Common Webcam Problems and Knowing When to Buy a New One

Webcams have become the most important piece of hardware for many people. With random cam sites, video chatting, and business meetings all taking place using a webcam it is essential that it works perfectly and doesn’t let you down. It has happened to all of us at some stage, you’re in the middle of a conversation and your webcam freezes. Nothing is frustrating than this and it certainly sucks the fun out of using your webcam. If you’re experiencing consistent problems with your webcam, it may be time to upgrade and buy a new one. However, before you splash out try out the solutions below and see if you can fix the problem.

Dark or Black Image

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This is a very common problem on webcams where a black screen appears immediately after the first image is displayed. There are a couple of things that could be causing this. Firstly, check the webcam’s light indicator is switched on by running the ‘Camera Assistant’, which will automatically adjust the webcam’s settings to display the best possible image. The second cause may be that it’s too dark in the room and the webcam has automatically switched off. Solve this by either turning on a light source or switching the webcam into night mode. If you still encounter the dark image problem, try reinstalling the webcam software.

Webcam Isn’t Detected

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Many laptops have built-in webcams, however, some people may have a better quality webcam which they wish to install on their laptop. A common problem encountered here is that when the webcam is plugged in the computer doesn’t detect it and it won’t work. If you have this problem, check the version of windows you’re using and download the appropriate driver software for the webcam. Sometimes the driver doesn’t automatically install properly and you need to do this manually. If the webcam still doesn’t work, try plugging it into a different USB port. It may take a few attempts to completely solve this problem.

Blurry Image

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If the picture your webcam is displaying is burry and out of focus, you can adjust the settings to create a better quality picture. If you go to the settings in your webcam and adjust the video capture properties, paying special attention to brightness and contrast, you should be able to sharpen the picture. Play around with the settings until you’re happy with the picture being displayed. If you can’t get a great image on screen it could be due to the webcam’s quality and upgrading may be the best option.

Driver Issues

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If you have any of the following problems, it is likely your driver is out of date and needs to be updated with a newer version:

  • Sound isn’t synced properly to the video
  • Webcam won’t shut down after use
  • Webcam plays sound but has a botched display

These are all software issues which should disappear after reinstalling your driver. If, however, the webcam remains problematic after upgrading all the drivers then it is possible the webcam hardware is faulty and it is time to buy a new one.

 

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