One thing that companies took away from 2020 was the need to get serious about webcams if we’re to spend more time connecting with each other through a virtual world. The Razer Kiyo Pro Ultra is about as serious as it gets, as the first webcam to boast 4K resolution at 60fps without any compression.
To be clear, this isn’t the first 4K/60fps webcam on the market. The Logitech Brio predates it by nearly five years and the Elgato Facecam Pro came out at the tail end of 2022. The Razer Kiyo Pro Ultra stands out from the crowd with how it handles compression, which is to say there is none thanks to a chonky sensor and NV12 format.
Razer says the sensor is twice the size of other webcams at 1/1.2-inches, which is millimetres away from the 1-inch sensors you get in DSLRs. This makes the webcam a bit of a behemoth compared to previous iterations, but it captures four times the light for a crisp and clear image. Enhanced HDR is available to make the colours pop, but this option locks you to 30fps only.
There’s also “advanced” face tracking, a portrait mode that pops a blurred bokeh effect in the background, and onboard memory so you can customise your profiles and take them on the go. My favourite, however, is the inclusion of a built-in privacy shutter you activate by twisting the case. It doesn’t replace the separate cover included with previous models, which is still in the box, but it’s a huge improvement considering the cap is easy enough to lose.
If the specs don’t give it away, its $299.99 price tag indicates that it’s squarely aimed at streamers that want one of the best webcams possible. After all, general users would still be at the mercy of compression from Google Meet, Zoom, and the likes, while the only roadblock in a streamer’s way is their bitrate. It’ll be available on the Razer Store from January 5.