The 7 Best Webcams for Twitch and YouTube Streaming

Logitech C922 webcam streaming twitch

Logitech

If you are just getting into the world of streaming, whether it’s on Twitch or YouTube, you have probably already discovered that the webcam built into your laptop is far from good enough to satisfy your needs. Even a laptop that’s been hand-picked for streaming to Twitch probably has a mediocre webcam; that’s just the way it is.  Adding a new webcam is the single biggest improvement you can make to step up your streaming game — it can give you higher resolution, a better framerate, improved color accuracy, and low-light performance, to say nothing of better audio via the built-in microphone. (You might even opt for a dedicated microphone, which will truly step up the quality of your production.)

So where do you go for a better webcam for streaming? In general terms, and at the risk of exaggerating for effect, anything is better than what you already have. But there are better and worse webcams for your needs, and you’ll want to find a model that delivers on the aspects you need the most, whether that’s resolution, frame rate, image quality, low-light characteristics, or other factors.

We’ve rounded up seven of the very best webcam options and break down what you should look for when you’re shopping for your own for streaming video.

What is the Best Webcam For Sale in 2020?

Logitech C922 Pro Webcam for twitch streaming Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Good video quality
  • Excellent price
  • Stereo microphones
Price: $119.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Razer Kiyo Webcam for twitch Streaming Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Excellent built-in ring light
  • Highly configurable exposure controls
  • 1080p at 30fps and 720p at 60fps
Price: $128.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Logitech HD Laptop Webcam C615 for twitch streaming Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Inexpensive
  • 1080p streaming
  • Good auto-expsoure control
Price: $73.76 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Logitech BRIO Ultra HD Webcam for twitch streaming Amazon Customer Reviews
  • 4K streaming
  • HDR support
  • Windows Hello face recognition
Price: $209.58 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
AUSDOM FHD Webcam for twitch streaming Amazon Customer Reviews
  • 1080p streaming
  • Excellent price
  • Fast F2.0 lens
Price: $59.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Microsoft LifeCam Studio Webcam for twitch streaming Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Affordable price
  • Good image quality
  • Easy setup
Price: $113.79 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Logitech StreamCam Plus Webcam for twitch streaming Amazon Customer Reviews
  • 1080p streaming at 60fps
  • Easy swap from portrait to landscape
  • USB-C for modern laptops
Price: $237.81 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Our Unbiased Reviews
  1. 1. Logitech C922

    Pros:
    • Good video quality
    • Excellent price
    • Stereo microphones
    Cons:
    • HD video is only 30 fps
    • You need to purchase background replacement software separately
    • USB cord could be longer

    Resolution: 1080p @ 30 fps, 720p @ 60 fps | Extra features: Dual microphones | FOV: 78 degrees | Weight: 5.7 ounces | Mount: Monitor grip, tabletop tripod | OS: Windows 7 or higher, MacOS 10 or higher, ChromeOS

    The all-around best option bar none, the Logitech C922 is the latest iteration in the Logitech webcam family and will serve most streamers with distinction. This webcam can stream a full HD 1080p at 30 fps, or you can throttle down to 720p for a smother 60 fps (which is likely what most streamers will want to do, since it can match the refresh rate of many games). The lens is set to a wide 78 degrees, which is especially handy for fitting two people in front of the camera in close quarters.

    The C922 is equipped with all the essentials. The camera has a fast and accurate autofocus feature and the camera automatically performs brightness and exposure compensation based on the ambient light conditions. The camera is very configurable via Logitech’s desktop app, and the background is easily replaced with Personify’s ChromaCam, though that’ll cost you extra. 

    It also has two widely spaced microphones (one on either side of the lens) for stereo capture of audio. The webcam affixes easily to the top of your monitor if you have a desktop computer for streaming, but it is also bundled with a small tabletop tripod for greater imaging flexibility. 

    Looking for lighting for your streaming show? Be sure to check out the best lighting kits for streaming as well. 

