Babble Best Picks:
Along with diapers and a car seat, a video camera is essential for any new parent's maternity-ward checklist. Of course, you'll also want a camcorder that delivers long after Mom and baby have come home. So, whether you're capturing everyday milestones, connecting with friends and family, or even looking to film the family version of Avatar, here are our picks for the best camcorders.
- Aaron Burgess
Best Webcam | Microsoft LifeCam Studio
Outward appearance is rarely the smartest reason to buy a webcam, but there’s no denying that the Microsoft LifeCam Studio just looks amazing compared to the competition. Easily mounted onto your monitor, tripod, or laptop, this durable, brushed-metal beauty promises full HD (1080p) widescreen video capability in virtually any lighting condition. Capability, of course, is the key word here: You only get the full HD experience if you have the software and PC hardware to support it, and you won’t get stellar video quality in low light. However, if you can accept these basic limitations going into your purchase, you won’t be disappointed. The kids and I used the LifeCam Studio for video chatting, substituting it for my PC’s built-in camera to talk to grandparents via Skype and record holiday greetings to share via Windows Live Photo Gallery – a feat that’s easy to do with the camera’s built-in software. The picture and audio quality were both stellar – and even though we won’t be making many serious home movies with this one, it will be a great way to keep in touch.