How to Use a Handycam as a USB Webcam

By Palmer Owyoung

A Handycam is a Sony handheld digital camera that is usually used to record videos of events that you would like to remember. The Handycam can also be used as a webcam to do video chats with your friends or family members. This way, you can see and hear from your loved ones even when you are thousands of miles away.

Step 1

Download and install the driver software (see Resources). Double-click on it to start it up. The program will ask where you want to decompress it. Click "Reference" and choose the Desktop. Click the "OK" button to continue.

Step 2

Turn on the USB streaming mode on the Handycam by going to the “Main Menu” and selecting “USB Streaming Mode.”

Step 3

Connect the Handycam to the USB port of your computer. The “Found new hardware” wizard will appear. Select "Locate and install driver software (recommended).” A warning message will appear that says, "Windows can't verify the publisher of this driver software." Ignore this and click on “Install this driver software anyway." The software driver installation will start.

Step 4

Go to "Computer" or "My Computer" (if you are using Windows XP). Select "Removable Devices" and find your Handycam listed there. To get it to function as a webcam, double-click the icon; it will bring up a window with a video feed of what your camera is seeing.

Step 5

Open up your chat software, such as Skype, Yahoo Messenger or ICQ (see Resources) and go to "Tools," "Options," "Video Settings" and select your Handycam as your camera. Now whenever you start a video chat, it will use your Handycam for the feed.