Fix: Skype camera not working in Windows 10

By: Matthew Adams
5 minute read

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  2. Click “Start Scan” to find Windows issues that could be causing PC problems.
  3. Click “Repair All” to fix all issues (requires upgrade).

Skype is messaging software you can use your laptop’s or desktop’s webcam with. With their webcams users can make video calls in Skype. However, some might not always be able to get a working video stream with their Skype cameras. So if your Skype camera doesn’t have effective video calls, these are a few ways to fix it in Windows 10.

First, note that Skype video calls only work with desktop and laptop webcams. They can either be built-in or external USB webcams. However, that does not include mobile cameras, which you can’t use for Skype video calls. Also make sure that an external USB webcam is correctly connected to desktop.

Re-install Skype With the Most Update Version

Have you switched off automatic updates in Skype? If so, you might need to update the Skype app to the latest version. That doesn’t necessarily mean you need to re-install the software, but that will guarantee you’re using the most update version with the latest patches installed. Open this web page and click Get Skype for Windows to get the update version. Alternatively, you could also select Help > Check for Updates in your Skype app.

Check the Webcam is Configured Correctly

  • Next, check the webcam is configured for Skype. Open the Skype app and select Tools > Options to open further settings.
  • Then click Video settings to check the webcam configuration. If Video settings states “Skype couldn’t find a webcam,” then Skype hasn’t recognized your camera.
  • If that’s the case, you should open your webcam software and switch the camera on with that. Alternatively, switch it on with a hardware switch if you can.
  • Then restart your Skype app.
  • Click Tools > Options and Video settings once again to check the camera configuration. Now you should see an image of yourself there.
  • If the video image is very dark, then you should select Webcam settings.
  • Select the Camera Control tab on the Video Capture Filter Properties window.
  • Then you can select a Low Light Compensation option that will lighten the video image.
  • Press Apply and OK to confirm the selected option.

Update Your Webcam Drivers

The latest drivers for your webcam might include updates that can handle the methods Skype uses to access camera video streams. So updating your device drivers for the camera could get it working with Skype. This is how you can check and update the camera device drivers in Windows 10.

  • Press the Win key + X and select Device Manager from the menu.
  • Now click Imaging devices where you should find your webcam listed.

  • Next, right-click the webcam and select the Update Driver Software option from the context menu.
  • An Update Driver Software window opens from which you can select Search automatically for updated driver software.

  • Or you could select Uninstall and restart Windows. Windows will automatically install the latest webcam drivers.

Update drivers automatically (suggested)

After you have uninstalled your drivers, we recommend to reinstall/update them automatically. Downloading and installing drivers manually is a process that carries the risk of getting the wrong driver installed, which may lead to serious malfunctions of your system.

The safer and easier way to update drivers on a Windows computer is by using an automatic tool. We strongly recommend Tweakbit’s Driver Updater tool. It automatically identifies each device on your computer and matches it with the latest driver versions from an extensive online database.

Here is how it works:

    1. Download and install TweakBit Driver Updaterdriver updater starting window
    2. Once installed, the program will start scanning your PC for outdated drivers automatically. Driver Updater will check your installed driver versions against its cloud database of the latest versions and recommend proper updates. All you need to do is wait for the scan to complete.
      tweakbit driver updater scanning drivers windows 10
    3. Upon scan completion, you get a report on all problem drivers found on your PC. Review the list and see if you want to update each driver individually or all at once. To update one driver at a time, click the ‘Update driver’ link next to the driver name. Or simply click the ‘Update all’ button at the bottom to automatically install all recommended updates.
      Automatically Update complete
      Note: Some drivers need to be installed in multiple steps so you will have to hit the ‘Update’ button several times until all of its components are installed.

Disclaimer: some features of this tool are not free.

Check Other Programs Aren’t Using the Webcam

Another thing to note is that other background software integrated with the webcam might be capturing the video stream. So that might be why the camera isn’t working in Skype. You can check this by right-clicking the taskbar and selecting Task Manager. Then select third-party software packages, especially instant messaging or web applications, listed under Background processes and press their End task buttons. Thereafter, restart the Skype app.

Fix the Webcam Freezing in Skype

The August 2016 Windows update generated a webcam freeze in Skype. So is the webcam freezing after a minute when you make a video call with Skype? If so, then that’s probably due to the Windows update that prevents USB cameras using the default H264 and MJPEG encoding. You can fix this by editing the registry as follows.

  • You can open the registry by pressing the Win key + R. Then enter ‘regedit’ into the Run text box and press OK.
  • Then you should browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\WOW6432Node\Microsoft\Windows Media Foundation\Platform in the registry.

  • Next, right-click an empty space on the right of the registry window and select New > DWORD (32-bit) Value from the context menu.
  • You should enter EnterFrameServerMode as the new key title.
  • Double-click EnterFrameServerMode to open the Edit DWORD (32-bit) Value window below.

  • Input 0 in the window’s Value data text box if that’s not already the default value.
  • Press the OK button, and then you should also restart Windows.
  • Now open Skype to make that USB webcam video call.

Run the Device Troubleshooter in Windows

It might be the case that your webcam isn’t working at all, let alone just in Skype. Open the Windows 10 Camera app to check the webcam’s working there. If it isn’t, the Device Troubleshooter in Windows might come in handy.

  • Type ‘troubleshooter’ into the Cortana search box and select to open the Troubleshooting Control Panel tab.
  • Click Hardware and Sound on the Troubleshooting tab.
  • Next, select Hardware and Devices from the listed troubleshooters.
  • Press the Next button to scan with the Hardware and Devices troubleshooter. Then it might provide a fix for the webcam.

  • Restart Windows if the troubleshooter detects and fixes anything.

Check Your Webcam is Skype Compatible

Not every desktop or laptop camera is compatible with Skype. If your webcam is more outdated, it might not be Skype compatible. This page includes a list of both compatible and incompatible Skype webcams. Scroll through the non-working camera list to see if it includes your camera.

With those fixes maybe now Skype will display video! Note that you’ll also need at least DirectX version 9.0 for Skype video calls to work. If a more general webcam hardware fix is needed, check out this Windows Report article or the manufacturer’s website for further details.

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