Smart home gives some benefits and the biggest one is you can easily know what is going on especially if you are not there. It supports you to check your kids, pets, precious collections since it is equipped by in home security cameras as the excellent tool to keep your eyes on all things you have when you have to be a bit far from your home.
Even if the capabilities really depend on the device you choose because some devices may have different specialties but camera allows you to monitor through live or recorded video. Not all cameras are produced with the same performance and same system. Some even come with alarms that will send you notifications or alerts since they detect any activity. Some may also have two-way audio. Other may be designed to monitor your baby and even double as your home automation hubs.
To choose the best security camera to your home, it is about something that covers your need. For example, you may go with a camera that is very easy to use and to set up. In addition, the very first qualities can be attractive with the discreet design. It is truly important that the camera you chose must be the thing that you want to add to your home, but it really depends on your needs. Therefore, evaluating your needs is crucial.
Things To Consider Before Purchasing Home Security Cameras
It is also important to know about the device support. A favorite camera should allow you to check in from anywhere whether through an app of your phone or web browser. The features depend on the camera, because one can be different from others. Here are some important things to consider when you have a plan to buy a home security cam:
The standard solution for cameras is 1080p and you couldn’t find any that can record in 4K. Surely there are benefits about choosing cameras with high resolution sensors. Almost all home security cameras have digital zoom, but few have optical zoom lenses. It can crop and enlarge anything that the camera is recording. It means the more megapixels a camera sensor has; it gives you the more capability to digitally zoom in and allows you to see more with clear visibility.
Besides, you have to consider about the field of view. All security cameras come with wide-angle lenses but not all have the same angles. It depends on the lens that is capable to see between 100and 180 degrees. In another word, if you need to watch large area, choose a camera with wide field of view.
Be more selective if you want to keep some cameras for your driveway, backyard or front porch. Not all home security cameras are quite rugged to be mounted outdoors. Therefore, be sure that you are choosing waterproof camera that can deal with rain, snow, sun and even in extreme temperatures of summer and winter. There are some brands that specifically designed as outdoor cameras. Never try to use indoor cameras for outdoor.
You may find most security cameras with Wi-Fi support, but not all rely on it. Some even have Bluetooth as the local control for easier setup through your smartphone, while others may have separate home automation networking standard to let the cameras interact with other devices. Most cameras come with the instructions on an app so you can connect them to the home network.
After the connection is done and the camera is connected, you can access it through your tablet or smartphone. Today, many home security cameras come with mobile apps and it means the app will do everything to support you. Some may also come with Web portals to offer you flexibility to access the videos and then get alerts anywhere.
The Cloud Storage
Not all cameras will record and then store the videos on the cameras. Most of them may use cloud services to offer remote access. Even some are designed with microSD card slots that allow you to pull the video physically from them once you want to review the footage but this feature is rare.
It is really important to understand that not all cloud services are the same although you are using the same camera. It depends on the manufacturer and your home security camera may store different amount of footage in different length of time. Commonly, this service is a paid subscription although some come with free cloud storage but in various degrees. Usually, the cloud storage service offered in tiers so you can choose between keeping the footage for week or month or even more.
The Price Tag
Now, we are going to tell you about our 10 choices when it is all about top rated security cameras. As you can find below, the top-rated home security cameras commonly available about $200 with additional fee to store the recorded video in cloud storage. It is worth to take a look so it can meet your need and budget.
Our Choice: 10 Best Home Security Cameras
|Name||Connectivity and Integration||Degrees of View||Storage and App||Video & Photo resolution||Notification||Features|
|Icontrol Network Piper nv||Wi-Fi, Z-Wave (IFTTT)||180||Cloud &Mobile||1080p & 1,920 x 1,080||Push, Email, Text, Call||Alarm, Digital Zoom, Night Vision, Two-way audio, Pan, Tilt|
|LG Smart Security Wireless Camera LHC5200WI (With ADT Canopy)||Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Z-Wave||130||Cloud &Mobile||1080p &1,920 x 1,080||Push||Alarm, Digital Zoom, Night Vision, Two-way audio|
|Nest Cam Outdoor||Bluetooth, Wi-Fi & IFTTT, Nest||130||Cloud & Mobile, Web||1080p & 1,920 x 1,080||Push||Alarm, Digital Zoom, Night Vision, Two-way audio|
|Canary All-in-One Home Security Device||Wi-Fi||147||Cloud &Mobile||1080p & 1,920 x 1,080||Push||Alarm, Digital Zoom, Night Vision, Pan, Tilt|
|Logi Circle||Wi-Fi||135||Cloud &Mobile||720p & 1,280 x 720||Push||Night Vision, Two-way audio|
|Nest Cam Indoor||Wi-Fi & Nest||130||Cloud & Mobile, Web||1080p & 1,920 x 1,080||Push||Alarm, Digital Zoom, Night Vision, Two-way audio|
|Netgear Arlo Q||Wi-Fi & (IFTTT)||130||Cloud &Mobile||1080p & 1,920 x 1,080||Push, Email||Alarm, Digital Zoom, Night Vision, Two-way audio|
|Netgear Arlo Security System (VMS3230||Wi-Fi||130||Cloud & Mobile, Web||720p & 1,280 x 720||Push, Email||Alarm, Digital Zoom, Night Vision|
|Petcube Play||Wi-Fi||138||Cloud &Mobile||1080p & 1,920 x 1,080||Push||Alarm, Digital Zoom, Night Vision, Two-way audio|
|Zmodo Pivot||Bluetooth, Wi-Fi||135||Local & Mobile||1080p & 1,920 x 1,080||Push||Alarm, Digital Zoom, Night Vision, Two-way audio, Pan|
Icontrol Network Piper nv – Unique Security Camera and Home Automation Hub with Faster Processor
You will be impressed with the camera’s image quality and it is very easy to use. It allows you to control numerous Z-Wave home automation devices. What the company should improve is that it is still lack of Android support as well as night vision capabilities. It is also unable to download recorded video. If you go with the new Piper nv with more expensive price, it is easy to use and it can work as Z-Wave controller but right now it provides sharp night vision video and it offers both iOS and Android apps. The highlight is the higher resolution CMOS sensor that allows you to download clips to your photo gallery. Its versatility and performance makes it as the top choice.
Design and Features – 3.4 MP Sensor and Full HD Video Resolution
The Piper nv has identical look to the original Piper and this version is equipped with ring of infrared (IR) LEDs you can find around the lends. It has 5.5 by 3.5 by 2.0 inches of height, width and depth respectively. It is also designed with silver-colored metal stand. It has snap-on mounting panel that allows you to hang it on wall. You can even order it with black or white finish.
The original version came out with 2-MP CMOS sensor but for this new version it has 3.4-MP sensor with 1,920 by 1,080 of full HD resolution. The front ha fish-eye lens with motion sensor and microphone to give two-way audio communications. The top has very loud 105dB siren. At the back, it has power jack as well as battery compartment with the 3 included AAA backup batteries.
