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Zoom: how to use a virtual background

Usually when we go to a meeting, it happens in a boring boardroom with large windows and stale coffee; however, 2020 has brought many gatherings into people’s homes. While coffee is definitely better, the view may not be – not everyone wants their living room or home office to be visible on a video call, especially if there are a lot of people walking around or you just don’t have time to clean up after your toddler. .

Fortunately, Zoom has a solution: virtual funds. These are overlays that cover everything other than you and replace it with another image, just like a green screen would. The zoom is smart enough to know which part of the image “you” are (with a bit of confusion in arms / helmets) and will replace everything else with the image you chose without the need for a green screen.

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You can use one of the default virtual backgrounds or download your own, whether you want to host your meeting with the Oval Office behind you or maybe a roaring waterfall or even the ISS, you can!

Tip: Always make sure the background you establish is appropriate for the situation and check before each meeting. Memes can be a fun background for a call with friends, but your boss won’t be so happy to see it!

Set up a virtual background

To configure a virtual background, you must access the Zoom settings. To access the settings, click on your user icon in the upper right corner, then click on “Settings”.

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To access Zoom settings, click on your user icon, then “Settings” in the drop-down menu.

Once in the settings, switch to the “Background and Filters” tab and stay in the default “Virtual Funds” sub-tab. Zoom comes with three static virtual background images and two video backgrounds that you can use. Just select one of the funds from the list by clicking on it. You can disable the virtual background by clicking on the first option “None”.

Tip: You can tell which backgrounds are animated by looking at the lower left corner of the preview image. Video backgrounds have a small white video camera icon, static backgrounds do not.

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Select a virtual background in the “Virtual funds” sub-tab of the “Background and filter” settings tab.

If you have a green screen or other single color background behind you, you can increase the quality of the background replacement / foreground detection. To do this, activate the “I have a green screen” setting at the bottom left of the “Virtual backgrounds” sub-tab of the “Backgrounds and filters” settings tab.

When you enable the setting, Zoom tries to detect your background color and automatically starts filtering with it. If the detected background color is not working properly, you can manually set the background color to replace by clicking the box at the bottom of the page titled “Manually choose the background color if the detected color is not accurate.”

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If you have a green screen or a solid background, you can improve the quality of foreground detection by enabling the “I have a green screen” setting.

Upload your own virtual background

If you are not a fan of default backgrounds or just want to use a custom background, you can choose to upload your own custom virtual background. You can download image or video backgrounds. Images must be in PNG, JPG or BMP (bitmap) format, while videos can use MP4 or MOV format. Video backgrounds can range from 360p to 1080p, while there is no upper limit on the resolution of the background image. It is recommended to use the highest quality version available, as this will give the best results.

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To upload a background, click the ‘Add’ icon at the top right of the virtual background selection screen, then select whether you want to add an image or video background and import it from your hard drive.

Tip: The recently downloaded virtual background will be selected and enabled by default. If you don’t want to use it right away, select a different one and verify that you are satisfied with the appearance in the preview at the top of the settings window.

You can upload video backgrounds or images with the “Add” icon above the virtual background selection area.

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