The Best Ways to Enhance Your Webcam Audio and Video | Panda Anku

Photo of the Logitech Streamcam

It’s a universally accepted truth that many of us are spending a lot more time than we used to peek into webcams, watching video from other people’s webcams on our own screens. Video calling and conferencing is now an accepted norm rather than an occasional oddity, and for the sake of your fellow callers, you want your audio and video feed to be as smooth and as high-quality as possible.

While you may be accustomed to simply opening the lid of your laptop or launching your favorite video conferencing software to begin your calls, there are ways to tweak and improve the quality of your output. After you’ve explored your options in just a few minutes, the other participants in the conversation will thank you. So we are here to help you with this process.

We’re mainly going to cover software settings here, but there’s more you can do: investing in a better webcam or microphone, making sure you’re in a room that’s adequately and evenly lit, and reducing the likelihood of any external noise are all good practices.

How to adjust the built-in settings for a better webcam picture

Windows has some basic settings that you can adjust to improve the quality of your webcam’s audio and video. On Windows, open the Start menu to search settingsthen choose Bluetooth & Devices and cameras: You should then be able to select your preferred webcam to get some basic brightness and contrast controls.

Adjusting these will quickly give you a better video picture, and you can use the preview window above the sliders to see what the changes will look like. If you want to return to the square and start again, click reset settings; and if you’re having serious trouble getting your webcam to work at all, click Troubleshooting.

Screenshot of Windows webcam options

Windows offers a limited number of settings that you can use.
screenshot: Windows

It’s a different story on macOS: there are no built-in settings to manage your webcam, and it really depends on the app you’re using to access the camera. Since FaceTime is provided by Apple itself and installed with macOS, it counts as a built-in preference option, and once you launch the app, You will find that your default webcam will become active immediately.

If you then click on the Control Center icon in the menu bar (it looks like two toggle switches) you will see a video effects button (to turn on background blur in portrait mode) and a microphone mode Button: Allows you to choose between default, language isolation (Ambient noise is suppressed) and wide spectrum (Ambient noise is let through).

Best 3rd party tools for better webcam picture

If you want more optimization options than an operating system built-in settings can help you, you can get help from third-party tools. These utilities are designed to sit on top of your operating system and work with any webcam They’re attached, so they’re not specific to any particular device.

Take FineCam for Windows and macOS, for example, which gives you controls for saturation, sharpness, brightness, contrast, white balance, and more, and can automatically improve the quality of a feed in low-light conditions. In addition, numerous one-click filters and effects are available. You can use the software for free, but many of the advanced options require a paid subscription that starts at $6.90 per month.

Screenshot of the webcam

Finecam gives you many settings and features to play around with.
screenshot: Finecam

ManyCam is another software package that is Worth a look, and again it’s packed with features to explore. You can tweak the brightness, contrast, and saturation of your video feed, you can combine multiple layers (e.g. when presenting slides), and you can experiment with picture-in-picture effects. It’s a useful suite of webcam tools that goes well beyond video and audio optimization, but most of these tools require a paid subscription that starts at $49 per year.

You also get a variety of optimization options CyberLink PerfectCam, which will set you back $9.99 per month for the premium edition (there’s a free trial so you can try it first). There are sliders for brightness, contrast, and exposure, you can smooth the appearance of your skin, and even have the program adjust some of these settings automatically. on top of that, You get additional effects such as background blurring and the ability to insert custom backgrounds.

It’s also quite possible that your webcam came with its own software, which means you want to check out…

App settings for better webcam picture

If you bought an external webcam, then it probably works as soon as you plug it in – but there’s also probably some free software you can download for it that gives you access to more settings and options. Logitech webcams, for example to have LogiTune.

In the app’s main window, select your connected Logitech webcam, then open the Video Tab. You’ll see that you can change the zoom level, field of view, and make manual adjustments to brightness and contrast turn autofocus on or off. Under the settings tab, meanwhile you can toggle HDR Toggle mode on or off, which should keep light and dark areas of the video feed visible.

Screenshot from Zoom

Zoom has audio and video optimization options.
screenshot: zoom

It’s also worth looking into the apps you use for your video calls, as there’s a good chance there are additional options here too, even if you’ve never used them. zoom is a good example: click the gear icon in the upper-right corner of the interface, then switch to Video and Audio Tabs on the left to make some adjustments.

Under Video, You can choose to activate it improve my appearance (which softens a few wrinkles) and Adapt to low light (to make you easier to see in the dark). You can also choose Progressive to find the denoise optimization option. Under Audiothere are settings to automatically adjust the volume during calls, as well as suppressing a variety of background noises (from pen tapping to dog barking).

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