I'm trying to use my Nikon D5600 as a PC webcam, but when I connect the camera to the PC (Windows 10) with a Micro USB cable (to be clear, the same I usually use to transfer photos from the camera to the PC), and I try to open Windows Camera, this message appears:

We can't find your camera
[bla bla]
If you need it, here's the error code:

Does anyone know why does it happen?

  • \$\begingroup\$ I'm not on Windows, but is it perhaps just as simple as this - photo.stackexchange.com/questions/94622/… \$\endgroup\$
    – Tetsujin
    Mar 27, 2020 at 7:38
  • \$\begingroup\$ You should check this with Nikon. \$\endgroup\$ Mar 27, 2020 at 7:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Tetsujin it is noet working for me :/ \$\endgroup\$
    – Urel
    Mar 27, 2020 at 7:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ @StephenG I didn't find anything in the Nikon manual \$\endgroup\$
    – Urel
    Mar 27, 2020 at 7:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ I'm betting it can't do it. I can get my 5500 showing in Camera Control, but not in my webcam app - which is actually designed to lever unsupported cameras [USB, not DSLR] into the OS to be recognised as webcams. I'm pretty sure if it can't do it, it can't be done. \$\endgroup\$
    – Tetsujin
    Mar 27, 2020 at 8:36

4 Answers 4


The live view mode on Nikon cameras is entirely in-built. When you activate the mode, the sensor is displaying the result onto the screen, but as far as the general functionality of the camera goes, nothing has changed.

It's still expecting to record the video onto the memory card.

The USB cable can be used to transfer files and trigger the camera in tethered mode on some Nikon models, but even in tether mode, the files will still end up on the memory card.

The only way to do this is to use the HDMI output on the camera, connected to an HDMI input on your computer. It's worth keeping in mind that HDMI ports are directional, and you cannot connect the camera output to an HTMI monitor port and use it as an input.

For the costs involved, and given that the live view on Nikon cameras will only run for a limited time (you'll have to keep tapping a button to keep it active), I would recommend buying a webcam.

The Elgato Camlink 4k sits around the £120 mark (around $150 U.S.), and though there are cheaper HDMI capture devices, the advantage of using the DSLR is image quality, which with a low end device cannot be guaranteed.

There are a load of webcams on Amazon which are well under the £100 mark, and would produce a perfectly usable image. Not as good as you can get on the Nikon, but the convenience and the ease of setup could outweigh the slightly smaller image size.

  • \$\begingroup\$ on many nikon cameras you can activate that the live view stays on and you are not needed to tap a button to keep it active. A usable image of a webcam is always very usage dependent and the DSLR will always give a better image and webcams are not really cheap ATM because of the covid situation. \$\endgroup\$
    – LuZel
    Jul 7, 2020 at 9:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ @LuZel The max auto-off time on the D5600 (and with a lot of Nikons) is 30 mins. To prevent it deactivating, the camera still requires a control input to reset this timer. DSLR are not designed for long term video recording. The sensors heat up, the mirror must be locked and the shutter held open. That camera is simply not designed for this purpose. Web cam prices might well have risen, but an HDMI interface is still expensive, and the image of a DSLR is not always better. It assumes you have a suitable lens etc. \$\endgroup\$
    – Alex
    Jul 7, 2020 at 10:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ i was ignoring the heat things etc. but i know some nikon DSLRs, like the d7200 can do it. and webcams with good FHD images like the the Logitech HD pro c920 is also over 100 € and if u already have a dslr and a good lens and does not need to run it for 6+ hours it should be better and u can do much more with these things (4k webcams are even more rare and expensive) \$\endgroup\$
    – LuZel
    Jul 8, 2020 at 9:20

For Mac users - a new webcam app.

I'm adding this to existing 'webcam' questions for future searchers.
I am in no way affiliated with this product or the company making it - this is a simple user to user recommendation.

I just discovered this today, announced on DPReview a new product called Cascable Pro Webcam £40 [£30 for the first week to 24 July 2020]

I've just tried the demo & it "just worked".
I've never had anything before on Mac that could do this with my D5500, so I thought I should let others know about it.
The app runs you through a setup procedure, including asking if you want to connect over WiFi or USB. I went with USB for my Nikon D5500.
Switch camera off, connect to USB, switch on - camera is discovered & set up automatically. It then asks if it can install a plugin to add it as an input option on any camera-capable app.
Done, that's it.

Here's their list of compatible cameras


You're using the wrong software, and assuming all USB data feeds are equivalent.

This is happening because your Nikon is not a webcam, and is not feeding a signal to the Windows Camera software that it recognizes as a USB webcam. You need to translate the USB signals from your D5600 into something that can be recognized as a USB webcam by your video conferencing software/Windows Camera.

The USB from the D5600 can, however, be used a tethered liveview in Lightroom, and that tethered liveview feed can be translated by several different pieces of software, such as eCamm Live, Sparkocam, vMix, or OBS + an OBS virtual camera plugin into a webcam feed.

See also: How can I use my dSLR or mirrorless camera as a webcam?


Nikon now has a new app for streaming live on some DSLR cameras. It call nikon webcam utility and it a free download from the Nikon website. You simply install and it runs like a plugin. I know for a fact that it works with the D5600 as I own this camera and have live streamed successfully several times. The catch is I believe it only works with certain live stream platforms like YouTube and zoom.so you might have to check that out but other than that it works great


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