image quality – Cumming The Fragrance http://cummingthefragrance.com/ Sun, 20 Mar 2022 14:02:42 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://cummingthefragrance.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/icon-120x120.jpg image quality – Cumming The Fragrance http://cummingthefragrance.com/ 32 32 AnkerWork B600 Video Bar Webcam Review – Present Yourself Better in Online Meetings https://cummingthefragrance.com/ankerwork-b600-video-bar-webcam-review-present-yourself-better-in-online-meetings/ Sun, 20 Mar 2022 14:02:42 +0000 https://cummingthefragrance.com/ankerwork-b600-video-bar-webcam-review-present-yourself-better-in-online-meetings/ We use affiliate links. If you purchase something through the links on this page, we may earn a commission at no cost to you. Learn more. REVIEW – Working from home has been the best thing to happen to my career as an art director for a children’s publisher since – I don’t know when. […]]]>
We use affiliate links. If you purchase something through the links on this page, we may earn a commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

REVIEW – Working from home has been the best thing to happen to my career as an art director for a children’s publisher since – I don’t know when. However, as good as the transition to working from home is, it presents some challenges that you don’t face in an office environment. One of the biggest challenges, for me, is getting the optimal setup for remote meetings. I know – I know, any recent smart laptop or tablet will have a built-in camera for those Zooms, Teams, or any meetings you need to attend. But does anyone take into account the video and audio quality seen by others? And have you seen how bad some of your colleagues look during meetings using their 720p resolution cameras? Ugh.

I might be a little obsessive, but I like to have as clean and well-lit a picture as possible that I can present to my colleagues (as ugly as I am). My MacBook Pro camera is not enough. Anker, a company known for its quality cables, chargers and hubs, may have a solution: the AnkerWork B600 Video Bar webcam.

What is that?

AnkerWork is the “business division” of Anker. They make speakers, headphones, microphones and webcams. The B600 is technically a webcam, but it’s so much more. Think of it as a webcam on steroids. In addition to a 2K camera, the B600 includes a built-in adjustable light, 4-mic array and dual speakers.

The B600 video bar has what Anker calls VoiceRadar. It’s noise-canceling technology that minimizes background noise while amplifying voices, making it easier for others to hear you. The two included speakers help you hear other speakers more clearly.

If lighting is an issue in your home workspace, the B600 has a fold-out lightbar with MagicSight (another Anker term). MagicSight will automatically balance the color temperature, so you don’t appear too yellow or too blue. Brightness is also automatically adjusted as lighting conditions change.

Then there’s SoloFrame, which allows the camera to follow you if you step out of frame.

What’s in the box

  • AnkerWork B600 Video Bar Webcam
  • USB-C cord
  • Power cord with multi-country adapters

Specifications

  • Resolution: 2K
  • Frames per second: 30
  • Auto focus
  • Auto exposure
  • Network 4 microphones
  • Two 2 watt speakers
  • Active noise cancellation
  • Automatic gain control

Design and features

The first thing you notice when you open the box of the AnkerWork B600 video bar is how nice everything is. It reminds me of opening an Apple product. The B600 itself is surprisingly heavy, so much so that I’d be worried about attaching it to a thin laptop lid like on my MacBook Pro. Since my main monitor is a thick XP-Pen 24 Artist Pro, that’s not a problem. But the B600 East well done. Just holding it is a treat.

The clip that holds it to a monitor is similar to many other webcam clips. It looks and acts like an adjustable upside down V. Just squeeze until tight. The “V” clip from my previous webcam was screwed into my shelf above the monitor. He never moved after that. I can do it for the B600. My apologies to Anker for ruining a flawless surface with a drilled hole. If necessary, the B600 is designed to work on a desktop tripod (not included).

Connecting the two USB-C ports of the AnkerWork B600 Video Bar webcam to a computer is simple. There are two cords: Power to USB-C and USB-C to USB-C. The power cable connects via USB-C, as does the video cable, but the two connections can’t be swapped or the webcam won’t work. There is a USB A port on the back, but it is exclusively used for Anker wireless headphones with receiver.

Once the connection is established, the AnkerWork application must be downloaded. This application completes the configuration. My previous webcam didn’t have an app, it was just plug-and-play. However, the B600 has many video options and enhancements that require application settings.

A blue LED light lets you know everything is properly connected. If the microphone is muted (done by simply pressing the left side of the camera), the LED indicator turns red. If the red light is flashing, something is wrong and needs to be corrected.

Touch the law side of the video bar turns the light on or off. a touch slider on the front of the video bar adjusts the brightness of the light.

The application integrates all kinds of parameters. You can adjust color temperature (warm to cool lighting), focal length, resolution (360p, 720p, 1080p, 2K), anti-flicker filter, brightness, contrast, and more. You could easily spend 30 minutes setting up the perfect vision for how you want to present yourself. And that’s in addition to all the settings you want to set in the streaming apps you use.

Once the app is set up, simply lift the light bar to turn on the B600. For my use with the Zoom app, I don’t need to reset anything unless I want to change something. It remembers my last settings.

I had a little problem with mirroring. The previous webcam I used mirrored me on my monitor, but do not to others on my Zoom call. However, the B600 shows others what I see, so my image cannot be reflected only for me. It’s weird to see the “wrong” hand move on my screen. While that’s okay, I’m used to it looking like looking in a mirror. It’s something I have to get used to.

The image quality of the AnkerWork B600 Video Bar Webcam is about as good as it gets. My last camera had 1080p resolution and I thought that was great until I saw the 2K image. The built-in auto light adjustment has lighting that varies as your face moves through light or shadow. Not only that, but as you move, the camera automatically tracks and zooms in and out to keep you centered in the frame as much as possible. It’s like having a personal cinematographer. Note that if the “movement” of the camera bothers you, it can be disabled in the app.

Prior to using the B60, all sound from the previous webcam came through my large desktop speakers (the webcam had no speakers). It was overkill for audio due to the size of the speakers. Additionally, there was a risk of echo when the webcam mic picked up sound from the speaker. The B600’s 4-mic array and built-in speakers work together to eliminate any echo effect. My colleagues can hear me perfectly and I hear more clearly since the B600 speakers are tuned for vocals. Microphone and speaker volume is set in the app.

