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How To Use Your Camera As A Webcam Without Additional Hardware

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Webcams have come a long way from the earlier days, but the quality they capture isn’t necessarily the best. If you just need a webcam for video conferences then that’s fine, but if you want to take your video conferencing to the next level with high quality footage, or if you want to start livestreaming, then you could consider using a camera like a mirrorless or DSLR.

The good news is while these cameras weren’t necessarily designed to be used as webcams, you can actually turn your camera into a webcam in several easy steps. Depending on the model you use, some companies have actually released software that turns it into a plug-and-play situation.

This seems to be in response to the coronavirus pandemic where more people are starting to work and study from home, and camera companies are taking advantage of this by releasing software that lets people turn their cameras into webcams, where previously users would typically have to rely on third-party software and accessories.

Fujifilm

If you own a Fujifilm camera, you’ll be pleased to learn that the company has an app called the Fujifilm X Webcam software that is available on both Windows and macOS. All you need is a compatible Fujifilm camera, a USB cable, and the Fujifilm X Webcam software.

–> Download and install the Fujifilm X Webcam software
–> Turn your camera on
–> Turn the drive dial and set it to “S” (single shot)
–> Go to your camera’s settings > Connection Settings > Connection Mode and select USB Auto
–> Using the supplied cable, connect one end to your camera’s USB port, and the other to your computer’s USB port
–> Launch your video calling app of choice
–> Go to the video settings and choose your connected Fujifilm camera as your camera of choice and you should be good to go.

At this point in time, the Fujifilm cameras that are compatible with the software include the GFX100, GFX 50S, GFX 50R, X-H1, X-Pro2, X-Pro3, X-T2, X-T3, X-T4.

Canon

Similar to Fujifilm, Canon had also released a software for Windows and macOS that can turn compatible Canon cameras into a webcam. Dubbed the EOS Webcam Utility Beta Software (it is still in beta, but otherwise functional), it providers users with an easy plug-and-play setup with their Canon cameras.

–> Go to Canon’s Webcam Utility website
–> Select your Canon camera from the list of compatible models
–> Download and install the software
–> Turn on your camera and turn the dial to movie mode
–> Adjust the exposure settings to your desired look
–> Take the supplied USB cable and connect one end to your Canon camera and the other end to your computer
–> Launch your video calling app of choice
–> Go to the video settings and choose EOS Webcam Utility Beta as your camera of choice and you are all set.

Olympus

While Olympus will be selling off its camera division, the good news is that the company will not be abandoning its users entirely. In fact, not too long after the announcement, the company actually announced the launch of the Olympus OM-D Webcam Beta software that lets users turn their compatible Olympus cameras into a webcam. The method is pretty straightforward like the cameras we mentioned above.

–> Download and install the Olympus OM-D Webcam Beta software
–> Connect your camera to your computer using the supplied cable
–> Turn on your camera and select the USB tether icon (four option from top)
–> Turn the dial on your camera to video mode
–> Go to your camera’s settings and select continuous autofocus
–> Launch your video conferencing app of choice
–> Go to your video conferencing app’s settings and choose “OM-D Webcam Beta” as the video source and you should be set.

Panasonic

If you own a Panasonic Lumix camera, the company has also released software for both Windows and macOS that will let you turn your Lumix camera into a webcam. Setting it up isn’t quite as straightforward compared to the options that we mentioned above, but this is a temporary measure of sorts while Panasonic works on a more “proper” app.

–> Download and install the LUMIX Tether app
–> Connect the camera to your computer using the supplied cable
–> Turn your camera on and select PC (Tether) mode
–> Set the camera to movie mode
–> Turn the AF dial to AFC
–> Go to your camera’s settings > Movie Mode > Continuous AF and select Mode 2
–> Go to Face Detection > AF Mode and select Face/Eye Detection
–> Launch the LUMIX Tether app and click on the “LV” button to launch the live view
–> Click the box button at the top left corner of the live view screen to remove any GUI overlays
–> Download and install OBS Studio and the OBS Virtualcam plug-in
–> Launch OBS Studio
–> Under Sources click on the + button and select Window Capture and click OK
–> Under “Window”, select LUMIX Tether Live View
–> Go to Tools > Virtualcam and click Start
–> Launch your video calling app of choice
–> Go to the video settings and under video source, choose OBS Video and you will be good to go.

Sony

Much like Panasonic, Sony doesn’t have a plug-and-play solution for turning its cameras into webcams and you will still need to go through third-party apps like OBS, but it is still a relatively easy process just with additional steps and additional software, but no video capture card is necessary.

–> Download and install the Sony Imaging Edge Desktop
–> Launch the application and click “Download” to download all the modules
–> Connect the camera to your computer using the supplied cable
–> Turn your camera on
–> Go to your Sony’s camera settings and under USB Connection, select PC Remote
–> Launch the Imaging Edge Desktop
–> Under Remote click Start
–> Double-click your camera in the list
–> Download and install OBS Studio and the OBS Virtualcam plug-in
–> Launch OBS Studio
–> Under Sources click on the + button and select Window Capture and click OK
–> Under “Window”, select Imaging Edge Desktop
–> Go to Tools > Virtualcam and click Start
–> Launch your video calling app of choice
–> Go to the video settings and under video source, choose OBS Video and you will be good to go.

Nikon

If you use a Nikon camera, it seems that the company has yet to release an official software that can turn its cameras into webcams. This does not mean that Nikon users are out of luck, but rather they would need to turn to third-party apps in order to get the job done, but it is still a relatively straightforward process.

–> Download and install SparkoCam
–> Connect your camera to your computer
–> Launch SparkoCam
–> Click Nikon Camera and select your camera from the list and click the checkbox
–> You should now see the live feed from your camera on your computer screen
–> Launch your video conferencing app of choice
–> Go to your video conferencing app’s settings and select “SparkoCam Video” as your source and you are pretty much all done.

Note that SparkoCam is free to use but comes with a watermark overlaid on it. You can purchase the license if you think that you might want to use it over an extended period of time.

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