Surveillance camera review

nstassel

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I've been interested in having a motion activated camera monitoring my gun safes and reloading area. Today I got a Amazon Cloud camera. They are available for $120 but seem to offer a lot of features including some cloud storage for free and 1080 resolution. It came with a mount for wall or ceiling locations along with a 10 foot cord and power adapter. Once powered up it updated its software. I downloaded a free app for my Android. The camera quickly found my wifi network and I could run the set up which was easy and intuitive.

Once it was was running, I moved it to a few locations in my basement gun room to try it out. Once I located a good spot I mounted it on the sheet rock above my bench. It covers a very wide angle and captures all of the room easily. Whenever there's movement in the room including the cat walking through I get an instant alert and it records the video and sound. I'm very pleased with this device.
 

richc

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I'm using Blink cameras. I wanted battery operated. They work great!

I have two zones for indoor and outdoor. They record only on motion, including in the dark. Picked up a raccoon recently wandering around the deck at 2 AM.

And there's no charge for storage. They give you a storage limit per hub device and that's more than enough. No ongoing charges was a big factor for me.
 
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I'm using Blink cameras. I wanted battery operated. They work great!

I have two zones for indoor and outdoor. They record only on motion, including in the dark. Picked up a raccoon recently wandering around the deck at 2 AM.

And there's no charge for storage. They give you a storage limit per hub device and that's more than enough. No ongoing charges was a big factor for me.
+1 on the Blink.

The free storage/no subscription is awesome. Excellent resolution and sensitivity. Immediate alarm to my phone when motion detected. My main concern was battery life, but I can attest I'm at 8+ months and have not needed to change it yet, so I'm satisfied with that.

Btw....this is also an Amazon cloud camera, so likely very similar to the OP's.
 

JayMcB

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I've been interested in having a motion activated camera monitoring my gun safes and reloading area. Today I got a Amazon Cloud camera. They are available for $120 but seem to offer a lot of features including some cloud storage for free and 1080 resolution. It came with a mount for wall or ceiling locations along with a 10 foot cord and power adapter. Once powered up it updated its software. I downloaded a free app for my Android. The camera quickly found my wifi network and I could run the set up which was easy and intuitive.

Once it was was running, I moved it to a few locations in my basement gun room to try it out. Once I located a good spot I mounted it on the sheet rock above my bench. It covers a very wide angle and captures all of the room easily. Whenever there's movement in the room including the cat walking through I get an instant alert and it records the video and sound. I'm very pleased with this device.
How LONG does it record? I have standalone zmodo camers and the issue I run into is they don't always record motion for long enough. There are also zmodos connected to an NVR at a different property, but then you need to access that locally to retrieve recordings
 

Kevin_NH

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There is a new indoor camera on the block. Wyze Cam goes for $20 and the video quality is very good.
The Wyze camera and Wyze Cam Pan are great for the price. I'm looking forward to an outdoor-rated version.

Unfortunately, like all cameras with "Free Cloud Storage!", they limit cloud recordings-- Wyze official firmware is locked to 12 seconds per clip, and one upload per 5 minute interval per camera. You can work around this by putting a card in the MicroSD slot for local storage, or by replacing the firmware with open source.
 

nstassel

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How LONG does it record? I have standalone zmodo camers and the issue I run into is they don't always record motion for long enough. There are also zmodos connected to an NVR at a different property, but then you need to access that locally to retrieve recordings
I don't know but I see some 3 to 4 minute videos saved already.
 

Prepper

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I just looked up the Wyze cameras. Unfortunately they don't work with Blue Iris so I can't use them. This won't matter for most people though.
 

powerman

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There is a new indoor camera on the block. Wyze Cam goes for $20 and the video quality is very good.
Integrations, Alexa and IFTTT

could be a winner for the price.

update, I ordered one from amazon, they charge about 25, with free shipping.
it already new I could pair it with my specific firetv, which I plan to do since that tv is the farthest from my front door. now I can check it out and not answer the door when those pesky political hacks come nocking, (yes already had one stop by last Sunday)
 
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richc

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When looking at cameras on Amazon keep one thing in mind. Amazon has their own brand of cloud cam. But Amazon also owns Blink and Ring. They own a big piece of this market.
 