What I like

  • Robust design and build quality
  • Great camera
  • Excellent 4-mic array
  • great sound

What I would change

  • It’s too heavy for some thin laptops
  • Expensive

Final Thoughts

The AnkerWork B600 video bar isn’t cheap. But it’s so well built and feels like quality tech. It works perfectly and looks great. I wouldn’t recommend it for laptops unless it’s resting on a tripod and not the screen/lid. If you work from home and spend a lot of your time in online meetings, the B600 can help you present yourself in your best light to your colleagues and perhaps improve your standing since you look so good. Who knows?

Price: US$219.99
Or buy: Amazon
Source: The sample of this product was provided by anchorwork.

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Lenovo’s ThinkPad X13 gets an update with a 5G, 1080p webcam https://cummingthefragrance.com/lenovos-thinkpad-x13-gets-an-update-with-a-5g-1080p-webcam/ Tue, 15 Mar 2022 14:00:00 +0000 https://cummingthefragrance.com/lenovos-thinkpad-x13-gets-an-update-with-a-5g-1080p-webcam/ Picture: Lenovo Lenovo has just refreshed several of its more budget-friendly ThinkPad models, and one, in particular, is worth watching closely. Cheaper than many of its business laptop siblings, the ThinkPad X13 and X13 Yoga are ultraportable laptops with everything you’d expect from a ThinkPad. This includes distinctive styling consisting of an all-black chassis with […]]]>

Lenovo ThinkPad X13

Picture: Lenovo

Lenovo has just refreshed several of its more budget-friendly ThinkPad models, and one, in particular, is worth watching closely.

Cheaper than many of its business laptop siblings, the ThinkPad X13 and X13 Yoga are ultraportable laptops with everything you’d expect from a ThinkPad. This includes distinctive styling consisting of an all-black chassis with red trim, a red rubber pointing stick tucked into the keyboard, and an illuminated “i” in the ThinkPad logo.

The success of these business laptops can be attributed to the consistent look and feel that Lenovo has maintained for over a decade. That hasn’t changed much with these new entries, although the company is, for better or worse, starting to come out of its black/red shell. To that end, the X13 is also available in Storm Grey, a dark silver tone that contrasts sharply with the other traditional color option. These may look similar to previous versions, but Lenovo claims the touchpad is now 15% larger.

Lenovo ThinkPad X13

Lenovo ThinkPad X13
Picture: Lenovo

The X13 is more of a portable, budget laptop than a 13-inch version of the X1 Carbon (which is where the X1Nano between), so its 0.7-inch, 2.6-pound chassis isn’t as sleek or slim as the more expensive model. However, the extra space leads to a generous selection of ports, which includes two Thunderbolt 4 ports (AMD doesn’t have USB-C Thunderbolt), two USB Type-A 3.2 inputs, an HDMI 2.0, headphone jack, and a SIM slot for 5G (sub-6Ghz over eSIM) or 4G LTE connectivity. The old connectivity option is joined by Wi-Fi 6E to make these new ThinkPads upgradeable.

One of the few complaints I had with previous models was that the screens were dim, dull, or both. Hopefully the 13.3-inch, 2560×1600 pixel (16:10) display on the new X13 models fixes those past flaws. These are Dolby Vision certified and get up to 400 nits of brightness, which should be fine even in brighter environments. Lenovo also makes claims about “narrow bezels”, although it seems to think we’re in another decade, as the thick bezel lining the X13’s display reminds me of Ralphie’s glasses in A Christmas Story.

Moving on to performance, the X13 is available in both Intel and AMD flavors. CPU options include up to a 12th Gen Intel Core i7 vPro chip for the Yoga, while the clamshell model gets AMD Ryzen Pro 6000 processors. PCIe SSD storage. As expected, the X13 relies solely on integrated graphics, so you’re looking at Iris Xe or Radeon 600M.

Lenovo ThinkPad X13 Yoga

Lenovo ThinkPad X13 Yoga
Picture: Lenovo

The X13 and X13 Yoga are direct updates from previous models, but there are a few hybrid-friendly enhancements beyond improved wireless support. Both of these laptops now come with an “up to” 1080p webcam with IR, and while the increased resolution doesn’t guarantee good image quality, it should mean an improvement over most 720p cameras.

Also new this year is Dolby Voice for better microphone performance and a larger 54.7Wh battery option in addition to a stock 41Wh battery. Lenovo hasn’t made any battery life claims for the X13, but it says the X13 Yoga’s 57Whr cell gives it up to 13.6 hours of battery life.

The Lenovo X13 Gen 3 and X13 Yoga Gen 3 will go on sale in June starting at $1,369 and $1,179, respectively, for Intel models. The X13 with AMD will launch alongside the others but will cost a little less at $1,119. Lenovo has also refreshed its ThinkPad L13, L14, L15 and L13 Yoga laptops, which will go on sale in April and May.

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Shopping for a webcam? Get one on sale on Amazon – Billboard https://cummingthefragrance.com/shopping-for-a-webcam-get-one-on-sale-on-amazon-billboard/ Wed, 09 Mar 2022 20:19:43 +0000 https://cummingthefragrance.com/shopping-for-a-webcam-get-one-on-sale-on-amazon-billboard/ All featured products and services are independently chosen by the editors. However, Billboard may receive a commission on orders placed through its retail links, and the retailer may receive certain verifiable data for accounting purposes. After two years of working from home, employees are finally back to the office. But whether you’re working inside or […]]]>

All featured products and services are independently chosen by the editors. However, Billboard may receive a commission on orders placed through its retail links, and the retailer may receive certain verifiable data for accounting purposes.

After two years of working from home, employees are finally back to the office. But whether you’re working inside or outside the home, video conferencing calls won’t go anywhere. If you want to increase the video quality in your next Zoom meeting, a webcam will do the trick.

From Macbook to Dell, every laptop on the market has a camera, and despite the steps taken to improve image quality, external webcams still have an edge.

For those looking for an affordable and easy to use webcam, the NexiGo N60 is a great buy. This highly rated camera is on sale at Amazon for 32% off, bringing the price down to just $34 (regular $50).

To buy: NexiGo N60 1080p Webcam ($33.99)

The first external webcam was introduced in 1991 (making them about five years older than laptop cameras), and a lot has changed since then, especially in terms of picture and sound quality.

