13 Webcams Reviewed

Microsoft LifeCam VX-5000

The Bundled Software

Microsoft includes software with its webcam that enables shooting videos as well as photos with a maximum resolution of 640 x 480 pixels and 1.3 megapixels, respectively. However, one limitation is that this will all have to be done close to your computer. Digital cameras and camcorders give you the advantage of greater mobility, but with this webcam you are limited by the USB cable.
Probably to prevent Logitech from being the only manufacturer to offer avatars in Live Messenger, Microsoft also has its small collection of tools which has grown in number since the last generation. We'll let you judge their overall usefulness for yourself.

The Microsoft LifeCam VX-5000 is equipped with a 1.3 megapixel sensor with a resolution of 640 x 480 pixels.  The first detail that stands out is that this webcam is very compact, which means easy transport.  Moreover, it is mounted on a flexible rubber base which enables placement on any type of support such as an LCD, CRT or even the desktop.  Contrary to the VX-1000, 3000 and 6000, there is an automatic focus feature which is highly desireable. 

On the desktop

On a CRT

On an LCD
On a laptop


So, what about image quality?

Microsoft has made huge improvements over its previous models.  During the day, quality is very good and the image rate is more than satisfactory.  Those who can’t sit still can move freely without being bothered by afterglow or a lack of fluidity.  In a poorly lit room, the subject is indeed visible on the screen while reactivity is slightly inferior.  Plan on having an alternative light source to give your conversation partner better visibility.

Good sound quality.

Sound quality is very satisfactory and the voice is recognizable.  Better yet, there is no background noise such as computer fans, which aren’t always the most discreet.

Microsoft LifeCam VX-5000
PlusesMinuses
  • Elegant and sober design
  • Image and sound quality
  • Foot
  • Compact
  • Video effects are of no interest
  • Night rendering is too dark
  • When used during the day the Microsoft VX-5000 offers nice image quality and precise sound via its integrated micro. Otherwise, rendering at night is a bit dark.