All modern applications used for chatting today also have a video calling option. Thus, a web camera is a computer accessory that is widely used among the users. Today we are taking a look at the MSI StarCam Clip, which is a budget web camera, costing around 15 euros including tax.
MSI was founded in 1986 and their headquarters are located in Taiwan. The company specializes in distributing a wide range of computer hardware products and accessories.
Let’s take a look at the MSI StarCam Clip specs:
Camera Lens: 1/4″ CMOS Sensor Glass Lens, 1.3 Megapixel
1/4″ CMOS Sensor Glass Lens Rear Pixel: VGA Format 640×480
Video Resolution: Up to 800×600 by software, 640×480, 352×288, 320×240, 176×144, 160×120
Frames Per Second: Up to 30FPS@640×480
Still Image Resolution: Up to 1280×960 by software
Focus Distance: 3cm~Infinity
Field Of View: 56 degree diagonal
Exposed Control: Auto
Image Format: RGB24
Power Consumption: Full Run: 2W typical
Interface: USB 1.1 Full Speed
USB Microphone: 45dB
Infrared Light: 0-2m High Power
A Closer Look
Inside StarCam’s package you will find the following:
- MSI StarCam Clip
- Software CD
- Multi-language Quick Guide
- User Manual
- USB Cable
So the package contains everything the user can expect from a web camera bundle.
The camera is madeof black high quality plastic and it is quite small. It is named StarCam Clip because it comes with 2 handy clips so the user can place the camera on a TFT screen or on a laptop screen. We didn’t face any problems while attaching the camera onto our TFT screen. Afterwards we used the smaller clip to attach it on our laptop, which also was not a problem. One thing worth mentioning is that the lens is made of glass instead of plastic, so that the camera can provide the best image quality.
At the camera’s back side we find the connector for the USB cable, which is also provided. Another nice feature is that the camera can rotate at almost 360 degrees, in case the user wants to point the camera at another direction.
Software, Capturing Quality and Verdict
The accompanying software coming with the camera is quite fulfilling, and is divided into two parts. MyGuard Live uses the StarCam as a security camera, and it alerts the user with alarming sound or email when it detects motion in a given area. A cool feature is that it supports remote access, so the user can check the camera from a remote location. The other piece of software is called AmpCam and allows you to capture images and videos in .avi format. The images looked ok, although the red color was a bit distorted, but this is something that cannot be noticed easily. Moreover, we found the videos to be blurry and that the audio captured had a lot of background noise. Therefore, we really recommend to use a headset to capture audio.
Of course the MSI StarCam Clip worked flawlessly with all popular chatting software, like Skype and Windows Live Messenger.
For 15 euros this camera does the job, given the fact that it belongs to the budget category. The quality we got was average, but that was something to expect.
(-) Videos captured blurry
(-) Audio captured had lots of background noise
Thus, we give the MSI StarCam Clip a rating of 7.5/10.