You would like to protect your home but use a professional agency exceeds your budget? So why not invest in a wireless WiFi camera? This guide will help you see more clearly and understand how these machines. Our comparative end folder will then give you some models recognized for their effectiveness.
IP Camera: what is it?
The objective of a camera is to capture images and transmit the data either on a screen or to a storage unit. So what difference a conventional camera of an IP camera (also called wireless camera or wireless camera)? In absolute terms, not much. This is actually how the data is transmitted varies.
IP stands for Internet Protocol. Even without great knowledge in English, we guess here where will spend the images and what material will be used. IP cameras in fact use technologies such as Wi-Fi or Ethernet. They are connected to your Internet Box and generally use a smartphone application or a Web browser to view what they see. Before investing, it will therefore ensure that you have a minimum equipment: a router or a Box, an Internet connection and finally a smartphone / tablet or PC. But if you read this guide, there is good chance that you already have everything!
Why invest in a wireless security camera? The reason invoked is mainly security. A network camera allows you to control your home or outside your home (with some legal limits), even away from home. Depending on the model, you can get alerts by email / SMS when motion or suspicious noise, while others are motorized to move the lens 360 and zoom in on what interests you. All you need is an Internet connection, which is relatively easy, since France has more facilities than other countries in this area through the Box.
Individuals are not the only ones affected by the IP surveillance cameras. Professionals can also use them for surveillance purposes, but other uses are possible as the counting of customers entering a store.
To select your IP camera, certain criteria have to be considered outside the budget: location, connectivity and features. We’ll go around these aspects before presenting some models that have retained our attention.
indoor or outdoor camera?
Above all, we have to decide the area to be monitored. From this location will depend almost everything else. An outdoor camera will thus be protected against rain or vandalism. Maybe will you need a motorized camera to monitor your living room 360?
The IP rating is probably the most important for an outdoor camera. Do not confuse with Internet Protocol! The IP rating is the degree of protection, it is found in many electronic devices. The higher it is, the more the device is protected against water and dust. Thus, a camera with an IP64 is insensitive to dust and waterproof against rain. One inner camera does not need to be protected as an outdoor model and their enclosure will generally be lower.
As an individual, you will have some legal obligations to follow when installing your security camera. Thus, an external camera does not film the street or your neighbor. You should cover your home and garden. If you hire staff (nanny, gardener), he must be warned of the presence of your cameras and in any case they should be used to follow them in their work to control purposes. Do not forget your cameras are there for safety, not to spy!
Connectivity: Wi-Fi or Ethernet?
Connectivity is also a very important point when installing an IP camera. Currently, there are two types of connectivity: wired (Ethernet) and wireless (Wi-fi). Each has its advantages and disadvantages.
Used in many electronic devices, the Wi-Fi eliminates the often cumbersome son. It allows a more flexible installation, but requires good passage of signal to function optimally. This means avoiding putting too many obstacles between your camera and your Box during assembly. The wireless signal can also be a victim of disruptions, it is often the case when there are Bluetooth devices nearby.
Best Wi-Fi standard is currently the 802.11 ac that uses the 5 GHz band, less sensitive to disturbances but with a shorter range. Generally, IP cameras use 802.11n on 2.4GHz.
Last point: do not forget to use an encrypted password to connect your camera to the box, you do not want anyone to intercept your videos!
Ethernet uses cables with RJ45 plugs to transmit data. Such a connection ensures maximum throughput without suffering the same disturbances as Wi-Fi. The connection is more simple as possible: connect and voila. so you would think that Ethernet is the best solution for IP cameras, but this is not necessarily the case.
Unless you want to pull cables through your house, your camera will be relatively loan Box, unless your home is equipped with RJ45 wall jack, which happens only for new constructions. However, you can use PLC modules for extending your Ethernet network, even if this solution can be costly.
Ethernet will therefore require a more complex implementation than it seems to have a discreet and effective installation.
View images of your home in real time is certainly useful, but you can not watch your smartphone constantly! In case of burglary (what we do not want you), it is useful to view recordings. The data should be recorded.
Depending on the model, IP cameras offer record images on a USB stick or SD card to be inserted into the camera. This solution is inexpensive, but few data can be recorded, especially in case of continuous recording.
Other manufacturers allow recording to a NAS. The NAS is hard disk accessed over the network. Some natively integrate with Box. The advantage is that you will benefit from hundreds of gigabytes of data. The establishment of such a device, however, requires some basic computer skills.
Finally, some manufacturers offer storage of your recordings on their online servers. Storage is therefore widely expected as a result, you can access your data from anywhere but do you want your recordings on discs end of a third company?
We have already seen the main features to consider when choosing your IP camera. We now turn to small additions that will make the difference to your needs.
It is impossible to stay the whole day on the smartphone to check that no one is brought home. Motion detection can do the job for you. Many cameras offer this feature which allows shooting only when motion is detected in the camera field. This avoids storing data unnecessarily by not filming in case of problems. It is even possible to trigger an alert via SMS or email when motion detection.
Your budget will largely depend on the quality of videos captured by your IP camera. The definitions currently range from 640 x 480 px in Full HD, or 1920 x 1080 px. In order to identify a face, a HD definition should suffice, or 1280 x 720 px.
The motion sensor can also be important depending on the area to cover. There are motorized cameras which pivot the sensor on its horizontal and vertical axis. You can move yourself the goal via the smartphone application or establish an automatic mode. If your camera is not motorized, it will be placed with precision during its installation.
Finally, some sensors have infrared lenses that allow for night vision (black and white images). Other benefits of LEDs that illuminate strongly for the purpose of deterrence.
The choice of writing
Here now various IP cameras that are known for their efficiency. There are hundreds of different models on the market, so do not hesitate to give us your preference in the comments.
Price: € 169
Tested in our columns, Nest Cam is a Wi-Fi IP camera that shines with its very small size. Simple to implement, it is a reference in the high-end and to monitor your home via the dedicated application for smartphones.