Why Is My Zoom Video Grainy?

Why Is My Zoom Video Grainy

Zoom calls have saved us from running around corridors to be on time for the meeting. We can now attend calls from the comfort of our rooms and not even worry about getting up.

However, only some things go as planned, not even on Zoom calls. If you have ever been on a Zoom call, you may have noticed that the video quality can sometimes be pretty poor.

This is because Zoom uses a process called lossy compression, which means that some of the original video’s data is lost when converted into the Zoom format.

The result is a grainy, low-quality video that can be pretty frustrating to try to hold a conversation in the video meeting. So, what makes Zoom videos grainy?

Quick Answer

Many factors can contribute to a grainy or low-quality video on Zoom, including your internet speed, the strength of your internet connection, or the quality of your webcam. Ensure you use the highest possible video quality setting in the Zoom settings menu to get it right. Moreover, check your internet speed and ensure it is sufficient for video streaming on Zoom (1.5Mbps or more).

This article will explain why your Zoom video is grainy and what you can do to improve the quality.

What Could Be Causing My Video To Appear Grainy on Zoom?

There are various reasons why your video might appear grainy on Zoom. The thing with the Zoom camera, or any camera for that matter, is that it depends entirely upon the surrounding lighting.

If the light on the subject is incident more than it should, it will always make the video hazier. And if the light is too low, it will be grainy. Let’s look into all the possible causes of grainy videos on Zoom. 

Reason #1: Smudgy Camera Lens

A smudged camera lens can be a significant contributor to a grainy video. Here is what you can do to clean your lens:

  • Use a soft, dry cloth to wipe the lens.
  • If there are stubborn smudges, try using a mild soap and water solution, careful not to drop water on your device. Be sure to dry the lens thoroughly after cleaning.
  • If your lens is still smudged, you may need to replace it.

Reason #2: Poor Lighting

If your video appears grainy on Zoom, it could also be caused by poor lighting. If you are in a room with not enough light, your camera will have to work harder to capture a clear image, which can result in a grainy video.

To fix this, try to move to a well-lit area or open up any blinds or curtains to let in more light. You can also try turning on any extra lights in the room, such as lamps.

If you still have trouble, try adjusting the camera’s white balance settings.

Reason #3: Poor Bandwidth

Zoom’s grainy video can also be due to poor bandwidth. When it comes to video conferencing, everything relies on bandwidth. If you don’t have enough bandwidth, your video will be low quality and choppy.

Conversely, if you have too much bandwidth, your video will be high quality but may take up too much of your computer’s resources, resulting in poor performance.

To ensure you have enough bandwidth for Zoom, we recommend connecting to a wired Ethernet connection if possible.

If you’re using WiFi, ensure you’re connected to a strong signal and that no other devices on the network could be hogging bandwidth. 

Reason #4: Too Many Background Apps

Another possible culprit is too many background apps. When you have a lot of apps running in the background, your computer’s resources are stretched thin, which can lead to a subpar performance in other apps, including Zoom.

To ensure this is the problem, try closing some of your background apps and then restarting Zoom. You may also want to try quitting other apps that you’re not using but running in the background, such as mail and web browsers.

If you’re still seeing grainy videos after taking these steps, another issue could be at play. But reducing the number of background apps is an excellent way to troubleshoot.

Reason #5: Poor Camera Quality

Poor camera quality can also play an integral role in making your video appear grainy. When choosing a webcam, select one with at least 720p HD resolution.

Many webcams also have built-in digital image stabilization, which can help reduce the appearance of graininess. If you’re using your phone as a webcam, hold it steady and avoid shaky movements.

If you’re well-caught up on the factors contributing to grainy videos, let’s move on to the troubleshooting steps you can take. 

Troubleshooting Steps for Grainy Video on Zoom

Ever had a video call where it was hard to see the person on the other side? Or your video appeared too grainy? Zoom displays a grainy video under various circumstances mentioned above.

Our troubleshooting steps will help you solve this issue and make your video clear again. 

Fix #1: Checking Your Internet Connection

If you’re experiencing grainy or pixelated video during your Zoom calls, you can check a few things to try and improve the quality.

First, make sure that you have a strong internet connection. Zoom requires a minimum of 600kbps (up to 1.8Mbps) for video calls, so if your connection is slower, you may experience poor video quality.

You can check your internet speed by running a speed test at www.speedtest.net.

If your connection is slower than 600kbps, try closing any other applications or browser tabs using the internet or connect to a different WiFi network if possible.

What Other Things Can You Do To Reduce Grains?

If you’re still having trouble with poor video quality after checking your internet connection, there are a few other troubleshooting steps you can try:

1. Adjust your video settings: You can change your video resolution and frame rate in the settings menu of the Zoom desktop app. Lowering these settings may help improve video quality if you’re on a slower internet connection.

2. Restart your computer: Sometimes restarting your computer can help resolve any technical issues causing poor video quality.

Fix #2: Updating Your Zoom

If you’re experiencing grainy video quality on Zoom, you should check to see if your app is up to date. To do this on a Mac, launch the App Store, find Zoom and click the update button.

On a PC, open the Microsoft Store and click the library icon in the bottom left corner. If any updates are available for Zoom, install them and restart the app. This should help resolve any issues with the grainy video quality. 


There are a few reasons why your Zoom video might be grainy. It could be because of your internet connection, your webcam’s quality, or the room’s lighting.

No matter the reason, you have several options for improving the situation. First, try moving to a different location with a better internet connection.

If that doesn’t work, try adjusting the settings on your webcam or adding more light to the room.

With a bit of troubleshooting, as mentioned in this article, you should be able to get rid of that grainy video in no time!

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