The N60 webcam delivers crisp, clear video in Full HD 1080p. It also has a stereo microphone, 30 FPS refresh rate and enhanced 110 degree field view. The NexiGo N60 is a USB webcam, making it a perfect plug-and-play option when the workday is over and you want to relax with some video games.

This camera received a 4.4 out of 5 star rating on Amazon, with most customers praising the ease of use and video clarity. It’s also compatible with Mac OS and Android, and works with Xbox, YouTube, Zoom, Skype, Facetime, Facebook Messenger and more.

The NexiGo N60 webcam is extremely versatile and can be used for video conferencing, gaming, streaming, distance learning, recording and other needs.

For additional tech upgrades to help improve your working life, check out our picks of the best wired headphones for listening to your favorite music and more.

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Nexigo N970P 4K webcam review https://cummingthefragrance.com/nexigo-n970p-4k-webcam-review/ Sat, 05 Mar 2022 11:00:00 +0000 https://cummingthefragrance.com/nexigo-n970p-4k-webcam-review/ Today’s best Nexigo N970P deals Nexigo N970P Specifications Price: $199 Resolution: 8.5MP 4K UHD (3840X2160) Microphones: dual microphones Field of view: 25-90 degrees Autofocus: Yes Manual focus: via remote control Remote control: Yes Speaker tracking: yes Connection: USB-B Size: 7.09 x 1.67 x 1.1 inches Weight: 1.6 pounds In today’s hybrid work environment, access to […]]]>
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Twice the camera for half the money https://cummingthefragrance.com/twice-the-camera-for-half-the-money/ Sat, 05 Feb 2022 14:00:00 +0000 https://cummingthefragrance.com/twice-the-camera-for-half-the-money/ There’s no shortage of smart home security companies right now, and if you’ve been around the world, you’ve probably heard of Wyze. Wyze has differentiated itself from the competition by selling repairable hardware at great prices. The Cam Pan v2 is no exception, costing just $50 while Nest’s entry-level cameras sell for twice as much. […]]]>

There’s no shortage of smart home security companies right now, and if you’ve been around the world, you’ve probably heard of Wyze. Wyze has differentiated itself from the competition by selling repairable hardware at great prices. The Cam Pan v2 is no exception, costing just $50 while Nest’s entry-level cameras sell for twice as much. This camera can also rotate 360 ​​degrees, giving it much wider coverage than a single fixed camera. Add to that its user-friendly interface, easy setup, and decent image quality, and this camera starts to look very appealing. There are a few downsides, but nothing big enough to give me second thoughts.

ANDROIDPOLICE VIDEO OF THE DAY

The Wyze Cam Pan v2 is an affordable security camera packed with powerful features. It offers more camera coverage for less money, making it an easy recommendation for anyone looking for home security.

Characteristics

  • Resolution: 1080@20fps, 15fps night vision
  • Connectivity: 802.11b/g/n 2.4Ghz
  • Night vision: Night vision range up to 30′ with 6 IR 940nm lights
  • Internal or External: internal only
  • Energy source: 5v/2a power adapter
  • Axis control: 360° horizontal pan, 93° vertical tilt
  • Operating limits: 32℉ – 104℉
  • Measurements (camera): 5″ x 2.3″ x 2.3″
  • Lens: f1.6 with 120° field of view
Advantages

  • Powerful AI detection settings
  • Excellent low light performance
  • Micro SD card slot for local storage
  • Very affordable subscription model at $2 per device per month or $15 per year
  • Pans and tilts
  • Easily download the video directly to your phone
The inconvenients

  • Not weatherproof
  • Only supports 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi
  • The included cable is only 6 feet long
  • Unable to combine motion detection zones with panning.

Buy this product

Design, Material, Box Contents

The Cam Pan V2 is a subtle update to the original Pan model, with the exterior virtually unchanged. It’s an innocuous-looking block of plastic that rotates and saves things. It doesn’t look as nice as something like the Nest Cam, but it doesn’t have to be pretty to be a good security camera. Inside is Wyze’s new “Starlight” sensor for improved night vision, as well as a more powerful processor.

As the name suggests, this camera can pan. With a 360 degree rotation range and just over 90 degrees of tilt, full room coverage is pretty much guaranteed and covering multiple rooms is easy. The base has a 1/4″-20 mount (the most common camera mount) and a grippy pad on the bottom, giving you the flexibility to mount it long term or just lay it anywhere near your camera. ‘a take.



the bottom of the cam pan v2 where you can find the quarter twenty mound, the microSD slot and the configuration and reset buttons

The only other things in the box are the 5v wall adapter and the extremely short power cord. It’s only 6 feet long, which greatly limits your camera placement. Wyze’s wall mount kit includes a much longer 15ft cable, but being able to place the camera more than 6ft away from an outlet without spending extra money doesn’t seem like an unreasonable expectation. The cable isn’t hardwired into the camera, so you can just use a third-party cable, assuming you still have micro USB cables lying around. While it might have been nice to see a USB-C port here, that’s understandable given the price.

There is a MicroSD card slot for local storage. Out of the box, it only supports cards up to 32GB, but Wyze has says that this limit will be increased in a firmware update by February 15. The presence of a card slot is refreshing though, as many other companies ignore this feature to push their cloud storage subscription.



wyze_cam_pan-2

The Cam Pan v2 has two-way communication, so you can tell your dog to get off the couch wherever you are. The same speaker doubles as a “mini siren” in case you want to try and scare off intruders. Personally, I think the “siren” feature is too quiet, but it’s still better than trying to scare someone off by shouting “wee-woo” through a glorified intercom.

Unlike the cheaper stationary Wyze Cam v3, this model doesn’t have an IP rating. So this isn’t the right camera if you need it in the elements. Another problem: it does not support 5 GHz Wi-Fi. It’s only a dealbreaker if you’re unlucky enough to have bad 2.4GHz congestion where you live.

Software, features, video

Pan v2’s main selling point is, of course, panning, and the app lets you use it in a number of ways. By default, it will pan continuously through its full range of motion, pausing for a few seconds at a time. You can also set up to four waypoints for him to stop at instead, which is useful if you don’t want him staring at the wall half the time. There’s also the motion tracking option, allowing the camera to track any movement it detects. Although the Pan v2 has access to the same motion detection areas as other Wyze cameras, it only works with the camera in stationary mode. At this point, why not buy the cheaper non-motorized Wyze cameras?

