Starting a video call or web conference can be surprisingly stressful. Will your webcam work the way it’s supposed to? Is it compatible with your web conferencing software and is everything set up properly?
If your webcam isn’t working right when the meeting starts, it’s already too late. That’s why it’s a good idea to test your webcam ahead of the scheduled call — it can save you some potential embarrassment if the video is misconfigured or not working at all.
How to test your webcam online
Is your webcam working properly? You should probably test it using the web conferencing software you plan to use, but if you want to quickly ensure the camera itself is working and is connected properly, test it in a web browser.
There are a handful of websites you can try; a reliable one is Webcam Test. Visit the page and click “Test my cam.” You might need to give your browser permission to access the camera, but after a moment you should see your video on the page along with detailed information about your webcam on the left.
You can test your webcam using a website like Webcam Test. Dave Johnson/Insider
How to test your webcam on Skype
To make sure your webcam is working properly in Skype, start the desktop app and click the three-dot menu on the left side of the window. Click “Settings” and then, on the Settings page, click “Audio & Video.”
You should see your video. If you don’t, the wrong camera might be selected – try the drop-down menu above the video window.
You can see your webcam video in Skype’s Settings. Dave Johnson/Insider
How to test your webcam on Zoom
Like Skype, Zoom makes it easy to test your video from the app’s Settings screen. Start Zoom and then click your account avatar in the top right corner of the window. In the dropdown menu, choose “Settings.” In the Settings window, click “Video” and you should see a live view of your camera feed at the top of the page.
The Zoom Settings will display your webcam’s video before the meeting begins. Dave Johnson/Insider
How to test your webcam on Windows 10
You might not be aware of this, but Windows includes a Camera program that automatically displays the feed from your webcam. You can use the app to take still images and record video. To test your webcam with this utility, click the Start button and type “Camera.” When you see the Camera app appear in search results, click it. The app will appear, automatically displaying video from your webcam.
Windows 10 has a Camera app that lets you record still and video from your webcam. Dave Johnson/Insider
How to test your webcam on a Mac
Just like Windows, your Mac has a camera app built-in. Find Photobooth in your dock or by searching for it in Finder. When it starts, you should automatically see your webcam feed.
Use your Mac’s Photobooth app to test your webcam. Dave Johnson/Insider