Razer has launched a swath of goods to this point right through the pandemic, however its new Kiyo Professional would possibly have the widest enchantment of all of them. It’s a brand new $199 webcam that appears like a lens ripped off a mirrorless digital camera, aimed to offer Logitech’s Brio some just right pageant within the specifications division. The four-year-old Brio continues to be the perfect selection if you happen to worth 4K seize and Home windows Hi authentication, however the Kiyo Professional is not any slouch, in a position to streaming or recording 1080p pictures at as much as 60 frames in keeping with 2d, with an not obligatory HDR mode that shows at 30 frames in keeping with 2d. Razer’s new webcam is a extra compact choice, and it has a couple of different options that would possibly make it value taking into account if you wish to have a high-end webcam for extra than simply becoming a member of Zoom calls.
The Kiyo Professional is being located as a good selection each for leaping into a gathering and for individuals who have spare time activities or careers broadcasting their faces. It’s backing up that declare with a couple of options that I’ve been ready to check during the last few days. Certainly one of them is its adjustable box of view (FOV), letting you change between 80 levels for a tighter crop of your face, a midrange 90-degree shot, or as much as a super-wide 103 levels. The latter possibility is good if a couple of individual is within the shot or if you wish to sing their own praises your dwelling house.
You’ll be able to modify those settings and extra from inside Razer’s Synapse, regardless that annoyingly, that tool didn’t all the time mirror adjustments I made to the settings within the digital camera preview. Surprisingly, I had to enroll in a Zoom name to look adjustments take impact. I perceive there are individuals who don’t wish to fuss with tool, and so you understand, this can be a plug-and-play tool for Home windows 10 and macOS. That stated, it’ll be at a hard and fast FOV, and the suite of settings that I element underneath gained’t be to be had to you except you get Razer’s tool.
6.5 out of 10
- Captures smooth 1080p / 60fps footage
- Does a good job of balancing lighting
- Supports a wide 103-degree FOV
- Costly, considering it can’t do 4K or Windows Hello
- Adjusting FOV requires Synapse software
- Autofocus is frequently hunting
This webcam features a 2.1-megapixel CMOS IMX327 autofocusing sensor with an f/2.0 aperture, covered in a sheet of Gorilla Glass 3, which is admittedly an odd feature for a camera that doesn’t move. It utilizes Sony’s Starvis technology, typically used in security cams, that makes it good at picking out details in low light and balancing light sources for a true-to-life picture. I was impressed with its ability to automatically make the dreadful lighting in my basement studio apartment look alright, with a few small tweaks by me in the brightness and saturation departments). So, I imagine people with ideal lighting will fare even better and possibly not have to adjust settings at all.
During some Zoom calls with the Kiyo Pro, none of the participants were blown away by the visual fidelity. They did, however, remark that it’s noticeably smoother and more detailed in terms of color accuracy than any laptop webcam, and especially given my apartment’s lighting situation (almost all artificial lights, with little natural light coming in), my picture looked lively.
Even with a bright window behind me that usually gets over-exposed by just about any laptop’s webcam, this camera balanced my apartment’s lighting without blowing out the background or dropping off in terms of detail. If you’re a game streamer with a vibrant set of colorful LEDs set up around your rig, this feature should be beneficial to you, too.
The autofocus works relatively quickly, and it didn’t have to spend long clearing up the shot when I held an object close to the sensor, then pulled it away so it could refocus on my face. However, the autofocus tends to jump around a lot, hunting for a clearer shot even if I’m barely moving. This was perhaps the most annoying part of the experience for me, but it’s a small consolation that Synapse lets you set it to manual focus if you don’t plan to move all that much.
This webcam features omnidirectional microphones, though I highly recommend using a dedicated microphone or a headset equipped with one instead. What’s built into the Kiyo Pro is good in a pinch, and there’s a good amount of bass and clarity in my voice, but it’s a little quiet and echo-y by default.
Razer’s Kiyo Pro is a competent webcam with a few unique traits. At $200, it obviously can’t compete with the fidelity of a DSLR or mirrorless camera that’s been repurposed as a webcam or even a modern smartphone with webcam apps installed. But for the cost, it should stack up better than it does to Logitech’s Brio released in 2017. Instead, Razer made an equally pricey webcam with fewer features. If webcams ever become as tough to find in stock as they were in early 2020, it’ll be nice to have another option on the market. But presently, it’s tough to recommend this model outright.