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How To Improve Your Camera For Online Classes Or Meetings

Online classes or meetings can be tiring, especially if your internet lags and you suddenly missed an important piece of information. Sitting within the same four walls can be boring. However, we can do a few things to jazz up our time in front of our screens!

 

We all have different needs; whether you want a more crisp look for your presentation or have always wanted filters to go with your webcam, here’s a list of how to do just that!

 

1. Use Snap Camera

Imagine Snap Camera to be like your Snapchat or Instagram filters, but for your online meetings!

Snap Camera

Source: RPP Peru

 

The installation for Snap Camera is so easy—just sign up with your email and you’ll immediately receive the file to run the app! When the app is up and running on your laptop, you can add quite a number of filters and different ‘lenses’ onto your camera view. Just like other apps with filters, you can always ‘favourite’ the lenses you like best for easy access.

 

What’s also great about this app is that it works on any streaming service, from Google Hangouts to Zoom and even Discord! Plus, the extension is free and can also be downloaded by both Windows and iOS users. So, you can skip the frustrating waitlist like how we all waited a few months back for Clubhouse to roll out to Android Users!

 

2. Invert Your Camera

Are you one of those people who have an asymmetrical face, where your face shape and features aren’t proportional? Well, if you have one like me, a good tip is to invert your camera!

Person holding a camera with their hands to take a flat lay picture

Now, there’s nothing wrong with having an asymmetrical face. Although I do favour posing using the left side of my face a bit more, I’m always trying to learn how to love posing with the other side. However, there are just times where cameras—especially iPhones—invert your camera view and you’re just not used to seeing your face from a different angle. A quick fix is to then re-invert your camera!

 

Many standalone apps can do this, and they’re available for both Android and iOS users. These apps can also invert your camera on Google Meet or Zoom too! The one caveat is that I’m no tech expert. Hence, I’m not sure if these standalone apps have the best security. If you think your scope of work is highly confidential, I suggest looking at the other tips in this list!

 

3. Get Some Webcam Tools

What if I told you, that you can somewhat get a YouTube-level video quality with just a few items? Here’s how!

Easy portable web camera

Sometimes, you see photographers and videographers carrying a bulky bag or a big suitcase filled to the brim with their camera equipment. Naturally, you think it’s all needed for a 4K shoot. This is true, but not always! If you want to record something simple at home, get the following items to improve your video output:

 

  1. Laptop lenses: If your laptop or device’s camera is awkwardly placed (Like Dell’s XPS13 is in the corner and not the middle), you can buy separate camera lenses that you can align and adjust to the middle of your device! Check out more durable webcams from Logitech as they have a range of models you can choose from.
  2. Soft Key Light: Use this or anything that emits yellow or blue light to be placed at a 45-degree angle from you! This will give you some nice, soft shadows and improve the atmosphere of your surroundings. 
  3. Daylight Light Bulbs: Try to find out if your lamp or light has this quality, as this type of bulb will mimic daylight. This way, your eyes won’t be as strained by a bright fluorescent light.
  4. Droidcam: Android users can use this app as well on their phones for better video quality!

 

4. Invest In Audio

Audio is important, especially if you are the one who has to moderate a session or give a speech! Here’s how to get great audio for a low cost.

Man holding a microphone and other recording devices

Firstly, invest in lavaliers. A lavalier clip-on microphone is small and portable. You can connect them to your device’s headphone jack and just pin the mic to your collar for the clearest sound! What’s great is that it can range from RM10 to RM60 depending on what you’re looking for. If you don’t want to buy it from Shopee, the nearest NinjaZ outlet will have it too! Next, invest in splitters. They are basically 2-in-1 wires, made for phones that only have one jack used for both headphones and charging (I’m looking at you, iPhone). These splitters allow you to insert two cables into your device instead of one.

 

Then, consider investing in a good pair of wired or Bluetooth headphones and earphones. Wired earphones will never have connectivity issues that you might experience with wireless or Bluetooth earphones. Just make sure to take good care of your cable condition! If you let your wired earphones get knotted up, you might risk damaging the internal wiring and affect the connection to your device. Try protecting your wired earphones with an earphone case, like this one on Shopee. Wireless or Bluetooth earphones may give you a little trouble if you have an unstable Bluetooth connection. However, they are definitely more convenient and portable! Plus, you’ll never need to worry about tangled wires with them. Just remember that they have to be charged often, of course!

 

 

If you aren’t sure which one of these tips you should adopt, just try any one of them and see if it helps change your mood or daily routine. When it comes to audio, however, it’s more of a must-have. In order for you to talk and present yourself smoothly without trouble, your audio should be crystal clear so that people can easily understand you! These tips are either free or affordable. Why not share it with your friends and see if it helps them? That way, you both will have a better connection overall when joining online classes, meetings and more!

A realism artist and an aspiring filmmaker. She’s also a devotee to R&B music and an advocate for racial equality.

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