Bad camera?


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  1. dowtie

    dowtie Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    One of the things I was really looking forward to with this phone is the 5 megapixel camera with flash... very appealing to say the least. However, in almost every review they have mentioned that the camera is largely inconsistent and routinely takes shoddy pictures.

    Is this a hardware problem or a result of software bugs? If its something that can be fixed in a patch then I will mark it up to it being just an issue of ironing out the kinks but if its more inherently hardware based I might have hold off for a better smartphone option...
     

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  2. Supraman21

    Supraman21 Well-Known Member

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    Well im a media freak and when I heard the Droid was able to record D1 video I got verrrry excited but then I heard it only records 24fps. Is this a hardware limitation or software cause the iPhone has roughly the same hardware as in cpu gpu but has a 3 meg camera and records 30 fps with the best audio ive ever heard coming from a cellphone video camera. I know the droid records at 720 by 480 and the iPhone at 640 by 480 but that extra 80 lines of res shouldnt lower the frame rate that much. The Instinct HD (5meg) can record 720p video at 30fps and D1 at 80fps so im pretty sure its a software limitation. So my question is can someone create a Video camera app that can change the video to 30fps or more if possible? Ohh and also is the screen glass or plastic?

    I hope someone can answer both our questions
     
  3. gthrift

    gthrift Guest


    I'm thinking is mix of both the hardware and software causing the problems. Just because it's 5MP doesn't mean it's high quality. I have an older 6.something digital camera that blows away my brother's 10MP camera because it's higher quality. MPs aren't the only factor.

    I also say software because in some of the Sprint Hero reviews I read people said they got much better quality pictures after turning off the auto focus. The Hero has a 5mp camera aswell so I'm going to guess that they are probably the same camera and similar software. If you can disable auto focus on the Droid then I would think there would be a similar improvement in quality.
     
  4. Supraman21

    Supraman21 Well-Known Member

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    I totally understand the fact that higher mp's doesn't mean better image quality.
    The HTC Hero and Droid probably don't have the same camera cause HTC makes the Hero and Motorola makes the Droid. I dont think the 24fps is a hardware limitation cause my Lg Dare which is a year old with a 3.2 mp camera can record 120fps and from the pics ive seen taken with the Droid they are better than my Dare( Video also).
     
  5. wonderbread

    wonderbread Well-Known Member

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    The DROID's autofocus can be turned off. I saw this option a little while ago but have not heard any reviewer experimenting with it off. Too many reviewer/blog sites are just oversized adolescents with ADD who just have a fit if everything isn't just how they want it at first blush.
     
  6. Barbara

    Barbara Well-Known Member

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    According to the Droid user manual there are three options in focus mode: Auto, Infinity and Macro. (Page 29 of the manual.) They don't show an option for turning it off but maybe that function is located someplace other than camera settings.
     
  7. Carl C

    Carl C Well-Known Member

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    Since the Droid is running 2.0 does it have the camera features as it says on the Android 2.0 highlights?
    & What is this infinity focus? :)
     
  8. Barbara

    Barbara Well-Known Member

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    I looked that up and basically it's another term for Landscape mode.
     
  9. gthrift

    gthrift Guest

    HTC and Motorola don't make most of the parts in their phones. I'm just saying its likely they have the same supplier since both have similar sized 5mp cameras.
     
  10. jer.lawrence

    jer.lawrence Well-Known Member

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    It's "off" on the autofocus -- it just stays focused at the maximum possible focal distance. Unfortunately, that still keeps a lot of stuff out of focus.

    Gah, I hope they fix this with the next rollout. I only dislike two things about this phone, and that camera issue is one of them.
     
  11. DrDroid

    DrDroid Well-Known Member

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    the focusing is fine in video mode; the camera mode focusing will have a fix on the next scheduled OTA update; we'll see.
     
  12. gshocker

    gshocker Member

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    Having a camera that focuses at close and mid range would be nice. The pictures still seem decent but the lack of focus lock seems silly. I certainly hope this OTA update can fix that issue.

    So far the camera doesn't seem to be a strong point on any of the Android handsets. The Hero that I had was not great either.
     
  13. JoeKC

    JoeKC Active Member

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    This is an acknowledged problem and is due for a fix on Dec 11.
     
  14. baka

    baka Well-Known Member

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    i heard they're gonna fix the issues with the camera in the first OTA update. honestly though, its better than the iphone by far. at least the thing takes pix you can discern. iphone took forever to get a good pic.
     
  15. icstars989

    icstars989 Well-Known Member

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    Im on the opposite side of that, no matter how they fix that focusing issue, its not gonna mean squat for better pics, I've had to learn to accept the Droids camera is just plain garbage. As much as I disliked my iphone, I gotta say, I feel their pics were much cleaner.
     