Inside, there is Series 500 Z-Wave controller, ARM processor, 802.11 b/g/n networking circuitry and sensors for sound, humidity, light and temperature. The pan and tilt capabilities give about 180-degree field of view with 10x digital zoom so you can get up close and personal.
We can say that it is more than surveillance camera. It uses sound and motion detection to alert you about any activity when you are not at home. It also has tracks indoor and outdoor temperature and humidity as well as local weather alerts. This is a multifaceted devices with smart switches and dimmers, range extenders, door and window sensors.
You can view live video through smartphone or tablet with iOS or Android app but you cannot access it by using a web browser. The dashboard of the app is the main control panel for this camera. The front and the center has security wheel so you can switch between stay (if someone is at home), Away and Vacation security modes. Even you can disarm all the rules for the security. Once you changed the modes, the camera will beeps loudly in few seconds and there will be a voice tells you that you are entering a new security mode.
At the left side of the screen, it shows indoor and outdoor temperature information and status menu placed below the security wheel lists about recent motion or sound detection as well as the status of the installed Z-Wave devices.
At the right, there are Settings, Events and Recording icons. To enable or disable the siren, select the Setting menu. There, you can also set temperature display to Celsius or Fahrenheit or even enable the Pet at Home feature so that it will let you to set the motion sensitivity to avoid small animals to trigger an event. In addition, it is possible to set up a Trusted Circle of contacts and you will be notified anytime an event happens. To help preserve the bandwidth, you can also adjust the video settings.
If you open the Event and Recording pages list, there will be all events and recordings triggered the camera and it will show you about the security mode you choose, the time of the day and the date. If you press the play icon next to each event, it allows you to view about 35-second of video clip stored in Piper cloud. About the cloud, it is able to store even more than 1,000 clips freely and it will overwrite them once the limit is reached. Once you clicked the arrow at the right, it means you are downloading the clip to your photo gallery.
At the bottom of the dashboard you can find tabs to allow you viewing live video, controlling Z-Wave device, setting security rules and viewing data collected by the camera sensors. It allows you to set rules for each security mode such as when the motion or sound is detected, when the temperature will reach the threshold. Some options are available such as to set the camera to record video, options to get alert by text, email, phone, or push notification, sounding the siren and notifying a member about your Trusted Circle.
Go to the Control page if you want to set up rules about the Z-Wave devices you have such as the timing schedules, the temperature thresholds and the lighting conditions. If you have a lamp connected to smart witch, you can make it turn on automatically when the camera’s light sensor says it is dark. Or, you can turn on and off the lights based on your timed schedule. Go to Vitals tab that will support you with colorful graph and it will display indoor and outdoor temperatures, ambient light and sound, humidity and motion data in the last 48 hours.
Go to the Live Video tab as the place where you can view the live streaming video. It is possible to view the stream in full screen mode, pinch the image so you can zoom in and out easily, swipes to engage the pan and tilt features by using finger.
The bottom of the screen comes with brightness slider, night vision switch, push-to-talk button, and a button that show lists of all connected with Z-Wave devices. It also has nice quad-view button that partitions the screen to four windows which is good for the same video feed. Each window allows you to zoom, pan and tilt to view different areas at the same time.
|Excellent HD image detail
Pan, tilt and zoom function
Sharp night vision
Z-Wave devices support
|No local storage
No web app
If you are looking for unique security camera that can be used as a home automation hub, it is good to choose Icontrol Network Piper nv. Now, it is designed with night vision, more robust camera sensor and the faster processor.
LG LHC5200 WI Smart Security Wireless Camera with ADT Canopy – The Cost-Effective Option
You may say that your choice right now is the best wireless home security cameras, but you cannot ignore this cost-effective solution that will keep tabs on your home when you are not there. Speaking about LG Smart Security Wireless Camera LHC5200WI, it is an indoor Wi-Fi camera which is good to support you 24/7 monitoring through ADT’s Canopy service. It is an ideal option for renters, homeowners and apartment dwellers who want to get benefit from professional monitoring without having a contract or hire professional installation. It is easy to install and it is completed with multiple sensors. Even it works as home automation hub. It is our choice as the professional cameras for home.
Design and Features – One of the most unique-looking models we ever seen
It is true that many home security cameras come in all shapes and sizes but when it is all about the LHC5200WI, it is one of the most unique camera designs. It has black and cone-shaped design with the height about 3 inches. It is 5 inches across the top and 2 inches at the base. There, you can find embedded micro USB power port.
Behind the black cover, the lens is added and it is close to the top of the housing. It is sandwiched by two IR LEDs to provide even more than 15 feet of night vision. The lens is thin with curved LED strip. When the Bluetooth pairing mode is active, the LED strip will blink blue, but it will blink blue and green when connecting to Wi-Fi and it will turn to solid green when the connection is successful. It turns to amber when downloading for an update, but it goes to amber and green once it is installing an update.
Inside, it is designed with 5-mp sensor, 130-degree field of view, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios, motion, humidity and temperature sensors. There is also a microphone and speaker to give two-way communication and 93dB siren. The Z-Wave circuitry will control smart home devices including light dimmers, smart switches from Aetoec, Eaton and GE as well as water sensors.
It is controlled by ADT’s Canopy app especially for iOS and Android mobile devices. It is a free app but it provides limited functionality. You can get more if you subscribe to ADT Intrusion Detection plan. You will not receive any email alerts and you couldn’t arm or disarm the system and you couldn’t control the Z-Wave devices or even run activities without subscription. Well, this can be so bad, but the biggest advantage is signing up with 24/7 monitoring service. If an alarm is triggered, it will contact you and if you do not respond, it will dispatch local authorities. Some services provide it with no contract so you can use it when you need, but other may offer you the contract for several years.
By using ADT Canopy app, it will let you to view video and even change the camera settings. If you want to see event-triggered recordings, however you have to subscribe ADT Secure Video Storage plan. We have to admit that the ADT Canopy add is easy to navigate. There is a dashboard screen that will support you to see the system’s mode (Home, Away, Sleep, Vacation). The mode is about the activities you want to dictate. It means you can create the actions to certain connected devices whether you want to turn it on or off based on schedule or event. For instance, it is possible to have lights turn on or off based on scheduled time while in Vacation mode to make someone is at home. You can disarm and disable motion detection when you switch it to Home mode. Even you can turn off all the lights in sleep mode. In comparison to Icontrol Network Piper nv, it doesn’t come with If This Then That (IFTT) support.
It has a panel in the center of the screen that will display a live video feed. If you turn your phone sideways, it will show you full-screen video and tap the three dots in lower right corner to open a menu bar with camera button to take snapshots. You can use the microphone button to support push-to-talk communication together with a speaker button to mute the sound. Below the video panel, there is a bar that will display current date, humidity and temperature level. It also has motion icon that will turn to red when there is a motion detected and gray when it is idle. Below it, there is a timeline of events including humidity and temperature changes, security alarms, motion detection and armed or disarmed times.
