For our Logitech MeetUp review, we did things a little differently, because this high-end huddle room webcam is simply too much camera for one telecommuting reviewer. In terms of both scale and intention, it belongs in front of an audience, in a meeting room where its unique wide-angle lens can be put to a proper test.
All of this is to say that we’ve broken with the tradition of previous VC Daily reviews—such as our reviews of the ConferenceCam Connect and the Brio—by handing this webcam off to some friends in a real office to get a realistic idea of how it handles in a true huddle room situation.
Some slight niggles aside, what we experienced was a high-quality camera with excellent visuals and sounds, big enough to capture an entire room…even if it seemed a little extravagant for the casual user.
Sturdy Design, Easy Setup
The team we found to put the MeetUp to the test—a group at a small architecture firm—are no strangers to video conferencing. It’s a regular part of their working lives, and they’ve got a powerful 100Mbs broadband connection at their disposal. They conduct bi-weekly in-house meetings across branch offices in Seattle, Vancouver, and Oakland, and near-daily meetings with external clients.
Unfortunately, as is the case with many businesses today, the firm doesn’t have a lot of IT continuity between offices, so they’ve used WebEx, Skype for Business, GoToMeeting, and Zoom in their virtual meetings. They’ve also switched between several types of setups, generally using a Logitech webcam connected to a ShoreTel or Polycom speakerphone.
All that variety is occasionally a headache for the team to juggle, but it does make them reliable conference cam guinea pigs.
The MeetUp impressed us—and our testers—right out of the box. The base unit is much bigger than a common clip-on webcam, but it has a solid build, is very stable, and comes with a 16’ USB cable that ran almost the length of the 12-seater room and meant we could put the cam anywhere we wanted.
Opening the camera remote and working out which way the batteries fit in was unnecessarily awkward, but the rest of the setup process was a matter of plug-and-play simplicity, and we went from box to video call in barely more than ten minutes.
Then it was on to the call.
A Wide-Angle Lens Reaches Every Corner
The most notable feature of the MeetUp, in this instance at least, is the width of the view it captures. We mounted the camera on the conference table and then on a shelf at eye-level, and at both locations it comfortably brought the entire room into view. The camera has a wall mount included (and you can pay extra for a TV mount) but it worked well just sitting on its own, which gives it added mobility.
The MeetUp has a 120-degree field of view, and it’s a really beneficial feature for a room that’s set up in the traditional horseshoe arrangement around the camera. The zoom and pan features were responsive, but the team was more excited about not having to put it to much use, as everyone fit in the frame comfortably. And, thankfully, there was none of the fish-eye warping on the edges that has plagued other wide-angle huddle room cam attempts.
The crucial part of any camera test, however, is the basic visual and audio quality.
Our Logitech MeetUp Review Conclusion
Again, this experienced team of video calling professionals was obviously impressed with the MeetUp—although, to my frustration, the team didn’t take the time to really push the device to its limits. The default settings on the camera present top-tier clarity and smooth movement, but as the MeetUp was put through its paces during a real meeting no one was keen to experiment with different resolutions or frame rates—which is a shame, because there’s a 4K ultra high-def sensor tucked away inside the device that promises much, and yet the advertised performance of 30 frames per second (even at the lowest resolution of 720p) is lower than that of smaller Logitech models, like the c922, which clips along at 60fps.
The audio was an even bigger hit with our testers, winning favorable comparisons to the dedicated audio of the team’s usual Polycom speakers, which is high praise. Both the speakers and the microphones performed well at distances of around 20 feet from the camera, and if members of a team like this can be seen and heard clearly from any spot on the conference table it makes them very happy.
Overall, the feedback—both witnessed in real time and offered up after the meeting—was very positive. The only real concern was whether or not all the high-grade audio and visuals were necessary when the team had previously enjoyed HD-quality calls over even the comparatively tiny Logitech C920—a unit more than $800 cheaper.
In truth, that’s probably an unfair comparison. The price point on the MeetUp reflects its radical superiority over the much more casual C920, which was never intended to capture the dynamics of a huddle room setup containing half a dozen people.
In the end, this is a beautiful, quality webcam that’s perfect for businesses that often use a huddle room or small conference room-type setup and are serious about their audio and video quality–those who make many client-facing calls, for instance. For those with more basic needs (telecommuters, for instance), or for those who regularly video chat in smaller groups–of, say, two to four people–the ConferenceCam Connect is several hundred dollars cheaper and should suit your needs just as well (its cylindrical design also makes it a little more portable).
For those looking for a powerful, high-end huddle room cam, though, the MeetUp was built for you. I’d love to get in another meeting room with it and push its potential some more, but the sturdy build, ease of setup, and ability to capture an entire meeting in high-grade resolution and audio is all you’ll want from a huddle room camera. If you want more proof, our tester team has just let VC Daily know they’d be happy to take the MeetUp off our hands—you know, just so it doesn’t sit around unused.
Note that while this site is sponsored by Logitech, reviews contain the writer’s own opinions and are not influenced by the views of our sponsor.