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  1. thebcooper's Avatar
    Hello,

    I recently was asked to test out an eBay purchased 1020 (running the current version of windows phone 8.1 and a current firmware version) for any defects and to make sure it is in working order.

    I myself own two 1020s (and have owned a third, but returned for hardware issues not relating to the camera) which both work beautifully.

    So, on the testing of the eBay purchased 1020, I noticed something odd with the camera. It seems to not autofocus on objects further than 4 feet away, and the focus slider does not work either for anything further than 4 feet away - in camera or video mode. (I know, the "Infinity focus" is blurrier than the last notch of the manual focus slider on any Lumia camera app on any phone. That isn't the concern here).
    Objects are slightly in focus if further away than 4 feet, but compared to my own 1020s, it is super blurry and non acceptable and goes worse the further away it is.
    This is of course very bad for videos, as it will never autofocus on distant objects - houses across the street, let alone things such as scenery and the like.

    Now, the odd thing is that the tap to focus *does* work in the camera mode, and works maybe 1 out of 5 attempts on the video before I shoot. This doesn't help the videos obviously, as that is fixed focus and thus even if I can get the distant objects in, anything close will be out of focus.
    The partially holding down the shutter to focus on the camera mode does work as well, which is strange. After taking a photo like that it automatically defaults to very close focus until I tap to focus again or hold down the shutter button partially. The photos it takes when focused via either of those means are in focus.

    I have also reset the phone 3 times, and upgrade the firmware once, and tried in the lumia camera app and the stock camera app. Same issue in both places.

    So, it can focus on distant objects further than 4 feet, but it refuses to do so either via the autofocus just generally, or via the focus slider. That to me would indicate a hardware issue, either with the lenses themselves, or the autofocus mechanism. But then why is it able to focus from the tap to focus or shutter partially held down? Doesn't that use the autofocus mechanism, and prove the lenses can actually move into place? If it was a software issue I would think that restoring/resetting it 3 times, using different versions of the Lumia firmware (and windows phone firmware) as well as different camera apps, it would work on at least one of those.

    Maybe the autofocus just can't work normally, but when forced to via the tap to focus it will jump start it in essence, but then why doe the focus slider not work properly?

    Of course on both of my 1020s in a side by side comparison with the eBay one perform perfectly, autofocusing properly and manually with the focus ring as well. One of my 1020s is on the same firmwares as the eBay one, and the other is on an updated developer preview of 8.1 (I think that is still not the latest public version...).

    Any ideas as to what this is? I'm obviously going to tell the person who bought the 1020 to return it as not as described, and if needed I will record a video of side by side function with them to prove the point. I know my phones function properly, and have been using them for videos for a year or so now so I know that the eBay purchased one is not functioning as a 1020 should.

    Is this a common issue (issue still, not a bug), or just bad luck? Any technical term for this, which I can tell the person who bought it to ask any future sellers they buy from?

    Edit:

    I just freshly restored both the eBay purchased 1020 and one of my own 1020s using the windows phone recovery tool. This should put them both on exactly equal grounds software wise, right? I can't be bothered to try restoring the eBay one down using the internal Nokia recovery software, to an even lower firmware than the current one to entirely rule out software issues with the latest version. (neither of my 1020s have this issue, and the one I just restored was running older software when I first tested against the eBay one, and then was updated normally, and then restored clean).

    This is an example of the issue.
    camera-difference.jpg

    The one on the right is the one I own, and worked fine before and after the fresh restore. The one on the left is the eBay purchased one. Yes, the one on the left is slightly out of focus in the actual picture of it because it is hard to keep 3 phones steady at one time. However, it very accurately shows the problem I'm having. Even with the focus slider set to pretty much exactly the same point on both phones, the one on the left does not focus clearly. (Even with the slightly blurry picture generally, it looks like that in person). It is as if the focus ring only controls image focus within 4 feet.
    Still weird is the tap to focus *does* work, which I would have thought uses the autofocus hardware. Maybe not, and it uses software algorithms to focus when you tap to focus, but uses the autofocus for sensing the manual focus slider and just general autofocus in videos?

    Anyway, just an update with an image of the issue in case that sheds light on it even further.

