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This is a sponsored article and was made possible by Fineshare. The actual contents and opinions are the sole views of the author who maintains editorial independence even when a post is sponsored.Finecam: Virtual Camera Assistant
Finecam is a software tool, which when teamed with an iOS client on your iPhone, turns the iPhone easily and quickly into an additional or even main webcam for any software that can access a camera. You can do this either with Wi-Fi or with a USB-to-Lightning cable.
Once installed, the software enables you to choose a camera (and it can use other cameras in addition to your iphone at the same time), then add backgrounds and apply filters and special effects to the stream before you hand it off to another program. You can also do fancy things like use PNG files to add branding to your screen, like a company logo in the corner (or anywhere you like, as you can move it around with the mouse).
The software also contains technology to improve the image you get from your camera, adjusting the color and white balance (to better match the background). You can also use green screen and AI image enhancement software to give your image a refreshed look.
Once you are all set up, you can use the built-in virtual camera hook to feed the output of Finecam to another piece of software, like Zoom, OBS or YouTube, in fact anything that can use external cameras.Next Level Cam Tricks
At first I I could find a reason yet another software widget. But Finecam is so much more than this. Think of it not as plain vanilla webcam driver software, but as a wedge that goes between your iPhone and the video conferencing software that adds functionality either not present in the target or behind a paywall.
With special effects you can make it look like old timey film or VHS video or glitchy sci-fi monitors.
You can add a PNG of your company logo in the corner or below like they do on TV shows.
And along with a basic library of backgrounds, you can add your own or choose from an extensive library of very cool backgrounds.
There are also AI-driven enhancements for making your image look better automatically.
There are also more precise manual refinements you can do to each aspect of the exposure and brightness and contrast, just as you would on a television.
Unlike a lot of automatic keying algorithms that video conferencing software uses, I found the background manipulations to be really rather good. The cut around you as opposed to your background (called a “key” in technical parlance) is quite clean, even without a green screen.
Finecam is surprisingly good considering my expectations were initially very low, and I like how simple it is and how effectively it does its job. The enhanced video feeds it generates are creative, fun and practical.
I know in this age of Zoom calls replacing meetings that some may be ashamed of their messy houses, but with these tools, you can quite credibly let people assume you have a really nice place without raising too much suspicion. Okay if you look closely you can tell it’s a key, and like all auto key software, it can get very frilly and soft in low light, but I’m still impressed.
One of the best uses I can see for this software is of course using it to provide a supplementary camera apart from your main camera while doing live streams. If you have another camera, then you can cut to your hands on a table or a view out of the window, for instance. Basically, it makes your broadcasts seem much more professional if you have multiple cameras.Finecam Availability
Finecam is a great piece of software and provides benefits for all the video conferencing software you use it with. You can grab it now and get started right away by downloading the free version. This gives you all the basic features.
All screenshots by Phil South.
Phil South has been writing about tech subjects for over 30 years. Starting out with Your Sinclair magazine in the 80s, and then MacUser and Computer Shopper. He’s designed user interfaces for groundbreaking music software, been the technical editor on film making and visual effects books for Elsevier, and helped create the MTE YouTube Channel. He lives and works in South Wales, UK.
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