Logitech recently launched its own simplified take on video chat software called Logitech Vid - and now there's a raft of new hardware to bundle it with. The company has announced a new series of – count ‘em – seven webcams, ranging from your standard fare to the flagship Pro 9000 model featuring Carl Zeiss optics and 16x9 widescreen video at 720p.
As well as including a selection of more budget friendly models, the C series offers two mid range webcams, the C500 and C600. The C600 boasts high definition video, with 8MP photo capture (software enhanced using the units 2MP sensor) and screen resolution of 720 pixels. As well as these quality visuals, the C600 incorporates a noise canceling microphone.
The C500 has 5MP snapshot capabilities and a 1.3MP sensor. Both models also use Logitech’s "Right Light" technology which automatically adjusts and compensates for differing lighting conditions. Customizable video effects increase the fun factor, allowing users to personalize their conversations with avatars and masks that mirror expressions and emotions.
For those keen on an even greater departure from the grainy images of the webcams of old, the flagship Pro 9000 model offers the added clarity of a Carl Zeiss lens. This addition promises sharp auto focus no matter how extreme the close-up. For those on the go, a portable version, the C905 is also available.
All of the C series are packaged with Logitech’s PC and Mac compatible Vid software, the simplified set up and operation of which may potentially appeal to less tech – savvy consumers as well as those currently using popular options like Skype. The streamlined interface does away with having to sign in with screen names, as a user merely invites a friend via their email address and the video chat starts once the invitation is accepted.
The software works for both embedded and standalone webcams, however one of the parties must have a Logitech webcam. The Logitech-free participant then has 30 days of complimentary Vid use, after which time they are required to purchase a Logitech webcam to continue using the software.
Price wise, the more basic models in the range start at US$29.99, with the Logitech C500 and C600 priced at $49.99 and $79.99 respectively. The Pro 9000 and its portable counterpart the C905 are both priced at $99.99.