Yes, the 2018 MacBook Air's FaceTime HD Camera is Awful

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jan 3, 2019.

  1. thobie macrumors member

    Oct 21, 2009
  2. rturner2 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 18, 2009
    No web cam could help Dan. Actually VGA might work better than HD. Hahahaha. Deleted post for sure. Comeon MR, take a joke.
  3. latweek macrumors regular


    Mar 26, 2015
    Just awful. The comments were so much better here in 2015.
  4. cocoua macrumors regular


    May 19, 2014
    madrid, spain
    apple wants a screen thin as paper, so they are that close to delete the webcam, but you could buy the new bluetooth iSigth for just 149USD
  5. MarkyR macrumors newbie

    Jan 4, 2019
    Agree with the comments. Rather than throw the Macbook on the skip - I purchased iGlasses - a really useful app that has really improved my webcam experience.

    You can trial it for free at:
  6. spitcoff macrumors member


    Jul 24, 2005
    Awful may be a bit strong here it does not look that bad to me
  7. selfmachine macrumors newbie

    Jan 29, 2015
    Why are there so few bicycle lanes in most cities? Because politicians don't ride bicycles.

    Why are Macs design snobbery and underspec'ed? Because Apple's board of directors loves money more than technology.

    Ockham's razor: always choose the simplest of all valid explanations.
  8. Zdigital2015 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 14, 2015
    East Coast, United States
    As health insurers try to reduce costs and doctors offices try to accommodate more patients, telemedicine and virtual Doctor visits are becoming more and more common.
  9. dan110 macrumors 6502


    Jul 13, 2013
    I'm going to play this video on a continuous loop the day Tim Cook is fired.
  10. Gogeta-Blue macrumors member


    Dec 10, 2018
    here is the deal, is actually very simple
    steve goal was to build the best computers, devices and get pay for it

    Tim goal is to make money by not giving the best that they can posibly can

    apple lower the quality of the product by using cheaper parts and components in order to maxime the profit

    tim thought that macs users are not going to noticed the diference
    all those 2013 models will be gone and recycle by now

    ehhhh wrong tim

    is just laughable that older devices are better than the new ones

    Tim if you are going to do the BS strategy at least lower the prices

    apple no longer wants to make the best devices, the new apple simply wants to make money by selling yunk

    that is the diference
  11. gorbag42 macrumors newbie


    Apr 26, 2011
    NY State
    If you're going to compare A and B, and then say B as worse, please be more quantitative.

    1) set up EXACTLY the same shot on A and B. Use a jig if needed. Measure your lighting, too (preferably use a room without windows so time of day does not matter.

    2) use a target that is typical for such comparisons, e.g. with contrast, resolution, tonal range, etc.

    3) determine that the configuration is the same for both, not just that you are using the same app on different machines. Is the driver the same? Are the parameters the same? (Is this an app issue, a driver issue, or really a hardware issue? Use a scope if needed.

    4) MEASURE the differences. What is the frequency response? What is the dynamic range? What is the color gamut?

    This post and thread is a diary entry, not a serious comparison.
  12. dewski macrumors 6502

    Aug 20, 2011
    I don't think I have ever used a webcam on a computer besides testing it to see if it works.
  13. Col4bin macrumors 68000


    Oct 2, 2011
    El Segundo
    Honestly, this is quite subjective and trivial.
  14. femike macrumors 6502

    Oct 15, 2011
    Using old cheap parts is what Apple does now. They no longer make the best products they can.
    Even the 're-engineered in no small way' mac mini update has got a pathetic Intel GPU in addition with the exact same case fro the last 7 years. Apple calling it 're-engineered in no small way' means the total opposite.
  15. wigby macrumors 68000

    Jun 7, 2007
    Well when you word a survey like that, you already know the results. The clamshell design of Apple (and everyone else's) laptops do not allow for a much better FaceTime camera than the one in there. I think ti could be upgraded to 1080p across the line but there are limitations which is why no one makes a good laptop camera to my knowledge.

    As far as usage? I think it's much more likely that users have little use for it in the first place or don't want to deal with complications. Have you tried Skype recently - it breaks and then updates constantly. I have half a dozen family members with modern Apple laptops. None of them have ever Facetimed me with those because they just use their phones instead. I don't think some of them even realize they can FaceTime using a MacBook.
  16. mwinterr macrumors newbie

    Oct 14, 2016
    2018 Macbook Air owners are NOT angry because they don't have a 1080p camera in their laptop. They are pissed because the still frame and video output of the Facetime camera is clearly and quite noticeably grainier and overall inferior to Facetime cameras on previous generations of Macbook Airs.

