USB 2.0/SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Connection
Hi-Speed USB 2.0 certified and SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ready connectivity. Full HD 1080p video calling (up to 1920 x 1080 pixels) and 720p HD video calling (up to 1280 x 720 pixels) -- Much of this depending on the CPU horsepower and internet bandwidth available on your Mac as well as the OSX video capture and conferencing applications you use.
Webcam Support For H.264 - SVC Video Compression
The camera supports hardware-based H.264 and SVC video compression, and part of the updated UVC 1.5 webcam specification. Realtime hardware compression reduces data sizes and also addresses optimizations for negotiating the best video call performance and frame rates in single or multiparty HD conferences. This is an important advancement since the bandwidth available and packet delivery rates on internet cable, DSL, T1 and other network connections can vary between users in, and during a video conference. Bandwidth negotiation and monitoring during video chat is getting more sophisticated.
Stereo Webcam Microphones
Like the C910 and C920 cams which preceded it, the C930 features built-in dual stereo microphones as well. Dual microphone arrays can help with noise cancellation as well as deliver a more accurate aural presence to the room. In my testing with other dual-mic webcams -- yes, they really are stereo, but given how close they are in physical proximity don’t expect breathtaking ambient audio.
Wide Angle Webcam Lens
The C930e has a W-I-D-E wide-angle 90 degree field of view, the widest of any web camera on the Mac to date. Although there are other wide-angle webcams for Mac with a slightly narrower, 70 degree FOV, some distortion typical of a ‘Fish Eye Lens’ can occur. Logitech’s C930e claims to address and compensate for this issue to maintain a more accurate view of a business conferencing room - or a couch full of friends or family at home. Do note however, that some folks may not like this trend towards the ever-wider wide-angle conferencing webcams we’re seeing. For more casual personal and adult 1 on 1 video chat, capturing more of what’s around you or the entire room isn’t necessarily ideal or preferred.
Webcam Autofocus and Light Management
This cam features super-smooth autofocus and their RightLight 2 automatic low-light correction technology that helps insure a clear image and better frame-rates in various lighting environments, even in low light. From my experience Logitech’s smooth and responsive autofocus took huge strides forward a few years back when they introduced the Mac Vision Pro. Far too many other Mac compatible web cameras have a rather ‘STEPPY’ and lagged auto focus. That can be distracting as a lesser webcam struggles to keep up and adjust to movement within the frame.
Optical Quality Webcam Lens
As with their previous premium webcam models, Logitech continues to use the awesome optical quality glass Carl Zeiss lenses for spectacular image clarity few other Mac compatible webcam brands deliver.
Webcam Privacy Shutter
A small, flip-down external privacy shutter that snaps on is included with the camera. However, I think an optional piece of clip-on plastic a rather chintzy ‘security solution.’ Other webcam manufacturers have used more elegant and integrated sliding lens covers built-in to the camera over the years with no separate pieces to break off or lose.
Optional Webcam Tripod Mount
Also welcomed is a standard camera tripod mount. Its integrated into the universal clip that also fits various Mac laptops, LCD screens, or sits atop CRT monitors on your desktop. Many Apple users are frustrated by the limited angles and range of, say, a MacBook, iMac or Cinema Display’s built-in iSight camera. So there’s a very healthy demand not just for external webcams for Mac in general - but some really want the stability and precision placement a tripod mount webcam can provide.
An external Mac compatible webcam can be used for a variety of needs. For teachers, presenters and others - specialized document web cameras with an adjustable stand is better than trying to hold something up and still in front of a built-in iSight camera. For business meetings, an eternal conferencing camera might be used to display products and highlight details or features of an item. For others, an external webcam with a tripod mounting option like the Logitech C920 with tripod mount might give the stability or precise placement you need.
Perhaps more than anything, adult webcam chat may be the single biggest driving interest in the flexibility of camera placement that an iMac or MacBook’s built-in webcam simply can’t provide. Don’t underestimate the size of the adult ‘naughty’ chat marketplace. Whether you think such online activity -- whether it’s Gay or Straight, between married couples or total strangers -- is inappropriate is moot. Literally millions of people across the globe engage in adult online conferencing, and for that purpose a PC notebook or Apple laptop’s internal camera is nothing but frustrating. Tilt the camera down far enough to expose your ‘good parts’ and you can’t see what’s onscreen anymore! Not all webcam chat is about smiling face to face interactions.
