Webcam Roundup 2022: StreamCam, Brio, Kiyo Pro, Facecam, HQ Cam

My last comparison between the Logitech c922 and the Raspberry Pi High Quality Camera left me wanting: The Logitech c922 has a very bad image quality but the Raspberry Pi High Quality Camera is very cumbersome to use as a webcam.
So, off to our favourite online bookstore. Shortly after, 4 new shiny contemporary webcams arrived for testing:

  • Logitech StreamCam
  • Logitech Brio
  • Razer Kiyo Pro
  • Elgato Facecam

I will again include the Raspberry Pi High Quality Camera as a point of reference and because it’s fun to see what you could do in the DIY department.

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Raspberry Pi Streaming update: Raspberry Pi OS

The latest version of the Raspberry Pi operating system brings significant changes. Apart from the ususal software updates to the Debian 11 Bullseye base, Raspbian now got rebranded to Raspberry Pi OS. It now comes with a completely new software stack to access its various camera options called libcamera. Unfortunately that means that the old commands raspivid and raspistill will no longer work. So it’s time to update our previous post about how to stream with a Raspberry Pi.

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Mining Monero On Azure

Privacy coins rallied in the last days in light of the current geopolitical events. So is it the perfect time to finally start mining? And how do we do it? We already saw that mining Monero on Raspberry Pis makes no sense. And we surely don’t want to buy a whole server farm, do we?

So how about mining in the cloud? After all, Monero prices are rising, so it should be profitable, right?

Spoiler: No, it isn’t. But if you want to know how to set up Monero mining on Azure with Packer and Ansible and see the gathered data, keep on reading.

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Traefik: Reverse Proxy with Configuration Discovery and Let's Encrypt

You might already know the “cloud native” proxy Traefik from Kubernetes. Or not, as Kubernetes hides most of the configuration from you. But Traefik can be really useful on its own and has a lot of functionality. I find two of its features especially useful for smaller servers ot home servers: the configuration/service discovery and Traefiks ability to resolve and renew Let’s Encrypt certificates.

Traefik Configuration Discovery

Traefik configuration discovery decouples the service configuration from the proxy configuration. Instead of editing a proxy config file every time you want to add a new webpage, you place the configuration at a known source and let Traefik pick it up. This allows for modular deployments where the services that Traefik serves do not have to be known beforehand with minimal downtime of the proxy.

Traefik can watch multiple sources for new configurations of services that it shall act as a proxy for. The service configurations can be read from a file, etcd, Redis and others. One particularly useful variant is the Docker configuration discovery where Traefik reads the configuration from the labels of a running container.

Automatic Lets’t Encrypt certificates with Traefik

Traefik is able to obtain Let’s Encrypt certificates for the domains of your services. When discovering a new configuration, for instance when a docker container starts up, Traefik will check wether SSL is required and how the certificate shall be resolved. If the ACME resolver is selected, Traefik will obtain a SSL certificate for the domain the service will run on and also keep it up to date.
The domain in question has to point to the server that runs Traefik, of course.

The following example shows how to set up Traefik in a Docker container and discover services on the same Docker network, serving them with SSL certificates. I will reuse the jumphost VM created in my guide for Azure VM Deployment With Ansible.

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Azure VM Deployment With Ansible

Lately, I wanted to try some web service that would scale to multiple machines so putting them in the cloud seemed to be a good idea.

But before scaling a set of machines, I need a single VM that can do some monitoring and also serve as a jumphost to reach the scale set. I turned the resulting Ansible script into this howto for deploying VMs on Azure with Ansible.

For tasks like that, everyone else is using AWS and Terraform, so I thought: too mainstream. Instead, I went with Azure and Ansible.

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Squeezefix Update v1.1.0: Fujifilm X-T4 Support

v1.1.0 of Squeezefix is out! Finally with support for newer Fujifilm Cameras. I tested everything with an X-T4 and X-T10, but the script might also work with other Fujifilm cameras. I just don’t have these lying around.

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Monero Mining on Raspberry Pis

Apparently mining Monero on Raspberry Pis seems to be all the rave now? So let’s try:

I had 5 Raspi 3B and one 4B 8GB lying around…

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Debugging PHP in an alpine docker container

Don’t we all have that annoying buggy app that should be fixed but works just enough to not do it right now? Well, for me that was my Bookstack wiki that took around 3 sec for every page load. So I will share what I learned and how I fixed it.

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Self signed certificates that Chrome will accept

Starting with version 58 in 2017 Chrome only accepts certificates that not only define the domain name in the commonName field of the certificate but also the subjectAltName. By doing so they brought their implementation more in line with RFC2818 as Mozilla has done with Firefox 48. Unfortunaltely some tools like the popular script do not support the new field in a convenient manner. But you can generate self signed certificates with that newer Chrome and Firefox versions will accept. Here is how to monkeypatch the problem away.

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Raspberry Pi HQ Camera vs Logitech c922

Update 2022-04-26: In a newer post I compare the contemporary webcams of 2022: Logitech StreamCam, Logitech Brio, Razer Kiyo Pro and Elgato Facecam.

During the supply shortages of 2020 I always wondered wether my Raspberry Pi High Quality Camera would have better image quality in Zoom than the Logitech c922 I normally use. Now that you can again order any webcam at a reasonable price I finally got around to test which one is better.

Focus of the tests are less pixel peeping and more a qualitiative result wether it would be worthwile to check out the Raspberry Pi High Quality Camera as a streaming option.

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