GAMDIAS IRIS M1 Review (Page 2 of 4)

Page 2 - Physical Look - Hardware

From an appearance standpoint, the GAMDIAS IRIS M1 is a bit unique. Most computer cameras are pretty subtle in nature, as they often have a black or dark exterior with the lens found in the middle. However, the GAMDIAS IRIS M1 resembles a human eye, at least with the large white border around the camera lens. One might even say the outer white rim is like the iris of the eye with the darker area inside being the pupil. In terms of dimensions, the whole unit is not the most compact. At a height of 75.54mm, a width of 56.46mm, and a depth of 65.95mm, the IRIS M1 will definitely be noticeable when it sits on top of your monitor. It also weighs 122.4g including the cable, or around 75g without. For some perspective, my Microsoft LifeCam Cinema weighs around 96g with the cable and 58g without. Obviously, the GAMDIAS IRIS M1 is a bulkier package with its larger dimensions and weight. In terms of construction, this webcam is made fully out of plastic with its white and black exterior. It generally feels solid and well-built despite its plastic shell and does not feel flimsy.

The GAMDIAS IRIS M1's white ring serves a real purpose as it acts as the diffuser for the light that exists around the camera. It is a pretty neat concept that GAMDIAS has done in combining a ring light with the webcam, although they are not the first to do so either. The white ring has several LEDs to illuminate the user and the diffuser ensures the lighting is not too harsh on the subject. In the middle, we have the camera module itself, which is capable of recording up to 1080p at 60 frames per second, or taking still images at a 2MP resolution. According to GAMDIAS, this has a 73-degree field of view with a near zero distortion lens. Otherwise, above the lens is a small LED light to indicate the activity status. When the light is turned slightly on, this indicates the ring LEDs are active, although this is pretty obvious just by looking at the ring light. When the webcam is actively being used and capturing, the LED light turns to a brighter green color. I do appreciate this light, as it gives a visual indicator to when you can expect the webcam to be actively capturing video. I would have liked to see this light also glow if the microphone is capturing audio, but this is not the case. At the bottom and in the middle of the GAMDIAS logo, we have a small pinhole for the microphone. This omnidirectional, noise-reducing microphone is meant to capture your voice while removing background noises. We will see how all of these specifications and claims play out in our recording tests later on.

In terms of buttons and inputs, the GAMDIAS IRIS M1 has two buttons on the top and the back. The first is located on the back and indicated by a sun-like logo. This is a capacitive touch area that lets users adjust the ring light. Short presses let users cycle through three levels of brightness as well as turning it off. Long pressing this area also lets users change between three different temperatures of lighting. This varies in warmth from a cool white, to a warm white, and then to a mixture of both. You can see there are really two arrays of lights that turn on or off for each specific lighting temperature. The second button is located on the top, marked by a camera. While you might think this is a shutter button, GAMDIAS calls it a one tap privacy button to further allow users to control what is being shown at a time. When pressed, this changes the webcam output to a generic logo. You could still use the included silicone cover to physically block the lens, but I do appreciate these multiple layers to ensure privacy and security.

In terms of mounting or placing the GAMDIAS IRIS M1, there are several options you can take. For one, you could put it on top of your monitor. The base unfolds to create a lip and steadying arm behind the monitor. These areas have rubber pads on the underside to ensure the camera does not fall off. One thing you should be aware of is the fact that there is a lip that hangs in front of the monitor, so it may interfere with your screen if you have slim top bezels. On my monitor, this lip is exactly the same width as my own monitor's bezels, but your mileage may vary. Next, you could also place the IRIS M1 on your table, as the base is weighted well to keep it upright. Finally, you can install the GAMDIAS webcam onto a tripod, as there is a standard 1/4" threaded tripod head mount underneath. In terms of adjustment, there is only the ability to tilt the webcam, as there is no pivoting or rotation of the webcam. It is a bit inconvenient, especially if you cannot place the webcam directly in front of you, but obviously this all varies with your setup. Out the back of the webcam is a 1.5m rubber USB cable to connect the IRIS M1 to your computer.

Page Index
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. Physical Look - Hardware
3. Sample Videos and Analysis
4. Conclusion