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Thread: Cheap web/video cam?

  1. #1
    danny.guitar Guest

    Cheap web/video cam?

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    I want to start making audio/videos to put on my site. I bought this real cheap webcam and wasn't expecting much...quality was okay I guess but the frame rate was terrible. I wanna record some guitar videos and whatnot. But on that camera, just strumming slow looked like a blur.

    What's the cheapest camera I can get nowadays with a good enough frame rate for this kind of thing? Or what kind of frame rate should I be looking for? I wanna look through some on the internet but not sure how to know if it will be good enough.

    Wanna keep it cheap as possible.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by danny.guitar View Post
    I want to start making audio/videos to put on my site. I bought this real cheap webcam and wasn't expecting much...quality was okay I guess but the frame rate was terrible. I wanna record some guitar videos and whatnot. But on that camera, just strumming slow looked like a blur.

    What's the cheapest camera I can get nowadays with a good enough frame rate for this kind of thing? Or what kind of frame rate should I be looking for? I wanna look through some on the internet but not sure how to know if it will be good enough.

    Wanna keep it cheap as possible.
    Video of any kind has to be at least 24fps. Anything less will be percieved as choppy and not fluid enough.

    Frame-rate will be dependant on the interface you are using and the specs of your system since cheap webcams don't have any kind of onboard encoding hardware like a DV camcorder would.

    You'll need to post your system specs before anyone can make a realistic recommendation.

    Most USB 2.0 webcams in the $50-100 range are capable of 25fps video at 320x240 resolution if your system is powerful enough.

  3. #3
    danny.guitar Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by brzilian View Post
    Video of any kind has to be at least 24fps. Anything less will be percieved as choppy and not fluid enough.

    Frame-rate will be dependant on the interface you are using and the specs of your system since cheap webcams don't have any kind of onboard encoding hardware like a DV camcorder would.

    You'll need to post your system specs before anyone can make a realistic recommendation.

    Most USB 2.0 webcams in the $50-100 range are capable of 25fps video at 320x240 resolution if your system is powerful enough.
    My computer's old & not that great as far as specs goes but it still seems to run pretty fast to me, even compared to newer computers:

    AMD 1.2 GHz
    512 MB RAM
    GeForce 4 MX Video Card
    80 GB 7200 RPM hard drive
    Windows XP
    USB 1.1

    I can buy & install a PCI USB 2.0 card if I need to.

    Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by danny.guitar View Post
    My computer's old & not that great as far as specs goes but it still seems to run pretty fast to me, even compared to newer computers:

    AMD 1.2 GHz
    512 MB RAM
    GeForce 4 MX Video Card
    80 GB 7200 RPM hard drive
    Windows XP
    USB 1.1

    I can buy & install a PCI USB 2.0 card if I need to.

    Thanks.

    That system is anchient by today's standards, especially if you want to do video work.

    Even this Logitech WebCam needs at least a 1.4Ghz P4. Keep in mind minimum specs don't promise decent perfomance - they simply guarantee the thing will not crash on the system. They actually recommend a 2.4Ghz processor.

    http://www.logitech.com/index.cfm/we.../3055&cl=us,en

    Capturing video is only half of the job - you'll still need to edit and recompress the video for Web distribution. Your current system will make that entire process very, very, very painful.

    Stop spending money on your current system and start saving up for a new one.

  5. #5
    danny.guitar Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by brzilian View Post
    That system is anchient by today's standards, especially if you want to do video work.

    Even this Logitech WebCam needs at least a 1.4Ghz P4. Keep in mind minimum specs don't promise decent perfomance - they simply guarantee the thing will not crash on the system. They actually recommend a 2.4Ghz processor.

    http://www.logitech.com/index.cfm/we.../3055&cl=us,en

    Capturing video is only half of the job - you'll still need to edit and recompress the video for Web distribution. Your current system will make that entire process very, very, very painful.

    Stop spending money on your current system and start saving up for a new one.
    You really need that powerful of a system to just record something from a web camera without staggering/choppyness? I don't do a lot of video editing, I just want to record some simple videos to put on YouTube or my website, but at least want people to be able to see what I'm playing.

    The reason I haven't upgraded my computer is because I haven't really had to...I do a bunch of web & graphic design using Photoshop CS3, audio recording, and sometimes DVD creation without any problems.

  6. #6
    danny.guitar Guest
    I tried out my friend's Logitech which is 30fps. He said he paid about $30 for it. It ran fine but the quality wasn't as good as I expected. Good enough for YouTue I guess.

  7. #7
    danny.guitar Guest
    I got the Microsoft LiveCam VX-3000 and it runs fine.

    Anyone know of any good software to record videos? Preferably free. It'd be nice to set the microphone device also so it doesn't record audio from the webcam's mic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by danny.guitar View Post
    I got the Microsoft LiveCam VX-3000 and it runs fine.

    Anyone know of any good software to record videos? Preferably free. It'd be nice to set the microphone device also so it doesn't record audio from the webcam's mic.
    you can turn the mic in the cam off by going to control pannel/syster/hardware setup and disable the USB audio device.

    I have the VX 3000 and it works well but might be bogged down with a USB 1.1 port. records fine at 29fps on USB 2.0
    Lemontree Studio
    Not bitter, not twisted!

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    **EDIT**
    It appears I was a bit late with this, but for future reference....

    Quote Originally Posted by danny.guitar View Post
    You really need that powerful of a system to just record something from a web camera without staggering/choppyness?
    If the webcam is doing all the processing in the computer, then yes. However, with a DSP card, I used to do some video recording and editing at 720x576 at 25fps on a 300MHz machine with no dropped frames.

    Either way, I would not use a webcam. Most digital cameras have some kind of video recording feature. This, for instance:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0aWdHV8VtHM

    ...was done on a low-end Samsung camera on a tripod. It was filmed at 640x480 at 30fps (the stupid thing not supporting our national standard of 25 ). The camera was about £90 - if they did the usual rip-people-off-in-the-UK trick you can probably get it for $90 in the US. I seriously recommend getting a power adaptor for it too, since it really eats the AA batteries if you do video with it.

    A camera like this will record the video to an SD card in AVI format. All you need to do is copy the video off the SD card, and edit it. Since the computer won't be doing the capture itself, you won't need to upgrade it.

    The only thing the camera is likely to suck at is audio, so I suggest you record that separately, use the AVI soundtrack as a guidepost and dub the separate soundtrack in.

    **EDIT**

    The camera is a Samsung S730

  10. #10
    danny.guitar Guest
    Thanks, I used this program to capture only the video and then recorded the audio from my 24/96 through Reaper at the same time, and now I'm trying to put the 2 together. For some reason, Windows Movie Maker is not wanting to cooperate by letting me simply mix the 2 together. I used Reaper to line up the audio with the video, so I should just be able to add the 2 together and it will be in sync.

    The audio is at 48KHz/16-bit/stereo/WAV and Windows Movie Maker won't play the audio when I try to put them together.

    Quote Originally Posted by LemonTree
    you can turn the mic in the cam off by going to control pannel/syster/hardware setup and disable the USB audio device.

    I have the VX 3000 and it works well but might be bogged down with a USB 1.1 port. records fine at 29fps on USB 2.0
    I bought a USB 2.0 card so it seems to work okay. I'm not sure what device is the audio device in the USB controllers hardware section... I may have to look at the webcam manual again cause I think it says which is which.

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