Like all of their competitors, Wyze has an optional paid subscription, but they also provide access to some great features for as low as $0 on a pay-what-you-want plan called Cam+ Lite. The paid Cam+ subscription obviously offers you a lot of additional user-friendliness, but it is not a requirement. Pairing the included person detection with a MicroSD card gives you a great experience. You can easily select any recent event in the app and take it to your local recording, all without a subscription.

It’s worth mentioning that Person Detection was initially promised as a free feature, but was only available as part of a paid subscription when it launched. Also, the basic plan was hampered. Initially, you had 12 second recordings saved in the cloud for 2 weeks, but with the introduction of Cam+ Lite, you now only get thumbnails. While you can still get these features for free, you need to sign up to get them, rather than just having them out of the box. With all the changes Wyze has made to their subscription model in a very short time, it’s hard to say what you might or might not get even in the very near future.

The app is very user-friendly and has plenty of options to tailor the experience to your needs. It’s easy to set watch schedules, location-based triggers to turn on your cameras when you’re away, and more. You can also check any of your cameras on smart displays (Alexa and Assistant) or a Chromecast.

A feature-laden security camera wouldn’t be useful if the camera part was not good. The Pan v2 is no slouch, however. Wyze promises better low-light performance with its updated starlight sensor, and it delivers. Between the new sensor and the wide-aperture f1.6 aperture of its lens, I got excellent low-light performance well after sunset. Awesome, I was able to see clearly and in color at 2am with nothing but moonlight and a street light at the end of my block. If you have no light, however, the night vision mode works just fine, and I had no problem seeing entire rooms – it’s completely black in the video above. While something higher resolution would have been nice, 1080 is still good enough to make out faces across the room.


Should I buy it?

Probably. If you wanted to add a smart camera to your home without breaking the bank, Wyze has a lot to offer. This camera costs just $50, is incredibly easy to set up, and offers better low-light performance than any of their competitors. If you want something for the outdoors, however, the lack of weather resistance makes it a pass.


wyze_cam_pan-1

Buy it if…

  • Want more indoor camera coverage for not a lot of money
  • You want to monitor your pets while you are away

Don’t buy it if…

  • You want an outdoor camera
  • The 2.4 GHz band is saturated where you are

We hope you like the items we recommend and discuss! AndroidPolice has affiliate and sponsored partnerships, so we receive a revenue share from some of your purchases. This will not affect the price you pay and helps us provide the best product recommendations.


About the Author

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Elecom 4K webcam review: Too expensive to be budget https://cummingthefragrance.com/elecom-4k-webcam-review-too-expensive-to-be-budget/ Sat, 05 Feb 2022 08:00:00 +0000 https://cummingthefragrance.com/elecom-4k-webcam-review-too-expensive-to-be-budget/ As the best 4k monitors become more and more accessible, one would expect 4K webcams to follow suit. But anything worth writing – or spreading – at home always tends to come with a high premium worthy only of the best webcams. There are several reasons for this, the main one being that most video […]]]>
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The ultimate guide to choosing the best webcam https://cummingthefragrance.com/the-ultimate-guide-to-choosing-the-best-webcam/ Thu, 03 Feb 2022 15:00:00 +0000 https://cummingthefragrance.com/the-ultimate-guide-to-choosing-the-best-webcam/ Photo: A billion pictures (Shutterstock) You can dress up for your next Zoom meeting as much as you want, but if you’re using your laptop’s tiny webcam, you’ll likely still look hazy or out of focus. Especially if you regularly work from home, you probably need something a little better. If you’re new to webcams, […]]]>

Image for article titled The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Best Webcam

Photo: A billion pictures (Shutterstock)

You can dress up for your next Zoom meeting as much as you want, but if you’re using your laptop’s tiny webcam, you’ll likely still look hazy or out of focus. Especially if you regularly work from home, you probably need something a little better. If you’re new to webcams, the vast array of options can be overwhelming. Let’s go over the types of features you need in a webcam and some of the best options available.

What to know before buying a webcam

Before buying a new webcam, there are a few important considerations to keep in mind, starting with:

Resolution

When it comes to cameras, pixels and resolution matter a lot. That’s why your laptop’s built-in camera looks pixelated. When buying a new camera, 1080p is the benchmark. Don’t buy a 720p camera.

If you can afford it, go for a 4K webcam. This will help you frame and crop better (if you plan to use the webcam to record videos for YouTube).

Frame rate

Frame rate means the smoothness of the video. A 30 the fps video is quite good, but a 60 The fps camera will give you better and more natural video.

Lenses

Again, the bigger the goal, the better. A larger lens means more light hits the sensor, making you look better. This is called aperture size, and it is measured in f/(number) format. Most webcams are in the f/2.0 to f/2.8 range, so you don’t have to worry about that.

Field of view

The lens also determines the field of view. This indicates the area captured by the video. A wide field of view will capture much more of the room. Webcams generally have a field of view between 60 and 90 degrees, and 78 degrees is the most common.

Auto focus

Most inexpensive webcams you’ll find on Amazon are fixed-focus. This means that if you move your face or raise your hand to show something, it won’t automatically change the focus. We recommend using a webcam with autofocus for the best experience – most webcams these days offer this feature.

Microphone

Some budget cameras have microphones, but you don’t need them. It’s best to use your headset’s microphone. Many high-end cameras, like the Dell Ultrasharp webcam, no longer have microphones.

Can we get by without a webcam?

If you can’t find a webcam (due to supply chain issues) or just don’t want to spend $50-100, it may be better to use your smartphone than buy a cheap webcam unbranded online.

Although it may seem like a logistical problem, using your smartphone as a webcam is quite simple. You can use free software available for both iPhone and android smartphones to connect your phone’s camera as a webcam for any video call application on your computer. You can even turn your DSLR camera in a webcam.

It’s a good solution in a pinch, but if you make frequent video calls, a real webcam will serve you better. Here are our picks.

Image for article titled The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Best Webcam

Logitech is a well-known brand in the webcam industry, and the StreamCam is the culmination of decades of development. This is a square 1080p webcam specially designed for the YouTube generation.

