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Is Webcam Compatible With Laptop?

Pic of a webcam

It is easy to admit that laptop cameras are crappy. Recording a good quality video is almost unimaginable with a built-in camera on a laptop. Therefore, you might get a thought, is a webcam compatible with a laptop?

Here I am talking about an external webcam that you usually use on a desktop computer. Let’s find out if it is compatible since you already have a built-in camera on the laptop, how it will work, and all the stuff you need to know about attaching an external webcam for better video quality.

Is Webcam Compatible With Laptop?

If you prefer live-streaming or recording video with your laptop camera, a built-in camera is not enough, that is for sure. Under this scenario, you can urge an external web camera to interpret this vital issue.

However, some laptops are out in the market with excellent web cameras. For example, laptops for webcam models usually have better camera systems to record HD video quality. Yet, adding external cameras can provide superior quality that is good for them.

So, is an external webcam compatible with a laptop? Yes, it is compatible, but you need to disable the existing camera and replace that with a webcam.

Now let’s discuss how you can do all of that to enhance your laptop video recording quality by replacing the built-in camera with an external webcam.


Disable Existing Camera

If you want to use your external camera regularly, it is better to disable your existing camera. Although you do not have to disable this camera in some modern apps, you can reduce hassles.

Since you do not have to make any changes to the hardware, you can always bring back the existing camera with a few clicks. So, here is how you can disable your existing camera on the laptop.

  • Go to the search bar and type “Device Manager.”
  • Then expand the “Imaging Device” section.
  • And you will see the existing camera there.
  • Click the right button of your mouse and disable it.

You have successfully disabled your existing camera; now, you can connect a new webcam to your laptop.

Connect External Webcam To Your Laptop

At this stage, your job is to find a nice webcam for your laptop that can solve low video quality issues and provide the excellent footage that you are looking for. Fortunately, many webcams are available in the market with outstanding video recording quality, even in low-light conditions.

These cameras are available in a USB cable which is usually plug and play. It automatically installs to the laptop after connecting via a USB port. Wait for a moment to install the necessary driver and then test it by opening the camera app. Also, check the microphone quality that additionally you get with the camera. I am sure you can see the significant difference between the built-in camera and the external webcam.

Selecting Camera In The Software Setting

Sometimes you do not want to disable your built-in camera for some reason. That could be you still want to use it for quick video calling and other stuff. Most video calling apps or recording apps allow you to switch between multiple cameras. For example, if you choose Skype, you can select the camera in their settings. And the same thing goes for Zoom or Hangout. So, you can switch between the camera whenever you need to without disabling any camera at all.

Why Use An External Webcam Over Built-in Camera?

Most of the time, people choose an external camera over a built-in camera because of the video quality. However, there are several reasons for doing that. Let’s talk about these reasons here:

  • The main reason is that the external webcam typically has better image quality than the built-in camera. The external webcam is typically a higher-resolution camera than the built-in camera.
  • It is often easier to position the external webcam than the built-in camera. The external webcam can be placed on a desk or tripod, while the built-in camera is typically located on the laptop lid.
  • The external webcam is often easier to use than the built-in camera. The external webcam typically has a built-in microphone, which allows you to record audio with your video easily. The built-in camera on most laptops does not have a built-in microphone, which makes it difficult to record audio with your video.

Some Tips To Use Webcam

A webcam is the most common way to breach your security. And hackers take that advantage to intrude on your privacy and hack your laptop. Therefore, you should take some safety precautions to prevent these unexpected incidents.

  • When using a webcam, be sure to keep your surroundings in mind. Ensure you are in a well-lit area and that there is nothing behind you that could compromise.
  • Be aware of who you are talking to. If you don’t know the person, verify their identity before engaging in any conversations.
  • If you use a webcam to conduct a meeting, test the equipment beforehand to ensure that everything is working correctly.
  • Disable or cover the camera after using it. That is the most efficient way to prevent any unusual incidents.
  • Place your camera in a suitable place to ensure better lighting to achieve better footage. Also, make sure it is not shaking or not going to fall while you are recording.


Now you have the comprehensive answer to your desired question, is a webcam compatible with a laptop or not. If you primarily use a laptop camera for video calling, I’d suggest getting a better laptop that ensures a better quality camera for video calling.

However, doing live streaming or recording video requires a better camera. And here comes an external webcam to solve the issue. Although it costs some money to get a better webcam, that is worth it based on the footage you get from it.

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