How to Set Up a Webcam

Setting up a webcam can be a very easy with the right parts for installation and calibration. Depending on which webcam you get, you may have a few of cords and a software CD inside the packaging. These are important to have when you move on to the next steps.

Step 1 - Placement

Find a place to set the webcam on your desk. Some models are designed to sit on top of your monitor with a clip, while others come with a little stand so you can place it directly on the desk. When picking the spot, make sure it has an unobstructed view of yourself since the user is the subject.

Step 2 - Installation

Place the installation CD that came with your product into the CD-ROM drive, making sure to use the buttons to close the tray instead of tapping it closed as this could damage the drive and the CD. You should get a splash screen after the disc has been in the drive for a few seconds that will ask you if you wish to install.

Follow the on-screen prompts to install to all the default locations. You may have to input a security code that is on the manual that came with the webcam.

After installation is complete, remove the disc and return it to the package for safekeeping. Storing the disc and manual in a shoebox along with any other manuals and important discs properly labeled is suggested so you do not loose them.

Step 3 - Connecting the Webcam

Most webcams are simple plug-and play-devices. Check your connectors on the cables that came with the webcam to make sure your attaching the device to the right port on the back or front of the machine. For a USB (universal serial bus) connector they can only be connected to your computer one way. If the connection does not work easily the first time, flip the connector over and try again. Some manufacturers have distinguishing marks on the cords so you know which way to hold the cable. As mentioned before if the cable does not fit easily do not force it, try to connect the cord a different way.

Step 4 - Recognition

Once the webcam is connected, you should get a dialogue window on the computer screen asking for the driver disk. Since you already installed the drivers, you can set the recognition program to search the computer for the drivers. By default, this is already selected, so go ahead and press next in the bottom right.

After a few moments of detection and installation, your new device will be noticed and ready for use. After you have the webcam installed you want to use some of the diagnostic tools to calibrate the webcam to broadcast the best image when in use. Here is where you can play with settings, similar to your display options like color, tint and contrast.