The last reason to possibly want an Apple compatible external webcam is to improve the image quality over what’s built into your aging iMac or MacBook. My first-generation white MacBook had a built-in iSight webcam at 640x480 VGA resolution that was notorious for having a very reddish image. (That color problem was rectified in later models.) An external UVC web camera not only gave me much more accurate color balance, but was higher in resolution and detail which easily outperformed the internal webcam.
When what’s built into your Mac isn’t good enough, consider any of the recommended HD webcams for Mac for affordable or very high quality webcam alternatives that will let you point your camera anywhere you need to.
Easily take and review snapshots, then send them directly to your Evernote notebook.
In the above video clip - iPevo demonstrates their document webcam’s software integration with EverNote to grab and subsequently share your captured images with others.
iPevo Ziggi Document Cam
With Webcam Stand
iPevo Point2View Cam
Manual and AutoFocus Control
iPevo offers two document cameras for Mac OSX with its Ziggi and manual and auto-focus Point2View webcams - along with camera mounting stands and specialized webcam snapshot software for Mac OSX to help you get picture-perfect images to share of small objects and documents during live presentations on a videoconference - or for later use.
Mac Compatible HD Webcam
Autofocus + Stereo Microphones
Offering dual microphones for stereo audio, 720p and 1080p resolutions and autofocus, this Mac compatible HD web camera currently lists at around $39, about half of Logitech’s price. In my testing the RocketFish HD performed quite well, good light sensitivity and color saturation, reasonable image clarity and smooth autofocus - although like too many webcams is a bit slow to respond to changes, about a 1-2 second lag in my estimation.
What you DON’T get from RocketFish at this price is the clarity and world-class optical glass Zeiss lens that makes high-end Logitech cams so spectacular in detail, or the exceptionally fast and fluid autofocus that outperforms all others.
Want and even lower-cost external Mac web cam? This cheap 720p RocketFish HD webcam for Mac or PC can usually be had for $15-20. Includes a built-in microphone and autofocus:
Cheap Mac Webcam
720p HD Webcam w/Mic
1080p HD GearHead Webcam
Stereo Microphone + AutoFocus
With an oblong design, auto-focus, and dual-microphones in a High-Definition web cam, clearly they're trying to mimic Logitech's best HD webcam models with a knockoff of their own. And for half to a third the price of other top-end HD webcams this GearHead HD camera may be a reasonable choice for budget-minded Mac owners.
As webcam resolutions increase - the demand on computer bandwidth becomes staggering, especially as we move from 720p to 1080p high-definition modes. It's just a TON of data to deal with. To keep data streams manageable - and to save significant disk space when capturing video to your hard drive, H.264 is a huge advance in reducing data size dramatically while preserving a very, very high quality image. It's so efficient and so good that it's been adopted widely across the computing universe, most notably and recently in the Blu-Ray DVD standard to deliver stunning images and still fit a feature film on disc. It's also one of the many CODEC's bundled into Apple's QuickTime software.
As it applies to Logitech's C920 web camera - what isn't clear is if Mac OSX is getting the benefit of H.264 compression built into the webcam's hardware. Although users report it works fine on their Intel Macintosh systems running Leopard and Lion, it's not known if or when the C920 will be OFFICIALLY 'Mac SUPPORTED' or 'Qualified For Mac'. The comments in this forum thread indicate Logitech isn't publicly committing to Mac compatibility -- at this time.
Genius iSlim 2000 Webcam
Mac OSX 10.5 and Up
Of note the Mac friendly Genius 2000-AF - as the model name implies - featured motorized hardware Auto-Focus, 2MP webcam resolution and a built-in microphone.
Creative LiveCam InPerson HD
Quad Microphone Array
Creative Lab's Live Cam inPerson HD webcam delivers Skype Certified wide-screen HD 720p Video Conferencing with onboard hardware H.264 processing to reduce the CPU demands on your system. You can enjoy headset-free video chat with it's noise canceling array of four built-in microphones that delivers clear voice reproduction and eliminates ambient room noises for exceptional audio clarity.
H.264 video compression built-into the web camera's hardware is something we'll be seeing more of in future models of Mac compatible webcams.
Creative specs for the InPerson HD state Mac OSX Leopard 10.5+, Snow Leopard or OSX Lion. As with many cross-platform compatible webcams, the bundled software is Windows only, but base functionality is assured thanks to it's UVC - USB 2.0 Video Class compliance. Keep in mind - HD video resolutions require fast dual-core Intel CPUs and online HD chat - and also REQUIRES a high-bandwidth internet connection to deliver good frame-rates in 720p HD modes.