Following on Canon’s footsteps, Fujifilm just introduced the company’s solution to turn X series and GFX system digital cameras into webcams. Now you can have a 102 million pixels webcam!
If you’ve a Fujifilm GFX100 camera and a Windows computer, you’ve a webcam that will make everybody go “Wow”. Not only do you have a huge sensor, with 102 million pixels, but you also have the option to choose the lens best adapted to each situation, and even the freedom to choose the Film Simulation mode that best suits your mood for each web-conference. Now, that’s a whole new world of options in terms of webcams, and it is all due to the constraints created by the pandemic.
Canon’s EOS Webcam Utility Beta software solution seems to have triggered the explosion of solutions to transform regular photo and video cameras in webcams. Turning a camera into a webcam is not exclusive to Canon, and there are other solutions that allow users to use their cameras this way. So, while it is not new, Canon’s solution is simple, and you just need to download the software, which is FREE, and install it.
“In unprecedented times, it’s imperative for Canon to provide our customers with useful, simple and accessible solutions to assist them in whatever imaging needs they have,” said Tatsuro “Tony” Kano, executive vice president of the Canon U.S.A., Inc. Imaging Technologies & Communications Group. “Our goal is that the Webcam Utility Beta software can help reduce some of the remote workday stress for employees who are tasked with video conferencing and virtual meetings.”
From Canon to Sony and now Fujifilm
The EOS Webcam Utility Beta software only works in Windows at the moment, but the introduction of Canon’s solution was well received by users, and many have asked for a version for other OS, which the company is developing. We’ve written here at ProVideo Coalition about the software, and even tested it with a camera that is not included in the compatibility list, and it worked fine.
Canon’s software solution requires one single USB plug to connect the camera to a Windows operating systems computer. Once the software is downloaded and the camera is configured within a video conferencing application, the user will be ready to go. The beauty of the process is that without any hassle and in minutes you get a high-quality camera working, offering an image that will be the envy of those you connect with.
The solution is so interesting, in fact, that the Sony ZV-1, just announced, can be transformed into a webcam by connecting it to a PC via USB. The ZV-1, presented as a camera for vloggers and content creators, is designed with video in mind and, through a software that will be made available in July, will turn into a webcam. It seems that Canon started a trend.
The Sony ZV-1 is ideal to use as webcam, because it is the first Sony compact camera with a side-opening Vari-angle LCD screen, allowing users to see their image on the LCD, making it easy to adjust settings and framing, while leaving the top shoe space free for adding an external microphone if you want to. Obviously, the rotating screen was designed with vloggers in mind, but it is good to have the option in this… webcam.
The new FUJIFILM X Webcam… software
Now, Fujifilm enters the scene. The new “FUJIFILM X Webcam” software for Windows computers, now available, will transform compatible Fujifilm cameras in… webcams. The list of cameras published by Fujifilm points to the GFX100, GFX 50S, GFX 50R, X-H1, X-Pro2, X-Pro3, X-T2, X-T3 and X-T4. Owners of models not included in the list may try their luck, as Canon users did. Some Canon models not listed work with Canon’s webcam solution, so the same may happen with Fujifilm.
The simplicity of the process is what makes these solutions so interesting for many users. According to Fujifilm, once you install the “FUJIFILM X Webcam” software, all you need to do is use a USB cable to connect the camera, to create a web-conferencing environment with much higher image quality. The enhanced quality of our digital cameras compared to built in webcams, says Fujifilm, “will improve your web conference with help from advanced functions such as the Film Simulation modes, which delivers Fujifilm’s unique color profiles.”
The company decided to develop the software that turns X Series and GFX System digital cameras into webcams because, as Fujifilm Corporation President, Kenji Sukeno, noted “this will help cater for the growing need for web-conferencing products.”