Even at default settings, it’s great for recording video interviews and podcasts. Moreover, it shoots 1080p video at 60 fps, giving you smoother and more natural videos. Due to its unique shape, you can also use it to make portrait videos (for TikTok or Instagram).

StreamCam has a very versatile mounting system and comes with a tripod.

Image for article titled The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Best Webcam

If you’re looking for a good camera under $50, try the Nexigo N60. At $40, it’s a basic webcam whose fundamentals are clear. It’s a 1080p webcam that records at 30 fps. But where Nexigo shines is its software. Although the camera is basic, the software gets pretty good video quality out of it.

There are a few downsides: the 110-degree viewing angle is too wide and zooming in doesn’t help. Low-light performance is decent at best, and getting good results requires a lot of tweaking in the software. But for only $40, it’s a good buy.

Image for article titled The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Best Webcam

The Original C920 webcam was released in 2012. This series of webcams have been performing well for 10 years, and we are still confident in recommending it for your home setup. The reason is simple: it’s an absolute workhorse – you’ll find this camera in virtually any office conference room. It doesn’t have the best image quality (the StreamCam will eat it for breakfast), but what it does have is reliability and customizability.

The 1080p webcam will record at 30 fps, 78 degrees field of view and with autofocus. Once set up, use Logitech software to adjust brightness and contrast, and you’re good to go.

Image for article titled The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Best Webcam

Razer, the company behind Baller RGB gaming components, makes a really good webcam for under $100. Razer’s Kiyo X is a polished version of their previous Kiyo webcam. They added the X and dropped the microphone and ring light. But the webcam is still good at what it does, which is image quality.

You get 1080p video at 30 fps or 720p video at 60 ips. It has autofocus and a versatile mounting system. Where Razer wins is in its customization and video settings.

Razer is good at white balancing and exposure on its own – give it just enough light.

Image for article titled The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Best Webcam

If you have the cash to spend and are looking for the best video quality, go with the $200 Dell Ultrasharp camera. The 4K camera lets you shoot high-quality video right on your computer, and it lets you zoom in on your face with less degradation than a 1080p camera. It also supports 1080p at 60 or 30 fps if you don’t have the bandwidth to stream 4K video.

The camera doesn’t have a microphone, but as we mentioned above, you don’t really need one. What the camera has is customizable software that helps you adjust video quality and lets you use presets.

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7 tips for taking great pictures of stars in the night sky https://cummingthefragrance.com/7-tips-for-taking-great-pictures-of-stars-in-the-night-sky/ Sat, 29 Jan 2022 20:13:24 +0000 https://cummingthefragrance.com/7-tips-for-taking-great-pictures-of-stars-in-the-night-sky/ Stargazing reinforces the wonder of our small size in the Universe. Combining science and meditation, watching the night sky is fascinating. Drawn to dark sky parks and communities on my travels, capturing beautiful images of the night sky is always an activity I like to include. To achieve some success with star photography, you need […]]]>

Stargazing reinforces the wonder of our small size in the Universe. Combining science and meditation, watching the night sky is fascinating. Drawn to dark sky parks and communities on my travels, capturing beautiful images of the night sky is always an activity I like to include.

To achieve some success with star photography, you need to plan and practice. Here are some tools and recipes for taking photos with a cell phone and DSLR/mirrorless camera to achieve your goals. Many are inexpensive and easy to implement.

Milky Way with rocks and bushes in the foreground (Photo credit: Julie Diebolt Price)

1. Find a really dark sky

The best tip for taking great photos of stars is to visit a Dark sky place where light pollution is reduced. There are 195 certified dark sky locations in the world.

2. Invest in this non-tradable gear

A tripod is essential for stabilizing your camera, whether it’s a DLSR/Mirrorless or a cell phone. It is impossible to hold either camera for the long exposures required for star photography. It would be better to reduce camera shake when pointing your camera lens to the sky.

3. Manage your HDR and flash

Disable flash and HDR (high dynamic range) on your smartphone. The flash is ineffective because the subject is not close enough. HDR tends to slow down your camera speed. Disabling it will improve performance.

Milky Way photographed at Joshua Tree National Park.
Milky Way photographed at Joshua Tree National Park; Joshua trees in the foreground (Photo credit: Julie Diebolt Price)

4. Use optical rather than digital zoom

Only use your mobile phone’s optical zoom range, as it performs lens adjustment like a real zoom lens and will provide better quality images. Avoid digital zoom as it relies on in-camera image processing, enlarging pixels and reducing image quality and resolution.

5. Carry an extra battery

Fully charge your cell phone before you start star photography. An external backup battery will ensure you have enough power to complete the entire series of photographs. Tie it at the beginning of the photo shoot.

A new, fully charged battery will allow you to capture enough images for a spectacular set of star trails from your DSLR/Mirrorless. You will not change the battery during the capture process.

Several apps offered in Google Play (Android) and App Store (iPhone) will definitely help your star photography.

You need to use an app to control shutter speed on smartphones. You’ll capture multiple photos in a short time to create a long exposure effect. Popular apps for IOS include Slow shutter camera and Medium Pro Camera. The options for Android are FV-5 Camera and night camera.

Program an intervalometer (cable shutter) connected to a DSLR/mirrorless camera to get the right combination of exposures.

NightCap Camera

NightCap Camera is a night and low-light photography app for iPhone. It uses artificial intelligence to make photography of stars, star trails, the ISS (International Space Station), and meteors more accessible.

The thing to remember is that the darker it gets, the slower it gets. And no camera can work without light. Light Boost is available but still may not provide the results you are looking for.

Photopills

PhotoPills is a robust personal assistant in all photographic disciplines. It provides detailed information for most of your questions when planning and shooting the Sun, Moon, Milky Way, etc. Augmented reality helps you find the pole star, celestial equator, depth of field and field of view.

Add essential information such as sunrise, sunset, twilight, golden hour, blue hour, moonrise, moonset, supermoon dates and calendar lunar, which are often used details.

Use it as a scouting tool to plan your photo shoots. You will know when to arrive and will benefit from assistance with the composition before the session.

Calculations for time-lapse, long exposure, star trails, tracking stars and hyperfocal distances are all part of the package.

