Video Security Systems
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Thread: Video Security Systems

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    Spartazoo's Avatar
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    Video Security Systems

    We just purchased an Arlo Pro 2 video surveillance system. Was quick and easy to setup but we are still dialing in the settings. So far so good.

    There were many systems to chose from. What system do you have and do you like it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spartazoo View Post
    What system do you have and do you like it?
    I've had a Swann NVR-7400 four camera system for about three years. (HD resolution. The recorder supports up to eight cameras.)

    What I like:
    Power over Ethernet (POE) - Only one cable to run; no exposed power supply; no need for outdoor electricity or batteries like wireless systems.
    A decent app -- I run it on Widows, iOS, and Android mobile devices.
    Motion zones - customizable zones and schedules
    Night vision - good discrimination
    Audio - connections are provided on the cameras (but I didn't run the cables)
    Recorder - Holds 3-6 weeks of motion-triggered video for my environment and supports two monitors
    Durability - Never had a hardware problem.

    What I don't like:
    Cost - Other brands are now nearly as good for much lower cost (Mine was a Sam's Club deal.)

    Clueless for smart homes - Can't yet really interface with any other devices
    (Workaround: I used the second monitor port and ran a cable to tie it to a PiP screen on my primary TV. Alexa opens the PiP window.)

    For any camera system:
    Seriously consider a POE system. Wireless sounds great until you think about outlets, power supplies, etc.
    Know your connectivity needs since some brands can't work with other devices or software
    Place your cameras to be easily visible; they are a good deterrent
    Insects will cause false motion alerts and spider webs can block the view if you don't spray around the camera occasionally.
    If performance becomes irregular, check the main power supply output voltage to ensure it meets spec. Those things can fail at any time, but may just become weak rather than shutting the system down.

    I also have a Ring Pro video doorbell. I don't pay for recording since I have the other cameras. It's a really, really, great addition with excellent tech support. I tied its motion detection to my Smartthings hub to trigger other events and added chime modules in the basement and back patio. A layered defense is your best bet. We have a traditional home alarm system, too.
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    I use a combination of driveway alerts and wireless cameras. If you go wireless, I'd definitely recommend some sort of external wi-fi antenna/extender. Take a look at Ubiquiti for the good stuff. It's relatively inexpensive for this. Properly positioned, something like this can give you good signal coverage for barns, outbuildings, etc.

    I'd love some more detail on the Arlo system. Do you like it? Does it actually text you the video clips. Probably too soon to ask about battery life. I've looked at Arlo before and liked what I saw, but it's pretty pricey. But we have a new neighbor that makes me a bit nervous, so I'm considering some battery operated wi-fi cameras to position in places where I can't run power (or a POE cable).
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    I will be adding a POE camera system with a NVR to host them all. I'm still working out the details but I'm fairly certain I will be going with Dahua Varifocal IPC-HDW5231R-ZE cameras. Likely mated to a 12-16 channel NVR. I will likely also mount some external IR boosters to help with the NV capability of them.

    There's a vendor that handles the ordering and shipping of them through AliExpress
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