I recently got a new Microsoft Lifecam Cinema. It's suppose to be a pretty high-end webcam capable of autofocus. There's no focus ring on it. The sample videos people submitted on youtube looks pretty nice in terms of color and quality.
But with mine, it doesn't seem to be focusing on anything. With me sitting about 3 feet in front of the webcam, I'm pretty blurry. And the rest of the room is blurry. The only thing that is in focus is if I put something really close to the camera (within 3 inches) - I can see the text on a book when it's held that close, and it's very crisp. So the focus seems to be "stuck" at about a few inches to the lens.
I've tried different lighting conditions, moving the webcam to different locations...no difference. The main subject (me) and the rest of the room is out of focus. In the videos on youtube, both the subjects and the room behind them seem pretty well focused.
I've also tried turning the auto focus checkmark off on the included microsoft software, and moving the "focus" bar across the adjustable range. Not sure what this is doing, but no difference in the video.
Also, this out of focus issue is true of the video and still shots that I take, as well as the streaming video (on MSN messenger).
Ok, believe it or not, I had this exact problem and I tried everything to no avail, but guess what worked? I smacked the thing fairly hard against my desk about 10 times, and suddenly it was able to focus properly once again. Was a last resort, and it worked! Maybe this will help somebody in the future. (not trolling)