Pro tip: Go to the PhotoPills website and download the user guide to get the most out of this program.

Sky View

SkyView (for iOS and android) is an easy-to-use augmented reality app. It is intuitive and a great tool for identifying planets, constellations and stars in the day or night sky.

According to CNET, “If you’ve ever wanted to know what you’re looking at in the night sky, this app is the perfect astronomer’s companion.”

Point your device skyward to identify constellations, galaxies, stars, planets and satellites at your location.

Great features let you set alerts for upcoming celestial events, and there’s a night mode that preserves your night vision with red or green night mode filters. Wi-Fi is not required and it does not require GPS or data signal to function, which is essential for Dark Sky Places with little or no internet connection.

Post-processing tools

You need to process the star trail and Milky Way images after capture. In my experience, the best tools for post-processing are Adobe Photoshop Where Adobe Photoshop Lightroom on your computer.

Milky Way with rocks and bushes in the foreground.
Milky Way with rocks and bushes in the foreground (Photo credit: Julie Diebolt Price)

7. Follow these “recipes”

If you want to try your hand at photographing the stars, here are some recipes to get you started. All exposure settings are approximate for DSLR/mirrorless cameras. Don’t be afraid to experiment.

Pro tips: Use a red headlamp or flashlight when traveling after dark. It takes 20-30 minutes for our eyes to adjust to the dark. Also, if you park near your photo location, be sure to turn off all of the vehicle’s interior lights so they don’t come on when you open the doors, spoiling your precious night vision. for several minutes.

Milky Way Recipe: No Moon

  • f/2.8
  • 8-30 second exposure
  • ISO 3200-6400
  • 3200K white balance

Full moon

  • f/5.6
  • 1-2 second exposure
  • ISO400

Rule of 500

  • Wide open lens (e.g. f/2.8)
  • 500 divided by focal length = longest acceptable exposure of stars without streaks due to Earth’s rotation
A photograph of star trails with rocks in the foreground.
A photograph of star trails with rocks in the foreground (Photo credit: Julie Diebolt Price)

Star Trails Recipe

Star trail photography can be an all-night event. Scout your location during daylight hours. Find an interesting foreground to include in your composition. Configure everything except your camera. Count the number of steps between your camp/parking spot and your installation. It will be easier to keep your bearings when walking after dark.

Pro tip: Use an activated ring light attached to your tripod so you and anyone else nearby can see your setup.

The blue star trails behind a Joshua tree.
A blue star trails behind a Joshua tree (Photo credit: Julie Diebolt Price)

Star Trails Camera Settings

  • BULB shutter speed
  • f/4.0
  • ISO400
  • 4000K white balance

Star Trails Intervalometer Settings (Electronic Cable Release)

  • Delay 00 00 00 (Delay before shutter release = no delay)
  • Long 00 04 00 (Exposure time = 4 minutes)
  • Interval 00 00 01 (Interval between exposures = 1 second)
  • N 0-399 (Number of shots, 0 = no finite quantity)
  • On/off button to start, NOT the large remote shutter button

Wait a second between exposures (so the sensor doesn’t overheat and pixelate your images). Longer than this will show gaps between each shot.

Your DSLR/mirrorless camera will capture between 18 and 45 exposures. The minimum desired total exposure time is 1.5 hours, or when your battery is depleted. I get several hours from a new battery.

Pro tips: Buy a new battery and fully charge it for that DSLR/mirrorless adventure. You will only use one per night during this process. Locate the North Star and use it to anchor your star trails. The pole star does not move because it is very close to the north celestial pole of the Earth.

White balance

  • Full moon – 5200 K (daylight)
  • Partial Moon – 4500K
  • No Moon – 4000K (Tungsten/Incandescent)

Pro tips: Be sure to remove the lens cap before starting the series of exposures. Test once or twice before launch. Head to bed and tour your facility in the morning.

Want to learn more about stargazing and the night sky? To consider

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Logitech’s StreamCam webcam is on sale at Amazon for $108 https://cummingthefragrance.com/logitechs-streamcam-webcam-is-on-sale-at-amazon-for-108/ Sat, 29 Jan 2022 17:18:44 +0000 https://cummingthefragrance.com/logitechs-streamcam-webcam-is-on-sale-at-amazon-for-108/ Ladies and gentlemen, the weekend offers! While some of us on the East Coast may be busy shoveling snow this Saturday morning, we hope many of you have a restful weekend full of deals and discounts. Kicking things off on the transaction front is Logitech’s StreamCam, which is currently on sale in its Graphite colorway […]]]>

Ladies and gentlemen, the weekend offers! While some of us on the East Coast may be busy shoveling snow this Saturday morning, we hope many of you have a restful weekend full of deals and discounts.

Kicking things off on the transaction front is Logitech’s StreamCam, which is currently on sale in its Graphite colorway at Amazon for $108. That’s about $62 off the regular price of this excellent webcam, one we consider to be the best webcam you can buy in terms of image quality. The StreamCam is Logitech’s flagship 1080p camera and is capable of reaching 60 frames per second, allowing for a smooth, crisp look. The Capture software can also keep you centered in the frame, much like the Center Stage feature found on Apple’s new iPads, and the compact webcam can record in landscape or portrait mode, a feature that makes it easier to edit clips for mobile. However, it doesn’t come on sale too frequently, and today’s price is just a few dollars off its all-time low.


Logitech StreamCam

The Streamcam supports 1080p resolution at 60 frames per second. It has a 78 degree field of view, as well as two omnidirectional microphones. Unlike most other options, the StreamCam connects via USB-C.

The Beats Fit Pro are a new dark horse in the world of true wireless headphones. While these days we often associate Apple-owned Beats with fitness-focused alternatives to the de facto standard AirPods line, the ANC-equipped Beats Fit Pro offer a comfortable fit and outclass the more expensive AirPods Pro. in audio quality. Their only downsides are a bulkier case that doesn’t offer wireless charging and they tend not to go on sale as much as the AirPods Pro. Well, that and the fact that they still work a bit more seamlessly with iOS than Android.

Today you can get the Beats Fit Pro with a $20 gift card at Amazon for $199.99, the full retail price. It might not be as good as last week’s gross sale, which saw the earphones discounted to $153, but it’s a steal nonetheless. Read our review.


