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Anker PowerConf C300 Review

Verdict

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Featuring AI tracking and software, the Anker PowerConf C300 goes beyond what most webcams provide. High-quality video and the ability to switch between solo and group use also make this model hugely flexible and a good choice for smaller conference rooms. It’s a touch expensive compared to rivals, so if your needs are more basic and your budget smaller then this may not be the camera for you.

Pros

  • Easy to set up
  • Very smart software
  • Excellent tracking

Cons

  • Expensive

If there’s one thing that the past year or so has shown us, it’s that having a decent webcam is essential. While the world may at some point revert to normal, it would seem that video chats are here to stay, proving easier and more efficient than meeting in person. Aiming to offer the best experience possible is the Anker PowerConf C300, which comes with one feature that many cameras are lacking: control software.

Via the app, you can set the view, adjust the brightness and contrast, and even get the unit to track you, so that you always look good on camera.

  • Easy-to-use software
  • Simple to place the camera where you need it
  • Optional privacy shield

The Anker PowerConf C300 uses a USB-C connection, plus there’s a USB-C-to-USB converter in the box if you need it, so this camera should work with any computer.

One of the most essential features of a webcam is the ability to place it exactly where you need it, and the Anker PowerConf C300 excels in this regard. Its flexible stand can be placed on a desk, or you can use the screw mount to attach it to a tripod.

Anker PowerConf C300 tripod screw

For those wanting to position the unit over a monitor or laptop screen, a hinged foot ensures you can get the camera stable and focused on the area you want, no matter the shape of your display. This camera proved to be far more secure than rival models such as the Creative Live! Cam Sync 1080p.

Anker PowerConf C300 on screen

In the box are two stick-on privacy covers with a sliding shutter. You’ll need to line up the cover carefully in order to avoid blocking the lens when in use. The shutter moves well and looks good, but having one pre-attached would have been a neater solution.

Anker PowerConf C300 slider

Most webcams are plug-and-play, and the Anker PowerConf C300 is just that – but to get the most out of the device you need the Anker Work app (Windows and Mac). It’s via the app that the real smarts are revealed: you can set up the view and control here, and then this feed is passed onto the video conferencing software you use, such as Google Hangouts or Zoom.

At its most basic, the software lets you adjust the resolution, adjust flicker compensation for lights in the background, and set the brightness, sharpness, saturation and contrast. It’s important to note that the resolution you set the camera at isn’t necessarily the resolution you’ll get when using video conferencing. Google Meet, for example, only supports 720p streams, for example.

Anker PowerConf C300 brightness contrast

The more advanced controls let you set the viewing angle – 78-, 90-, or 115-degrees – so you can choose between a close-up or getting in a group of people. If you want more intelligence, then there are two modes: Auto-Frame, which will automatically adjust the camera’s viewing angle based on the number of people it can see; and Solo-Frame, which will focus in on and follow one person.

Anker PowerConf C300 framing

These settings can be changed mid-call, too, with the feed adjusting.

  • Sharp, detailed picture
  • Great microphone
  • Excellent automatic focusing

With its Full HD sensor, the Anker PowerConf C300 produces a sharp image. Colour balance is excellent, and the image is well exposed. This is particularly true with HDR turned on, which helps balance out bright hotspots, such as light streaming in through the window.

Powered by an AI chip, the Anker PowerConf C300 automatically focuses on you, adjusting the picture, so you’ll spend less time faffing around in settings menus. What’s particularly impressive are the auto-framing modes.

With Solo-Frame turned on, the camera kept me front and centre, automatically tracking my movements. It isn’t at all distracting, since there’s a delay to any refocusing. So, moving to grab a drink or pick something up won’t cause the picture to jump around; slide your chair back or into a different picture and the composition changes to match.

In the images below you can see me switching between a Creative Live! Cam Sync (top image) and the Anker PowerConf C300 (bottom image), and I could see the difference immediately. On a Zoom call, the Logitech camera looks good, if not a bit soft around the edges, but the viewing angle isn’t ideal, as you can see from the image below.

With the Anker PowerConf C300, the picture is sharper and more detailed, and with the wide viewing angle set, you get more of the background.

Creative Live Cam Sync 1080p sample
Anker PowerConf C300 sample

The Anker PowerConf C300’s built-in microphone is pretty good. It cuts out background noise, making sure I could be heard clearly.

It certainly isn’t cheap, but the Anker PowerConf C300 is excellent – in terms of quality and features, it’s the best webcam you can get. Its flexibility also enables the unit to switch between personal and group modes, making it a useful choice for meeting rooms. Of course, there are cheaper webcams available that offer a boost over any built-in model, but if you want the best then go with the Anker PowerConf C300.

Should you buy it?

If you want the best image quality and the flexibility to capture a group of people as well as yourself, the Anker PowerConf C300 is an excellent webcam that will do the job.

If you just need a cheap webcam for solo calls and don’t need the absolute best image quality, this camera is a touch expensive. There are cheaper, more basic rivals that may be a better option.

Verdict

Featuring AI tracking and software, the Anker PowerConf C300 goes beyond what most webcams provide. High-quality video and the ability to switch between solo and group use also make this model hugely flexible and a good choice for smaller conference rooms. It’s a touch expensive compared to rivals, so if your needs are more basic and your budget smaller then this may not be the camera for you.

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Dimensions30 x 30 x 99mm
ConnectionUSB-C (USB Type A adapter in box)
Resolution1080p
SupportWindows 10 and MacOS

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