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Where would we be without webcams in 2020? Just think about it — we rely on them for everything these days in the age of coronavirus, from work meetings to workouts to streaming games to chatting with family and friends. Now that we’re spending all our time on Zoom and Google Hangouts, we need a camera that can keep up with us. Of course, most laptops and phones have built-in webcams, but getting a dedicated webcam has plenty of perks. For one, the picture will be much crisper and cleaner. Especially when you’re on a work call, that makes for a more professional experience. Plus, it’s nice to see loved ones in all their un-pixelated glory when you can’t see them in person. That’s why the best webcams aren’t just for YouTube stars. (But you can use yours to create content, too.)

There’s a wide range of webcams out there, from bargain options that cover the basics for everyday calls to splurge models that have customizable cameras and software options. We did the shopping for you and narrowed it down to the best webcams for every budget. If you purchase an independently reviewed product or service through a link on our website, Variety may receive an affiliate commission.


1. Wansview USB 2.0 Desktop Laptop Computer Web Camera

Get ready for some serious high def! The Wansview PC webcam boasts an enhanced CMOS image sensor to bring 1080P high definition image and video so that your video calls, conference games or whatever else you use it for come in crystal clear. It has a wide 90-degree-view angle and advanced H.264 video compression technology so that everything is wider and smoother. There’s a built-in microphone that captures audio within 20 feet while automatically reducing background noise. It also has automatic light correction so that you’ll even be seen in the dark. All it needs to easily connect to your computer is a USB 2.0 cable — no driver needed. If you add a flexible clip, it can be added to a laptop, desktop, PC or smart TV. Super versatile, it’s compatible with most software, including Skype, Zoom, Facetime, Facebook, YouTube and more, as well as several operating systems, such as Windows XP/2000/7/8/10, Mac OS and Android Smart TV. $34.99, amazon.com



2. Amcrest 1080P Webcam with Microphone & Privacy Cover

What makes this webcam a standout is its versatile placement, as it comes with a mounting clip and ¼ tripod thread, so it can be used practically anywhere you can think of. Boasting full HD 1080 pixels, the USB webcam has a wide 70-degree viewing angle, so optical distortion is never a worry. For peace of mind, the Amcrest webcam comes with a privacy cover for when the webcam isn’t in use. The built-in dual noise reducing microphone has terrific sound for both audio and recording. It works on a range of devices and platforms. In case of any technical glitches, it come with a full one-year warranty and lifetime support provided by Amcrest directly. $49.99, amazon.com


3. GESMA Webcam with Microphone

All you have to do is plug in this GESMA webcam via a USB 2.0 connector and you’re good to go! There’s no need to download software or struggle with an installation. The built-in microphone automatically filters out background noise so that everything sounds crystal clear. The full HD 1080p webcam has panoramic resolution, designed for professional video use. To ensure you get the perfect angle, it can be rotated 90 degrees. Widely compatible, it can be used with any laptop, LCD monitor, desktop or tripod on a range of platforms. $38.99, amazon.com



4. Hrayzan 1080P HD Webcam with Privacy Cover and Tripod

At 30 frames per second, every detail will shine through, making it one of the best webcams at this price point. It captures everything in 1080 full HD at a wide angle of up to 110 degrees, so it’s ideal for video chatting and recording. The built-in audio will pick up your voice as far as five meters away and has automatic noise reduction. A tripod-ready universal clip is included, which fits any laptop or LCD monitor. There’s also a privacy cover to keep you safe from hackers spying on you. $49.99, amazon.com



5. Qtniue Webcam With Microphone

Talk about picture perfect! This webcam boasts full HD 1080 pixel resolution to deliver high definition video at 30 frames per second, 2 million high definition image sensors, automatic white balance and light correction, making it one of the best webcams out there. With a picture so clear and bright, it’s great for everything from making video calls to streaming to recording. There are two microphones that filter noise and make your voice sound clear. All you have to do to get it started is plug it into any USB drive. The 360-degree adjustable bracket helps you work the best angles every time. $39.97, amazon.com


6. Logitech C920 HD Pro Webcam

Clear, rich, sharp and smooth. Those are the best words to describe the visual experience with this full HD 1080 pixel webcam. Logitech teamed up with Skype to get top resolution for the C920 model, with recording capabilities of 30 frames per second. The cameras capture and show everything in real world detail, including bright colors, thanks to Logitech Fluid Crystal technology. $159.95, amazon.com


7. eMeet C960 Full HD Webcam

Designed for professional use, this is one of the best webcams for work. Equally great for gaming and entertainment, it streams in 1920 X 1080p video at 30 frames per second and has a four-layer anti-glare glasses lens for the ultimate picture. There are two stereo omnidirectional microphones built in with eMeet Voice IA technology to cancel out background noise while picking up your voice, as well as automatic low-light correction technology, so dim lighting won’t be a concern. The tripod-ready universal clip can be attached to any TV or computer, plus the 90-degree wide-angle lens picks up more than usual. $59.99, amazon.com

8. NexiGo AutoFocus 1080p Webcam

You don’t have to be a pro to work this webcam — it has an autofocus feature to ensure you’re always looking crisp and clear, along with 1080 pixel resolution at 30 frames per second. The privacy cover for the NexiGo PC Webcam covers the lens when you aren’t using it, which does double duty to protect you from hackers and keep the lens clean of dirt and debris. Another perk is the built-in noise canceling microphone provides the sound you want. $59.00, amazon.com


9. Walfront 1080P Webcam

Whether you’re calling friends or your boss, this webcam works equally well thanks to its topnotch video quality, live streaming and recording up to 1080 pixels at 30 frames per second. The only thing required is a USB 2.0 port; it’s compatible with most operating systems like YouTube, Skype and Facebook, to name a few. The 360-degree rotating threaded base and adjustable mounting clip make it a cinch to get the perfect shot from anywhere. Automated features do the heavy lifting for you, such as facial beautification, noise reduction via the built-in dual digital stereo microphone and autofocus technology. $32.90, amazon.com


10. Logitech BRIO Ultra HD Webcam

Certainly a worthy splurge, this best webcam has all the bells and whistles, making for excellent video quality. It has a top quality glass lens, 4k image sensor, high dynamic range and autofocus. With HD zoom up to 5 times, there are three field of view options to choose from. Faking perfect lighting is a no-brainer, as it automatically adjusts exposure and contrast to nix glare and backlighting. It can be connected multiple ways, including USB 2.0, USB 3.0 and C connections, plus it’s certified for Skype for Business and Cisco, and works with popular video meeting apps such as Zoom, WebEx, Facebook Messenger and more. $254.00, amazon.com