How bad is the MBA 2018 Camera really?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by geejay9876, Dec 25, 2018.

  1. geejay9876 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2018
    #1
    Hi,

    there are tons of reports about the Macbook Air 2018 camera being grainy or greyish. How bad is it really? I am doing quite a lot of Skype telcos and needs some decent camera.
    BTW: I noted that video from colleagues with Macbook Pro often looks bad, not sure whether that is a connectivity or camera issue. Is there some issue also with MBP cameras? I was always quite happy with the old-style MBA camera.

    Has anyone done a comparison between 2015 MBP, old style MBA and 2018 MBA camera?

    Cheers
     
  2. revmacian macrumors 6502

    revmacian

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    Oct 20, 2018
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    USA
    #2
    I have been researching the 2018 MacBook Air because I plan to buy one soon. Part of that research involves seeing what is posted on the internet. I have watched many videos on YouTube, and read numerous web pages, and I'd like to know where these "tons of reports" are located, because I haven't seen any. Have you tried watching YouTube videos or reading web pages to see if the camera is grainy or grayish?
     
  3. Ma2k5 macrumors 68020

    Ma2k5

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    London
    #3
    The reports are on Apples support forum and also on this one.
     
  4. geejay9876 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 3, 2018
    #4
    https://9to5mac.com/2018/12/02/some...poor-facetime-hd-camera-quality-are-you-poll/

    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/8627217

    https://www.iphoneincanada.ca/mac/2018-macbook-air-hd-camera-quality-blurry/
     
  5. revmacian macrumors 6502

    revmacian

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    #5
    Perhaps I haven't been paying proper attention to this issue. Of the hundreds of videos I've viewed, I can only remember one of them stating that the MBA camera is lower quality than that of the current iPhones. It's a webcam, it's not designed to provide professional quality images. I think many people have been spoiled by the high quality of smartphone cameras.
     
  6. Ma2k5 macrumors 68020

    Ma2k5

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    London
    #6
    No webcam will beat iPhone or smart phone cameras as they are only 720p (some are 1080p but even then phones usually have a 5MP+ front camera). I think what people were comparing it to was the old Air and the MacBook Pro’s which also have a 720p web cam and the new Air is doing a worse job it seems.

    It could be that Apple have put a lower quality 720p web cam in the Air to save costs - it seems they have cut quite a corners on the Air. We already noticed it has a less bright/vibrant screen then the previous 12” MacBook (it is understandable that it is worse than the Pro’s but not so much why it’s worse than the MacBook lineup) and some preliminary complaints about the audio output, could they have cheaped out on that too?
     
  7. revmacian macrumors 6502

    revmacian

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    USA
    #7
    Not sure about audio, I'm hearing impaired so don't put much importance on audio. I do wonder, however, if the inclusion of the T2 chip, which does a lot of the work that was done by the CPU in previous models, is to blame for the apparent poor experience in some of these areas. Being that the T2 chip is new to the MBA, I hope Apple continues to improve things.
     
  8. Ma2k5 macrumors 68020

    Ma2k5

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    #8
    Could be.

    With regards to audio, the quality issue is for when you connect your audio equipment to the 3.5mm jack. The speakers are fine.
     
  9. geejay9876 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2018
    #9
    I checked the MBA 2018 and MBA 2017 cameras next to each other in the shop with photobooth. The old MBA looks sharper.

    I suspect that the new Macbook air 2018 camera looks more fuzzy because the camera has only 720p resolution and the screen is 1600p so the camera image one sees on the screen is extrapolated.
     
  10. KB23 macrumors newbie

    KB23

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    Toronto, Canada
    #10
    TBH, it's AWFUL!! Thankfully I rarely ever use it anyways.
     
  11. lpolarityl macrumors 6502

    lpolarityl

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2009
    #11
    It is pretty cruddy looking. I honestly never use the camera on my laptops so its not a huge deal to me. The 2018 MBA is not cheap by any means so a nicer quality camera would have been expected. The camera is probably my only complaint that I think most people could agree with. It is a really terrible quality camera when you consider the cost.
     
  12. kreasonos macrumors regular

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    Dec 4, 2013
    #12
    Remember the cameras that used to come on flip phones in the early 2000s? Yea, it's like that.
     
  13. LIVEFRMNYC macrumors 604

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    Oct 27, 2009
    #13
    It's not that bad. But in room lighting, there is more noise than it should have. But not to the point where it's a horrible capture.
     
  14. acorntoy macrumors 65816

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    May 25, 2010
    #14
    Why have people decided to go all out in rage with this new Air?

    “The screen is SO DIM” — The screen on the Air is the same brightness as the MacBook and the same brightness MacBook pros were pre 2016, nobody really complained then.

    Now the camera?

    It’s a laptop camera. They’re all crappy, even the pros. The MacBook Air actually has an UPGRADED FaceTime camera, It isn’t the lowest in the lineup, the 2018 Air features a 720p camera while the MacBook which cost $100 more comes with a 480p camera. It actually has a better screen capable of more color than the MacBook as well despite some saying it’s a dull/flat screen.
     
  15. Ma2k5, Dec 27, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2018

    Ma2k5 macrumors 68020

    Ma2k5

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    #15
    Even though it is rated 300 nit, the screen isn't the same brightness nor hasthe same colors as the 12" MacBook, it is noticeably worse, hence the complaints (and why people likely wouldn't have complained about the previous MacBook's).

    As for the 720p camera, it is inferior to the 720p camera on the Pro too, not sure why that is.

    NB People did complain about the webcam by the way of the 12" MacBook, being 480p. People generally complain if there is something to complain about.
     

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