On the right, at the top of the dashboard it has a shield icon in green when it is unarmed but red when it is armed and gray when your subscription is turned off or lapsed. To arm and disarm the system, tap the shield. At the bottom of the dashboard, there are buttons to access the Devices, Activities, Dashboard screens and more.
For the Devices screen display, there is the place to see a list of all installed devices such as the camera and the built-in sensors or even any Z-Wave devices you have connected. Tap the camera and it will lead you to a screen with live video feed as well as thumbnails of event-triggered video clips. At the top of each device screen, there is a gear icon that will take you to settings such as the video quality (cameras), temperature thresholds, and sensitivity (motion sensors).
In Activities screen, you can tap the plus icon if you want to create a new Activity so you can choose a trigger (manual, started by device, start at the specific time) and an action. It is possible for you to assign the Activity to all modes and run activities by using Alexa voice commands.
For the More screen, it gives you options of configuring monitor settings such as entry and exit delays, editing address and password, entering emergency contact information and entering your permit number. There you also can configure your profile and messaging preferences, view help files and change billing information.
Installation and Performance – Easy
EASY. That is all about installing this camera. Simply, download the app and create an account. Once the account was verified through email, follow the on-screen instruction to register. Plug in the power cable and wait for 10 seconds so the LED blinks to blue which is the indication that the camera is ready to pair. Hit next and the camera will be identified and listed on the following screen. Connect it to your Wi-Fi router and enter your password. Wait for about 2 minutes to get an update to complete. Once finished, the camera is registered successfully.
LHC5200WI comes with sharp 1080p daytime video and during the test, it had excellent color quality. The night vision was designed with good contrast and it showed highly detailed out for about 15 feet. There was various motion detector sensitivity settings ran well. When it was set to Person Detection, any pet went freely around the room and there were nothing to trigger the sensor, but you must be triggered every time. The All Motion setting worked as advertised. Smallest movement could trigger the sensor such as passing car. It means if you want to use this setting, be sure that you place the camera in the right location so there will be no false alarms when you are out of the house.
It comes with instant reaction although the 93dB siren is not deafening but it could be heard through your neighbors. The recorded video showed sharp look with clear two-way voice communication. The system had quick response to our arm and disarms commands.
At last, the humidity reading was very accurate.
|Sharp HD Video
ADT Canopy monitoring
Control Z-Wave devices
|Unlock some features through Canopy subscription
Requires cloud subscription to watch video
Just like the Piper nv, the G Smart Security Wireless Camera LHC5200WI is able to track indoor temperature and humidity. It is also capable to control various Z-Wave home automation devices. It has excellent daytime and nighttime HD video with motion detector that is adjustable to ignore background activity as well as small pets.
If you still in doubt to purchase, you can make a comparison to its rivals such as Canary, Zmodo Pivot and others.
It is the first camera with professional monitoring especially with the use of ADT’s Canopy service and app. If you pay monthly fee, you will be granted.
Nest Cam Outdoor – A smart camera with a lot of great features
Installation – Using Outdoor Power Outlet
With magnet mounted design, IP65 rated that is water and dust-proof as well as continuous power required, many people asked about its installation whether or not it is secure. When you go with this camera, the first to consider is about the power. The installation manual recommended by Nest is to use an outdoor power outlet and not everyone has it. If you don’t mind with bit more work and a drill, it is possible to install the camera and use indoor power. It is cheaper instead of hiring electrician to install the outside outlets. It is also the more secure option since the cable wouldn’t explode.
To connect it to indoor power, you have to drill a hole through the outside wall with the width of a broom handle to feed the cable you will need. Use a heavy-duty drill and you can continue the installation by attaching the camera to the wall with the provided screws.
The cable is quite long so you have to consider again the best location outside to place your camera and where the plug is relative inside your home. Besides, there is no form of security between the power cable and the waterproof housing. It is simple to disconnect, just twist and pull. The cable is thin and it is easy to cut.
We have to say that it is not your option if you are looking for a serious home security camera. Unless, if you don’t mind to invest for the wiring and power supply in some protective housing.
It has Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), 128-bit AES with TLS/SSL secured and Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n, 2.4 GHz (WEP, WPA, and WPA2 encryption supported).Nest recommends you to connect the camera to the home Wi-Fi indoors before beginning the installation and venturing outside to setup. It is easy to start. Simply, download the app, create an account, scan the QR code on the camera, choose the Wi-Fi network, enter your password and done!
The dilemma also happens when you go outside to setup the camera and then you realize that the signal in your home is low, even not too strong to deal with the outside walls and to compete with your neighbor’s signals. No Ethernet and it mean you cannot plug it into powerline adapter or router to start wired connection. When the connection is low you may be bombarded with waning messages from the camera alerting to you. To fix this issue, you have no way to add Wi-Fi extender which will improve the signal and the connection becomes solid or even more permanent. But of course it also means that you have to invest your money again.
Design – Good visual presence
The camera will be installed on the outside of your home and it can show green light as the sign that it is recording but you can turn it off in the app. The advantage of Nest is that it has stored footage and accessible through the cloud. Although a thief or other visitor wants to upset the camera, surely they couldn’t remove the footage.
Outdoor Recordings, Alerts and Video Quality
It is built with 3-mp sensor, 1080 HD 30fps capture, 130-degree wide-angle lens, night vision mode and 8x digital zoom.
The eight times digital zoom provides clear picture through digital enhancement but it only happens if you wish to fix the view to certain point because it cannot be used on recorded footage. Besides, it is a cloud-based security camera. In another word, it will use your broadband bandwidth so you have to consider first if you have fair usage policy especially on your internet.
It is important to note that at 1080p, each camera is capable to have 140GB to 380 GB of upload bandwidth per month. At 720p, the camera can use between 60GB and 160GB monthly.
Since the camera needs 200-1,200kbps bandwidth while streaming video, be sure that you have considered about the bandwidth if you are not on superfast broadband. The app allows you to record in 360p, 720p and 1080p. Although it has plenty flexibility, but it is still a big consideration for those who need remote viewing.
We have to say that it has impressive night-vision mode with clear view of the same surroundings even at night without extra lighting to add.
The camera is capable to detect movement and people so it will alert you about the presence of both. If your camera saw someone or noticed some activity, you will get push emails with the inclusion of a photograph of the relevant event. You can see the footage by using the app.
Be sure that you are installing the camera in the right place in a quiet spot if you don’t want to get many notifications. It is recommended to install it in front of a doorway or in secluded spot for useful results.
The Two-Way Communication
As you probably know that the Nest Cam Outdoor has built-in mic and speaker. Placing the camera close or above the front door, it can be a good tool to monitor and to communicate with visitors. It is because the two-way communication with built-in speaker and mic.
It is also featured with push-to-talk logic so you can pres a mic button to the app so you can talk to the visitor. It can be a nice tool to greet them with the audio cue first and then you can talk. Some lag may happen because the voice and the reply will go through the cloud servers first. It is a good system if you need a quick interaction. Since Nest is cloud-based, t means that you can start any quick interaction while you are not at home so you can use the app remotely and access the footage.
