updated 04:15 pm EDT, Fri September 15, 2006
Microsoft LifeCam NX-6000
The highest-quality webcams available today typically operate at a 1.3-megapixel resolution, which is enough for windowed video chats but falls short for full-screen chat and still images. Microsoft hopes to remedy this problem with the LifeCam NX-6000, a laptop equivalent of its earlier VX-6000 model. The sensor inside the NX-6000 can record 2-megapixel video at a 1600x1190 resolution that is almost a perfect match to the full size of many laptop and 20-inch desktop displays. Hardware in the camera can also interpolate still images to an even sharper 3200x2380 (7.6-megapixel) picture. Microsoft has logically made integration with Windows Live Messenger an important feature and has a call button to start video chats quickly. For portability, the lens can slide into the camera body. NX-6000 cameras begin shipping in November for $100.