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Computer Accessories

Creative Live! Cam Optia: Mini, driverless webcam

Webcams... they're mostly pants, right? Yeah, but wait until you check out the brand-spanking new Creative Live! Cam Optia

Creative must love YouTubers. The incessant demand for user-generated Web videos means they can keep pumping out webcams, and here's yet another. It's the Creative Live! Cam Optia and it's not too shabby.

It has a so-called 'precision lens' that lets you capture video at a monstrous 0.3 megapixels. If you think that's crazy, hold on to your hoodie -- you can then enhance it with the accompanying software to a quite frankly mind-boggling 1.3 megapixels. We're being sarcastic (in case you're half asleep or American), but don't let that put you off -- videos came out pretty good anyway. For a webcam.

Best of all, you don't even need to install a driver file. It works with Macs and PCs and complies with USB Video Class, so as long as you have Windows XP Service Pack 2 or better, it'll work straight away. The camera also supports Advanced Video FX, which let you distort and apply effects to your video. It also has Smart Face Tracking, so it'll follow your bonce as you move about the room.

The Live! Cam Optia looks gorgeous, too -- almost Apple-esque, in fact. It can sit on your desktop, or straddle your TFT monitor or laptop without issue. It's slightly shameful that the lenses from most camera phones have a higher resolution, but if you have £39.99 to blow, you have our blessing to buy it. -Rory Reid