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i comment a lot Or a webcam, so few make a great first impression on me. But when I sit in front of the Razer Kiyo Pro Ultra at CES 2023, I’m easily fooled into thinking I’m being photographed by an expensive DSLR.
Available now for $300, the Razer Kiyo Pro Ultra builds on our current selection of high-end webcams, with a larger sensor that promises to be the largest ever in a webcam. That means more detail and better colors. Here’s why it could be the new webcam to beat for serious content creators and broadcasters.
• Launch date: Available now on Razer.com
• product: Razer Kiyo Extreme
• price: $300
• Why it’s worth your attention: Based on one of our picks for the best webcams, the Kiyo Pro Ultra has a better sensor, bringing it closer in quality to a true dedicated camera. While a $300 webcam isn’t cheap, it’s more affordable than buying a fancy DSLR and the equipment needed to connect it to your computer — and it’s a lot easier to set up.
When I get ready to make a presentation with the Kiyo Pro Ultra, I can tell it’s no ordinary webcam. Even the sharpest webcams can produce an overall uninteresting image, whereas the Kiyo Pro Ultra created a compelling cinematic bokeh effect that made me look like I was sitting in front of a professional camera. I could clearly make out each of my beards, and the camera managed to keep my face in focus as I walked around while blurring out the crowd of CES attendees behind me.
It’s all thanks to the camera’s Sony Starvis 2 sensor, which Razer says is the largest sensor ever found in a webcam. According to the company, the camera captures almost four times as much light as other webcams, which means far more overall clarity and detail. Thanks to the powerful processor inside, you’ll be able to capture true 4K video at 30 frames per second, or 1080p video at a smoother 60 fps.
Like the Kiyo Pro before it, the Ultra is plug-and-play via USB-C, making it easy to enjoy its outstanding picture quality. It’s much easier and cheaper than buying a DSLR like the $550 Canon EOS Rebel T7 and an adapter like the Elgato Cam Link 4K to make it work with your PC.
While the Kiyo Pro Ultra works out of the box, those who prefer to tinker with every possible setting will be able to do so through the Razer Synapse app. Here, you can manually adjust things like focus, exposure, and lighting type; adjust resolution and frame rate; and toggle HDR for a more dramatic image.
All of these features come at the cost of size. The Pro Ultra is pretty much the largest webcam I’ve ever seen, bigger even than the already bulky Kiyo Pro. However, it’s pretty sleek for its size, and I appreciate the new physical shutter, which lets you completely block the camera with a quick turn of the lens. Like the previous model, there’s a separate cover that you can use to cover the webcam and protect the lens when traveling.
If you’re looking to up your YouTube videos or Twitch streams with DSLR-like image quality without paying DSLR prices, the Razer Kiyo Pro Ultra is on your radar. A $300 webcam is certainly an investment, but it’s also cheaper and easier than trying to install a proper professional webcam on your PC — and your audience might not even notice the difference. The Pro Ultra is available now, and we’ll be doing a full review of it soon.