  16. JoeKC

    JoeKC Active Member

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    The consistent thing in reviews is the praise for the video. I've seen some of these posted in HD on youtube and they're very good indeed. So it's unlikely the camera is taking lousy stills, but good videos. It's most certainly a software issue, most likely focusing. So let's hold judgment for a month and see.
     
  17. icstars989

    icstars989 Well-Known Member

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    You're right, the video's are superb, but the same can be said for any camcorder that takes stills, the stills are nowhere near the quality of the video. However, I still stand by your comment and I will save my final judgment until the fix out. There's so much to love about this phone, that either way, a camera isn't going to make or break me.
     
  18. baka

    baka Well-Known Member

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    its true that the droid hasnt yet blown my mind with the camera, but honestly i havent had this huge problem with focusing. the pix for some reason just arent as good as they could be - especially with 5mp. but really though, the iphone pix were cleaner? i dunno man... it took so long to get a non blurry pic with the iphone that itd have to be pretty damn clean for me to like those pix better.

    i didnt really buy the phone for the 5mp camera either, though. its just cool to have for those random shots when you're in a bar or somewhere else without a point and shoot or DSLR.
     
  19. JoeKC

    JoeKC Active Member

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    I've always been big into photography, so the camera is a big issue for me. But I ordered a Droid anyway because a problem has been specifically identified and it's indeed a software issue. I suspect the best way to test the camera is to manually set it to infinity and try taking some pictures with the camera well braced. Thiis is one of the first tests I plan when my Droid arrives tomorrow. I would not have ordered the Droid had I not been confident of a fix. I hope I'm not disappointed. :rolleyes:
     
  20. MotoDroidHelpandInfo

    MotoDroidHelpandInfo Well-Known Member

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    Dl a barcode scanning app. Then watch it focus. Much better then taking pictures. Hopefully they're trying to make the real camera app operate like that.
     
  21. icstars989

    icstars989 Well-Known Member

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    I have Shopsavvy, not sure if that is different from any other barscanning app, but the quality of the pics are the same between that and the camera. For me its not a focusing issue, its the overall final product of the image. Again, its not deal breaker for me, I just dont think the quality of the pics are gonna be addressed in the new update. Having a background in photography I have a gut feeling that's a hardware issue, I hope I'm wrong, but either way, its a great phone with or without a decent camera.

    When the update comes out, and if the quality of the pics are cleaned up, I'll buy you all a round :)
     
  22. JoeKC

    JoeKC Active Member

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    When I tried the camera in the Verizon store I knew it was flawed. The autofocus wouldn't lock and every picture looked horrible. Until the software fix arrives, the only real way to test this camera is to set the focus to manual->infinity and take a snapshot of a somewhat distant object in good light. Then go into a photo editor and make a 100% crop. How sharp is it? If you have accounted for motion blur by holding the camera very steady (tough to do with a tiny camera) this should give a decent test of the quality of the lens.

    I don't see why this wouldn't work for macro shots also, although I have seen no definition of what exactly constitutes a macro shot.

    I have seen many autofocus shots where the subject in the foreground is blurred, but the background is nicely focused. The camera is grabbing the wrong focus point. This makes me think there is a decent camera lurking in there somewhere.
     
  23. jer.lawrence

    jer.lawrence Well-Known Member

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    I hope so! The quick camera was one of the most commonly used features on my last phone, the BB Curve. I still think that the sensor in the Droid is definitely better than the one in the Curve, but I can't use the camera in the Droid the way it is now. It won't focus on anything, and in infinity, everything up close is blurred.

    I'm looking forward to the fix, I've always used my phone camera for those quick snap shots.

    Joe, I'd be very curious to see some of those comparisons when you're done. :) I have a D80 (Nikon) but haven't even considered trying to compare the two, as they're so vastly different in quality. I may have to give it a shot, though.
     
  24. icstars989

    icstars989 Well-Known Member

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    Alright, I've been going over some shots I've taken with the phone, and here's what I've come up with. Aperture seems to be a fixed f/2.8 which maybe we expect from such a small sensor. My ISO has been between 51-400 (95% though at 200 regardless of light it seems.) So, this seems plenty reason enough that our shots are coming out blurry and noisey because even at ISO 400 that isnt gonna be enough light to produce crisp shots in anything but the very best of light (sun.)

    Any of you guys care to chime in on what your Exif Data reads? I'd like to know if these ISO's can go higher than 400. Hopefully they will give us a couple extra tools to play with when the new patch is out. I'd like to see what these sensors are capable of.
     
  25. link1305

    link1305 Active Member

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    I'm going to look into the framerate issue....mostly because I've wanted to write an Android app but didn't have a good excuse, until now :D
     

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