As seen in:
Elmo
MO-1
IPEVO
Point 2 View
Epson
w/SXGA Resolution
Lumens
Ladibug
HoverCam
T3
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Good

Multi-functional device. Portability and image clarity -- up close and at a distance -- are two of its greatest strenghts.

Strong auto-focus. Affordable price.

Exemplary image quality. A long list of helpful features.

4X digital zoom. Wirelessly connects to any laptop.

LED light and automatic color correction optimize image quality. Doubles as a 3D scanner and webcam.

Bad

Software is not quite on par with the Epson and HoverCam.

Only two megapixels. Does not fold neatly for travel.

The most expensive document camera on our shortlist.

A more simplistic product than some other contenders on our elite list.

On the heavier side -- a minor drawback to portability.

Bottom Line

An excellent camera at a mid-range price. The best all-around package available.

Ideal for cash-strapped classrooms and other live-presentation scenarios. The best quality for the lowest price.

A deluxe document camera that makes life easier for professionals in many vocations.

On the pricier end. Wireless connectivity is one of this camera's greatest strengths.

A less-expensive option with sophisticated software and superior zoom.

How we decide
BestReviews is committed to providing comprehensive and trusted reviews for products that matter to consumers. We do the research to help you save time and money.
0
Products received from manufacturers
68
Models Considered
32
Hours Spent
1
Experts Interviewed
178
Consumers Consulted

Best Document Cameras

Once upon a time, you had to spend thousands of dollars to get high-quality images from a document camera. Fortunately, that's no longer the case. We present five of the best -- and most affordable -- document cameras on the market today.

Products we Considered

Elmo
MO-1
IPEVO
Point 2 View
Epson
w/SXGA Resolution
Lumens
Ladibug
HoverCam
T3

Considerations

Image Quality

Clearly the most important aspect of a document camera is the quality of the images it produces. Our top five models are guaranteed to deliver crisp, high-definition pictures. We gave extra points for automatic image enhancing functions that aid users in projecting the best picture possible.

Features

When choosing a document camera, there’s a lot to consider: zoom, recording capabilities, built-in microphones, image enhancement, software, and more. Our shortlist represents a wide variety of the best components available.

Portability

Whether you're switching classrooms or traveling to different business locations, portability is crucial when it comes to document cameras. Our shortlist includes the best designs for people on the go.

Price

Price is an important factor when it comes to document cameras. Our elite list includes quality models at affordable prices.

Considerations

Image Quality

Elmo MO-1 Visual Presenter, White

Owners tell us that they love the compact MO-1 Visual Presenter's full-HD images, especially when they take advantage of the HDMI output! Impressively, this camera can maintain standard high definition when recording video of up to 30 frames per second. It boasts a shooting area wide enough to display large documents and a dominant digital zoom for closer analyses. As a result, your images look crisp and clear from near and far. If image quality is of utmost importance to you, we highly recommend the MO-1 Visual Presenter.

IPEVO Point 2 View USB Camera

For the price, customers are pleasantly surprised by the image quality produced by the IPEVO camera. A two-megapixel sensor may be overlooked by some, but users with Point 2 View experience report that the quality is magnificent. Some have gone as far as to say that it competes with more expensive models. While the IPEVO only offers up to 1,600 X 1,200 pixels, the auto-focus function ensures that every one of those pixels is as sharp as possible.

Epson DC-11 Document Camera Projector Accessory

The Epson DC-11 is a high-definition camera with a five-megapixel sensor. While it rivals the MO-1, it lacks an HDMI port and doesn't quite reach full HD. However, it does feature a stronger zoom. Owners love its 10X digital zoom and adamantly declare that the picture quality is equal to or better than models that cost thousands more. Not one pixel is sacrificed when utilizing the zoom, according to owners. Even in split-screen mode, the DC-11 maintains high-caliber picture.

Lumens DC120 Ladibug Document Camera

With a five-megapixel sensor, you can feel confident in the quality you receive from the Lumens DC120. A 4X digital zoom provides a sharp picture at close range; customers adore this simplistic approach to high-resolution imagery. The built-in auto-tune function automatically adjusts with changing colors and brightness, guaranteeing a crisp, dynamic image every time you use the device.

HoverCam T3 Document Camera (HC-T3)

With just three megapixels, the HoverCam has a smaller sensor than some other contenders. Despite sensor capacity, users consistently report high satisfaction with the device. The LED light maximizes brightness. Automatic color correction operates seamlessly inside the software to immediately enhance every picture. While the HoverCam doesn't quite match the image quality of the Epson DC-11, it certainly competes in the same realm.

