Any way to turn off face detection for iPhone 5 camera?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Hawtin, Nov 17, 2012.

  1. Hawtin macrumors member

    Oct 10, 2012
    I genuinely think it's the face detection setting that Is causing my 5 to take ages to autofocus when opening the camera. Is there any way to turn this off so I can see if it makes a difference?

  2. tymaster50 macrumors 68030


    Oct 3, 2012
    New Jersey
    something must be wrong with your phone. it takes mine 1 second to autofocus and if I switch to the front facing camera it'll take 2 seconds for the green box to go away.
  3. FSMBP macrumors 68020


    Jan 22, 2009
    To answer your question, no. You cannot turn it off.
  4. Jordan921 macrumors 601


    Jul 7, 2010
    Bay Area
    Face detection shouldn't cause any issues with the camera focusing.
  5. aliensporebomb macrumors 68000


    Jun 19, 2005
    Minneapolis, MN, USA, Urth

    I do notice my iphone5 will sometimes decide to focus on something other than what I'm filming. Irritating to say the least. I tap on the screen to get it to focus on what I want and then the thing sits there refocusing on a piece of dirt on my windshield if I'm photographing out the car window.
  6. meistervu, Nov 20, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2012

    meistervu macrumors 65816

    Jul 24, 2008
    OK, if you are a camera, how would you know what your user is trying to capture so that you can make an intelligent decision on where to focus?

    It does take a lot of brain power to guess correctly most of the time what someone else is trying to capture. Normally, foreground objects are chosen, which works well in the majority of the case, but then there is the wind shield issue. However, even if you can add the "skip the windshield" logic, there are times when you want to shoot the windshield, so it's foolproof either.

    What you need is a camera that can read your mind to focus on what's in your brain at the moment you press the shutter.
  7. LittleGwen macrumors 6502

    Jul 25, 2012
    i think if you turned off face detection it would only cause more focusing problems
  8. Hawtin thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 10, 2012

    So why has every other iphone camera I've used previously automatically been in focus when the camera opens?
  9. daneoni macrumors G4


    Mar 24, 2006
    The dearth of options in the camera app is irritating.
  10. meistervu macrumors 65816

    Jul 24, 2008
    In theory, it takes time to detect faces, so turning off face detection should help. I would think that the logic go like this when the camera goes to focus:

    1. Capture a sample of the image
    2. Process the capture to detect foreground objects
    3. Figure out if there are faces in those objects
    Focus on detected faces, otherwise focus on other foreground objects. There may be some additional fuzzy logic going on to balance the depth of field.

    That said, found the iPhone 5 focusing to be really quick, and I am used to the speed of an DSLR.
  11. meistervu, Nov 20, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2012

    meistervu macrumors 65816

    Jul 24, 2008
    I have owned an iPhone 3G, 4, and now 5. I find the 5 to be the fastest of them from sleep to wake up and taking photos. I am used to my DSLR with some really fast focusing lenses, and I am pleasantly surprised by how little delay is in the iPhone 5. It's a mile ahead of P&S cameras not so long ago in term of capturing speed.

    The iPhone 5 does have to be more precise with its focus because of its wider aperture which can result in narrower depth of field (blurry background). This is a common problem people face when they buy an expensive lenses that can shoot at wide aperture. They suddenly have focusing problem because their depth of field is now so narrow that if they miss their focus by an inch they end up with a blurry face where as which a cheap lens the depth of field is so deep that they can miss their focus by an arm length and no one would notice the difference. What this mean is there has to be more processing going on in the back end to prevent complaints like "my picture are blurry." In my observation, all that processing did not add any delay to photo taking. On the contrary, the iPhone 5 is significantly faster than all my previous iPhone in the photo department, and the focus is often right on.
  12. Tea-Aholic macrumors 6502


    Dec 8, 2011
    Melbourne, Australia
    Just a quick tip for you... If you hold down on the screen until the box pulses, you can lock focus to infinity so you don't lose focus during video recording.
  13. uberfu macrumors newbie

    Dec 9, 2009
    Go out and but a real camera ! Duh.

    Not a phone with a built in camera.

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