Razer, like other manufacturers of gaming computer peripherals, could not stand aside during the boom in streaming services and the huge popularization of streaming. The brand introduced a whole line of microphones and cameras for streamers and other content makers.
And today we’re taking a look at the Razer Kiyo webcam. Despite the fact that the model was released a long time ago, it remains relevant to this day. The device is equipped with a matrix with a resolution of 4 megapixels, and the maximum video resolution is 1920 x 1080 at 30 fps. But the main advantage of the model is the presence of a ring LED backlight, which allows you to achieve a high-quality image even in low light conditions.
Mounting options: L-shaped mount and tripod (not included)
Cable length: 1.5 meters (braided)
Packaging and equipment
The camera comes in a small cardboard box with the manufacturer’s proprietary design. The packaging is designed in black and green colors. The front part shows the device itself, the back lists the main advantages of the camera.
Inside, the device is securely fixed in a form of dense foam rubber. There are no complaints about the quality and reliability of the packaging. Everything looks stylish and soundly.
In addition to the camera itself, we will find documentation and a couple of branded stickers with the brand’s logo in the box.
There are no additional accessories.
Design and construction
When folded, the chamber has the shape of a black three-layer cylinder with a white “cover”. The top section is a ring illuminated lens. There is a status indicator above the lens and a microphone hole below it. Here we see the manufacturer’s logo. The body is made of black plastic.
The upper ring is designed to change the intensity of the backlight. It has a comfortable textured surface for easy adjustment. There are 12 brightness levels in total. The LEDs are covered with a white plastic diffuser, which gives a soft light and prevents strong glare. The backlight temperature is 5600K, which corresponds to daylight.
The upper section supports angle variation within 120 degrees. This is quite enough for both desktop placement and for installation on a monitor.
The bottom section also has a wide range of adjustment, which is enough to fit the thickest monitors or TVs.
The surfaces that are in contact with the monitor have a rubberized coating. This prevents slipping and makes the camera more secure.
Despite the absence of a rigid fixation and all kinds of clamps, the camera is attached to the monitor quite reliably. During operation and possible vibrations of the monitor, it does not dangle or drive.
The range of adjustment is sufficient for any monitor height and streamer height.
The bottom is also rubberized for a secure desktop setup. There is also a seat for mounting the camera on a tripod.
Connection and use
The camera connects to a PC via USB. The length of the supplied cord is 1.5 m. This is quite enough for comfortable use. The cord itself is quite soft, has a fabric braid and is not at all prone to twisting.
No additional software installation is required. The camera is ready for use immediately after connection. You just need to select it as a video source. Regardless, the camera is recognized by Razer’s proprietary Synapse app. Here you can make a full camera setup and immediately evaluate the results.
The ring light has 12 brightness levels. The implementation of its adjustment made me happy. The textured ring does a great job with this feature. Movement in both directions is smooth, without cutoffs. The maximum brightness at a distance of 1 meter is declared at 10 lux. Despite the presence of a plastic diffuser, the camera is noticeably blind at maximum brightness. Therefore, you should not look at it for a long time.
Mounting to a monitor also raises no questions. The camera is securely fixed on the screen of almost any thickness. Values from 3 to 55 mm are available. And thanks to the rubberized surfaces where it touches the monitor or table (when installed on a tabletop), the camera does not slip or move, and also does not leave any scratches.
The overall build quality is also pleasing. The design looks solid. All parts fit tightly to each other. The adjustment of the position of the sections is soft and soundless. When squeezed, there are no backlash and squeaks.
The camera supports several modes of operation: 1080p @ 30FPS / 720p @ 60FPS / 480p @ 30FPS / 360p @ 30FPS. The first two are preferred.
When using the camera in complete darkness, the backlight turns out to be in place and noticeably corrects the situation. At its maximum level, the image can be considered quite acceptable, although there is some slight noise.
From the tests, the backlight really significantly improves the image and allows you to broadcast even late at night and without additional lighting.
But there is nothing to praise the built-in microphone for. The sound quality is on par with microphones in inexpensive headphones. It is suitable only as a temporary option if the main external microphone breaks down or the headset does not have a microphone. There is no noise cancellation, so viewers of the broadcast will hear all the surrounding noises, while the microphone noticeably distorts the voice.
As stated by the manufacturer, the camera is easily recognizable and works with the Open Broadcaster Software (OBS), which is used by most streamers and podcasters. It opens up more possibilities for customizing the image than the standard tools of the operating system. There are no problems with the connection and operation of the camera in OBS.
During the entire operation, the camera left mostly positive emotions. The Razer Kiyo boasts excellent build quality and stands out from the crowd with its unusual design and built-in dimmable backlighting, which, in turn, allows you to achieve a decent picture in low light or even complete darkness.
The Razer Kiyo is a great option for the aspiring streamer or other content maker. The built-in backlight makes it possible to refuse additional lighting and allows you to achieve an acceptable picture even on night streams, and a well-thought-out design opens up wide possibilities for installing and configuring the camera to suit your needs.
Built-in adjustable backlight;
Correct autofocus operation;
Clever design that allows you to mount the camera on a table, monitor or tripod.
Mediocre built-in microphone quality;
The backlight is a little dazzling at the maximum brightness level.