If image quality is of utmost importance to you, we highly recommend the Elmo MO-1 Visual Presenter.
Considerations

Features

The Elmo MO-1 has multiple functions. It can serve as a 3D scanner, a webcam, and a video recorder with audio capabilities. The software included doesn't quite match up to the likes of the DC-11 or the T3 -- and we docked a few points for that -- but it earned some of those points back with its 300-degree range of motion. HDMI ports permit users to connect to state-of-the-art projectors; USB and VGA hookups work as excellent alternatives. Elmo had the foresight to build an SD card slot into the machine. These memory cards are trusted by top-of-the-line DSLR cameras.

IPEVO's Point 20 View USB camera includes a lot of the great benefits seen in more expensive cameras: auto-focus, exposure control, live video, 6X digital zoom, and more. It also is compatible with video recording software that not only allow users to enjoy live video at 30 frames per second but also to save it. Even more importantly, the IPEVO's live video quality is astonishing. We also love its ability to take high-quality snapshots. Bottom line: if you need a budget-priced camera for live presentations or classroom teaching, this piece of equipment could potentially give you everything you need.

Epson DC-11 Document Camera Projector Accessory

Much to the delight of customers everywhere, Epson left no stone unturned when developing the DC-11. We give it high marks for its split-screen function, built-in microphone, and on-board recording memory (great for recording videos, audio, and stills). The SD card slot allows you to videotape limitless footage. The LED light ensures that every image is bright and easy to discern. Efficient software maximizes your productivity. Every teacher in our survey indicated that the DC-11 is a stellar classroom tool, but the accolades extend far beyond the teaching work space; other professionals love the Epson DC-11, too!

What immediately stands out about the DC120 Ladibug Document Camera is that it sits atop a goose neck base, allowing users to access an infinite number of angles. We really love Lumens’ “Wireless Solution,” a piece of hardware that connects the camera to any laptop or computer. Users rave about the auto-tune feature which requires only one touch to generate sharp focus and vibrant colors. The DC120 comes with some unique features that each individual should weigh appropriately to their needs. If you value simplicity, the Lumens DC120 could be your perfect camera.

We give HoverCam a positive rating for its “SmoothZoom” technology. This feature allows users to effortlessly zoom up to 16X. Our research suggests that the average customer is blown away by the HoverCam's image quality, even at max zoom. The included software equips users with auto-color correction and the ability to adjust images for brightness, sharpness, and contrast, among other things. The product's "motion trigger" scanning allows users to scan documents continuously -- even an entire book!

The Elmo MO-1 isn't just an incredible document camera. It also serves as a 3D scanner, a webcam, and a video recorder with audio capabilities.
Rafe
Expert Consultant
Rafe
Technologist, Product Review Professional

Rafe Needleman has been testing and writing about technology products for over 20 years. He has evaluated hundreds of products as editor of CNET and reviews/editorial director of Yahoo Tech.

Considerations

Portability

Elmo MO-1 Visual Presenter, White

The MO-1 folds neatly into a weightless, transportable device. Customers overwhelmingly appreciate the portability of this camera. If you’re a professional who travels or a teacher who moves to different classrooms throughout the day, we strongly suggest that you take a closer look at the MO-1 Visual Presenter.

IPEVO Point 2 View USB Camera

While the IPEVO Point 2 View certainly has the power to be a permanent fixture in any classroom or home office, it’s much smaller than the other models on our shortlist. A minor gripe from customers is that the camera does not naturally fold into a neat, portable package. Instead, it condenses awkwardly. Fortunately, IPEVO offers a carrying case on its website. However, if you don’t want to shell out the extra cash, the frame is unobtrusive enough that most people are able ignore the clunky design.

Epson DC-11 Document Camera Projector Accessory

The Epson DC-11 is a powerful machine. While it offers better output than some other models, it's also a bit larger. You might expect this to mean it's not portable. While it doesn't quite match the MO-1 in portability, Epson designed the DC-11 to fold on top of itself. Upon collapsing, the camera -- at less than five pounds -- is easy to move around. Clearly, this device was designed to be a classroom or conference room staple.

Lumens DC120 Ladibug Document Camera

The Lumens DC120's goose neck stand makes it easy to fold for transportation. While the design is not as convenient to store as the Elmo MO-1, you can bend it as needed, and there's no need to worry if it shuffles a bit in transit. Lumens offers a padded carrying case as an optional accessory, but even without the case, users report a positive experience when moving the Lumens camera.

HoverCam T3 Document Camera (HC-T3)

Folding down, the HoverCam's tower comes into itself and slides down for easy transportation. Some users report that it has a bit of weight to it, but for most, this is a minor issue. Customers enjoy the HoverCam's compact design and offer positive feedback about the product. If you’re someone who needs to move around a lot with your camera, the HoverCam T3 could be the right solution for you.