The Subscription and Features – Free Plan is Available
For this one, Nest provides 24/7 live video, 30 day history as well as activity/people alerts. It comes with 30 day free trial and it means you can get a taster about any offer at the full subscription level. Then, you will have to upgrade.
The free plan provides three hour snapshot history, live video feed, activity alerts and no person alerts as well as two-way communication features. You have to pay if you need more recording history.
With no subscription, if you want to use the Nest Outdoor Cam as your security camera, it is only useful for notifications and live feed. It means if you were burgled overnight and you just realized in the next morning, you couldn’t access the footage.
More Footage Functionality – A nice camera with time-lapse videos
It has shareable live stream, save-able and shareable clips and time-lapse video creation. It is a nice camera with the ability to create time-lapse videos. It allows you to capture footage from the camera and then turn it to be 30 or 60 or 120 seconds video. It also has the ability to capture, save and then share clips of events or any detected activity. You can use it if you want to share footage of introducers to police. Simply, choose the timeframe using the calendar and the timeline. You can set the start and then end the clip before exporting. It lets you to download the video or share a direct link so others can view it.
The camera provides the ability to share live streams to public or to anyone within a password. It is possible to share it to family or friends if you are not around your home and want someone to make sure that your home is safe.
For sharing, you can register other members of the household to the account. This makes everyone has the app on their phone so they can monitor footage and get alerts. These are free features and quite different from the time-lapse and clip sharing. It means you need a Nest Aware subscription.
|Excellent video quality
Sound and motion detection
Works with lots of other devices
Subscription plan required for some required
Outdoor power required
Although it is called a secure security camera, the Nest Cam Outdoor is quite good, although it is not too good. It is a smart camera with a lot of great features. The quality of the footage for both day and night capture is good as well as the alert system to detect people and the two-way engagement to speak with visitors whether you are at home or not.
It comes with its shortcomings so you have to install it properly since it can be easily taken and the longevity of capture is limited which is only about three hours unless you go with the Nest Aware subscription so they will provide you the access to capture about 10/30 days prior.
It does have high-quality smart camera design but it is not the hardcore if you look for a security camera. It is still a handy option.
Canary Home Security Device (All-In –One) – A sharp 1080p imagery Security Camera with quick mobile alerts
If you need something more than just surveillance camera, this can be your next option. It is designed with multiple sensors as well as 1080p camera. It is able to record events when the motion is detected and it provides crisp live streaming video to your smartphone. Besides, it is able to monitor air quality, humidity levels and temperature inside your home. It uses geofencing to arm and disarm automatically and you don’t have to deal with it. It supports you to access the last 12 hours of recorded video freely, but if you want more, you have to subscribe to premium cloud storage plan. This camera doesn’t allow you to control other home automation devices which is unlike the Icontrol Network Piper nv , but it offers more control over recorded videos.
Design and Features – Sleek Security Camera with 3X Zoom
It is available in white, black or silver and the Canary is basically a sleek security camera which is about 0.87 pound cylinder and it has 6 inches of height and 3 inches in diameter. For the front of the canister, there is a glossy black panel that can hold about 1080p camera and 147-degree viewing angle. It is designed with 3x zoom, 12 infrared LEDs to provide night vision with the range even more than 25 feet. In comparison to the Piper nv, it also has 1080p camera but it provides wider viewing angle that is 180 degrees, 10x zoom and pan as well as tilt capabilities.
At the rear, there is an Ethernet port, micro USB power port and a port for secure connection between the camera and smartphone. Underside of the camera, there is an LED ring which blinks red when it is searching for network connection and it will glow in solid red when it is offline. A solid green light means it is armed and yellow light means disarmed.
Under the hood, there are humidity, temperature, ambient light sensors, motion sensor, air quality sensors and 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi adapter to connect to a wireless network. It also comes with 90dB siren. It is completed with a microphone to let you hear anything. It doesn’t support two-way audio communications.
It is good because you can access and manage it from anywhere by using free iOS or Android app. the app ,leads to a Home screen that will show each camera since you can add more than four. It also has Watch Live button placed in the center of the screen for live stream videos to open. The video will take half the screen with portrait mode and it will go to full-screen in landscape mode. At the bottom of the screen, there are buttons to sound siren and place emergency call. Enter the emergency number is possible in the Setting menu.
To find the current temperature, humidity and air quality readings, you can find it below the Watch Live button. Once you tap any reading, it will launch a chart to display levels with the normal, abnormal and very abnormal air quality chart based on the amount of contaminants present such as carbon monoxide, ethanol, hydrogen, cigarette smoke and cooking odors. The Piper nv comes with humidity, temperature and air quality levels alert but you couldn’t find that in the Canary.
At the bottom of the Home screen, there is a button that will let you to arm or disarm motion-based push notifications. It also has Privacy mode that will turn the camera and the microphone off. You can enable Auto-mode Swtiching that will use geofencing to arm the Canary in case that you want to leave the perimeter of your home for about 500 feet and then disarm it if you are ready to go back.
The profile button is provided that will let you to a screen where you can edit about your personal information including name, phone number, password and email address as well as the + button that will let you to add users so there will be anyone else you trusted to view the live and recorded video.
For the motion-triggered recorded video, it will be stored to the cloud and there is no option for local storage. Simply, tap the View Timeline tab at very bottom of the home screen to view a recorded video. Each clip comes with a timestamp, the description of the event and the bookmark icon to add clip to your bookmark library. There you can check all events, armed events or even bookmarked events. It is also possible to request video download and delete the video. Check your plan information through the setting screen display. There, you can also check for the address and geofencing location, the emergency numbers, installed devices and members or users. No option for adjusting motion sensitivity at the time of writing this review but it can be available in the future software update.
Since it comes with trial period, it provides you seven days of timeline history as well as 100 video bookmarks and unlimited downloads. After the trial period is over, you are automatically invited to get free starter plan that will provide you 12 hours of timeline history, five bookmarks and three downloads.
Setup and Performance – Easy installation and sharp 1080 streaming video
Its installation is quite easy to do. You only have to download the app and then create an account by using your email address as well as smartphone number. Tap the Setup Canary Now and it will ask you to allow the app to access your location services or to enter your home address. Then, plug in the Canary and mention the app where it is located and how it will be connected to the internet whether it is through Wi-Fi or Ethernet cable. Immediately, it will find your connection and ask the password. What you have to do is connect the yellow security cable to the Canary and the audio port on your smartphoe and choose Next to establish a safe and secure connection for these devices. Canary will lead you to an update and verification process to complete the installation.
Based on the test, it was capable to provide sharp 1080 streaming video, recorded daylight video in good contrast and bold colors, well-lit black-and-white night vision video in good image detail and the motion sensor that was a bit sensitive which could lead to false trigger. The sensitivity slider was also the minor issue. But the push notifications came instantly.
