Creative Labs Live! Cam Video IM Pro
- Decent quality image, wide range of controls, fun
- Maximum resolution is software enhanced
A great webcam that offers reasonable image quality and all the features you'd expect out of such a device.
Price$ 89.95 (AUD)
The lengthily named Live! Cam Video IM Pro is one of Creative Labs' mid-range webcams. It's got a heap of functionality and decent video quality to boot. Anyone looking for a simple to use webcam that includes some fun extras can't go far wrong with this product.
The heart of the Live! Cam Video IM Pro is a 640 x 480 VGA sensor. This is used to good effect for video and stills. Images can be scaled by Creative's software up to 1280 x 960 (1.3 megapixels), and they don't look too bad. Video can be captured at the native resolution of 640 x 480 at 30fps, or scaled to 800 x 600 which drops the frame rate to 15fps. Video is clear and sharp, with few signs of blurring and a good colour balance. Creative include a wide range of controls, such as gamma, backlight adjustment and exposure, which is useful for anyone using the webcam in low light.
If you don't want to use Creative's software then the webcam is fully compatible with MSN Messenger, Yahoo! Messenger and others. Creative even bundle a clip-on microphone so you can engage in voice conversations. However, it's Creative's software that provides the most fun. This allows a whole host of extra features that you don't find with cheaper models. In addition to JPEG photo capture, and WMV or DiVX video capture, Creative offers motion detection, remote monitoring and time-lapse video.
To spice up the video capture, Creative includes a whole range of video effects filters. These range from bizarre psychedelic motion filters to the ability to superimpose your head on Ayers Rock or the Eiffel Tower. We were even able to get into the Christmas spirit with Creative's 'sparkle' filter! If you get bored of the twenty or so filters that come bundled, it's possible to download more for free from Creative's website.
The motion detection feature is similar to those we have seen on other devices. Areas can be set on the screen to monitor, and when motion is detected an alarm sounds and the camera starts recording. It can even be set to email stills of the intruder to a give email address. If you're really feeling adventurous then it's also possible to configure the camera to be viewed remotely over the Internet, though you'll need your own website to do so. Face tracking is also included, though its usefulness is debatable. The idea is that the camera zooms into the area of the screen that contains the user's face, though we found it wasn't entirely accurate and would constantly zoom back and forth all over the place.
One other fun feature is the ability to record time-lapse video. In this mode the camera takes a still shot at give intervals, and then merges them into a WMV video. This is perfect for taking those long shots of flowers blooming you might have seen on nature programs, or the high speed cloud movement sometimes seen on weather forecasts such as Channel 10's Skywatch.
Overall it's hard to see what else anyone could really need from a webcam; Creative has done a great job at including a multitude of features with respectable image quality.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 LG 2017 OLED TV range full review: W7 Signature Wallpaper, G7, E7 and C7 UHD TVs
- 2 Tag Heuer Connected Smartwatch and Android Wear 2 review
- 3 Subaru XV 2017 review
- 4 Samsung 2017 QLED Q7 TV: Full, in-depth review
- 5 Kogan Atlas UltraSlim Pro laptop: full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Microsoft's Story Remix uses machine learning and mixed reality to make your movies awesome
- New IoT malware targets 100,000 IP cameras via known flaw
- Facebook launches tool for capturing 360 video inside VR
- Sony's PlayStation 4 Pro finally adds 4K video support for local files
- HBO brought its best shows to life at SXSW with an awesome escape room
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- MSI GE72 7RE Apache Pro gaming laptop review
- LG 2017 OLED TV range full review: W7 Signature Wallpaper, G7, E7 and C7 UHD TVs
- Huawei P10 smartphone review
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTSocial Media Executive / Specialist (Facebook) - online gamblingNSW
- TPSenior Project ManagerVIC
- CCSystems Analyst- Port MacquarieQLD
- TPUAT CoordinatorQLD
- FTUrgent -Java Developer (Programmer). 3 different positionsNSW
- TPSenior Developer - API - Data ReportingNSW
- FTSenior Data Engineer | up to $92 p/hrVIC
- FTSenior Business Analyst, Regulatory Reforms, FinanceNSW
- FTNetwork AdministratorQLD
- CCVDI EngineerACT
- FTImplementation ConsultantNSW
- FTSecurity ConsultantVIC
- FTDisaster Recovery AnalystNSW
- FTManager - Commercial ClientsACT
- CCState-wide Business Transition Lead - BrisbaneVIC
- FTSolution Architect - Datacentre / StorageQLD
- CCSAP ISU Functional ConsultantVIC
- TPSenior Deployment Officer (Office 365)QLD
- FTDemand Release ManagerNSW
- CCSenior Magento DeveloperVIC
- FTProcurement OfficerACT
- FTDigital Marketing Manager | Initial 6 Month ContractNSW
- FTSolution ArchitectSA
- FTIntegration and Implementation SpecialistVIC
- FTSenior Business Analyst, Wealth ProductsNSW