If you haven’t heard yet, the verdict is out: webcams are here to stay. The best webcams are so popular that they have changed the way people interact and work forever. Because of this, many without a webcam might feel left out. But don’t worry! Did you know you can transform many older devices into webcams? It’s true! Stick around as we show you how to use a camcorder as a webcam.
And camcorders aren’t the only devices that can be used as webcams. We have a similar resource on how to use a DSLR as a webcam.
Always fully charge the camcorder battery or hook it up to a power adapter before using it to facetime, as webcams won’t charge by plugging into the computer.
Whether you’re looking to play around with that old hand-held kicking around the house or are frantically trying to find an alternative to your computer’s broken webcam, this project is super useful. And the good news is that figuring out how to install a webcam, camcorder, or otherwise is often simple and quick.
Bear in mind there are other things not covered in this article. However, after you’ve completed the setup, it’s helpful to know how to update the webcam driver. If you’d instead rather read up on something with a built-in webcam, we have an article on how to use a camera with a Google Chromebook.
To ensure your camcorder works as a webcam, the first thing to do is check for either an HDMI or USB port.
Check your manual to ensure that your specific webcam comes with webcam software (also known as a streaming driver). Then, check that the software works with your computer’s operating system. After downloading the software, restart your computer.
Plug your video cable (HDMI/USB cable) into the video capture device and computer.
Power on the camcorder, and turn the USB streaming function ON in the camcorder menu settings.
Enter your computer’s webcam program to begin the video feed. You can adjust the webcam settings within the software program to achieve better video quality.
Remember that not every camcorder model can be used as a webcam. Check your user manual or call the manufacturer to confirm this spec.
STAT: Camcorders are still manufactured and sold today, costing anywhere from $50-$4,000. (source)