The geofencing or Auto-mode switching worked best with the siren that was not as loud as the Piper’s 105dB siren. However, it is quite effective and even could be heard through two doors down.
|Sharp 1080 video
Monitors air quality
Simple to install
Crystal clear night vision
|Pricey cloud subscription plans
Lack of two-way audio
No local storage
With the sharp 1080p imagery and the quick mobile alerts, these are all good reasons about why should be this Canary to complete your smart home security options. It can be installed in minutes and it supports tab on humidity level, air quality and room temperature. You can download or delete recorded video. It has enough loud siren and motion sensor that will arm automatically when you leave your home. It provides many of the same features and functionality as the Canary to control other home automation devices. It also has wider field of view with tilt, pan and zoom capabilities. It supports text, email, phone call alerts too.
At last, it is bit less expensive but you will get more bang with the Piper nv.
Logi Circle – Attractive and easy-to-use home security camera
It is true that Logitech has tried to rebrand the general consumer products division for friendly sounding. They tried for non-PC products. The goal is to give simpler, easier and more accessible devices. It is the first home security camera to meet those criteria. The Logi Circle is attractive camera with no cord design and it has un-intimidating app. It is also designed with two-way voice communication that will make you keep in touch with your home so you are more than just keeping the track of it. It is also completed with 1080p video capture and cloud storage which allows you to enjoy the keeping footage even longer than 24 hours. However, it is still lack of few more useful features you can find in Piper nv or Nest Cam.
Design – More like a webcam
Its look will remind you to a webcam instead of a security camera. It is constructed from plastic with the size like a baseball and it is mounted on a small cylindrical base. The front of the camera is designed with glossy plastic ring around the lens and the ring is surrounded by a speaker grille. There is also an indicator light above the lens with different colors that will tell you about its status. It can pivot up and down but you cannot twist it to the left or the right.
For the base plate, it is attached on the eight-foot USB charger to the camera to make sure that the contact points touch the pins in its base. The magnetic plate is also attached security close to the steel surface. Since the plate is connected to the base, you can set it sideways or upside-down in various places even on wire shelves or under fixtures.
It supports you even without power cable attached since it has built-in battery but it only works for more than 12 hours on a charge. It is better to not keep it off of the charging for a quite long. If you need wireless home security camera, Netgear Arlo VMS3230 has better battery life.
On the underside of its base, this security camera has small power switch that is the only physical control on the camera with the great hidden pinhole Reset button placed on the back of the base. The connection pins for charger and it means that they didn’t design it with ports, slots or buttons.
Setup and App – Simple setup and easy to navigate
Its setup is totally simple with free iOS or Android apps. You can turn the camera on and then wait the light indicator to blink to blue. The next you should do is following the directions in the app so that you can connect it to Wi-Fi network. Since it is designed as a home camera, it is important to set it up so it can work to your home network and there should be no bother changing locations and that is not a big problem at all.
Besides, the app is easy to navigate since it comes with simple interface with unobtrusive icons and scrolling wheel of recordings. The all videos will be recorded to Logi’s cloud and in another word you can access it from your mobile device as long as you have the app installed. There is no Web portal yet. Around the main screen, it displays the live feed from your selected camera and there will be a series of time on the right side of the display. If you swipe down, it will play video of related time stamps and it will file automatically once the camera detects any motion. Swipe it up and you will find a compilation of clips based on last day recording.
Swipe it to the left and it will bring up the app’s options and relatively sparse. Turn the camera on and off or with additional cameras. Flip the video 180 degrees are possible and that will be useful if the camera is mounted upside down. It also has individually toggle the indicator LED, microphone, speaker, Power Save mode to help battery life longer when it is not connected to charger, auto night vision and more.
About the live feed, it is the place for audio that will allow you to hear anything through the camera. The Logi Circle is also completed with built-in speaker that will support you to talk through the app to whoever visits your home. The voice communication is push-to-talk. It means press and hold the voice icon on the lower left of the screen to start speaking through camera.
Based on the manufacturer, they claimed that it is a real-time video feed with the voice chat and it really depends on your network status. If the Circle lags take about a half-second from what it captures to what the app shows, it can spend about five to ten seconds if you have a weak signal issue from your Circle or your mobile device. But we glad that the app comes with a signal indicator to show whether or not the camera has any issue with the network and it can keep strong connection.
For the speaker, we have to say that it is fairly weak. If your normal speaking voice is softer than ideal, it sounds better than a mumble. However, you really have to close the camera to hear anything from the speaker. Sadly, nothing you can do to adjust the speaker volume or the microphone sensitivity. That is the main issue in this Circle. The lack of functionality should be fixed. As you know that it is designed to be very easy to use. Although you can use it to record video clips automatically when it detects movement, send you push alert, still you cannot set up specific zone or times for the alert to active manually. The thing you can do is to activate the automatic Smart Location geofence feature that will disable notifications if it will detect your mobile device close to camera, the options of enable or disable notification for motion, disrupted internet connection or low battery. It would be good as a home surveillance camera if it has more manual control and some scheduling options for its notifications.
Even you can access your Circle through Web portal as the bonus of service for you. It offers the same controls as other cameras with the live and recorded options of the app.
Circle Safe Subscription – Free 31-day trial
In fact, the video recorded by Circle will last only for 24 hours unless you can download it to connected mobile device. The optional is to subscribe the Circle Safe service to help you extending the cloud storage drastically. The Circle Safe can record 31 days of video to the Logi Circle account you have and it supports you to access video after getting a notification of an event. They provides the free 31-day trial too.
Performance – Good video quality
Now, since it is capable to handle 1080p video with the recent update, it is capable to stream and capture video in that resolution easily. It has very good video quality with the wide 135-degree lens to produce distortion. About the live video stream, it really depends on your network connection. After the Circle has uploaded the video clips to cloud storage, they look sharp. It has bright and vivid colors in normal lights. With a built-in set of infrared LEDs and auto night vision mode, it shows all in green-gray monochrome.
The mobile app and the Web portal ran smoothly with a half-second of video lag. During the test, they were very responsive to navigate and it was quite easy to download clips or take snapshots from its interface.
|Easy to set up and mount anywhere
Simple app and web portal
Battery powered option
Two-way voice communication
|Alerts and recordings are impossible to configure
Battery cannot last long for realistic wireless use
Several complaints have been answered by Logi and they provided much-needed features to it since its launch and we have bumped up our score to answer that. But, the Nest Cam and the Flir FX are available in the same price with the more configuration options. You can find Flir FX with microSD card slot to give simple local recording. The problem is the Piper nv is pricier but still able to serve Z-Wave home automation hub, even in our choice it is the powerful option for its functionality.
Nest Cam Indoor –Dual band Wi-Fi surveillance camera with 1080 video motion and sound detection
If you have read the review of the original Dropcam Pro in 2013, you might be wowed with its surveillance camera HD video quality, easy to use design and dual-band Wi-Fi capabilities. But this new one gives you the same but with new design app. It can be a solid choice for those who are still beginner to find the right surveillance cam. If you already own a Dropcam, there is no much warrant an upgrade to provide. It is quite different from Nest Cam that can support other Nest devices. However it doesn’t double as full-on home automation hub like our choice, the Icontrol Network Piper nv.
