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I recently bought a Nyko Zoom for Kinect which is a lens attachment that is supposed to enable you to use the Kinect with less room.

When I've attached it, it does zoom out more as advertised but the Kinect then becomes very unresponsive and the video showing depth of field is very messy and has artifacts.

Kinect without Zoom attachment

The Kinect Tuner without the Zoom attachment has a clean image.

Kinect without Zoom attachment in Dance Central

Dance Central without the Zoom attachment has a clean image, but can hardly fit me in.

Kinect with Zoom attachment in Kinect Tuner

The Kinect Tuner with the Zoom attachment has a dirty image with lots of black.

Kinect with Zoom attachment won't detect the floor

The Kinect Tuner Tracking screen fails to detect the floor with the Zoom attachment on. Retrying usually fails. Without the Zoom, this step works fine.

Kinect with the Zoom attachment in Dance Central

Dance Central with the Zoom attachment on fits me in better, but has lots of blurred shapes on the bottom of the screen, usually at my feet or the carpet. The game becomes very unresponsive.

With the Zoom attachment on, it also becomes really hard to navigate menus or move cursors around the screen.

I stand around 4 - 5 feet away from the TV and then there is a couch and a wall behind me.

Have also:

  • tried having the Kinect sitting just below the TV but that didn't help.
  • experimented with the Tracking and Calibration screens a fair bit to no avail.
  • wiped both the Kinect and Zoom lens with a soft cloth to remove dust.

How do I get the Zoom and Kinect working together reliably? Could the Zoom be defective?

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I'm having the same problem. Attaching Zoom to Kinect while playing Dance Central does not fair good result. I've tested with couple songs, easy and hard, with Zoom attached I'd score half star to a star less than without Zoom attached. I guess Zoom is not for every game. –  user13838 Nov 8 '11 at 8:21
    
to be honest, it sounds like this might be a flawed product –  Jeff Atwood Nov 16 '11 at 17:18
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2 Answers

Ensure the lens of the Zoom tool is completely clean. With magnification, a small smudge is going to look a lot worse and affect the view so close to the Kinect. Alongside cleaning of the object, check how the add-on is sitting on the Kinect.

Is the housing too snug and holding the added lens at an angle to the body of the Kinect in a way so it is in fact occluding the camera's view?

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After installing the zoom, I experienced ALL possible problems you could imagine that were posted here and in other blogs, ranging from not being able to find me to the jig dance and epileptic movements the avatar does when it does get around to seeing me).

Then I analyzed that this zoom was a reverse-telescope that makes me look smaller, and increases its view angle. So I did the following:

  • I made sure there was no light at my back, even if it was in the ceiling several feet behind me.
  • No lights to my sides which might be in the direct sight of the Kinect which now had an increased field of view.
  • I made the light above me much brighter so that the Kinect can clearly see me.

Now the signal the Kinect senses (my body) is nice, clean, clear, and stable. No more jigs, epilepsy, and invisibility.

I hope I was able to help.

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