Creative Live! Cam Notebook Pro
The Cam Notebook Pro is another model from Creative’s range of web-cameras for notebooks. The Pro suffix seems to imply a more serious model than the one reviewed in the previous section. On the other hand, the words like Ultra and Pro don’t mean much in the mouth of a hardware vendor, not only of Creative, and do not always mean a technically advanced device. Let’s see if this web-camera really deserves its Pro designation.
As opposed to the previous camera, this one is equipped with a VGA CMOS sensor. Its maximum resolution is limited to 640x480 pixels too, but the frame rate cannot be higher than 15fps at that because the camera is connected via USB 1.1. To remind you, the Live! Ultra provides a frame rate of 30fps at 640x480.
The lens can be turned about by 270 degrees. When turned by more than 90 degrees (in the top point), the captured picture is automatically rotated in the window.
The Live! Cam Notebooks Pro kit includes a cute pouch for carrying the device, a handsfree headset (one headphone with a microphone), a CD with software, and an installation guide.
The Cam Notebook Pro has a simple optical system consisting of a single-glass lens. Focusing is manual. This affects the image quality as you can see in the shot of the ISO Resolution Chart. The picture loses its sharpness towards the borders, and there are barrel-like geometrical distortions.
The next shot shows the quality of color reproduction:
It’s all right, yet the transitions between the different colors aren’t very sharp.
The test shots suggest that the Ultra model is better than the Pro, and the Pro suffix doesn’t make the Creative Live! Cam Notebook Pro a professional model whatever it may mean.