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Creative Live! Cam Optia,
Purchased February 27, 2007, $79.99

Be sure to also read Common issues with Creative cameras.

The designers have done a good job of copying the successful look of the iMac products, with clean lines and a hospital white appearence. For some reason it includes a fabric carrying bag; although, I'm not sure why anyone would want to carry this camera around. The stand makes it just a bit too big for a portable notebook camera.

The camera includes a simple headphone similar to many cell phone headsets, the small ear bud type with a microphone a few inches down the cord. There is no microphone inside the camera.

The camera does quite well with a bright light just behind my head. You can still see my face. Acceptable performance in all higher lighting levels. A little fuzzy in low light.

The stand fits nicely on flat panel monitors that have a square edge and some relatively level top. There are some issues with mounting on my notebook with a rounded edge. The camera will sit on the top, but if any vibration or movement occurs, the camera has a tendency to slip, usually forward falling on the screen. Creative has added a feature which allows the camera to swivel side to side just a bit. Since the camera head is mounted to the base on the left side, that is where it swivels. This is also the area where the blue online indicator glows around the mount.

This is the first camera I have tested that is fully USB Video Class compatable, meaning you don't have to install any drivers. You can just plug it in to a Windows XP or Visa computer and it will work. The included software offers added features.

Overall not a bad camera.

Creative has set up a special site for software updates and added features for their newer cameras at Screen shots of camera configuration settings
Camera Control         Video Proc Amp         Stream Format

Sample images showing how this camera performs under different lighting conditions
See a 640x480 image taken under plenty of light
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