The IPEVO Point 2 View USB Camera is an affordable and effective tool for classroom teaching and other live presentations.
Considerations

Price

Elmo MO-1 Visual Presenter, White

Selling for $359, the MO-1's price is quite appealing. For the money, you get a high-quality picture and more features than lower-priced cameras. Another excellent benefit is the Elmo MO-1's portability. When this super-slick camera is folded, it becomes virtually weightless.

IPEVO Point 2 View USB Camera

At a cost of $58, IPEVO’s Point 2 View Camera is the cheapest of our contenders by far, but it provides quality and features that put it on par with more expensive competitors. Features we love: high-definition picture (1,600 x 1,200 pixels), a video display of 30 frames per second, auto-focus, and exposure control. Overall, the IPEVO is a great solution for teachers and other professionals on a budget.

Epson DC-11 Document Camera Projector Accessory

At a price of $1137, the Epson DC-11 is the most expensive camera on our shortlist. However, there's no doubt that you get what you pay for. An exciting array of features are integrated into the Epson's slick, portable design. Owners tell us that this camera is every bit as good as those that cost thousands of dollars more.

Lumens DC120 Ladibug Document Camera

Consumers can purchase the Lumens DC120 for $379. Owners praise its high-quality lens, goose neck base, and overall durability. (Lumens backs this product with a five-year warranty.) Teachers love this camera because it provides high-resolution images and the freedom to move the lens in any direction. Many owners tell us that the Lumens' wireless capabilities were simply too convenient to pass up.

HoverCam T3 Document Camera (HC-T3)

For just $219, the HoverCam is a steal. Users tell us that its image quality is on par with models that cost a lot more. The camera folds into itself for convenient transportation, and its software is the best in the game.

Owners love the IPEVO's high-definition picture (1,600 x 1,200 pixels), 30-frames-per-second video display, auto-focus, and exposure control.

Best of the Best

When all considerations are measured and weighted appropriately, the Elmo MO-1 Visual Presenter stands out as the Best of the Best.

The image quality is unparalleled. Full1080i HD capabilities, paired with HDMI ports, result in stunning visual clarity. This is particularly useful when users are required to zoom in. Whereas most camera images become blurry or pixelated during a zoom, the MO-1 maintains its sharpness. This feature holds true when used with the optional microscope adapter, too -- a benefit that has science teachers absolutely thrilled.

The Elmo MO-1 includes plenty of other exciting features, as well. People love the SD card slot for its unlimited memory. They appreciate the device's versatile ability to function as both a webcam and a 3D scanner. The MO-1 is more powerful than any other machine, but incredibly, it’s also the easiest to transport. Elmo has designed this device to be virtually weightless; it’s closed position is amazingly compact and portable. Indeed, the engineers at Elmo have done their due diligence with the MO-1 Visual Presenter.

This document camera is a clear-cut winner in every category. We could not ask for a better product, and the price is amazing at just $359. Anyone in the market for a document camera would absolutely love the MO-1 Visual Presenter.
Best of the Best
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Indeed, the engineers at Elmo have done their due diligence with the MO-1 Visual Presenter

Best Bang for your Buck

Our extensive consumer research revealed as simple truth: there is no better value than the IPEVO Point 2 View USB Camera. This product provides the Best Bang For Your Buck.

Although the HoverCam T3 gave IPEVO a run for its money, the IPEVO Point 2 View's attractive price was too good to ignore. It boasts a two-megapixel sensor with one-touch auto-focus for crisp picture quality, a video capture speed of 30 frames per second, and the ability to take screenshots. Customers say the camera's flexibility allows them to access several angles, and they love its extraordinary digital zoom. It's easily portable, too; teachers and other professionals on the go can transport the device with little trouble. It may be a little "clunky," but this is a minor flaw.

Considering the fact that many document cameras sell for thousands of dollars, the IPEVO is a pleasant shock to the system. Any budget-restricted teacher would be thrilled with Point 2 View. The same goes for budget-conscious business professionals who need to make presentations or sales pitches. If you fall into either of these categories, the IPEVO was designed for you.
Best Bang for your Buck
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Considering the fact that many document cameras sell for thousands of dollars, the IPEVO Point 2 View USB Camera is a pleasant shock to the system.
The team that worked on this review
  • Jennifer
    Jennifer
    Writer
  • Melissa
    Melissa
    Editor
  • Ann
    Ann
    Operations
  • Jimi
    Jimi
    Product Analyst
  • Kriti
    Kriti
    Data Scientist