Re: camera recommendations

Mark L. Bardenwerper, Sr. (
Wed, 31 Dec 1997 19:37:59 -0600

Bruce Dodson wrote:

> I have scanned through the archives and have come to the conclusion that the
> parallel-port cameras like quickcam won't do what I want. So I was
> wondering if anyone has any recommendations of USB camera versus capture
> card/camera combo. The USB cameras, like Kodak DVC300 and Intel Create and
> Share, are a bit cheaper than the capture card combos like USR BigPicture.
> So my question is this: Are the USB cards cheaper because they are easier to
> manufacture, or just because they are not as good?
> One possible benefit of the capture card combos is that I could use it for
> other things besides video conferencing. There are the conventional uses
> (i.e. video capture), but I wondered if the capture card can also be used to
> view movies and TV via a VCR? I wouldn't need a TV tuner because the VCR
> has that. Ideally I could plug the camera into the VCR's AV ports, the VCR
> into the computer, and then be able to watch movies windowed or full-screen
> from my computer room, OR switch the VCR to let the camera input pass
> through. Am I crazy?
> There is also the (still more expensive) option of a home-grown combo of
> capture card (e.g. vidium) and a standalone camera. That would probably
> give the best picture and best flexibility, but it wouldn't be as compact or
> convenient.
> Ideas? Preferences?

Of course, I may appear to be biased, and I probably am by my experience, but my
Hauppauge Win TV-Radio video cap card was easy to set up and utilizes a standard
video camera (which you can disconnect and use for other things, or you may
already have one). For info on these, go to
Any cams that do not run from a card will need to get their CPU power from the
only other source, your computer. This means other types will work OK, but they
will always be slower. Picture quality may or may not be what you want either,
depending upon the brand.
Connectix B&W will get you going cheap. It runs off the parallel port. I had one
and I thought it was cool when I was starting out.

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Mark L. Bardenwerper #:?) Technology...thoughtfully...responsibly.