Maximum PC Staff Aug 15, 2008

Microsoft VX5000 Webcam

At A Glance


Unique contouring base, relatively cheap.


Black holes and rainbows, proprietary features.

Black holes, rainbows, and Microsoft technology. What do these three things have in common? You’ll find all of them in the VX5000 webcam.

The VX5000 is the first webcam we've ever tested with a flexible base. You can contour it to fit on your laptop or have it simply act as a traditional stand. During our recording tests we found that the webcam couldn't display pure white; instead, bright whites would display as aqua. Furthermore, when objects quickly crossed over a bright white background, they would disappear. Another hiccup we discovered was an effect very similar to spatial Moiré pattern aliasing —the ripples in our shirts would create wavelike rainbows which contorted as we moved.

The VX5000's embedded microphone, however, was surprisingly sensitive and did a great job recording with sufficient clarity. Unfortunately, this acute sensitivity also applied to background noise, which the microphone recorded with the same fidelity.

The webcam comes with a number of cool features, including one-touch blogging and one-touch calling and photo swapping; however, these features are tied to Windows Live or Messenger software and cannot be used with other apps. If you won’t be using these proprietary features, the unit is little more than a generic 1.3 megapixel webcam hindered by faulty color reproduction.


Microsoft VX5000 Webcam

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