  2. 2. Razer Kiyo

    Pros:
    • Excellent built-in ring light
    • Highly configurable exposure controls
    • 1080p at 30fps and 720p at 60fps
    Cons:
    • Getting the right levels takes experimentation
    • Expensive
    • Windows only

    Resolution: 1080p @ 30fps, 720p @ 60fps | Extra features: Built-in ring light | FOV: 82 degrees | Weight: 10.6 ounces | Mount: Monitor grip | OS: Windows 7 or higher

    Razer markets the Razer Kiyo specifically for the streaming community, so unlike many webcams that started out in the web conferencing world but were co-opted by streamers, this device is purpose-built for this task. That’s evident both in the resolution — it can stream 1080p at 30fps or 720p at 60fps — and in its signature lighting feature. A true rarity among webcams, this camera has a ring light encircling the lens. Ring lights are known for delivering even, fairly flat illumination, and this light can enhance any dim setting. It’s also easily adjustable thanks to a dial on the outside of the ring, so you can dial in exactly the right light level. 

    The Razer desktop software gives you a wealth of customization, including automatic and manual focusing, along with the ability to tweak brightness, contrast, saturation and white balance. You can even save presets for different studios, rooms, time of day, or recording locations so you can optimize the lighting with just a couple of clicks.  That said, you might need to fiddle quite a bit to lock in the right settings, since you have so many options, including the ring light; be prepared to spend some time getting used to this webcam’s idiosyncracies. 

    Unfortunately, the camera is Windows-only, but is otherwise well-equipped, with a wide field of view, omnidirectional microphone, and excellent compatibility with popular streaming platforms like Open Broadcaster and Xsplit. 

     

  3. 3. Logitech C615

    Pros:
    • Inexpensive
    • 1080p streaming
    • Good auto-expsoure control
    Cons:
    • Shortages are driving up the price
    • No 60fps mode
    • No stereo audio imaging

    Resolution: 1080p @ 30fps, 720p @ 30fps | FOV: 78 degrees | Weight: 5.6 ounces | Mount: Monitor grip | OS: Windows 7 or higher, Mac OS 10 or higher, ChromeOS

    You don’t need a high-end webcam to stream, and Logitech drives that point home with the Logitech C615, a modest webcam that can get the job done at a fairly low price if you don’t have a lot of special requirements. The C615 is a budget-priced webcam that streams 1080p at 30fps and trims costs by not offering a 60fps frame rate at a lower resolution. But it has a good 78 degree field of view and a pretty effective single microphone.

    It includes some auto-exposure control and lighting correction, so video looks pretty good regardless of lighting conditions in the room, as long as you have a minimum lighting level (it doesn’t fare well in the dark). An autofocus system keeps you in sharp focus automatically. 

    It sits on top of your monitor but can also be tripod mounted, and is compatible with Windows, Mac, and ChromeOS systems. Unfortunately, there’s a huge demand for this webcam right now due to its combination of low price and smart features, so you might find the price a little inflated online. My advice: Either wait for a price that’s representative of the real list price or choose a better webcam that is selling for the same price as the inflated C615 __ but don’t spend more than about $70 on the C615.

  4. 4. Logitech BRIO

    Pros:
    • 4K streaming
    • HDR support
    • Windows Hello face recognition
    Cons:
    • Expensive
    • Most people don't need 4K streaming yet
    • No still image capture

    Resolution: 2160p @ 30fps, 1080p @ 60fps, 720p @ 60fps | Extra features: HDR | FOV: 90 degrees | Weight: 2.2 ounces | Mount: Monitor grip | OS: Windows 7 or higher, Mac OS 10 or higher, ChromeOS

    The present might not be 4K, but the future certainly is. Someday, most webcams will stream in 4K, but for now there’s the Logitech BRIO. This stunning webcam streams a full 4K — that’s 4096 x 2160 pixels — at 30fps. Do you need a 4K webcam? That’s hard to answer. Most people can’t appreciate a 4K feed right now, but some can, and if those folks watch your stream, well, there’s your answer. Even if most folks are still living in an HD world, the BRIO future proofs your stream and lets you stand out from the crowd. The BRIO also features HDR, and it’s one of the few webcams on the market to offer such a wide color gamut. 

    For sure, the 4K video quality is a dramatic and noticeable improvement over HD. But the camera also steps down to either 1080p or 720p at 30fps or 60fps. That means you can get buttery smooth 60fps at full HD, which is also a powerful tool in your belt. You also get a very wide-angle field of view — as much as 90 degrees, though adjustable through 65 and 78 degrees as well. 90 degrees is downright expansive, and likely more than you need most of the time, since it’ll include the entire room you’re shooting in. You’ll need to plan your background more thoroughly than you’ve ever done before. 

