Gaming laptops are traditionally full of compromises.
- Built-in noise suppression microphone, slick alloy casing, image quality, autofocus, mounting options
- Full functionality only possible with iChat AV, not compatible with Windows systems, expensive, image settings not adjustable
If you’re a Mac user, the iSight is the only webcam you should be considering. It’s expensive, but in terms of quality and ease-of-use it’s a clear winner.
Price$ 229.00 (AUD)
The Apple iSight is a stylish Macintosh based FireWire webcam which delivers outstanding video quality and includes a noise suppression microphone - but be prepared to pay for Apples styling.
As with most Apple hardware products, the emphasis is on unique design and the iSight is certainly eye-catching. Cased in a cylinder shaped aluminum-alloy exterior, the iSight wins points for looks, and weighs only 63 grams. Furthermore, it offers three different mounting options including a plastic stand for eMac's and other desktop computers, a mount for iBooks and PowerBooks and a magnetic mount for LCD monitors, including Apple's cinema displays.
Once mounted, the iSight is adjustable both at about 20 degrees in each direction. We found that when it was attached to the top of our iMac G5, the angle of video capture is increased and overall, the iSight feels more like a television than a video camera.
Once we connected to iSight to our computer, we were thoroughly impressed with its results. Particularly important to note was the image quality which is as close to full colour reproduction as we have seen on any webcam. To top it all off, we found the image was crisp and clear at all times. The iSight also features autofocus (which ranges from as close as 50mm), while an on-board processor automatically adjusts sharpness, colour, white balance, focus and exposure. The autofocus feature was excellent when it focused on a stationary item and even followed moving objects fairly well.
But the autofocus isn't perfect and sometimes focused on the wrong area, particularly when a second person or object entered the viewing area. Additionally, the image settings such as colour, brightness and contrast are not adjustable. While the automatic functions do a fairly good job, we would have liked to have the freedom of adjusting the settings ourselves.
The Apple iSight includes a built in noise-suppressing microphone and it delivered clear audio during our tests. Apple claims the microphone takes in the sound and then determines which sounds are essential to the conversation with an algorithm that filters out excessive noise. While it sounds fairly technical, we can tell you that it does work as well as claimed.
On the negative side, the iSight requires iChat AV to operate all of its functions and this is not included in the package - in fact there is no included software at all. Furthermore, the iSight is built entirely for use on Macintosh based systems so Windows users will have to look elsewhere.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Google Pixel 3a review: Less is more
- 2 Huawei P30 Pro review: A photography powerhouse that leans into and elevates its natural strengths
- 3 Samsung Galaxy S10 review: Messy decisions mar smart evolutions
- 4 Dell G7 review: Growing pains
- 5 Nokia 8.1 review: The more things change, the more they stay the same
Latest News Articles
- D-Link locally launches Omna home surveillance hardware
- Ring expand local offering with new Stick Up Cam
- CES 2019: Arlo expand into the smart home, confirm Arlo Ultra pricing
- Arlo announces 4K HDR wire-free security camera system
- Navman introduces the MiVUE dash cam
PCW Evaluation Team
As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.
The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.
This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.
Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications
I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)
It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!
- Huawei P30 Pro: Full, in-depth review
- Panasonic Lumix S1 review
- Google Pixel 3a review: Less is more
- Everything you need to know about Smart TVs
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?