Trust’s digital offering: the ‘Familycam’

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1 April 2005 | 0

The device is a versatile Webcam, offering four functions in one product. It can be used as the standard Webcam, a low-end digital camera, an audio recorder or a mini video camera. 

If that sounds impressive, fair enough. But before you make any impulse purchases, a bit more investigation wouldn’t go astray. 

Admittedly, the first thing that caught my eye about the Familycam was the digital camera function. A useful feature, but if you are expecting it to replace your own camera or save yourself a few hundred euro on a separate digital camera, think again.

 

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Most digital cameras have a resolution of over 2 megapixels (about 2 million pixels). The Familycam’s digital photography function takes photos at about 0.3 megapixel resolution — 300,000 pixels. The quality is significantly poorer than standard digital cameras, but for the price you are paying, it would be unfair to expect anything else. 

All in all, the Familycam is a nifty little Webcam. It’s lightweight and compact, and you even get a free tripod with it. If you want to take your self-portrait using the digital camera mode, there is a small mirror on the front of the camera to make sure at least part of your head gets in the shot. 

There is nothing bad, as such, about this Webcam. There are, however, one or two things that might put people off buying it. For starters, the viewfinder on the camera isn’t exactly accurate, so it’s worth checking out your photos or video footage to make sure you got what you were looking for. If you rely on the mirror on the front of the camera for taking your self-portrait, you could wind up cutting half your head from the picture. And of course, there is the issue of resolution on the camera function. 

The software that comes with the product isn’t compatible with Macs and some versions of Windows XP will need drivers downloaded from the Trust Website (www.trust.com) before it will work properly. 

Other software included on the CD ROM includes Videomail, Ulead Cool 360 and Ulead Cool 360 Viewer. 

To sum up, the Familycam is aptly named. Like a family it can promise a lot, disappoint at times, but it is nice to have around. Whether or not you want to shell out for this product is quite another thing. You may not be able to choose your family, but you can certainly choose what to spend your hard-earned cash on. If you want a Webcam, it’s probably as good as any on the market. If not, give it a miss. 

Specs:

Trust Familycam 310 AV

Don’t buy this product expecting it to replace other gadgets — its best function is as a Webcam and nothing else. 

Rating 6/10

Price: €129.99

Contact Scope Distribution: +353 (0)1-623 5333

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