How to access webcam settings in Windows 10

by Ivan Jenic
Ivan Jenic
Ivan Jenic
Troubleshooting Expert
Passionate about all elements related to Windows and combined with his innate curiosity, Ivan has delved deep into understanding this operating system, with a specialization in drivers and... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • If you wish to customize your video output, you need to access Windows 10's webcam settings.
  • This guide works for built-in laptop webcams and separate ones that can be plugged in.
  • You can also block other users on your PC or apps from accessing your camera.
How to access camera settings in Windows 10

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As always, Windows 10 provides you with different ways to access the settings menu for various devices on your PC or laptop and the webcam settings are no exception.

Fortunately for you, there is a very easy tutorial below on how to get to the webcam settings and set up everything you need from there.

First of all, you should know if your webcam is working as intended because if it is a hardware malfunction, you will have to call your webcam or PC manufacturer to resolve the issue or send you a new webcam.

Nevertheless, it is always a good idea to check the wiring from the webcam and be sure you have it powered up.

If the PC or laptop has a built-in webcam or a wired webcam, you can use the Windows 10 app to access the webcam settings needed.

How to I enable or disable the camera access for the users?

If you have more than one account or user on your PC or laptop, it’s good to know that you can change their access to the camera and the apps using it.

As an administrator, you can simply block their access and that would be a good measure to protect them. Here’s how to do that in Windows 10:

  1. Click the Windows button and select Settings.
  2. Select Privacy.
  3. Now click on Camera from the left pane and check the current status for the camera access. Our camera access is turned on.
  4. If you want to change that, just click the Change button and it will show you the switch to change this setting.
  5. By turning the switch to off, we prevented other users from accessing it. Of course, if you want, you can switch it back at any time by following the same steps.

We have to mention that by blocking the user access to the camera, you are also blocking any apps from using it.

Now that you know how to grant or block camera access for other users, you have a few different methods to open the camera app and change its settings.

How can I access the webcam settings on Windows 10?

1. Acces the camera from the Start screen

  1. Click the Start button, type camera, and select the app from the results.
  2. Select the cogwheel button to open Settings.
  3. Now, from the panel on the left, you can do a lot of adjustments like the resolution for photos and videos, time lapse settings, framing grid, and more.
  4. These settings might differ depending on what your webcam is able to do for example your webcam might not support the Spot adjust option, therefore, you won’t have it in the Settings menu.

If you intend to upgrade to the new OS in the near future, learn how to enable your camera in Windows 11.

2. From a third-party webcam app

  1. Go to Microsoft Store and download a webcam app. We discovered Webcam Pro but you can go with any other app you desire. Just click the dedicated button to get it.
  2. After you install it, you need to select the webcam you want to use. In our case, it’s the integrated laptop webcam but if you have multiple cameras you can select the one you prefer.
  3. The next step is to acknowledge that the app can access the webcam.
  4. Now, to access the camera settings, click on Configuration. You will notice a rich pannel of possible camera settings, from brightness and contrast to zoom and roll.
  5. This particular app can handle up to 3 webcams at the same time. You can click the Add webcam button and select them one by one.

We just gave you an example of an application that you can use to access the camera settings and, as you can see, it has more options than the Windows Camera app that comes with your OS.

In fact, we have a great third-party camera software list that will offer a lot of ideas in that direction.

Of course, you can use such apps that can handle a camera. For instance, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Skype, Discord, etc, will do wonders.

If you’re interested in how to change the save location of your photos on Windows 10, check out this guide dedicated to changing the camera save location that will help you do just that.

So, there you go, in just a few seconds of your time, you can access the camera or webcam settings in Windows 10 and customize them for your personal use.

How can I restrict apps access to my camera?

What if you don’t want one or more apps to access your camera? Well, you can restrict all desktop apps from using your camera or you can select them from a list with just a few steps:

  1. Click the Windows button and select Settings.
  2. Next, click on Privacy.
  3. Select Camera from the left pane.
  4. Now, the first decision you can take is to turn off all apps access to your camera by clicking the switch right below Allow apps to access your camera.
  5. If you scroll down in the right pane, you will see that all Microsoft Store apps and desktop apps have now restricted access to your webcam.
  6. However, if you keep the Allow apps to access your camera on, you can only turn off the access to Microsoft Store apps or desktop apps by toggling their individual switches to off. This will allow you flexibility on choosing the apps to restrict from accessing your webcam.

How can I completely disable my camera in Windows 10?

It’s good to know that turning off the access of the apps to your camera will not stop absolutely all software from accessing it.

If Windows doesn’t have control over that application because you gave it permission to override it, the only solution remaining is to uninstall that app or to disable the camera completely.

  1. Right-click the Start button and select Device Manager from the list.
  2. Click on the Cameras or Imaging devices sections to expand them, then right click the camera, and select Disable device.

Of course, if you change your mind and want to use the camera again, repeat the process but this time select Enable device from the list.

There are also manual ways of disabling the camera. If you have an external webcam, you can simply unplug it from your PC.

Many webcams today have some kind of lid that you can use to block the sensor and if you have a built-in laptop webcam, covering it with tape will also do the trick.

Actually, we have a neat webcam sticker list that can protect you from prying eyes and keep things elegant.

Do you wish to record yourself at higher resolutions to get the best quality and image clarity possible? Thankfully, you can do that.

If your PC doesn’t have an integrated webcam, take a look at our list including the best 4K webcams available right now.

Don’t hesitate to leave any other questions in the comments section below if you want to know more about the subject.

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