Many people would welcome the extension of macOS’ Continuity Camera feature in macOS Ventura and iOS 16 to turn your iPhone into a webcam. The biggest problem that comes with this feature might be finding a proper way to mount or position your iPhone! (See this article for tips.) But for some people, you also might not want to use the full camera frame of the wide-angle (or standard) rear camera on your iPhone.
Apple doesn’t yet offer a place to crop and zoom, or to choose between alternate rear cameras or the front camera. You can resort to third party software to help you. The software you need depends on whether you need FaceTime, QuickTime, Safari, and other Apple compatibility, or just use a webcam with third-party video software.
FaceTime is not required
Apple does not yet support public virtual webcams, which are program-managed streams of video from other video or composite feeds. The most popular of these packages are open source and free Open Broadcasting System (OBS). OBS now has built-in virtual camera software; Previously, you had to go through some technical loops and now it is just a click away.
In OBS, you can select your iPhone as the video source just as you would in FaceTime or other apps. under Sourcesclick the plus sign, select video capture devicethen select your iPhone from File device Popup menu. If it works correctly, you will see a preview of the iPhone display. click yes. You can now drag the handles of a red rectangle to crop a portion of the video stream that is smaller than it appears by default. Click now Launch the default camera under the Controls menu (by default in the lower right corner of the screen). In Zoom or other video conferencing or video applications, select OBS Virtual Camera. (OBS can layer titles, audio, windows, and more, too; consult its extensive documentation and forums.)
If OBS seems like too much to manage or you find it challenging, you can give it a try Mmmm, a video presentation system that allows you to combine audio, video, slides, screens, and other sources. The free tier should suffice if you’re just looking to frame your iPhone’s input as an enlarged or cropped video that you can output to your videoconferencing software.
If you need to use FaceTime with your camcorder, Camo from embrace It is currently the only virtual camera software I am aware of that is fully integrated with Apple’s macOS video input.
With Camo, you can install an app on your iPhone or iPad and your Mac. iOS 12 or later and macOS 10.13 or later or required. There is also a version for Windows 10 or later. You can connect your device to your Mac via USB or over Wi-Fi starting in a few weeks.
The Camo Studio app in macOS lets you select the camera you want to use on your iPhone or iPad as a source and then apply zoom, rotate, effects, watermark, or image adjustments to it. The output becomes a virtual camera that you can select effectively in any video application. (I use Camo as my video streaming source with my iPhone because of its extensive configuration options.)
Camo has a free tier that allows up to 720p video but doesn’t include zoom and most other features. However, you can test the free version to see how you like it. Camo is $4.99 per month, $39.99 per year, or $79.99 to unlock forever. The paid license covers up to 2 computers and allows watermark removal.
This Mac 911 article is in response to a question submitted by Macworld reader Bradley.
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