Date: May 21st, 2007
Article by: Jackie Mueller (Hardware Reviewer)
Edited by: Nathan Glentworth (Owner / Head Editor)
Product was submitted by: Cyber Snipa
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PRODUCT COMPOSITION, PICTORIAL AND WALKTHROUGH
The software CD brings up a splash screen with a simple four step install process. The DirectX install I skipped since I already had it loaded on my machine. Step 2 (the driver) is the only thing that must be installed for the camera to work. After that the camera will function just fine with an instant messaging program, Skype, etc. Step 3 is Cyber Snipa's Video Center software used to interface with the camera. Step 4 is the optional VP-EYE application which gives more options for video capture, surveillance, photo albums, and other things.
The Video Center program brings up a window of the camera output and an interface screen that allows viewing the output in several resolutions. Video recording can be done with a few different video compressors. I chose MPEG4, recorded a few minutes of video and the quality turned out to be pretty impressive with the exception of fast moving objects being a bit blurry. Choices in the advanced options menu include adjustments of brightness, contrast, gamma, hue, saturation, and sharpness. Color balance can also be tweaked.
Still shots are pretty good quality for a $20 camera as this picture was taken without making any adjustments or enhancements. Pictures came out somewhat blurry in low light, so I would recommend using the Scout in a well lit room.
There are additional interesting (but gimmicky) options in the advanced settings of the Video Center software. Several image effects are for the choosing including mosaic, particle, glass tile, and a “polychrome” photo frame which is demonstrated in the picture above.
Most features of the optional VP-EYE software are of questionable usefulness, but might be fun for some to play around with. Use it to create things like greeting cards, special effects, photo albums, and video monitoring.