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Tips & Tricks

Troubleshoot, find support articles, run tests directly on your phone with the support application.
Read more and discuss the app here.

Some Camera Issues AND Suggestions

Message 1 of 10
Message 1 of 10

Some Camera Issues AND Suggestions

Hello fellows from this community,


I have had my Z3 Compact for a little more than a week, it is not much but I think it might be sufficient to help other users with my personal experience.


I know that there has been several threads about specific camera issues with our devices, some widespread and some very limited, however I would like to start this thread as a way for people to post both issues encountered and temporarily or permanent solutions as well as suggestions to make the experience better for other users.


I will try not to list our devices features (Sony's Product page already does that) but I do want to show off certain capabilities that many users AND TECH SITES ignore or simply forget to demonstrate.





- Scene description: Close-up picture, indoor light with sunlight coming through a tinted window.

- Mode: Superior Auto, No Flash



- FIX: Turn on Fill Flash or Flashlight to overcome incorrect automatic White Light selection.





- GENERAL FIX for most of this cases, simply step out of that enviroment with crazy lighting... As soon as I step out of that office building the issue went away:




2. FLASH IS TOO BRIGHT FOR LOW LIGHT (I.E. Night Clubs, Bars, etc)


- Scene Description: Night Portrait with dark enviroment, less than 2 meters away.

- Mode: Superior Auto. Flash ON



- FIX: Change mode to Manual, and lower Exposure Value (EV) to desired results (mine was between -1.0 to -1.7). Leave Flash ON.



Note: this fixed was done in a hurry and I didn't take the time to manually select each scene, so you might want to play around and test before you actually need a picture in a hurry.





3.1 HDR


This is well known but many people still fail to realize its advantages besides exposing shadowy areas....


I took these 2 images at my front yard, showing very similar results with the main difference being the well exposed sky, without darkening the subjects when HDR is turned ON:








This is one of my favorite features of having a high count MP camera.


I took 2 pictures at night, of a distant building (right) and its parking lot illuminated (left).


TOP picture in Superior Auto using Zoom (remains in 8MP)

BOTTOM picture is also Superior Auto but no Zoom, just cropped at the center (Low Res, and this is what most smartphones cameras do with digital zoom)





This feature has got a lot of media press and marketing, but not many people know what it is and for what situations...


Besides the typical extreme low light situation that requieres NO flash.... when you are in a place with your target far away than what the flash actually can reach, this may also come in handy.


- Scene Description: Low Light shot, semi-abandoned restaurant's parking lot.

- Mode: Superior Auto. Flash ON



- FIX. Turn your Flash OFF (and check that the Low Light candle Icon appears on the bottom right) or alternatively change mode to Manual and set Scene to High Sensitivity ISO. Also with Flash OFF. Steady Hands




I hope everyone find this info helpful, or at least interesting. This snapper is actually quite capable, but we need some time to learn how to make the most out of it.

It is true that competing phones give better results in some situations, but it is mostly shooting Auto mode vs Auto, this phone is capable of great Manual settings.


As an extra tip, third party cameras (such as Google Camera) can take advantage of features like HDR using full resolution instead of the regular 8MP on Sony's camera application.





Message 2 of 10
Message 2 of 10

Re: Some Camera Issues AND Suggestions

Nice post there. Will be healpful for new people joining sony and also for other brands.


I actually realized these potentials just yesterday night when I was trying to capture moon and dark sky. And what all settings you explained here was exactly the same which I tried experimenting with.


..and today only read this post. :smileysmileywink:


I still have a concern that why sony locked its Camera to just 8MP for Auto mode? It could have very well provided it to a 12mp or 15mp.

-------- If my Post or Answer helped you out, Please KUDOS me Slightly smiling Face
Message 3 of 10
Message 3 of 10

Re: Some Camera Issues AND Suggestions

Yes, I still wonder why they limited it and didn't allow you to choose, BUT in all fairness, the pixel binning works pretty good and there is little difference between the 20.7MP and the 8MP pictures I take on daylight... And at the end of the day, 8MP will be easier to handle, share and store than 20MP.

I put the last tip about third party cameras such as Google camera taking advantage of the full resolution, but in reality I use Sony's camera most of the time, except when needing panoramas or sphere picture.

Also last night I tested Pet Scene mode and it really does help avoiding eye reflections on my dog, it still look weird but much less than without this mode. Great job from Sony the there
Message 4 of 10
Message 4 of 10

Re: Some Camera Issues AND Suggestions



Thank you for the post.