LittleCalm

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I’ve tried a bunch of different brands and really have yet to figure find something that checks all the boxes:

— wireless
— easy to set up via WiFi
— easy to use smart phone App
— remote monitoring and email/text alerts that are not burdensome
— easy to use software / App that allows simple to set up motion detection

I haven’t found a decent one that works well and isn’t a PITA to either set up or use.
 

PatMcD

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I’ve tried a bunch of different brands and really have yet to figure find something that checks all the boxes:

— wireless
— easy to set up via WiFi
— easy to use smart phone App
— remote monitoring and email/text alerts that are not burdensome
— easy to use software / App that allows simple to set up motion detection

I haven’t found a decent one that works well and isn’t a PITA to either set up or use.
Nest system is pretty simple and does all those things.
 

richc

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I'd argue Blink fits the bill, but certainly YMMV.

I’ve tried a bunch of different brands and really have yet to figure find something that checks all the boxes:

— wireless
— easy to set up via WiFi
— easy to use smart phone App
— remote monitoring and email/text alerts that are not burdensome
— easy to use software / App that allows simple to set up motion detection

I haven’t found a decent one that works well and isn’t a PITA to either set up or use.
 

BlacknRed

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Blink ++. Wireless means wireless and many say wireless, but require power. Not really wireless. Battery life is up to two years. Indoor and outdoor camera options. Blink has up to a 60 second record and 10 second retrigger time minimum. Blink does audio, but in Ma. you need to turn that off because criminals have rights not to be audio recorded while ransacking your house.
 

LittleCalm

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Nest outdoor doesn’t look wireless to me.

Blink doesn’t seem to get great reviews in terms of its response time vs false triggers. Also, short base range and limited detection range for motion. Would be curious to know if the batteries really last 2 years.
 

WanMan99

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Just bought a Blink XT 2x pack on Prime Day ($123.99 I think). Love them so far, great video quality, easy set up and free cloud storage. Think I'll get 2x more for indoors.
 

LittleCalm

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Looking at Arlo (Netgear) too. Bottom line is that if you read the reviews they all seem to have limitations, often with respect to being able to set proper motion detection and zones. Would be curious to hear from those with long term experience with outdoor Blink in terms of battery life, ability to set detection area, false triggers and realistic base range. Also, does Blink have geofencing? I see that’s Arlo does.
 

BlacknRed

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Battery life depends on factors like how often it gets tripped or how often you use it to just take a look at the weather or living room. They do last at least a year and I look at them frequently. Trigger time is about 5 seconds. Someone running past is not going to show up. Like a trail cam, you'll get dead frames. Distance from base to camera seems to be about 50 feet depending on materials in between. You can have multiple bases running on the same network so cameras on one side of the house on one base and the other side on a second one. False triggers have been very very low and trigger distance of 70' away or so. I have had them since the kick starter release and no issues with my original hardware or other pieces that I have added on. I have one XT (outdoor camera) and it is less than a year old with it's original charge. That is the one that I usually check the weather on. Battery is still strong. No Geofencing on Blink that I am aware of, but that isn't a feature that I would activate anyway.
 

LittleCalm

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Thanks. I had heard the base range was really short. 50’ is pretty limited. I do have Ethernet lines in various parts of the home so in some places it could still work. Geofencing is key - don’t want to have to turn the base on and off all the time.
 

LuvDog

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I have the original Arlo wireless and also the Arlo
Q for indoors

Im in the process of replacing my 5 camera wireless Arlo setup with Ring cameras out doors. Although the Ring system is much less robust compared to Arlo.

Arlo geofencing is great. I’ve been using it for at least a year or two. They recently updated their firmware to add e911 and call a friend alerts. THey also added “person” detection to the AI so that you can filter out any other movement and only record and alert if a person enters the area. My dog does set off the person detection but she’s an 80 Doberman.

The battery life varies widely. You can set the recording sensitivity and also the length of the recordings. Battery life depends on how often and how much you record. Temps can also affect lifespan. I’ve had mine out year round here and they have lasted between 3-9 months. Depending on how often they trigger.

Don’t buy cheap batteries though. They’ll eat them up. I’ve had good luck with the surefure batteries
 

LittleCalm

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Yeah, not a fan of cloud storage. Would love a wireless, battery-based system with local storage. Not sure that exists.
 
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