Design and Features – Striking Design
It has striking design to make it much better than the predecessor, the DropCam Pro. It is puck-shaped device with thinner pedestal-style stand and smaller base that will support the camera to swivel in 360 degrees and then fold it in 180 degrees. It has 4.5 by 2.8 by 2.8 inches of height, weight and depth respectively. It is also designed with magnetic base for easy mounting on metal surface. You can unscrew the camera from the stand and then mount it on a tripod since it comes with a wall mounting bracket and screws. Inside the box, you can find 9.9-foot white USB cable, power adapter and Quick Start guide.
The use of 3-megapixel sensor of the camera provides 1080p video at 30 frames per second and it has built-in dual-band 802.11n as well as Bluetooth 4.0 circuitry. There is also 130-degree field of view and 8x digital zoom. It also has eight infrared LEDs for night vision video.
At the top of the camera, there is a small solid green light as a status light once the camera is on and it will blink green when someone is watching and it turns to blue when someone is talking through the speaker. This camera has built-in motion and sound sensors for video recordings and push notifications. It is also featured with speaker two-way audio communications with your mobile device. For the push notifications, it only works limited to one per 30 minutes. Unlike the D-Link HD Wireless N Day/Night Outdoor cloud camera (DCS-2330L), there is no email notifications.
It is possible for you to view live video but you have to purchase first to a Nest Aware subscription so you can view, share and then download any recorded video with the 30-day trial period when you create an account. Speaking about most cloud video storage plans, there is no cheap price to provide by Nest. Sadly, there is no free basic plan they can provide as you could find in the Netgear Arlo Security System and the Piper nv. But they offer a price break if you work with multiple cameras.
App Control – Support mobile app for iOS and Android devices and web-based console for PC
It supports mobile app for iOS and Android devices as well as web-based console if you are PC users. Those can control the Nest Protect and the Nest Learning Thermostat. In case that the Nest Protect senses smoke, you can have the camera begin recording or it will automatically turn on when the Nest Thermostat is in Away mode.
The app leads to a page that will show the Nest device installed in your home. Click on your camera and you will get a live stream with the current time of the day on the top of the screen. Below it, there are Forward, Reverse and Play buttons. Use these buttons if you want to scroll through previous sound and motion events. Use the Live button to go back to live video. There is a microphone button below the player buttons you can use to communicate with anyone within camera range, History button and Enhance button. Use the Enhance button with the digital zoom feature. It supports you to zoom in on an area easily and press the Enhance button to improve its clarity so you will get the details of the area. Choose the History button to get a list of recorded event videos with thumbnails per hour. If you click on the thumbnail, it will play the clip but it cannot be downloaded, shared or deleted from the app.
You cannot delete any event videos but you can download and then share the videos through Web console. It means you have to create a clip by using Timeline marker located at the bottom of the screen. The clip can be more than an hour long and after that it will be Timelapse clip automatically. You can store more than 3 hours of clips in the clouds and share it via Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. You can download the clips to your PC too. The timelapse feature allows you to record even more than 24 hours of video and it supports you to condense it into 30,60 or 120 seconds clips. You can share these clips or download.
Visit the Settings menu with the On/Off switch, Home/Away switch that will sync the camera with the Nest Thermostat and Image Quality Selector from 360p, 720p to 1080p. There is also a notifications area to enable motion and sound alerts. The Video Access Setting supports you to keep your camera private or public. If you want to make it public, you can send a link to anyone that will make them easily access your live feed. The Schedule setting can be used to control when the camera will turn on or off.
Installation and Performance – Very easy to install and excellent color quality
The installation of this camera is very easy. Simply, you need to plug it in and then download the free app. Once you open the app, you will see a welcome screen and you will be asked to provide your location information such as your continent, country and zip code as well as the name of your home that you want to add to the Nest account. The other Nest products can be seen on your opening screen together with the Nest Cam. If you click Add a Product from the setting menu, you will be instructed to use your smartphone’s camera to scan the QR code on its back. If there is no connectivity issue, you can get it connected in just 10 seconds.
During the test, it provided highly detailed live and recorded 1080p video. It also came out with excellent color quality. The digital zoom ran well to enhance the specific details of the video. Its night vision video was sharp. The motion and sound sensors were responsive. The Timelapse worked well to make you easily pinpoint an event without spending much hour of video and the clear two-way audio communications.
Some issues happened during the test. The notifications were prompt but it took 30 minutes between alerts which could be problematic. The camera housing could get hot to touch after one or two hours of use. Nest mentioned this issue on their support site and therefore, you have to consider carefully about where you will locate it.
|Easy to setup
Sharp image detail
Great digital zoom
Support other Nest devices
|Pricey cloud storage
Easy to get hot
Limited notification capabilities
It is a good camera if you need something to keep an eye on your home if you are going out with its highly detailed live and recorded video in 1080p. It supports you with the push-to-talk feature so you can communicate with anyone within the camera range through your tablet, smartphone and others. It is designed to work well with other Nest devices such as Nest Protect and Nest Thermostat. It can record video while detects motion or sound and send push notification to you but the notifications are limited and they don’t include any email alerts. To go with this camera, you can enjoy it if you don’t mind to spend expensive cloud service to subscribe so you can view and manage your recorded video.
Netgear Arlo Q – A home security camera with sharp, colorful 1080p and clear night vision video
It doesn’t come with revolutionary and it is available in US, UK as well as Australia. It doesn’t have 360-degree view of IFTTT and it is not rated for outdoor use just like other Arlo cam models. But, it is the part of our choice when it is all about finding the safe option.
Design and Features – 1080p HD live streaming in a day and night-vision mode and stunning specs
It works. It has prompt motion and sound alerts with other stunning features such as 1080p live stream in-day and night-vision mode, video playback, two-way talk, Arm/Disarm function and others. However, its live streaming video wasn’t enough to hit the Net Cam’s especially for the night-vision mode.
The Installation and App – Easy to Setup
You will love its installation that is very easy to do. All that you need is download the Arlo app on your iOS or Android device and then follow the step-by-step instructions so you will get started. Like the Nest Cam, it has similar 1080p live streaming security camera with sound and motion alerts – The Arlo Q is also designed with a magnetic base to let you snap it to any magnet-friendly boards.
In comparison to the Nest Camp, the Arlo Q has larger and lighter hardware but it sounds not as durable as the Nest Cam. It is also not easy to maneuver and angle. Both of them come with similar functionality but we must admit that the Nest’s version is easier to navigate. It comes with two significant caveats. The Arlo Q has its motion and sound alerts on demand with the free 7-day event-based cloud storage and the optional paid service in case that you want to keep it with the continuous videos recording.
The Nest Cam has their clips of motion and sound alerts on demand and then they will only send one alert for every 30 minutes and there is a potential scenario that you don’t get a notification during burglary or other events for your security issue. You have to check your activity log actively to see motion and sound events. Nest doesn’t offer event-based cloud storage for both free and paid and you have to pay about 10 dollars per month for server-based recording and storage.
