Home Surveillance?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by wayland1985, Dec 10, 2015.

  1. wayland1985 macrumors 6502

    Jan 16, 2008
    Forgive me: I'm not sure this is the place for this:

    I'm a cheap person... So paying for ADT is getting old.

    I came across "Ring" the other day (the doorbell camera), and got to thinking that maybe now is the time to invest in a surveillance system for home. I've been pouring thru forums, products and reviews of products, but I'm having a hard time finding something. Surely somebody here can lend some input !

    Basically, all I'm looking for is a way to get photo or video alerts when somebody approaches my house. Then I can decide if I need to call the authorities. There are lots of surveillance systems on the market, but I haven't found one that's apple friendly, or fully reliable.

    Does anybody have any suggestions?
  2. ericgtr12 macrumors 65816


    Mar 19, 2015
    I use the Nest Dropcam for this, it works really well. Excellent quality picture, easy to setup with just your cell phone and you can designate zones (draw with your mouse on a computer) for it to monitor and notify you. We have it trained on our front door and nobody steps foot on the porch without us getting an immediate notification with their picture.

    I also use Comcast for home security and it has cameras as well but it really serves a different purpose than the Nest Dropcam, which is great for notifications and alerts.
  3. BernyMac macrumors regular


    May 18, 2015
    Check out http://arlo.com/en-us/

    And if you are as cheap as you claim and in the USA, go to any harbor freight store and you will be able to check out varied systems on the cheap.
  4. wayland1985 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 16, 2008
    The drop cam is nice... But won't work outdoors.

    I had looked at the Arlo: and like the idea: do you have one? Does it eat up band with?
  5. steve knight macrumors 68020

    steve knight

    Jan 28, 2009
    I used the dropcam under the eves. but for some reason it got worse at staying connected. brought it to my shop and it works fine. the samsung smartcam is better and it does not cost a monthly fee to store video. So far the cameras are pretty sensitive and go off way too often. I use smartthings and a motion sensor to keep track and sensors on the gate doors. so I know when someone opens it I can use check the camera.
    there are a lot of options that are free of monthly fees.
  6. Wondercow macrumors 6502a

    Aug 27, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    Generally, I'd advise against this: unless you spend a lot of time and trial-and-error testing you'll generally have constant alerts. People out for a walk, kids playing, dogs, cats, squirrels (or whatever critters you have in your area) cars, etc. They'll all set of the motion sensors. Hell, just a good wind can usually set them off, and on my indoor cameras I'll sometimes get alerts because of dust particles flowing in front of the lens.

    Since there's usually little that the police can do about people outside one's home (even if they are "suspicious looking" people generally have a right to approach a residence's front door) my recommendation is get quality cameras for inside and some less expensive ones for outside. I backed Canary on Indiegogo and couldn't be happier with the system.
  7. ericgtr12 macrumors 65816


    Mar 19, 2015
    That used to be an issue for me but with the latest advancements in zones it's very rare that I get an unnecessary alert. The occasional cat maybe but for the most part when I get one, I know it's because an actual person is at my door.
  8. wayland1985 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 16, 2008
    I ended up ordering an Arlo and set it up... I'm still playing around, but I'm surprised to see the zone settings are far inferior to the drop cam.

    The picture is hit or miss too, so I may end up trying another alternative (I'll give this a few more days though).

    I really want outdoors to keep an eye on packages/deliveries (lots of news stories of packages being stolen), and it wouldn't hurt to keep an eye on our cars too.

    I'm thinking about trying the d-link offering, but I don't see myself using the nest outdoors (plus I hate that it's subscription based)
  9. ericgtr12 macrumors 65816


    Mar 19, 2015
    Yeah when I saw Harbor Freight in that post it pretty much stopped me in my tracks, nothing against them but they're the bargain basement of cheap stuff. 32 screwdrivers for $8, too good to be true type of junk. If you want something decent, you have to pay for it.

    Unfortunately, we seem to be in the middle of a boom with these systems. It will be nice when the wireless (though still plug in powered) cameras become a little more real time, even the best one's still have some lag and you can't monitor them like you can those that are still hardwired. I used to have a Lorex wired system and it was pretty decent, I was also able to access all my cams from the iPhone app but after moving I didn't want to go through all the wiring again.

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