If you attend a lot of Zoom meetings or you want to attend family video events, you’ve probably experienced how bad your laptop camera is. Rarely do those built-in cameras perform well. This can mean poor video or audio, which can ruin an otherwise enjoyable or productive time.
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The camera uses a 48-megapixel Sony IMX582 Exmor RS sensor capable of 1080p video with an f1.8 six-element glass lens to produce accurate colors. The camera actually shoots in 4k but downscales it to 1080p, so it’s compatible with most video chat software. The Tadpole has an adjustable clip, so it will fit most laptop displays. A premium, woven wire is used to avoid tangles and make it more flexible. As far as size is concerned, the Tadpole might remind you of the old iPod Shuffle — it measures just 1.2 inches square. Opal calls it the “world’s smallest webcam”.
Tadpole works on MacOS (Mountain Lion or later) and Windows (7 or later) and allows simple call muting with a tap on the USB connector.
As far as sound is concerned, Tadpol uses a directional VisiMic, which only captures sound it can “see.” No sound outside the camera’s field of view is picked up or recorded. This is not done with filtering, AI, or other tricks…just physics. This also means the Tadpole will pick up less ambient noise, so your sound will be much clearer for calls and meetings.
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There is no software to install for Tadpole, as it is truly plug-and-play. MacOS users, however, can download an optional software (Opal Composer) that allows customization of Tadpole settings. Windows users can install OBS Studio to get more out of the camera.
When you purchase the device, you get everything you need to do it. You can also buy a handy portable case, so you can take your camera more safely on the go.
If this sounds like the perfect upgrade for your laptop, you can purchase one Tadpole now (black or white) for $175. Carrying case $25.