I've been helping my retired friends, who winter down south, set up inexpensive home surveillence systems for their primary home residents (Usually 3' to 5 cameras). Until I found the WVC210 I've used Panasonics BL-131A's. I'm really impressed with this Linksys camera, in fact it would be perfect for home surveillence camera if the firmware had a few more features. The ideal system is one that includes stand alone wireless ip cameras that require only the camera/router/internet for the system to function. Both the Panasonic and the Linksys have this capability. They both also let you access them anytime on the web and have PTZ to check out the property. (Panasonic does allow for better Zoom)
Panasonic sends the motion detection email alert but the Linksys goes a step further by including a 5sec avi/with sound attachment. Would be greatly improved by having the ability to email more than a 5sec file. Would have helped to have it send using a more compressed file than avi (more information in the same size file). Argument could be made that some mail providers limit file size to 1mb but most providers have upped the attachment size these days because most of us send photos and video files that are much larger. Lets say we up the email attachment to a 2 or 3 min video. Then instead of just seeing someone walk to the front door, we see them ring the doorbell and make sure they walk away if we are not home.
FTP Alert - Again both cameras have this ability and again Linksys probably includes the 5 sec attachment. (Advantage Linksys) This is where Linksys could, however, gain many more customers like myself. We don't need to record/save files at set times during the day, we just need to record and save files if there is activity. Instead of just using FTP to accept an alert, it would be perfect to have the camera stream data to our FTP data storage site for longer periods when motion is detected. Lets say the firmware had settings that allowed streaming to go for maybe 10,20,30 min. Probably would want to have the ability to limit to file size if there were a lot of false triggers sent.
Both the Linksys and the Panasonic cameras don't handle morning or afternoon sunny days. Linksys has a big advantage by using a dome over their lens. Now they need to exploit the advantage by coming up with some non-glare plastic to use for the dome. Overall its a great camera and I will use more of them in the future. Wish there was an inexpensive outdoor version of it. Wouldn't take much to make it waterproof and that would be enough to use outdoors in places without severe weather.
Steve, I've also got to comment on Cisco's tech support. I've called them a couple of time and got to a tech in minutes and had no problems understanding them. I can not say that about most support centers today. Yours is excellent!!!!!!
I have looked at your suggested cameras and while they look good I prefer cameras that have PTZ to cover as close to 180 degree as possible with a single camerea. I also want them to be wireless and not require a computer as a montoring device. I earlier downloaded and looked at the Cisco Video Monitoring v1.2.1 but could not find many features at all. The web based application that came with the camera certainly looked better and had more configurations. The camera picture even looks clearer using the camera's software. I'm hoping that when Cisco acquired Linksys they kept the programmers that developed Linksys v1.1.0 software because this interface and features beat most any of the monitoring systems I've seen costing a couple hundred dollars. Wish I could use it to monitor those Panasonic cameras. :>)
Darrell, as Steve mentioned, the WVC210 can store to a NAS, basically you could get the camera to record all the time and let it recycle so you could record a whole day's worth on a NAS, if some event happens you will get an email alert. Now you know when the event happens so you can go right to that time and see the whole event.
As for outdoor it i really not just a matter of waterproofing the camera but the components inside the camera will need to be outdoor certified too and those components do cost much more than indoor components as they don't have to withstand severe temperature changes.
Thank you for your "pat on the back" for our support group, we value our customers and appreciate their support so in having a great customer support team also help to make people like yourself our life long customers.
You might have put me on to a possible solution. I had no idea what Record to SMB/CIFS was on the camera setup software but if it means you can send recording to a NAS it could be a solution?? Of course it would be an extra expense (A NAS system) and if I have 4 or 5 cameras setup to stream avi to the NAS wouldn't it take a lot of hd space? Promise this is my last questions
It's OK Darrell, you can ask as many questions as you like, we're here to help. Depending on how many cameras you set up I can get you some rough estimate of storage space. The reason it is a rough estimate is due to lighting, movement, resolution and frame rate. You really don't need to record at the highest resolution or frame rate. Many integrators will record at 320x240 at 10 frames, this will save you space and you will not miss anything. Most NAS these days can store at least 1 terabyte (2x500 GB drives) and that's all you'll need running, no PC, I'm sure you can record a whole month on 1 camera with that much storage.
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