    Thanks!
    Last edited by thebcooper; 07-08-2015 at 10:26 PM. Reason: Add additional information/tests done.
    07-08-2015 06:24 PM
  2. hornp's Avatar
    My wife has a 1020 and just within the past few weeks, it started having an issue with focus. She said that it also doesn't always focus with the hardware halfpress focus, either. I'd like to know if there's a solution, but I've got nothing, yet.
    It sometimes works better if you turn off the focus assist light, but that's no guarantee. And that's also no solution..

    Anybody else got anything?
    07-24-2015 09:03 PM
  3. Marlon Bu's Avatar
    Does other Camera Apps have the same Problem? If yes, its a hardware bug.
    07-25-2015 03:50 AM
  4. thebcooper's Avatar
    My wife has a 1020 and just within the past few weeks, it started having an issue with focus. She said that it also doesn't always focus with the hardware halfpress focus, either. I'd like to know if there's a solution, but I've got nothing, yet.
    It sometimes works better if you turn off the focus assist light, but that's no guarantee. And that's also no solution..

    Anybody else got anything?

    It is a hardware issue, I tried pretty much everything software wise I could think of short of restoring it to an older firmware/OS via the internal recovery tool from Nokia, which I shouldn't have to do anyway as both of my other devices are fine on their firmwares/updates. A new phone was bought, the original returned, and all is well with the new one. No issues whatsoever. Now, there may have been some combination of something I didn't try where the focus could be forced into working perhaps, but I shouldn't have to. The focus should work without screwing with the software to try and get it barely usable. (if you are on a beta, sure, that is fair play if it doesn't work properly, but it wasn't)

    Does other Camera Apps have the same Problem? If yes, its a hardware bug.
    Yeah, the other camera apps have this issue too. Although, they might both have it if the firmware is bad because that is what they use to control it anyway for the most part I would think. However, the issue shouldn't persist over several hard resets and a complete wipe of the device via the software recovery tool from Microsoft (not the internal one from Nokia)
    07-26-2015 12:04 AM
  5. mjrtoo's Avatar
    If it's like most other DSLRs, autofocus focuses on the closest thing within the focus area, so it's not surprising it seems that way.
    07-26-2015 10:23 PM
  6. Marquis de Faux's Avatar
    fffffffffffff
    We need a moderator here.
    07-26-2015 10:46 PM
  7. thebcooper's Avatar
    If it's like most other DSLRs, autofocus focuses on the closest thing within the focus area, so it's not surprising it seems that way.
    That may be, but this is not the case here. The original post details everything out more so. Side by side comparisons between two other lumia 1020s, and it the one with the focus issue didn't do what it should do if it was working properly. Like I said, I did pretty much everything software wise to try and get it working. I even flashed one of my phones to the exact same setup firmware/OS/App wise as broken one, and mine still worked fine.
    Even the focus ring didn't work properly, it only focused within about 4 feet.

    Originally I was posting and asking if anyone else has had similar issues before, hoping it may be a rare software issue. (I wasn't too high hoped there though). More testing though, and I'm 99% certain it was a hardware defect. (only reserving 1% for the use of internal testing tools and such, which I shouldn't have to use)
    07-27-2015 01:10 AM
  8. tkuhe's Avatar
    My wifes 1020 has the same issue. I haven't had a chance to baring it in to the MS yet to see if they can help.
    07-27-2015 01:18 PM
  9. Ixia's Avatar
    Mine has started doing this occasionally. I'll take a few perfect shots and then then it'll stop focussing. I have to close the camera app and reopen it, then it goes back to normal. Really annoying as I have missed quite a few shots this way. Phone is still under warranty, but I can never reproduce it at the shop.
    07-28-2015 12:14 AM
  10. thebcooper's Avatar
    Mine has started doing this occasionally. I'll take a few perfect shots and then then it'll stop focussing. I have to close the camera app and reopen it, then it goes back to normal. Really annoying as I have missed quite a few shots this way. Phone is still under warranty, but I can never reproduce it at the shop.
    Have you tried doing a hard reset on the device yet to see if that clears it up? (and does your manual focus slider work for longer distances too?)
    The issue with the phone I was talking about was constant, and it never worked properly even after several hard resets.
    07-28-2015 11:08 PM
  11. Ixia's Avatar
    Can't face doing a manual reset yet. But I actually haven't tried the manual focus when it happens, will try that. I also keep meaning to see if it happens in Proshot.
    07-31-2015 02:46 AM

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