Is it worth it to buy an inexpensive webcam on Amazon?

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Don’t dismiss a low-cost webcam from Amazon until you’ve used it.

image credits: wired

When you start seeing a lot of knockoffs and dupes from internet-based small merchants and retailers springing up on Amazon, you know there’s a lot of demand for anything. Webcams were in the forefront during the pandemic, when everyone on the planet seemed to be looking for methods to interact with others without leaving their homes. Naturally, lesser-known firms and even unknown brands felt compelled to participate.

This was a godsend at the time, because big-name manufacturers like Logitech and Microsoft couldn’t keep up with demand. For months, the top webcams were sold out, leaving a large portion of the populace looking for alternatives. Enter Amazon’s new breed of webcam companies, which have not only made things easier for you, but have also helped you save money.

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Is it still worth buying a cheap webcam on Amazon now that webcams from reputable manufacturers are mainly back in stock? Let’s have a look.

Cheap webcams: don’t be fooled by their low price

Webcams from unknown Amazon brands with names that look like a random string of letters (HZQDLN and DEPSTECH) are generally less expensive than their big-brand competitors.

A 1080p webcam from XPCAM or even the more well-known NexiGo, for example, will set you back at least half of what you’d pay if you bought it from Logitech, Microsoft, or Razer. In fact, they’re around the same price as the 720p options from Logitech and Microsoft. Furthermore, webcams are frequently reduced on Amazon, allowing you to save even more money.

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That’s great news for anyone seeking for a basic webcam that won’t set them back more than $50/£50.

When it comes to 4K cameras, however, that rule does not always apply. The DEPSTECH DW49 and the Sansisco 4K, for example, are both around $100. However, you’ll find several “cheap” 4K cameras that are either the same price as their high-end equivalents or only $20 or so less. The NexiGo N950P and the WyreStorm Focus 210 Webcam 4K are two good examples.

If you’re looking for a cheap camera on Amazon, it’s worth looking at what Logitech and Dell have to offer first, especially if you’ll be using it for work or business, as we’ll detail later.

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1080p webcams vs. 1080p webcams

Looking in the budget section already indicates that you want to spend as little money as possible, but that doesn’t mean you’re willing to forego features or picture quality. Whether or not it’s worth it to buy a cheap webcam on Amazon is mainly dependent on what you’ll be using it for.

If you’re searching for a cheap webcam to use for video conversations with friends and family, their low price, 1080p resolution, and positive Amazon reviews make them worth considering, even if you’re unfamiliar with the brand. Same goes for remote workers who don’t require anything more than a working webcam for daily standups and team meetings.

On Amazon, for example, the XPCAM FHD Webcam has a 4.3 out of 5 rating and generally good reviews from verified customers who praise it for its quality, ease of setup, and included accessories (tripod and privacy shutter). It has also received accolades for its excellent visual quality.

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The NexiGo N60, on the other hand, has a higher 4.4 out of 5 rating and over 21,000 reviews. Customers have praised the picture quality and auto focus feature, as well as the ease of installation. One reviewer even claimed that it has better visual quality than his iMac.

Even if you require something with extra features like a ring light or a noise-cancelling microphone, Amazon is a good place to look for a low-cost alternative. The NexiGo StreamCam N930E, for example, provides both of these features while still being less expensive than any of Logitech’s existing 1080p webcams.

Taking the 4K route

The majority of people who invest in a 4K webcam do so for business purposes. And by that, we mean everyone from local business owners and content creators to those in high-ranking positions in financial institutions. After all, 4K cameras are still quite expensive, and most people don’t require such high quality for their video calls.

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If you’re looking for a 4K webcam for your business, it’s probably best to go with a well-known brand. That’s because you don’t know anything about the Amazon suppliers, so you don’t know if they manufacture the webcams themselves or if they’re even producing the firmware. When dealing with sensitive data, that firmware (and that webcam) could be readily hacked to access that data.

Those inexpensive 4K webcams may be $20/£20 or $30/£30 less expensive, but they also come with a larger chance of a security breach, which may cost you considerably more money – or, worse, your entire business.

If you’re only looking for a 4K camera to use for personal calls, something like the DEPSTECH DW40 or the Sansisco 4K Webcam should serve. It’s not worth the risk if you’re dealing with sensitive or classified material that could be used against you, even if there are a few things you can do to reduce the danger.

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