Fritzy video broadcast on zoom

  • #1
DaveC426913
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Wife's lappy shows her video as complete video corruption. Network seems fine
My wife has a bunch of Zoom meetings this week. Her incoming feed is fine but everyone sees her as this blocky frozen screen. It starts off OK but then starts to freeze and corrupt until it's just coloured stripes and blocks.

I am on the same (Bell) network and my speedtest showed 100Mb+ for both up and download - even while she's Zooming.

It's a VAIO. I can provide specs if necessary. Camera is standard integrated.

She operates her lappy like a desktop (including 2nd monitor) haven't seen it leave her desk in months, so its not exactly roughly treated.

At first I assumed it was network connection but is it likely it's a failing camera? What can I do to test/mitigate it? (I mean, short of going out and buying an external camera.)
 

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  • #3
DaveC426913
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How is the camera preview normally? (Open any camera app and check the preview.)
OK so far. Doesn't seem to fritz out.

This only started a few days ago, haven't had any problems before then.

I think I will set up a Zoom with her from my lappy.
 
  • #4
DaveC426913
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So, this a screen cap from my lappy when zooming.

1674148824021.png


She says it starts off OK, then does this for a few minutes then goes back to being fine for a few minutes.

Notice the ghost images of a crotchety old man in the top of the image on the left.
 
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  • #5
Wrichik Basu
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Since it started a few days back, I suspect it can be a driver issue. Windows updated itself automatically, and the updated driver for the camera was buggy.

Are you using the Zoom app on Windows? If yes, can you try re-installing it?

The camera app should also allow recording video. Can you record a video on her laptop for a sufficient length of time and see if this happens? The camera could start off fine, but the problem may start after some time, especially if the video is being recorded or broadcasted.
 
  • #6
pbuk
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Notice the ghost images of a crotchety old man in the top of the image on the left.
Looks like a software/driver problem to me: there's no way even a broken camera can distort an image that is not coming through the lens. Sony has not made a VAIO for years, is this one of these threads where it turns out after a couple of dozen posts that you are running a bootlegged copy of Windows 3.1 or something?
 
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  • #7
DaveC426913
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The camera could start off fine, but the problem may start after some time, especially if the video is being recorded or broadcasted.
Yes, that's what happens.

Or are you suggesting this is its own distinct test?
 
  • #8
Wrichik Basu
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Or are you suggesting this is its own distinct test?
I was suggesting to record a video through the camera for some time. Not through Zoom, but the usual camera app.
 
  • #9
DaveC426913
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Looks like a software/driver problem to me: there's no way even a broken camera can distort an image that is not coming through the lens.
I was thinking an overheating or failing chip.

Sony has not made a VAIO for years, is this one of these threads where it turns out after a couple of dozen posts that you are running a bootlegged copy of Windows 3.1 or something?
🤔 No.

All legit.
 
  • #10
DaveC426913
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I was suggesting to record a video through the camera for some time. Not through Zoom, but the usual camera app.
I guess I could do that. I guess it would rule out Zoom as the culprit..
 
  • #11
pbuk
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🤔 No.

All legit.
Oh, a legit copy of Windows 3.1: that's alright then :wink:
 
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  • #12
DaveC426913
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Good point though. When I update the drivers, I'll double-check what v. of Windows she's running.
Got to be 10.
 
  • #13
Wrichik Basu
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Good point though. When I update the drivers, I'll double-check what v. of Windows she's running.
Got to be 10.
Are you using Zoom through the Windows app, or through the browser?
 
  • #14
DaveC426913
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Are you using Zoom through the Windows app, or through the browser?
The browser launches Zoom in its own Window. Not sure whether that addresses your q or not.

But ... the latter?
 
  • #15
Wrichik Basu
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The browser launches Zoom in its own Window. Not sure whether that addresses your q or not.

But ... the latter?
Is it a separate app? Or a separate browser window?

Can you confirm the Windows version running on the laptop?

If you record a video using the normal camera app over a sufficient period of time, and the issue is not reproduced, it implies there is some issue with how the Zoom app is interfacing the camera output.

If the issue is easily reproduced on the recorded video, then it is a driver problem that's creating a mess everywhere.
 
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  • #17
vela
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I was thinking an overheating or failing chip.
This could be the case. I've heard that Zoom is a resource hog on the Mac. It's probably the same on Windows. You could try reproducing the problem, then quickly quitting and starting a new Zoom session and see if the problem recurs immediately. If it doesn't, it may not be a temperature issue.

Have you tried running the speed test on your wife's computer? There might be something about her system which is limiting the upload speed.

Make sure Zoom is up to date.
 
  • #18
DaveC426913
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Yes, it is a nine-year old computer. It has been perfectly adequate for nine years.

x64-base
Windows 10 Home
AMD-A10 2100GHz
8Gb RAM

Checked that camera device driver is up-to-date.

It does run slow. Takes, like, five minutes to boot. There's a lot of apps that like to preload themselves in Startup. I turn many of them off. I've just turned the rest of the high impact ones off.

I run scans and disc checks occasionally, enough to be assured it's not a virus or disk problem.


Make sure Zoom is up to date.
But it's launched from the browser. There's nothing to update.
 
  • #19
DaveC426913
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I've heard that Zoom is a resource hog on the Mac. It's probably the same on Windows.
Yeah, although it's strange that it just started this week.


I should probably check the functionality after a reboot. Some bloaty apps get uppity if there isn't enough free memory.
 
  • #20
StevieTNZ
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It does run slow. Takes, like, five minutes to boot.
Sounds like this HP laptop I have at the moment, yet that is only over three years old.