Beats Fit Pro (with a $20 Amazon gift card)

Beats Fit Pro headphones have built-in wingtips that help them stay secure during runs and workouts. They also have excellent noise cancellation, and their sound has just the right amount of bass and kick to keep you motivated.

The Roborock S6 MaxV is a robot vacuum mop with a solid feature set that includes AI-based obstacle avoidance, up to 180 minutes of battery life, programmable no-go zones, and integration with Alexa from Amazon. Roborock’s top model normally sells for $750, but it’s currently discounted to $460 at Amazon and walmart (Be sure to clip the coupon on the page at Amazon).

We haven’t tested this exact model, but our resident smart home reviewer Jennifer Pattison Tuohy recently found a lot to like in its flagship counterpart, the Roborock S7 Plus. This latest vacuum retails for $950, so the S6 MaxV promises many of the same features – suction capability, lidar navigation, tank size, and more. – for nearly half the price. The S6 lacks the self-emptying docking station found on the S7 Plus, but if your house is littered with toys and other potential obstacles, the MaxV might be the best bet.


Roborock S6 MaxV Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Roborock’s S6 MaxV can vacuum and clean your space while avoiding obstacles on its own thanks to its dual-camera setup with lidar navigation.

If you’re a PC gamer, the two biggest digital storefronts are both offering discounts worthy of your attention right now. Both epic games and To smoke are hosting Lunar New Year sales, offering various savings on a wide range of titles. Steam’s sale runs until 1:00 PM EST / 10:00 AM PST on February 3, while Epic is extending its sale until February 9.

In addition, you can again get a $10 coupon from Epic to use on any full game purchase over $14.99. This means you can get new titles like the excellent Sony God of the war PC port for $39.99or fan favorites like Disco Elysium: the final cut for only $5.99. However, to take advantage of the coupon, you must sign up for Epic’s newsletter and wait for the coupon to arrive in your inbox, which may take up to 24 hours.


God of the war

The reboot of the classic PlayStation franchise has finally made its way to PC. The already gorgeous title has been enhanced with higher resolution shadows and Nvidia DLSS for incredible fidelity and performance.

Other great deals going on right now

  • The second-gen Google Pixel Stand is finally here, and our very own Allison Johnson reviewed it and found it to be a good charger, if a bit pricey for what it offers. Luckily, if you have an older Pixel 3, 4, or 5 that can’t take advantage of the new charger’s higher power output, you can currently get the first-gen model for $28.99 ($50 off) at Woot.
  • Pokemon Legends: Arceusa Nintendo Switch title that represents a refreshing twist on the classic Pokemon formula, is already on sale at Amazon for $54.99 ($5 off). Read our review.
  • Philips Hue bulbs often get deep discounts, but you don’t always get a deal on the brighter 1,100 lumen bulbs. Currently, Costco members can purchase a 75W equivalent multi-color smart bulb four-pack for $119.99 ($30 off).
  • If you like the idea of ​​charging your phone wirelessly (slowly) by resting it on an adorable Pikachu, this pokemonMadcow’s themed wireless charger is $47.99 ($12 off) at GameStop. It might be a novelty, but it also charges three other devices via USB. In addition, the cheeks light up! Come on, it’s adorable.
  • Apple’s second-generation AirPods are on sale at Amazon with the $99.99 wired charging case, almost matching their price to date. Although now considered the entry-level model, they still offer excellent wireless performance, reliable battery life and surprisingly detailed sound. Read our review.

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Microsoft’s modern webcam review: This $55 webcam makes you look good, but you’ll need a better mic https://cummingthefragrance.com/microsofts-modern-webcam-review-this-55-webcam-makes-you-look-good-but-youll-need-a-better-mic/ Tue, 25 Jan 2022 08:00:00 +0000 https://cummingthefragrance.com/microsofts-modern-webcam-review-this-55-webcam-makes-you-look-good-but-youll-need-a-better-mic/ Source: Microsoft Looking for a new webcam to go along with your work-from-home (or even office) setup? Microsoft has you covered with its “modern webcam” which is also “Teams certified”, meaning it’s ready to use with Teams without too much hassle. Sure, this webcam will work well in any application, but the Teams Certified stamp […]]]>

Source: Microsoft

Looking for a new webcam to go along with your work-from-home (or even office) setup? Microsoft has you covered with its “modern webcam” which is also “Teams certified”, meaning it’s ready to use with Teams without too much hassle. Sure, this webcam will work well in any application, but the Teams Certified stamp is there to let you know that if you use Teams, this is the accessory for you.

It’s been a few years since Microsoft last shipped a webcam, so it’s good to see the company is back with something new. Unfortunately, it’s not a flagship webcam, which means it’s not 4K or includes Windows Hello facial recognition support. It’s simply a webcam designed for video conferencing, and it does a great job, but with a few caveats.

There are plenty of great webcams out there, so be sure to check out our roundup of the best webcams for Windows PCs in 2022! I’ve been using the Microsoft Modern Webcam for a little over a month now. Here is my review:

Cropped Modern Microsoft Webcam

Modern webcam from Microsoft

At the end of the line : The Microsoft Modern Webcam is a great choice for anyone looking for a 1080p webcam for video conferencing on a budget. With a built-in privacy shutter, clear video and smooth low-light performance.

Good

  • Easy setup
  • Compact design
  • Smooth performance in low light
  • Affordable price

The bad

  • Built-in microphone is no good
  • Accessory app needs work
  • No Windows Hello
Category Modern webcam from Microsoft
Dimensions Length: 1.99 inches (50.53mm)
Width: 1.42 inches (36.05mm)
Depth: 2.94 inches (74.58mm)
Weight 0.21 lbs (88.3g)
Outside Front window: glass, polished black
Tripod mount: copper, shiny silver
Other components: plastic/TPE/rubber, matte black
Sensor 1080p 30fps video output
1.4um x 1.4um
HDR
Auto Exposure
Auto white balance
Automatic anti-flicker
78 degree wide field of view
Cable length 59.1 inches (1.5 meters)
Submissions USB-A cable
An audio codec PCM, 16-bit, 16 kHz sampling
Compatibility Windows 8/1
Windows 10
Windows 11
macOS 10.15+

Modern webcam: Price and availability

Modern webcam from MicrosoftSource: Windows Central

The Microsoft Modern Webcam is available directly from the Microsoft Store for an MSRP of $70. However, right now you can grab the webcam for just $55, making it a bargain regardless of the downsides. It can also be found on Amazon; however, prices there often fluctuate above and below $70.

