I’ve been longing for a webcam that does true 4K/60 output and Elgato have gone and done that with the Facecam Pro, its new high-end webcam that is great for creators and professionals alike.
I’ll start the review by saying that this is a webcam for someone that likes to tinker with their settings to get a perfect image quality, and the great part about it is that you can do exactly that.
Using the Camera Hub software, you can change everything from the shutter speed to the ISO to the white balance and even the focal length in order to get your picture exactly how you want it, and it is required to some degree as even in perfect lighting, you will want to make minor tweaks to get it looking perfectly.
The Facecam Pro uses a 1/1.8 Sony sensor which allows for DSLR-like quality in a webcam. Whilst a lot of apps probably won’t take advantage of the 4K resolution, having the added resolution has a lot of benefits. Not only will it allow for a better quality looking image at lower resolutions, it also means that you’ve got more room to play with in terms of zooming in your image and panning around without losing too much quality.
It’s just as well as the Elgato Facecam Pro has 90 degrees field of view, which is fantastic for those that have wider setups/backgrounds that they want to show off, but with the added flexibility hat 4K allows, it means you’re not locked into that specific shot, and can crop tighter if need be.
One of the best parts of the Facecam Pro and what makes it feel more DSLR than webcam is its focus that can auto focus and you can also manually focus. It’s very quick to recognise something being held in front of the screen and blurring the background behind it for a cinematic effect.
The Facecam Pro has a discrete black design, and it can be mounted using a regular 1/4″ thread to sit on top of your monitor, on a tripod or on many of Elgato’s own stands. Pulling it out of the box, you’ll notice that it is quite large, especially when compared to other webcams, but having 4K/60hz with a Sony sensor with no compromise is definitely worth the added size. It’s worth mentioning that there is no privacy cover, which might be a dealbreaker for some.
It takes advantage of USB 3.0 using a USB-C cord that will need to be connected, so obviously make sure that the hardware you’re using has USB 3.0 capability (most should at this point) or else you won’t be able to use the webcam. It’s worth mentioning that there is no microphone included although if you’re spending $500+ on a webcam, I’d assume you’ve got a better microphone setup than one that can be used in a webcam.
The benefit of Elgato hardware is that you normally have fantastic software to match and that’s absolutely the case with Camera Hub which intuitively lets you control settings, zoom and pan and also add effects from Elgato marketplace (on PC) including the likes of green screen effects without needing a green screen.
Similarly, if you’ve got an Elgato Stream Deck Plus, you can display settings such as current zoom and ISO and quickly control settings such as exposure whilst watching it in real time in Camera Hub. It all just works seamlessly together.
All-in-all, if you’re somebody that wants to tweak every aspect of your image and take advantage of 4K/60FPS with no compromise, the Facecam Pro will be for you, but if you’re someone that doesn’t want to tinker, then there’s probably a few cheaper alternatives on the market (probably even just the regular Facecam) that you can get away with.
The Elgato Facecam Pro is a great quality webcam that is perfect for the high-end user that wants to be able to customise every aspect. The auto focus is fantastic and as always the Elgato software helps elevate the entire experience.