November 30

I just have a simple question...
I was using an older iMac G5 with an external iSight camera and just upgraded to a new 24" iMac. Can the external iSight camera still be used on an iMac with a built-in camera?
The cable with the external camera allows for more flexible viewing capability.



Hello rgarros50
The second part of your question is not quite so simple.
Plug your external iSight in and turn it on. If you like, you can use the suggestions from How to test your (external) iSight to ensure it is functional to be sure it is working with your new iMac.
The answer to your question about the "default camera" depends on which application you are using to operate your iSight. Here is how camera selection works in a few example:
(1) For iChat, you can choose which iSight you use in the "Camera:" choices bar in iChat > Preferences... > Audio/Video that appears when more than one compatible camera is connected. Although your camera choices will be different, the choices bar will look something similar to the Preferences settings shown here:
Most other applications also have settings that allow you to choose which camera to use. However, they do not all work the same way.
(2) For instance, iMovie's camera choice is NOT set via Preferences. When you have more than one compatible camera connected, iMovie uses a drop-down menu choice something like this (depending on which version of iMovie you use):
Note: Because I have no built-in iSight, when my external iSight is disconnected, the drop-down menu shows only "Time Lapse." Because your iMac has a built-in iSight, your built-in iSight will show in the drop-down menu even when no other camera is connected. Connecting your external iSight should allow you to choose either camera.
(3) Photo Booth is such a simple, basic app that it offers no menu selectable choice. Unless you make your built-in iSight the camera being used by some open application before you launch Photo Booth, Photo Booth will use ONLY your built-in iSight.
However, you can use the trick from ¶ 4 of to let Photo Booth use your Firewire external  iSight:
• Connect your external iSight and turn it on.
• Quit Photo Booth (PB) if it is running.
• Launch any app with a user-selectable camera "Preferences..." menu command.
 (The "tip" suggests that you use iChat, but others should work as well.)
• Open "Preferences..." and set the camera "Preference" to use your built-in iSight.
• Now launch PB. PB should now use the external iSight
 because your built-in camera is in use by the other application.
(4) For apps other than those above, see their Help or other documentation.
EZ Jim
PowerBook 1.67 GHz w/Mac OS X (10.4.11) G5 DP 1.8 w/Mac OS X (10.5.2)  External iSight

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