    The BRIO is easy to set on your monitor or you can mount it on a tripod. It has the expected camera exposure controls, but you’ll also find a 5X HD zoom on board,. as well as compatibility with Windows Hello, which means you can use it to log into your PC with face recognition.  

    One other suggestion: Depeinding on your needs, you might be able to use a point & shoot camera with 4K video support to do video recording and broadcasting as well. 

     

  5. 5. Ausdom AW615

    Pros:
    • 1080p capture
    • Excellent price
    • Fast F2.0 lens
    Cons:
    • Rubber loop is tricky to mount
    • No 60fps streaming
    • Manual controls are challenging

    Resolution: 1080p @ 30fps | FOV: 65 degrees | Weight: 7.2 ounces | Mount: Rubber loop | OS: Windows Vista or higher

    If you want a webcam with more flexibility when it comes to exposure control and focus, the Ausdom AW615 is worth taking a look at — with the caveat that with more power comes more manual tweaking. The webcam has a solid 1080p resolution at 30fps, but there’s no higher framerate available; it tops out at 30fps regardless of resolution. On the other hand, it has a very fast f2.0 lens, which lets in a lot of light, enabling you to shoot video in lighting that’s dimmer than what many other webcams could tolerate without generating a lot of noise. 

    Interestingly, the webcam doesn’t have autofocus, so you will need to manually dial in the focus every time you use it. That’s frustrating, but you can get some great results if you’re willing to invest the effort, and the manual controls, combined with the fast F2.0 lens lets you get some good video in edge conditions that other cameras can’t match. But it’s definitely more trouble than it’s worth for many day-to-day streaming and web conferencing duties. 

    Even the mount is an indication that this is a webcam with a rather narrowly defined purpose. Rather than the standard L-bracket for standing the webcam on your monitor, it has a rubber loop instead, which stands well on the desktop by generally is hard to position firmly on your monitor. It’s also missing a standard 1/4-inch tripod mount. 

     

  6. 6. Microsoft LifeCam Studio

    Pros:
    • Affordable price
    • Good image quality
    • Easy setup
    Cons:
    • No 1080p streaming
    • No 60fps streaming
    • Only moderate specs and performance

    Resolution: 720p @ 30fps | FOV: 75 degrees | Weight: 4.5 ounces | Mount: Monitor grip | OS: Windows 8 or higher

    Microsoft’s LifeCam Studio is a bit of an odd duck; though it has a 1080p sensor, don’t be misled. It has a maximum resolution of 720p for streaming which it does at 30fps. Even so, the image quality is excellent, due in part to the 1080p sensor and also to the large glass lens. The entire webcam is barrel-shaped, reminiscent of a military spotting scope, or perhaps an old-style camcorder. 

    The mount is a bit odd as well. A C-shaped hook hangs over the monitor rather than gripping with a more traditional L-shaped folding bracket, and the bottom of the hook has the 1/4-inch mount for a tabletop tripod. The hook makes it hard to use and reposition; left alone, it’s fine, but it doesn’t grip the monitor as effectively as an L-bracket, and that means it wiggles and flops when you try to move it around. 

    Overall, though, this webcam, performs well and is a worthy candidate for streaming. Image sharpness is good, as is color accuracy. The autofocus lens stays true under normal conditions, and the microphone does an adequate, if unremarkable job as well. 

  7. 7. Logitech StreamCam

    Pros:
    • 1080p streaming at 60fps
    • Easy swap from portrait to landscape
    • USB-C for modern laptops
    Cons:
    • Expensive
    • No USB-A adapter included
    • Field of view could be wider

    Resolution: 1080p @ 60fps | Extra features: Easy portrait/landscape rotation | FOV: 78 degrees | Weight: 5.3 ounces | Mount: Monitor grip | OS: Windows 7 or higher, Mac OS 10 or higher

    If you don’t need the ability to stream in 4K — and right now, that’s probably most everyone — then the Logitech StreamCam is the webcam to get, as long as you don’t mind investing in the high price. And yes, this webcam is pricier than pretty much any other model in this list. But it’s worth it, especially since there’s Open Broadcaster, Spreamlabs, and Xsplit support built-in. 