The main downside of Arlo Q is the lack of third-party integrations. Netgear doesn’t provide IFTTT channel or work with any devices from other companies and you couldn’t be logged into the Web and mobile app by using the same account at the same time which makes it a little bit inconvenient, but you can do that with the Nest Cam.
When it comes to its hardware and app, we expected that it works with more devices but its alerts functionality, Nest-Cam-level specs and free cloud storage make it as our choice to recommend with its DIY security staples as the same as the Nest Cam.
|Easy to install
Good night vision
Detailed HD images
Email and push notifications
Free cloud storage
|Some response lag
It is a responsive and reliable security camera for your home with 1080p HD resolution, motion and sound alerts, night vision, two-way talk, activity zones and free 7-day event-based cloud storage. To get continuous recording as you need, you have to pay monthly fee. But, it has an issue with the third-party integrations and it is impossible to log into the same account on more than one device at the same time. The camera is still hard to beat its rival, the Nest Cam. It is a good option if you want a simple and straightforward indoor home security camera with its free cloud storage and top specs.
Netgear Arlo Security System VMS3230 – A wireless camera anywhere with great functionality
Right now, it is easier to install a home surveillance system with the support of proliferation of Wi-Fi cameras but mostly is still going with an AC power source. It shouldn’t be any issue at all especially for indoor applications because there are plenty of power outlets. But, it does for outdoor usage. The Netgear’s Arlo Security System VMS3230 is a fully wire-free home surveillance camera system with the palm-sized design and battery-powered cameras with the base station that will support you to track motion in and around your home. It allows you to view live and recorded video through your smartphone or PC.
Design and Features – 4 ounces small cameras with more than six-month of battery life
This option comes with two cameras, base station and Ethernet cable with eight CR123 Lithium batteries, so four are for each camera. It is possible to purchase a single camera with additional camera but it sounds more expensive than purchasing the dual option. For the kit, it has four semi-round metallic mounting devices that support you to attach it to a wall with the screws and drywall anchors included. Each camera is designed with powerful magnet in the back of its housing so you can attach the mounting device without any tools. Place the camera on any flat surface is possible. Even you can attach it to your refrigerator if you want too.
For the camera and the base station, it has attractive glossy white finish. The small cameras have 2.5 by 1.6 by 2.8 inches of height, weight and depth with the weight only about 4 ounces. They are waterproof rated that support you to place it in temperature from 14 to 122 degrees Fahrenheit. It means you can install it outdoors in all extreme climates. Each camera is supported with CR123 batteries that can last for more than six months.
The camera has maximum resolution of 1280 by 720 and 130-degree field of view. To provide night vision, it comes with 12-infrared LED with the range of more than 24 feet. To keep power consumption to minimum, the pan and zoom functionality is digital and it means you have to pre-set the camera settings. It also means that you can dynamically pan, tilt and zoom like what you can do with the Piper nv. In addition, it is lack of audio support so you cannot initiate one or two-way communication just like the Piper nv and the Compro TN900RW cameras or even record audio with your video. But, this camera supports motion detection and it can be configured to email and push notification alerts.
ThE camera works with the base station through Wi-Fi and the maximum range is more than 300 feet. About the base station, it has 6.5 by 8.5 by 2.3 inches that will remind you to the older Apple AirPort Extreme router with the LAN port, two USB ports, Power button, power jack located on the back, Reset switch and 5-LED status indicator (power, internet, camera, smart home, USB) on the front. The smart home and USB indicators can be reserved for future use and Netgear mentioned about the possibility with the Zigbee and Z-Wave controllers for extra features.
About the recorded video storage, Netgear provides three levels of price. The basic service means free and it provides you 7-day of cloud recording with more than 1GB of storage and it supports more than five cameras with one base station. The second is the Premier service with the cost about 99 dollars per year and 30-day of cloud recording with more than 10GB of storage and more than ten cameras as well as one base station to support you. The last is the Elite service with 149.99 dollars per year and 60-day of cloud recording with more than 100GB of storage to support more than fifteen cameras and three base stations. These levels support you t download your videos, share via email and create motion detection schedules.
Apps – Support iOS, Android and PC users
You can use an Arlo app for iOS, android mobile devices as well as web portal that will let you to log in from your PC. If you open the app, you will see a split-scren view that will show installed camera and the last captured image. There is a camera name, time, date, battery level, Wi-Fi indicator and motion detection icon at the top of each camera screen. There is no live video so you have to press Play button with the arrow icon to launch live feed and it will stay active until you leave the app or you navigate to Library, Mode, or Setting Screen by using the icons at the bottom of the screen. However, it may take battery power and network bandwidth.
At the Library, there is a list of recorded videos and snapshots and these are stored in the cloud. If you click any file, you will view the video or photo. You can mark it as your favorite and then share it via email or download it to your device. You can delete it too. For the Mode screen, it is the place to create motion detection schedules. You can specify dates and times there if you want to enable or disable motion detection in each camera. In Settings menus, it is the place to adjust motion detection sensitivity as well as recorded video quality. It is also the place to create rules for email and push notifications to send when the motion is detected.
It is possible to upgrade your subscription level, manage storage, edit personal information and adjust camera settings such as the digital pan and the zoom feature that will let you zero in specific point within camera’s field of view. The camera will hold this position and you can make some adjustments to the Setting screen. You can switch to full-screen mode if the live feed is initiated. Other things you can do is to record live video, adjust the brightness with the control icons at the top of the screen or even to take a snapshot.
Installation and Performance – Easy to install with sharp 720p of picture in good color quality
It is easy to install the Arlo system. Plug it in the base station at first and then connect it to your router. Wait so the Power and the Internet LEDs turn to green. Download the app by using QR code on the included instruction guide and create your account by using your email address, first and last name, and password and security questions. You will be asked to choose the service plan.
After that, you can sync it to the camera. You have to install the batteries in each camera and hold the camera a foot away from the base station. Press the Sync button on its base station and on the camera. If the LED on the camera blinks to blue, it is already connected. Enroll the second camera by placing one camera to a room and then mounted to other outside.
It delivers a sharp 720p picture with nice color quality. It also has sharp black and white night vision but it comes with muddy detail around 20 foot mark. It has 2-3 second lag between its live actions. Its display is similar to other wireless network cameras such as Ion The Wi-Fi Video Camera.
We have to admit that the motion detection feature is flawless. Don’t set the sensitivity level too high because the camera will send notifications easily. During the test, it came with consistent email and push notification with clean video, motion and crisp.
In addition, the camera installed outside never faltered but during the test, it gave inaccurate reading because it had to deal with extreme temperature. In the near future, Netgear will resolve it.
