. Despite its low price, the Creative Vista Pro is reliable, easy to use and works with all the video enabled software we threw at it. If you want to just video conference with friends on your favourite instant messaging program, or grab a couple of shots here and there, the Vista Pro is a cheap, but dependable, solution.
The Vista Pro clips firmly onto any thin support, such as an LCD monitor or a laptop screen. The legs also fold away, allowing the camera to be placed on any flat surface, although we did find the camera to feel unstable when sitting on top of a CRT monitor. To focus the image, users can adjust the focus of the camera by turning the manual focus ring, located around the lens. After plugging in the camera through the included 6" USB cable, we were taken through a simple install process.
The software bundle ncludes Creative's WebCam Center - an all purpose webcam control software that allows video capture, remote monitoring, motion detection, and time lapse video recording. The remote monitoring function allows users to set up the cam as a security device, recording still images and uploading them to a user provided FTP. The interval for recording the still images can set up for a shot every second. Creative also include ArcSoft Multimedia Email and Ulead Photo Express, an easy to use and simple image editing application.
The image sensor used in the Vista Pro is a 640x480 CMOS sensor, which is of a lower quality sensor when compared to CCD sensors. This image sensor is limited to capturing video at 30 fps at 320x240, or 15 fps at 640x480. By comparison, the Creative Live! Ultra is capable of a full 30 fps at 640x480. Running at 320x240, we found the video quality acceptable and the graininess not as apparent due to the lower resolution. When capturing at 640x480 at 15 fps, video lags quite considerably and the graininess is evident.
We tried the camera in a variety of applications, including MSN, Yahoo! Messenger and AIM. The device is recognized as a Video For Windows (VFW) device, and therefore works in any video capable software. This is very handy if you intend on using your own software for streaming video to the internet, or recording effects in your favourite open source software.
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GGG Evaluation Team
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.