Microsoft LifeCam HD-3000 Review

The Microsoft LifeCam HD-3000 is an excellent webcam in many ways, especially considering its modest price point.

Our Verdict

The Microsoft LifeCam HD-3000 may not provide fully high-definition video, but it is a solid and hardworking device considering its price point.

For

  • Its three-year warranty is the lengthiest of any in our lineup.

Against

  • Its image resolution is only 4MP, which is much lower than most other webcams.
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The Microsoft LifeCam HD-3000 can shoot in 720p high definition at 30 frames per second.

The Microsoft LifeCam HD-3000 can shoot in 720p high definition at 30 frames per second.
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The universal attachment base lets you choose where to set the LifeCam, whether it’s atop your monitor or mounted to a tripod.

The universal attachment base lets you choose where to set the LifeCam, whether it’s atop your monitor or mounted to a tripod.
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With the ability to shoot in a 16:9 widescreen format, the HD-3000 allows for cinematic video recording.

With the ability to shoot in a 16:9 widescreen format, the HD-3000 allows for cinematic video recording.
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The HD-3000 has a fixed focus, so you’ll need to constantly check to make sure you’re in focus while recording.

The HD-3000 has a fixed focus, so you’ll need to constantly check to make sure you’re in focus while recording.
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The LifeCam HD-3000 ships with a three-year manufacturer warranty, the best of any webcam we reviewed.

The LifeCam HD-3000 ships with a three-year manufacturer warranty, the best of any webcam we reviewed.

The Microsoft LifeCam HD-3000 is an excellent webcam in many ways, especially considering its modest price point. It lacks many of the more advanced features found in the best webcams, like the Logitech HD Pro C920. Despite this, the webcam is hardworking, provides good audio and video quality overall and is easy to use.

This web camera can shoot 16:9 cinematic video in up to 720p, which is basic high-resolution. You can capture video at up to 30fps at 720p, which is decent, though other webcams can shoot 30fps at 1080p (full HD). If that difference in resolution isn’t a big deal to you, then the LifeCam HD-3000 is a good option. However, if you plan on taking lots of still photos, the unit may not cut it, as its still image resolution is a disappointing 4 megapixels. Microsoft’s TrueColor technology enhances the LifeCam’s brightness and color under most lighting conditions.

The HD-3000’s lens has a fixed focus and lets you digitally zoom in on an image up to 4x. Its microphone has an integrated noise reducer, so it automatically reduces or eliminates background noise in any video you record. Built-in social media sharing lets you share those videos to friends and followers on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. The HD-3000 is also compatible with Skype for Business.

With a cord length of 4.9 feet, you should have enough room to get the HD-3000 set up just where you want it in your office. Tilt and pan functionality allow you to tailor your webcam’s view even more. The PC camera is compatible with Windows XP, 7, 8, 8.1 and 10, although the TrueColor function is only supported on Windows 8 or later.

The LifeCam ships with an impressive three-year limited warranty from the manufacturer, longer than any other unit we reviewed. Customer support for the webcam is available directly, although you may not need it if your questions are answered in the available user manual and FAQs section on Microsoft’s website.

The Microsoft LifeCam HD-3000 lives up to expectations and stands true to the specs provided. The few misses with the Microsoft LifeCam – which boil down to a slightly lower video capture resolution, a low still-image resolution and a lack of advanced features – aren’t horrible, but there are other comparably priced products that perform better and have more features.