The solution I've found is to use a program to make the D-SLR appear to programs as webcam. However until now I haven't found a free program that does this for Windows (Mac users should check out CamTwist). Without further ado, I'd like to introduce digiCamControl.
digiCamControl is a free program that allows you control and get a live feed from a number of supported Canon, Nikon and Sony cameras.
It also has a Web Server function and this has recently been expanded to include a virtual webcam feature which allows cameras appear to applications as a webcam and hence work with programs such as Helium Frog, Monkeyjam or Heron Animation. Video chat applications such as Skype will also work, however the live feed from this method has a slight delay and low frame rate making it not very ideal for video chatting.
Here's how to set this up:
- Download and install beta version 2.0.17 (IMPORTANT) or above of digiCamControl.
- Open digiCamControl and in the menu bar navigate to "File > Settings".
- Select the "web server" tab and tick "use webserver". For privacy reasons I'd recommend making sure that the "allow public access" option below this is unchecked.
- Restart digiCamControl with your camera turned on and connected to your computer via a USB cable.
- Click "allow access" if a Windows Firewall alert appears.
- Press the "Live view" button in digiCamControl (it has an icon with "Lv" on it).
- Open the program you want to use the camera with and choose "digiCamControl Virtual WebCam" as your video source.
- If a green focus rectangle is displayed on the image you can hide it by unchecking "show focus rectangle" in the display menu of the live view window of digiCamControl.
- Using live view quickly drains your camera's battery. Consider purchasing an AC adapter for it.
While this method isn't as slick as a native solution, I hope it allows you to at least make some use of your fancy D-SLR in many Windows programs without having to pay for something like SparkoCam.
If you have any questions feel free to comment below and I will do my best to help out!