    I'm not mad that the front facing camera on my iPhone and iPad are better than that on the 2018 Macbook Air. I'm pissed that I dropped $1,800 on a product who's camera is noticeably worse than the 2011 variant I'm replacing.

    That said, thanks to Macrumors for finally shedding some light on this issue. I still have hope that the issue can be fixed in a software update, and that with more media exposure, Apple will finally address it one way or another.
  17. rgetter macrumors newbie

    Sep 20, 2008
    Portland, Oregon
    --- Post Merged, Jan 4, 2019 ---
    The two main issues I see can probably be fixed in software. On the 2018 MBA, the backlight compensation appears to be a couple of f-stops weaker (darker) and the white balance is shifted way towards the red (look at the "gray" sweatshirt). Detail/sharpness seem to be nearly identical meaning that there may be the same sensor in the old and new models. And one more thing... 720 is standard definition (SD), 1080 is HD. Those are worldwide standards--even in Cupertino.
  18. travelsheep macrumors 6502


    May 30, 2013
    Even my iPod 5th gen 2011 had better quality for facetime. Just put a permanent sticker over the MacBook webcam and forget about it.
  19. wigby macrumors 68000

    Jun 7, 2007
    I half agree with you. Customers want better FaceTime camera quality from their MacBooks but they're not comparing them to previous MacBook models. They're comparing them to their iPhones.
    --- Post Merged, Jan 4, 2019 ---
    MacRumors is claiming that. I don't believe customers are making laptop purchasing decisions based on the FaceTime camera quality. People are looking at FaceTime on their iPhones and comparing it to FaceTime on their laptops costing 3x more and getting upset. There is a difference but Apple should definitely improve the laptop camera along with other laptop specs.
  20. ka-spot macrumors 6502a

    May 23, 2012
    Sofia, Bulgaria
  21. gavroche macrumors 6502a


    Oct 25, 2007
    Left Coast
    Well, I actually agree with you... In earlier comments in this thread I said that it seems that Apple doesn't give a rats arse about laptops, and that I recently bought a Surface Pro (tired of Apples over priced products... bad value for what you get... in particular laptops and iPads). I by no means am a defend Apple at all costs pwrson.. I only meant to point out that there are some on here only seemingly wanting to bash Apple and nothing else. :)
  22. MrJeffreyGee macrumors regular


    Apr 20, 2009
    Ok, but how does it compare with the 2003 Apple iSight camera?
  23. selfmachine macrumors newbie

    Jan 29, 2015
    And how does it compare to sticks and stones?
  24. bigyenta, Jan 4, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2019

    bigyenta macrumors newbie

    Dec 25, 2008
    --- Post Merged, Jan 4, 2019 ---
    --- Post Merged, Jan 4, 2019 ---
    The back lighting is creating a misleading result, causing the main image to darken and appear more grainy. AND you're trying to make comparisons with a couple different backgrounds and that is simply not providing a consistent result that can be used for comparison. Is this done on purpose to emphasize a predetermined outcome or is this simply an innocent oversight? Please RE-TAKE ALL the photos with ALL THE SAME BACKGROUND and NO back lighting interference to make this comparison truly credible.

    That being said, the camera in a $1000 Plus computer should be of a higher quality without doubt. Until Apple starts offering really innovative products like they used to, I think that they have a lot of nerve charging more each year for refreshed versions at yesterday's standards.

    Example of complaints:
    - Small Hard Drive Space on all mobile units, laptops, iMacs, iPhones etc.
    - Most Hard Drives and Memory are soldered onto the motherboards & not user upgradable
    - Upgrade costs for even the most minor improvement is available via Apple only at astronomically high prices
    - No SD card in iPhones
    - No User replaceable Batteries in the iPhone

    Apple is charging too much for their products and that may ultimately be the companies downfall. Electronics costs should be going DOWN each year not up.
  25. dogslobber macrumors 68040


    Oct 19, 2014
    Apple Campus, Cupertino CA
    OK it's a flawed camera but this guy has been given too much oxygen.

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