Acer’s ACR010 QHD webcam is affordable and simple to use, with bright and colourful picture quality
- Manufacturer: Acer
- Model: ACR010
- Type: QHD wide-angle conferencing webcam
- Supplied by: Acer
Acer ACR010 QHD Webcam Review
There are quite a lot of options if you’re looking for a webcam these days, but they are very hit or miss with the quality, especially at the lower end of the price range. Acer’s ACR010 has an SRP of around £49.99, but it can be picked up for as little as £30 if you shop around, putting it squarely in the budget category.
Given its low cost, I wasn’t expecting the world, and the ACR010 certainly has its limitations. I was pleasantly surprised at the overall quality of the image, though. It’s probable that the ACR010 won’t suit everyone, but for some users, this could be exactly the cam you were looking for.
Design and build
What’s in the box?
- ACR010 QHD Webcam
- Lens cover
- Quick-start guide
The Acer ACR010 QHD Webcam is compact and lightweight, with a simple and modern aesthetic. Build quality is very good, with all panels sitting flush and no visible screw holes disturbing the smooth matte-finished cover at the rear. The shell and front panel are made of plastic, but it feels of a decent quality. The glossy panel is very susceptible to fingerprints, though it’s not where you would normally hold the cam so it is of no cause for concern.
As can be seen in the images, it has a flexible stand that can be used to either stand the ACR010 on your desk or for hooking it over the top of your display. It’s a little fiddly getting the stand adjusted how you want it but once in place, I found it held its position well. It provides a solid and sturdy mount to a display, but I found when it is free-standing it’s very prone to wobble if you bump your desk.
It has an integrated 2.5m USB-A cable that exits downwards from the left side of the cam. I would have much preferred it to either exit rearwards or be placed in the centre, as it prevents you from turning the camera anti-clockwise unless you want the cable dangling in front of your display. Due to the lightweight nature of the camera, it also has the tendency to pull the camera to one side if the full weight of the cable is being supported, but it only took a minute of adjusting the position to keep everything level.
The lens cap is a welcome addition, and though I prefer an integrated shutter, it doubles as a protective cover if you need to carry your cam round in a laptop bag or backpack.
Connectivity and setup
Acer’s ACR010 is a straightforward plug-and-play webcam. The integrated USB-A cable will work plugged directly into any USB2.0 or higher port.
I tested the webcam on a couple of Windows PCs and an Xbox Series X, and it was detected straight away, making this a viable option for console users as well as those on PC. The wide-angle lens means this won’t be practical for streaming if you play on a large display from a distance, but it works, nonetheless.
There is no control software, meaning you are reliant on whichever platform you are recording, streaming or conferencing on to make adjustments. That’s to be expected at this price point, but be aware there aren’t any added features such as background removal.
Maximum supported resolutions:
- 1440p QHD (2560×1440), 30fps, 16:9
- 1944p (2560×1944), 25fps, 4:3
- 5.0MP – 2592×1944 4:3
The overall quality of the image produced by the ACR010 is very good, providing bright and vibrant colours with excellent saturation.
Due to the 70° wide-angle lens, it’s great for family Zoom calls, as you can easily fit your whole family into the picture. You get quite a significant fishbowl-effect distortion around the edges, though, which is why I wouldn’t recommend this cam for streaming or recording if you are more than a few feet away from the camera. Conversely, the wide-angle makes it ideal for use with a laptop, as you can easily capture yourself fully in frame from close up.
The auto-brightness errs slightly in favour of darker parts of the picture, but the overall balance is good, and I had no issues making the focal point of the image stand out (me, in this case). In heavily contrasted images bright parts can become blown out, but the only time this caused me any issues was with bright sunlight from a window in the background.
These weren’t ideal conditions, of course, and would cause similar problems regardless of the cam I was using. As long as you consider the lighting when setting up your cam you should have no problems getting a satisfactory image. I also found the auto white balance to be accurate, keeping a natural hue to the picture that accurately resembled the actual conditions.
Low light performance is better than I expected, with the ACR010 managing to capture plenty of detail in darker and more highly contrasted parts of the image. Due to the lack of any native image processing, there is still some graininess in very dark conditions, however, compared to an integrated webcam, it’s a significant improvement.
Auto-focus can be temperamental with some cheaper cams, but I had no issues here. The ACR010 manages to lock in the optimal focal length without that annoying quirk some cameras have where they constantly adjust, swimming in and out of focus.
The Acer ACR010 has an integrated omnidirectional microphone, and it provides passable audio if you have no other alternative, although it lacks that fully fleshed richness that you get from bespoke microphones. Pickup is on the low side, however, especially from a distance, so you may find people struggle to hear you. If you are reliant on the integrated microphone there are better options.
The Acer ACR010 may be lacking when it comes to added features and frills, but the most important part, the picture quality, is very good. It’s a step-up from the typical 1080p resolution of most webcams in this price range and provides a rich and colourful image beyond most competition at this price point.
The wide-angle lens used feels far wider than the quoted 70°, which has its advantages, but it’s a double-edged sword. It works best if you are close to the camera and makes an ideal cam for laptop users, as you can easily fit yourself fully into the shot. When positioned further away it’s great for getting several people into the frame, but for a single user, it can include far more of the background than may be desirable. It also introduces significant fishbowl distortion around the periphery of the image
The ACR010 won’t be suitable for everyone, but considering the price, it’s certainly worth your consideration.