I came accross another problem that makes Z3 Compact photographs trashy in comparisson to, e.g., iPhone 5S... 


When taking picture in snowy environment the "Super Automode" significantly shifts white balance to purple. Whenever I tried using "Manual" mode, left or right quarter of the frame was blurred very heavily, thus, the picture was absolutely corrupt.


I have checked if the blurring issue is reproducable indoors. Yes, it persists in "Manual" mode regardless of lightning or dominating color of the scene.


Don't you know by chance any solution to prevent Sony Xperia Z3 Compact from randomly blurring significant parts of image in "Manual" mode?


Thank you in advance.


Best regards.

Message 5 of 10
Message 5 of 10

Re: Some Camera Issues AND Suggestions

Sadly (or fortunately for some) I live in a tropical country without snow. I suppose that the issue you are referring to is the pink blotch in certain lights. I cannot reproduce it but you might be able to upload some samples and we can give our opinions, however there are many variables that can produce those kinds of issues.

I am no expert in photography but I love experimenting with it and all I know is personal experience and research.
Message 6 of 10
Message 6 of 10

Re: Some Camera Issues AND Suggestions

@vdv I'm an avid photographer with cellphone and till date have possessed hi-end camera cellphones.

Anyways all phone and camera cos. use diff. lenses sourced by diff. manufacturers. On that it also depends on how effective and efficient is our phones camera software to utilize all the features of that lens and technology. And so till date I have only used Nokia phone and hence m used to their cam software very well.

Now after shifting to Sony it was a tad difficult for me to gain the expertise so took help from forum and now I'm much aware of all the tools offered by sony and I must say if used properly you can catch that perfect image.

Still fiddling for more accuracy and pic perfection.

Well I dont have any such issues with my Z3.

It may be that your lens have gone foggy owing to the snowy conditions so you might need a cleaning/servicing from sony.
Or if you are using screen guard at the back side and if by mistake it has slightly shifted to the lens are then too this issue can occur.

First try to correct this issue and also clean your camera lens of course from outside with a clean dry soft cloth.

And as mentioned do post images so we can get a better idea.
-------- If my Post or Answer helped you out, Please KUDOS me Slightly smiling Face
Message 7 of 10
Message 7 of 10

Re: Some Camera Issues AND Suggestions

Hello vdv,


Sorry it took me this long, but like I said earlier I don't have much experience with snowy enviorment... however, have you tried using the "SNOW" mode in Manual?




After reading the suggestions made by Sony "Using still camera settings", it seems like this mode would prevent overexposing the image and maybe this will help with your issue...


I still test as many modes as I can, and I still get great results for the most part... the only "issues" I've encountered (besides the ones already mentioned) are heavy loss of details on far foliage/grass (specially with the loseless zoom), something I will post later... and the other one is extreme bordering when framing a dark object with backlight.


My next post will be about those 2. But sadly I don't have any advice to overcome those problems, other than image post-editing (softening, changing brightness/contrast, etc)


Anyway, hopefully you can find a way to take great pictures in Snow...

Message 8 of 10
Message 8 of 10

Re: Some Camera Issues AND Suggestions

OK, I am back... and with pictures.


Issues mentioned in my previous post:


1. Detail Loss on Grass or Foliage, specially after Zooming:

- Description: I was trying to take a picture of the bird that was on the glass table, and after that I noticed the grass was extremely blurry/pixelated due to high contrast (bright leaves / shadowy areas) HDR helps very little and the picture lose vibrancy.


DSC_0544.JPGCrop Grass.JPG


2. Extreme Borders (Sharpening?) when the subject is dark vs the backlight (also worse when Zooming in)




It becomes more noticeable with this bird:

DSC_0698.JPGBird border.JPG



For this problem, the solution is using a post-editing app such as Autodesk Pixlr and Softening the image a little bit, and maybe play around with Brightness/Contrast values.


Maybe this problem occurs because the image is Zoomed and the "Superior Auto" algorithms do not kick in...

One time poster
Message 9 of 10
Message 9 of 10

Re: Some Camera Issues AND Suggestions

I have the xa and the front camera isn't there in support other said on the test

"front camera not available"

And flashlight is gone as well peasep can I have some help, thanks!


One time poster
Message 10 of 10
Message 10 of 10

Re: Some Camera Issues AND Suggestions

Hi, i have a problem with the rear camera of my xperia z3 compact.. its been a month i cant use the camera because of a misterious blank or black screen since i bought the phone 2 months ago.. i hope u can help me with.. what happen with my phone n how to fix it... thanks