    First and foremost, you get 1080p resolution at 60fps, which is a trick that few webcams can pull off. That means you get silky smooth full HD streaming, as well as the ability to sync your video with games that are also running at a high frame rate. Also, note that the camera is square, shaped sort of like a GoPro. The unit is designed to shoot equally well in portrait or landscape mode, and you can make the switch as easily as rotating the camera. If you want to shoot smartphone-style with a vertical aspect ratio, the StreamCam makes that a snap. And then switch back to landscape when you’re done.

    The camera mounts easily to the top of your monitor and can be screed into a tabletop tripod. Audio is excellent thanks to dual omnidirectional microphones, and you get a fast F2.0 pens with excellent autofocus. 

    One thing to watch out for: This is a thoroughly modern webcam equipped with a USB-C cable. If you have a modern laptop, kudos! You’re in business. But if you only have USB-A ports, you’ll need to get a USB-C to USB-A adapter; Logitech doesn’;;t include one in the box. Given the cost of this webcam, that’s an oversight. 

How to Shop for a Webcam for Streaming on Twitch and YouTube

A webcam is, at its core, a video camera and microphone, so when you shop for one, it pays to pay attention to many fo the same things you'd consider when shopping for any ordinary camera. Resolution is important, for example, but webcams for streaming have a complication: They need to be able to send a particular resolution at either 30 or 60 frames per second. Even if a webcam supports 4K resolution, that doesn't mean it can do it 60 times a second. And that's why you need to pay attention to the combination of resolution and framerate.

30 frames per second is adequate for video conferencing and some video streaming, but if you want a high-quality stream, 60fps is important. It's especially important if you want to sync the stream with gameplay. That's why you might sacrifice resolution and stream at 720p rather than 1080p -- your webcam can handle the lower resolution at the higher framerate, which trumps resolution.

Other camera-centric features to pay attention to include how well the webcam autofocuses and adjusts exposure and brightness in response to ambient conditions. The webcam's low-light performance may also be a consideration. Can it record in low light without creating noisy video? A webcam, with a fast lens can generally tolerate low light better than slower lenses, and the main way to tell is to see what the webcam's f-stop is. A smaller number means a larger maximum aperture, which translates into better light handling. Some of the best low-light webcams have F2.0 apertures. Bigger apertures are technically possible but become too expensive to pack into a small desktop camera like a webcam.

Don't forget about sound quality. Some streamers use a sperate microphone to ensure the best audio quality, and that might well be your plan. But to be on the safe side, don't discount the integrated mic entirely; you never know when, for technical or logistical reasons, you need to rely on the webcam's mic. That's when it's handy for the webcam to feature dual stereo mics or to have sophisticated noise reduction or audio processing.

Most webcams use a simple L-shaped bendable bracket to sit on top of your monitor, but it's also important to see if you can attach it to a tripod via a standard 1/4-inch tripod bolt.

The Best Value in a Webcam for Streaming 

Lucky for you, as long as you pay attention to the core specs and get a webcam that offers the capabilities you need for your streaming project, you can't go too badly awry. For example, if you're on a budget and want to improve your streaming quality without breaking the bank, the Logitech C615 is an excellent choice, and it should be available for well under $100.

If you want to explore the world of 4K streaming, there's only one practical choice: Get the Logitech BRIO. This 4K UHD webcam can stream 4K at 30fps, but can also deliver 1080p at 60fps, which is a great Plan B. It's like getting two amazing webcams for the price of one.

If you don't need 4K, but do want 1080p at 60fps, I'd still strongly consider the BRIO -- you're future-proofing your streaming rig. But if the ability to easily record vertically is more important than 4K, go with the Logitech StreamCam, which hits 1080p at 60fps.

Finally, if integrated lighting is an important consideration, then go with the iconic Razer Kiyo. It's a superb webcam that is like having a lighting studio all in one small device.

See Also:

11 Best Noise Cancelling Headphones

The Best Lighting Kits for Streaming for Twitch and YouTube

8 Best Microphones for Streaming to Twitch and YouTube

Best Desktop for Streaming on Twitch and YouTube

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