Alcatel OneTouch – Fixing dark video problems on the camcorder

Yesterday, I reviewed the Alcatel OneTouch Fierce smartphone that I picked up last week. As I mentioned, one of its quirks is that the videos taken through the camcorder feature are sometimes extremely dark, so dark as to be unviewable. This only seems to happen inside and I was not able to get it to happen outside, even in dim surroundings.

flickerAfter looking around the web, I found that this was not unique to my phone and that a number of other users had seen the same thing. A couple fixes were suggested and after playing around with them I was able to correct the problem.

Both solutions are found in the main image settings in the camera / video app. The best one is to set the Anti-flicker setting to 60 Hz. This immediately fixed the problem for me as you’ll see in the two video clips below.

The other solution is to set the Scene mode, also found in the main settings. Setting it to “Night” fixed the problem for me. The only problem is that both the Auto-flicker and the Scene mode affect the photos taken as well and the Anti-flicker setting is probably one that you can set and forget about regardless of what kind of photos you’re taking.

Here’s the quality with the default settings …

… and here’s the same indoor scene with the Anti-flicker setting at 60 Hz.

I’m not sure if this is a software or hardware issue but it’s definitely a bug with the model as other people have reported it. I know that the light adjustment will sometimes kick in on its own even when using the default settings but usually it stays dark. Either way, it was a relief to find a solution.