iSight is a brand name used by Apple Inc. to refer to cameras on various devices. The name was originally used for the external iSight webcam, which retailed for US$149, connected to a computer via a FireWire cable, and came with a set of mounts to place it atop any then current Apple display, laptop computer, all-in-one desktop computer, or flat surface.
Apple introduced iSight at the 2003 Worldwide Developers Conference, It was intended to be used with iChat AV, Apple's video-conferencing client. iMovie (version 4 and later) could also be used to capture video from the device. In April 2005, Apple released a firmware update for the iSight to improve audio performance. As of October 13, 2008, the external iSight was no longer for sale in the Apple online store or in retail locations.
Meanwhile, Apple began using the term to refer to the camera built into Apple's iMac, MacBook, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro computers, Thunderbolt Display, and Cinema Display. In November 2010, Apple began calling them "FaceTime cameras". However, the term was not retired, as the iPhone 4 and later, iPod Touch (fifth generation and later), iPad (third generation and later), iPad Mini, and iPad Pro all incorporate an “iSight” rear camera in addition to a front-facing “FaceTime” or “FaceTime HD” camera.
The external iSight's ¼-inch color CCD sensor has 640×480-pixel VGA resolution, with a custom-designed three-part F/2.8lens with two aspherical elements. It features autoexposure, autofocusing from 50 mm to infinity, and video capture at 30 frames per second in 24-bit color with a variety of shutter speeds. However, the iSight has an image delay of approximately 120 ms.
The iSight incorporates internal microphones with dual-element noise suppression. The actual camera only takes up one-quarter of the unit; the remaining space is primarily occupied by its two microphones and mounting socket.
The iSight camera weighs 2.3 ounces (63.8 grams). It uses a single FireWire 400 (IEEE 1394a) cable (included) for audio, video and power.
Apple iSight webcam
Four camera mounts, a plastic tube carrying case and a FireWire camera mount adapter are also included. The user can select the mounting bracket most appropriate for their monitor or other mounting surface. It is fully compatible with its nativemacOS, as well as partially compatible with the Microsoft Windows and Linux operating systems.
The iSight has a small green LED that illuminates when the camera is in use. It also has an iris that closes by twisting the front of the camera.