Modern webcam: what is good

Modern webcam from MicrosoftSource: Windows Central

The Microsoft Modern Webcam is a sleek and functional little camera that sits above your monitor with the included stand/tripod. It comes in a glossy black finish and looks super clean in any configuration. It has a built-in privacy shield that uses satisfying magnets to open and close, with the closed position also cutting power to the camera in addition to actually covering the lens. When active, there’s a small ring of light that surrounds the sensor letting you know the camera is on.

It’s also designed to be plug and play, meaning you can just plug the USB-A cable into your PC and you should be good to go, with no real setup required. That said, if you want to customize the webcam, Microsoft offers an app called “Microsoft Accessory Center” that will allow you to do so. Here you can change settings like color temperature, HDR on or off, auto white balance, etc.

Here are all the things you can set up with the Microsoft Accessories Center app:

  • HDR on/off
  • Retouch on/off
  • Brightness
  • Contrast
  • Saturation
  • Acuity
  • white balance
  • Auto Exposure
  • Flicker reduction
  • Enable/disable the webcam microphone

The performance of the camera itself perfectly acceptable. It’s a 1080p shooter, featuring a 78-degree field of view, HDR support, auto exposure, auto white balance, and anti-flicker capabilities. . It’s a well-rounded sensor that looks great in well-lit environments. Microsoft does a good job of adjusting exposure so that your face is always the most visible, even if you have a bright light source such as a window directly behind you.

I also came away rather impressed with the low-light performance of this webcam. While still quite noisy, the webcam didn’t drop frames in an attempt to open the sensor and let in more light. I stayed smooth on video, which is nice to see and makes a big difference when presenting on video calls.

I also found that this camera does not seek focus randomly as much as others. My Logitech BRIO 4K is really prone to randomly seeking focus on my face, even though I hadn’t moved much in frame. I did not notice this behavior on the Microsoft Modern Webcam.

Modern webcam: What is not good

Modern webcam from MicrosoftSource: Windows Central

In our tests, the Microsoft Accessory Center app needs some work. We found that it often forgets the settings and sometimes does not apply the color temperature settings even after selecting them from the drop-down menu. It’s not a big deal, as it takes a few seconds to go back into the app to reapply the settings, but it’s a bit annoying.

Some color temperature settings are also a little strong, and the same effect may differ randomly without changing anything in your frame. Sometimes this gives the impression that the filters you apply are not taking effect, as the differences between certain effects are sometimes incredibly minor or non-existent.

The biggest downside to this webcam is the built-in microphone, which it seems even Microsoft doesn’t recommend you use. By default, the webcam comes with the built-in mic disabled, and attempting to enable it in the Microsoft Accessories Center app will present you with a warning that this microphone is not Teams certified.

The built-in mic just isn’t good.

I’m really happy to see that Microsoft has added an option to enable or disable the built-in mic, since a lot of people have setups where they already have a dedicated microphone and don’t need Windows to confuse themselves with the mic it has. should use. It’s also beneficial here because the built-in mic just isn’t good.

Sound often sounds buzzy and noisy, even with the mic gain settings turned off. It’s not a pleasant mic to listen to, which is probably why it’s disabled by default. My Surface Laptop 4’s built-in mic did a much better job of audio, and Windows will default to your set mic if the webcam mic is disabled in the accessories app.

Finally, there is no Windows Hello built into this webcam. For the price, you probably shouldn’t expect it, but if you were looking for a Microsoft solution to add Windows Hello to your existing desktop PC, this isn’t the product for you.

Modern webcam: Video and audio test

Here’s a brief video and audio performance test, including an audio comparison with the Surface Studio 2’s built-in mic.

Modern webcam: Competetion

Logitech Brio 4KSource: Windows Central

The webcam market is full of all kinds of different webcams, ranging from high-end 4K 120 FPS sensors to low-cost 720p cameras. The Microsoft Modern Webcam sits comfortably in the middle, being relatively affordable with sufficient performance in well-lit environments.

If you’re looking for something high-end, the Logitech BRIO 4K is our recommendation. It has a 4K sensor, up to 60 FPS video recording, dual-array mics, and even Windows Hello built-in. But it all comes at a premium price of $200, well above the Microsoft Modern Webcam, at just $99.

Alternatively, we have the Logitech C920, arguably the king of 1080p webcams. It has a wide 78 degree field of view, dual microphones and a glass lens for clarity. Microsoft’s modern webcam competes very well with this device, but I think Logitech beats it by a small margin thanks to its slightly better image quality.

We also have the HP 320 FHD and 325, similarly priced to the Microsoft Modern Webcam, 1080p sensor, but with a slightly narrower 66-degree field of view. That said, these HP webcams are mounted on a 360 bracket, which is unique, but could be useful in certain scenarios.

Modern webcam: Should I buy it?

Modern webcam from MicrosoftSource: Windows Central

You should buy it if…

  • You need a basic, high-performance webcam
  • Looking for something that is plug and play
  • Already have a dedicated microphone

You shouldn’t buy it if…

  • You need something with a good built-in microphone
  • You want Windows Hello facial recognition

The Microsoft Modern Webcam is a great choice for anyone looking for a camera that excels in everyday video conferencing in apps like Microsoft Teams. If you’re presenting to large audiences or attending small team meetings, you can’t go wrong with the modern webcam.

3.5
out of 5








That said, all is not perfect. Although I came away impressed with the video quality, even in low-light scenarios, the built-in microphone is just plain bad. Microsoft ships the webcam with the microphone disabled for this reason, so I recommend a dedicated microphone instead.

Globally. for the price, I think you’re getting a good deal with the modern webcam, as long as you’re using a different microphone. The build quality is good, it looks sleek on top of any monitor or screen, and the built-in privacy shutter with magnets is a really nice touch.

Cropped Modern Microsoft Webcam

modern webcam

At the end of the line : With excellent video performance even in low light conditions, you can’t go wrong with Microsoft’s modern webcam, designed with Microsoft Teams certification in mind.

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