The first laptop I ever got was a Sony VAIO. Back in 2006. Let's just say, it didn't last long. Even though it was costly. How naive of me.
 
  • #21
DaveC426913
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The first laptop I ever got was a Sony VAIO. Back in 2006. Let's just say, it didn't last long. Even though it was costly. How naive of me.
It's been nine years, so I guess YMMV.
 
  • #22
StevieTNZ
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It's been nine years, so I guess YMMV.
I'm looking forward to having a laptop with a SSD drive. We replaced our desktop over the weekend, and I cannot believe how fast things load. As I told my High School Computing teacher, who I still keep in touch with, I'm going to be shocked - and adjust to - when I don't need to wait forever for things to load.
 
  • #23
Wrichik Basu
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But it's launched from the browser. There's nothing to update.
I think you are using the Zoom Windows app. Even though the meeting is launched from the browser, it's not working in the browser; the browser just launches the Zoom app.

Can you please try and report the following:

1. Can you set up one more Zoom call, and this time, forcibly use the Zoom web client on the problematic laptop? To do this, when the pop-up shows up in the browser, you have to "Cancel" it and click "Join from your browser" link at the bottom of the page. See this page (bookmarked link) for the instructions: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/ar...-Zoom-web-client#h_01FGW753J4PVWY94DCEQQTAQ1Q

2. Could you reproduce the problem while recording a video through the webcam for a sufficient time period?​

3. I am sure you guys have Google accounts. Can you set up a Google Meet session on both of your laptops and see if the issue can be reproduced?​

This way, we can understand whether the issue is only in the Zoom app, or system-wide.
 
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  • #24
DaveC426913
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OK, here's an anomaly. Per Google speedtest:

My connection clocks in at 120dn/90up Mbps.
Even after a hard reboot, hers clocks in at only 25dn/25up Mbps.

Both are Wifi to the router, which is centrally located (in her office).

Why would her connection be throttled?

For what it's worth Google's speedtest says "[her] Internet connection is fast. It should be able to handle multiple devices, streaming HD videos, video conferencing, and gaming at the same time."
 
  • #25
Wrichik Basu
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Why would her connection be throttled?
Don't know the answer, but my connection is 30 Mbps max, and I can happily stream 4K videos as well as do video conferencing without any issue, even when multiple devices are connected to the router.
 
  • #26
anorlunda
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I believe that Zoom is critically sensitive to slight dropouts as short as 1-2 seconds that are hard to notice on other services.

My WIFI had 5 dropouts in 15 minutes and much trouble with Zoom. But after switching to Ethernet, zero dropouts and zero problems with Zoom.

I used the Chrome extension "Internet Connection Monitor" to document the dropout frequency.
 
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  • #27
Wrichik Basu
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I believe that Zoom is critically sensitive to slight dropouts as short as 1-2 seconds that are hard to notice on other services.
But that shouldn't corrupt the video like this.
 
  • #28
anorlunda
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But that shouldn't corrupt the video like this.

Her incoming feed is fine but everyone sees her as this blocky frozen screen.

Yes, that's common when the digital framing goes bad. In some cases, it freezes the whole frame. Other times, it appears that the errors exceed the error correction capacity, but it attempts to render a frame anyhow.

I see "blocky frozen screens" on TV sometimes.

@DaveC426913 could test my theory by installing that Chrome extension and monitoring dropouts on his wife's PC.
 
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  • #29
DaveC426913
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@DaveC426913 could test my theory by installing that Chrome extension and monitoring dropouts on his wife's PC.
OK, just did that. I installed the Monitoring extension and left it open.

She hosts meetings via a company account setup in E*ge so I had to make a new account via Chrome.

The moment I started to host a new meeting - even before I had a chance to invite myself - her video came up corrupt on her own screen. Chrome told me there was zero interruptions and 100% connectivity and everything else was green across the board.

After about 30 seconds her video simply righted itself.

I just checked again, after about two minutes and it's back to corrupt (essentially colour-inverted). Still zero interrupts, latency 30ms.

There's a running real-time graph that's labeled "online/offline" with a 0-100 scale (as if one can be, like 57% online?) and it wanders between 20% and 80%.
 
  • #30
StevieTNZ
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With the wifi speeds, it could be how old the device is (versus another). I doubt the Vaio laptop will support 802.11ax, for example.
 
  • #31
DaveC426913
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With the wifi speeds, it could be how old the device is (versus another). I doubt the Vaio laptop will support 802.11ax, for example.
Huh.
I'm using 802.11ac, 5GHz (5G) (866/433 receive/transmit).
She's using 802.11n, 2.4GHz (4G) (120/60 receive transmit).

Still, I'm beginning to suspect it isn't a bandwidth issue.

I'll have her un/install the Zoom app.
 
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  • #32
StevieTNZ
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The Internet speed on a device can be affected by how fast the device is, also. Eg. if the HDD is writing at a slow speed, don't expect a file to download fast.
 
  • #33
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I should also ask - what type of router do you use?
 
  • #34
Vanadium 50
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I've used Zoom with connections good and bad. I've seen it freeze video and rarely audio. But I never saw it distort the video.
 
  • #35
DaveC426913
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I should also ask - what type of router do you use?
Uh Bell Fibe.

But my lappy is unaffected, which is on the same network.


And again, it happened even without actually inviting anyone into a meeting. I saw my own video reflection corrupted Which suggests it doesn't have anything to do with the network at all. (I think.)

Also, intermittent isn't really the right word. The kicks in for a minute or two then kicks out for a minute or two, then kicks back in.
 

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