Small form factor cameras
Easy to install
Free cloud storage
Good quality and night vision video quality
|No audio recordings
Lack of dynamic pan, tilt, and zoom functions
If you have a problem of convenient power source around your home and you need to install surveillance camera around, the Netgear Arlo Security system VMS3230 is good option to go with. It is a little neat Wi-Fi camera that works with batteries and you can install it anywhere to monitor any activity in and around your home. It delivers sharp video, detect and record any motion and then save it to the cloud. However, its audio support and dynamic pan, tilt and zoom capabilities should be improved. It shouldn’t be a big problem for you if you have more concern on its long-battery life. But, if the lack of audio is the main problem for you, you should go with the Piper nv though you cannot use it as a outdoor camera.
Petcube Play – Latest security 1080p camera with excellent night vision, cloud storage and alerts
You can find many home security cameras on the market but there are only two with a laser pointer so you can play with your pets when you are not at home. It is the Petcube that is also called Petcube camera and the second is the new Petcube Play which gives significant improvements from the original with the 1080p video, night vision, cloud storage as well as alerts. It is possible to purchase the original version which can be under 50 dollars, but the hardware improvements are the biggest advantage for those who purchase this new edition.
The Camera – 10-7 ounce cube camera with 3.1-inch
It is a 3.1-inch camera with the weight about 10.7 ounce. This cube has transparent black plastic for its front panel with the metal body in black, rose gold and matte silver finish. The front panel wraps the camera lens close to the top and there is an infrared LED on its left as well as laser array at the bottom. It also has single recessed micro USB port on its back to power the camera with the included adapter. On the bottom, it comes with rubber square to keep the Play from sliding on flat surfaces. A standard tripod screw supports you to attach the device anywhere.
The design is still identical to the original version, but it has more advanced technology inside. The company upgraded the 720p to 1080p and retaining the same wide that is about 138-degree field of view. The camera also has night vision with the infrared emitter to lit up your dark apartment when you come at night. The vital upgrades are granted to fix the current problems.
The App – Very easy to create account
First of all, you need to create a free Petcube account so you have to set it up and then access your camera which is quite simple to go. At this time, you are only allowed to have one Petcube device on your account, but you cannot set up multiple cameras to complete different places or even angles of the same room.
It also let you to access the Play if you go with the same Petcube app. Open to a control panel and you can find whether the camera is online or not. You can view other public or shared cameras although if you don’t have Petcube. If you tap the large camera icon located in the middle of the screen, it will take you to the live view. The Care button on its left supports you to access Petcube Care subscription service and the Share button on the right allows you to share your camera feed with family, friends or even public.
It means that people on your Friend list can get the access in certain period of time and People you add to your Family list can access the camera at any time. You have to set an interval if you use Public camera access. It is possible to set whether people who access your Play can get two-way audio and laser functions or not.
PetCube Care – New cloud storage service to watch your pets
Basically it is a new cloud storage service that is designed to solve the current issues in the original camera. It is able to store 10 days of video or 30 days of videos. You can store the video in the cloud and it has activity alerts. This makes you able to get push notification when it detects motion and sound.
The service is specially designed to watch your pets, not intruders. It means that the alerts are not as advanced or open to configuration as Nest Aware. It doesn’t connect to any home automation systems.
Performance – Improved video quality
Petcube Play has much better video quality compared to the original model. It has higher resolution camera to give crisp and colorful picture although sometime it came with irritating light bloom from the lamps of your apartment. It has excellent night vision with very bright infrared LED that will let you to watch your pet.
Besides, the camera has a microphone and speaker so you can listen and talk to your pets. The speaker is quite loud and you can tap or drag your finger over the video that will shine a laser and entertain your pet. You can use the camera and video icons to save screenshots if you want to capture cute things your pet is doing.
Good night vision
Speaker and laser to interact with your pet
Optional cloud storage service with alert
|Cannot support multiple cameras
Expensive cloud storage service
The Petcube Play finally fixes all inconveniences you could find in the original Petcube and now it offers sharper resolution, excellent night vision and cloud storage with alert service. It also has a laser you can use to play with your pets. It is a good option if you don’t mind with the jerky laser and pricey subscription service. It is better to choose the laser-less Piper nv or Nest Cam Indoor if you need multiple cameras.
Zmodo Pivot – A crisp 1080p video camera with multiple security and environmental sensors
The indoor Zmodo Pivot was unveiled at the first time at CES earlier this year and it is not a newcomer to security camera scene. It comes with something different from before since it has motion sensors with 360-degree and pannable center that can auto-rotate to record any activity clips outside. It also has 135-degree camera’s fixed range.
It is featured with night vision, Bluetooth speaker, two-way audio, 16GB of internal storage, humidity and temperature sensors. It also comes with two battery-powered door/window sensors and it supports you to add any accessories around it.
Although it sounds like the camera is too much, the features around it give more value. It has 1080p live stream with night vision and other solid standard features although the motion detection sounds missing.
Features – The motion sensors
It is capable to pan and tilt with motion sensors that sound uncommon among DIY-pan and tilt cameras. When it comes to single, fixed view-security camera like Nest Came, it is completely MIA. The motion sensors are the highlight to keep it apart from the competition. You can find the sensors at the top of the camera with the 135-degree field of view. It means when there is someone walk close to the camera and they don’t pass in front of the camera lens, it doesn’t matter at all because the built-in motion sensors will issue an alert and it will capture a video clip of activity.
It also comes with two-battery powered door/window sensors. You can program it to rotate in direction of door. Window or others you are monitoring once the sensor detects activity. With the 360-degree motion sensors, door/window sensors and panning capabilities, it also have some solid specs such as 1080p high definition resolution, temperature and humidity sensors, 16GB internal storage, night vision, Bluetooth speaker, related Android and iPhone apps and two-way talk via built-in speaker and microphone.
Design and configuration – Best for the center of a room
It works best if you locate it in the center of a room since it has 360-degree panning capability. It is a smallish black cylinder that will remind you to Canary in the term of design. It has simple configuration as easy as downloading Zmodo app, plug in the Pivot camera and enter the local Wi-Fi credentials. Add door/window sensors simply by choosing Add device and select accessories and then push the button on the side of the sensor so it is getting started and connected.
The app is easy to navigate and it is not the most streamlined software, but you will get everything easier after extended use. However, there are some significant limitations that it is mentioned to bring the cloud storage into the mix, but not right now.
The third-party integration is the main issue. It doesn’t support Alexa, Nest and other smart home platforms.
The Performance – No much lag and good live stream for both day and night mode
During the test, it performed really well and it didn’t lag much. It had good live stream in both day and night mode with the auto-adjusted software between the SD and HD when the Wi-Fi network turned slow and the notification about motion and door/window activity were quick.
It wouldn’t capture all events because it will send you an alert not more than once for 10 minutes.
|Easy to install
Sharp 1080p video
Lots of sensors
|Doesn’t support with IFTTT or other smart home devices
A bit slow panning motion
No cloud storage yet
It can be a nice option if you want to cover wide field of view and you don’t have any problem at all with the third-party smart-home integrations. It is a quirky camera especially with its 360 degrees of motion sensors and pannability as the asset.
So, those are our choices about 10 home security cameras reviews that are best for 2017.