With the continuous advancements in webcam technology and other types of digital cameras, there’s some stiff competition matched by huge demands. Given the statement made by Razer calling the new Stargazer Webcam “the world’s most advanced webcam”, we’re going to have to apply some serious shrewdness in order to determine the efficacy of this statement.
Many online game streamers have actually chosen not to use webcams for their broadcasts, either because they don’t provide enough value for the price, or because the abundance of advanced performance features capable by other types of digital cameras. For this reason, the existence of any HD camera or microphone must perform well enough for just about any intended purpose, and their advanced features must be both practical and effective.
We’re also going to be breaking down the overall durability, ease of use and appearance of the Razer Stargazer webcam in this review to provide a complete analysis on its quality, and to determine how well it will serve you.
High Frame Rate and High Resolution
The basic requirement for any high quality digital camera, especially those used indoors for professional broadcasting and recording, is video performance. Due to the demands of video games as well as professional quality videos, a high frame rate is required in order to satisfy the demands of users and audiences alike.
What the Razer Stargazer has to offer in this area is a high definition camera and an Intel 6th generation core processor for robust performance in terms of both desirability and reliability, which is evidenced by its incredible capabilities. You can achieve a maximum of 60 frames per second, with a high frame rate mode that’s specifically optimized for live streaming, giving you control and flexibility over what you’re capable of streaming.
While this mode offers a resolution limitation of 720p, this is still a huge demand that many audiences are still taking time to catch up to, and at this frame rate you can stream as well as anyone else online.
There’s a second mode that’s useful if you prefer a higher resolution that the HD camera is capable of, which limits the frame rate to 30 frames per second, but boosts the resolution to a maximum of 1080p. As you’ll find out below, this is plenty of performance to allow for professional use.
Dual Array Microphone with Automatic Noise Cancellation
While a microphone isn’t absolutely essential to an effective webcam, if it does include one it must have excellent performance. The Stargazer is no exception no matter how powerful the camera is, and with a dual array microphone it’s off to a great start.
What this piece of hardware allows you to do is record your voice in high resolution. It’s also capable of supplying the core processor with complex digital data for the application of advanced signal processing. The microphone itself is capable of automatically cancelling out any distracting background noise, also detecting precisely where the sound of your voice is coming from to produce a concentrated beam.
As a result, you have clearer and louder recording of your voice as well as an elimination of many of the causes of distortion in the recording of your voice.
USB 3.0 Connection
A secure and compatible connection is just as important as any other feature for quality, because without fast and effective data transfer there will inevitably be a huge reduction in digital quality. Using USB 3.0 technology with the Stargazer means that the webcam can communicate back and forth with your computer and handle a lot more data than most other webcams that exist.
In terms of data transfer speed, it’s capable of transferring up to 4.8 gigabytes per second which is a huge amount. Utilizing duplex data transferring systems, it can move large chunks of data simultaneously as well.
With USB 3.0, the hub can handle more power through its bus powering system, due to its capability of supporting advanced power management features. The Stargazer is only compatible with the Windows 10 operating system exclusively, however USB 3.0 is backwards compatible with USB 2.0 hardware so you won’t necessarily have to change your ports in order to use it.
While this will reduce the performance quality that it’s capable of, you can still take advantage of its powerful camera and microphone, as well as the advanced optimization and editing features discussed below.
Advanced Video Enhancing Features for Personal and Professional Use
Any professional webcam user will demand the most out of their hardware, as this area often makes or breaks a buying decision depending on desirability.
The Stargazer is delivers three powerful advanced video features engineered and made possible by Intel, via RealSense technology, which include Dynamic Background Removal, 3D Scanning and Face and Gesture Recognition. Let’s go over these a bit more in detail…
Dynamic Background Removal
This functionality makes use of the Razer Stargazer’s depth sensing technology to change the game for professionals by virtually eliminated the need for setting up and using any type of green screen. You’re given the option of simply editing out any existing background at a certain depth and adding in the specific background of your choice, however you can also move objects and create a custom viewing space as well.
This feature is effective and especially useful for people who are streaming games, and would like less clutter and waste of space in their room, as well as less required space by your camera to recognize the background texture and depth.
There are many applications of 3D scanning that relate directly to gaming preferences that simply make it more immersive and fun to play, however it provides serious practical applications as well. For starters, without any additional programming or hardware requirements, the Stargazer is ready right out of the box to begin scanning 3D objects.
Game developers, designers and anyone who uses 3D printers for personal or professional use can appreciate the fact that you can immediately scan either your face or an object in real space, and have a digital copy of it on the computer with very little effort. Traditionally, game designers would be required to spend an unfathomable amount of hours putting detail and artistic work into creating realistic faces for their games.
If you’re using Unity as a game engine, 3D objects scanned by the Stargazer are immediately compatible and portable to their programs, whether you’re building a game or modifying one.
Face and Gesture Recognition
This is a somewhat new technology that’s steadily been improving in performance, and the Stargazer’s Intel RealSense technology provides greater capabilities as well as opportunities for using it.
First and foremost, the facial recognition allows you to unlock your computer via the Windows Hello software by using the precise details of your face. It’s similarly effective with gesture recognition, as you can launch applications and play complex motion detection games seamlessly with specific gestures, or simply wave your hand over the desired object you’d like to use.
Overall Durability and Economic Quality
Investing in computer hardware is a serious consideration even for those with a lot of financial options, as you have to be careful to choose a webcam that will perform well for your specific needs and wants.
Considering the Stargazer’s superior frame rate capability at high resolution, and the advanced features that Razer has made available in partnership with Intel, we think that the somewhat steep price tag is well worth the investment. That being said, the integrated advanced technology also means that it’ll provide desirable functionality for many years to come, as it’s ahead of the competition in many ways.
For regular users who just wish to speak with family over Skype, the Razer Stargazer is likely going to be way more powerful than you’d dream of expecting.
On the other hand, the world of online broadcasts and video game streaming is one indication of the demand for such a webcam where there hasn’t been one like it in the past. It’s revolutionary, unique features give it a huge increase in its overall value. Even professional designers and video game developers can find tremendous value in it even if they don’t require the highest resolutions or frame rates.