Best Camera For Streaming
Whether you're setting up your first stream on Twitch or you're a veteran looking to upgrade, having the best camera for streaming can make a world of difference. Cameras, or webcams, allow players to see you when you're streaming and are often a staple of the modern setup for streamers today. There are many different types of cameras which range wildly in price and features, so choosing the best one for your setup can sometimes be an overwhelming experience. We've decided to take a look at some of the top streaming cameras below and see how they all compare.
Having a facecam for your stream has long become an important factor in building and growing an audience on streaming sites like Twitch.tv and Mixer. It's no surprise that streamers regularly say that once they added a camera to their setup, their audience and viewer counts increased. Having a camera helps build a relationship between your viewers because they can see how you react to important moments on stream and seeing your physical appeareance helps make things feel more personal. Of course, not everyone has a camera or facecam setup, so it is possible to still have a large audience following you without one. But if you want to take it to the next level, we recommend a streaming camera for your setup.
Having a camera for your streaming setup doesn't have to be an expensive acquisition either. There are many different types of cameras which can be used for starter streamers or those want to test out whether having one is for them. You can always upgrade to a better camera at a later date too if you find streaming with a camera is a popular experience for your viewers.
Camera Setup Considerations
Let's take a look at some of the important aspects of having a web camera for your stream and what you need to consider:
- Processing Power - Having a facecam means your computer needs to process another input stream. Rendering a live video alongside gameplay or some other live video stream means more work for your computer's CPU. If you have a slow computer, you'll want to consider getting a less powerful webcam so that it doesn't impact the quality of your stream. If your computer is a gaming computer, you should be fine with whatever camera you choose to use (as they are typically designed with all the resources needed).
- Resolution - How good do you want your facecam to be? The quality of webcams varies greatly and they all have different resolutions they can capture. The standard resolution is full HD (1080p) with options to downgrade should you need to. But you may also want a 4K camera for capturing high-quality footage. If a webcam isn't something you're particularly bothered about and just want to try out, you can go for an even lower resoultion at 720p. The higher the resolution though, the more power your computer needs to process and render the video, so keep that in mind when buying.
- Tripods/Stands - Something many streamers forget when buying a camera is where they are going to place the camera. Some cameras come with their own attachment devices that allow you to clip them to the top of your monitor. But you may also want your camera to be at a different angle/position and for that you'll need a tripod for your setup too.
- Built In Microphone - Some cameras also come with build-in microphones. If you're a streamer, you probably have your own microphone setup already but if not, you may want to consider using the built-in microphone that some cameras provide.
- Camera Field Display - How wide do you want your camera to be able to shoot from? Some cameras have limited range and some have wide-angle lenses allowing them to pick up more of your setup.
- Other Features: Having zoom in features, light-correcting functions and more will also add benefits to your stream setup.
4K versus HD
4K resolution is becoming more and more popular; you'll hear most game companies creating their games with 4K resolution in mind and it's definitely the buzzword for the latest movies and TV screens of the last few years. The question is whether having a 4K camera is really nesscesary for streaming on platforms like Twitch? Does it really matter if you have crystal clear facecam? Are people that bothered by it that they will switch off?
The answer is pretty much no. 4K cameras are usually not required to keep your audience on your stream- unless your stream is doing something outdoors and literally revolves around your camera. For a simple facecam in the bottom of your streaming setup, a nice HD camera will work wonders. Popular streamers with thousands of viewers may use 4K cameras just because they can and want to provide the best of the best viewing experience. But if you're on a budget and want to conserve how much you invest into a facecam for your stream, a HD model will be fine.
The price difference between 4K and HD cameras is coming down quite a lot. When 4K first came onto the scene, the price difference was incredibly high. Nowadays the cost is probably less than double, so if you do have some extra cash, it may be worth investing in.
The Best Cameras For Streaming
Let's go ahead and take a look at some of the most popular cameras for streaming. We've tried to show a variety of different types at all sorts of different price ranges so you should be able to find something here that will benefit your stream setup.
This camera shoots footage in spectacular 4K resolution and comes with a premium glass lense for capturing high-quality footage. It has HDR (high dynamic range) enabled, autofocus and a range of other options to make sure it delivers beautiful life-to-video quality. It has USB 2.0 and 3.0 connectors and has three different field-of-view options whilst maintaining its high definition quality.
Its RightLight 3 technology helps with automatically adjusting of exposure and contrast to compensate for glare and backlighting.
- 4K Resolution
- 3 different Field Of View options
- RightLight 3 technology for adjusting light exposure and glare.
This camera is perfect for starting your streaming relationship with your viewers. It captures up to 720p resolution video and comes with a built-in microphone that can block out background noise (can als o be disable if you have your own). This camera is priced incredibly low at under $20, which makes it perfect for new streamers. It comes with automatic light-correction for smooth high-quality recording.
- 720p Resolution
- Auto-light correction
- Under $20.00
One of the most highly-rated cameras for streaming, the Logitech C920 records in Full HD allowing for a perfect facecam quality without breaking the bank. It has over 10,000 reviews on Amazon, rating it 4.5 stars. The camera can clip on top of your monitor easily and also comes with a built-in microphone. Settings for this camera can easily be adjusted in OBS studio too.
- HD Resolution
- Highly Rated
- Easily Mounted onto Monitor
- Built in Microphone
This is another great webcam for starting out with. It shoots in HD video and works well with software like OBS and Skype. The camera is equipped with 7 element optical glass lens to provide crystal clear images. It has a wide 100 Degree Angle View with no optical distortion which makes it perfect for streaming. It also comes Advanced H.264 Vedio Compression Technology that helps with smoother streaming and processing of live video footage.
- HD Resolution
- 100 Degree Angle View
- Advanced H.264 Vedio Compression Technology
- Built in Microphone
If you're looking for something with a bit more quality, try the Panasonic Lumix FZ80 camera. This professional piece of equipment can capture 4K footage in stunning detail. It has a 18.1 megapixel camera 60x zoom and many other features that professional photographers would use. It does require a stand to use for streaming, but the quality will be unrivalled to standard webcams. This camera can also be used for travelling and other activities if you're after high definition photos and video.
- 18.1 megapixel camera
- Professional Camera
- Connect with USB/Wifi.