What Is a Good Webcam Resolution

Nathan Rizzuti Profile image

Written By:

Updated September 29, 2022

Resolution is a word often associated with camera quality. As video conferencing and live streaming become more popular, many find themselves looking for the best webcam and asking the question: what is a good webcam resolution? It can be tricky to figure this out, but below, we’ll explain what you should look for and how to determine what’s right for you.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Selecting the correct webcam resolution depends entirely on what you use the webcam for.
  • For basic video meetings, calls, and standard features, a 720p webcam should suffice.
  • Purchasing an external webcam with a higher resolution is a good idea for recording, live-streaming gaming content, and detailed presentations.

What is a Good Megapixel for a Webcam

Before considering any extra features, anyone looking to purchase a quality webcam should figure out how many megapixels are good for the webcam. Selecting a decent webcam with the right image quality comes down to the function of the webcam.

Insider Tip

Many webcams come with a function that lets users toggle between various resolutions.

Typically, most webcams will come with one of three resolutions:

  • 720p (HD Ready)
  • 1080p (Full HD)
  • 4K (UHD)

First, it’s essential to define resolution. Camera resolution indicates how many pixels are captured within each frame. The more pixels, the finer the image quality. So, looking at the list of common webcam resolutions, a 720p is short for 1280 x 720, meaning it captures a total of 921,600 pixels.

Suppose you want a webcam for basic video calls with friends, family, or business ventures. In that case, going with a 720p video camera will work just fine. HD-ready cameras are often budget webcams and can be found for low prices, many under $30. Remember that if you have a laptop computer, you likely have a 720p resolution built-in camera and may not need to buy a dedicated webcam. However, laptop cameras have fewer features and often produce a lower-quality image than external webcams.

Warning

Switching a webcam to a higher resolution often reduces the connection speed. Always ensure your internet connections are stable before starting an important video feed.

More expensive webcams provide settings where users can choose between lower and higher resolutions. A high-end webcam can cost anywhere from $50-$300. With such a webcam comes an array of excellent features that boost image quality. Besides excellent image quality, extras can include autofocus features, color intensity, and auto-tracking. Such high-quality video webcams are great for content creators and anyone needing to display high-resolution material.

Finally, you may encounter a webcam with a resolution lower than 720p. While this will still work, the video quality will be significantly lower.

STAT: A 4k camera has a pixel count of 4096 x 2160, totaling 8,294,400 pixels. (source)

We have many helpful resources for those experiencing issues with their webcam, like our guide with tips on why your webcam lags.

What Is a Good Webcam Resolution FAQs

Do webcams affect a video feed's audio quality?

Most webcams do not come with a built-in microphone or speakers. However, some standalone webcam models come with a built-in microphone. Be sure to check the packaging to ensure that this is the case before buying.

What is a webcam frame rate?

A camera's frame rate explains how many individual snapshots a camera records every second to make up a video feed. For example, most webcams have a frame rate of 30-60 frames per second.

Why are laptop webcams low quality?

A laptop's standard built-in webcam is usually 720p. While 720p is fine for basic needs, laptop manufacturers use cheaper parts when making webcams.
Nathan Rizzuti Profile image