Hardware Review for Nefsis / Microsoft Roundtable Camera Review
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5/1/2009 11:32:23 PM

Nefsis – Hardware Review

April 23rd, 2009

Roundtable Camera

Here at our Nefsis lab, we are constantly testing new equipment, certifying devices like sound cards, video captures cards and cameras to work with Nefsis. Recently we tested the Microsoft Roundtable camera with Nefsis. With little modification, the Roundtable camera worked with Nefsis and the results were impressive.

Initially, we connected the Roundtable camera to our test PCs using the built-in USB cable. The first PC was set up with Windows XP and the second with Vista. Both PCs recognized the Roundtable camera without having to install any special drivers.

The Roundtable comes with a camera that supports two video modes. The first mode is called the ‘Active Speaker Mode’ and the second is the ‘Panoramic’ or 360 view mode. The Roundtable is also equipped with a conference speaker phone for those needing to conduct one way or multiuser phone conferences. In our test we focused primarily on the camera feature.

The documentation that came with the device only indicated the Roundtable was compatible with Office Live Meeting. However, since Nefsis uses DirectX, Nefsis was able to recognize the Roundtable device without issues.

As soon as we entered a Nefsis meeting, the Roundtable camera activated appropriately. Each camera mode was listed as individual devices, which made the Roundtable appear as two cameras. The modes were Panoramic and Active Speaker modes. In the first mode, the Roundtable displayed the image in full 360 degree panoramic view at 1056 x 144 Video Resolution. It took a few moments to adjust to the panoramic view, however we found it very interesting.

The second mode reviewed was the active speaker view. In this mode the Roundtable switched between 5 cameras and each camera was activated by sensors on the base. The design allows the Roundtable to switch between users as it detected their voices. The default video resolution was 176 x 144. The performance was completely satisfactory.

The Roundtable proved to be an excellent choice for meeting rooms. It's ideal in situations where meeting attendees sit around a conference room table and each require some camera time. Other than getting used to the panoramic view, our opinion of the Roundtable was positive, if you can afford the estimated $3000 street price.

Additional images of the Roundtable camera

Full image

Close up of the camera head

Base of the Roundtable

Power adapter equiped with a telephone and network connector

USB connector from the base of the Roundtable

Click this link for more information on Nefsis hardware recommendation

9/17/2009 1:30:11 PM


I´m testing the round table as well but i can´t get the round table panoramic view in nefsis. Nefsis gives me a warning at the bottom of the screen '' set video resolution failed '' . What modifications did you made prior to install ? I´m running on a windows XP system with a maximum resolution of 1024*768 , so maybe that is a problem. The other view works perfect.

thanks already

10/4/2009 1:05:21 AM

We are looking into the camera issues related to the Roundtable/CX5000 device.

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