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2016
Best

Video Surveillance Cameras Reviews

reviews & comparisons

Video Surveillance Cameras Review

Why Buy a Surveillance Camera?

A security camera serves one primary purpose: to help you protect the things that matter most. Video surveillance plays a major role in reducing theft and preventing crime. Advances to video monitoring technology and wireless compatibility have made it possible to keep an eye on your most precious items from almost anywhere. Many models, like the Swann PRO-760 Super Wide-Angle Security Camera and the Lorex 700TVL Security Camera have movement sensors and alert settings, which you can configure to send email alerts or push notifications when something happens. Surveillance cameras such as the Samsung SmartCam HD Pro also allow you to keep an eye on your loved ones while you’re not around, so if something unfortunate were to happen to a child or pet, you can know and respond immediately. Retrospectively, a good surveillance camera can help aid in intruder identification, which increases capture rates following break-ins or acts of vandalism and violence.

What to Look For

Because of the importance surveillance plays in our lives, surveillance companies have produced hundreds of options for customized home and office surveillance systems. You may find it tough to choose the solution that’s right for you. A good home surveillance camera offers high-resolution indoor and outdoor capabilities, and the advancement of wireless technology means less mess and more flexibility. Design advancements mean you don’t necessarily have to hide the camera away (unless you want to), and features such as night vision and movement tracking can be nice. Audio might be important if you’re planning to use your surveillance camera as a baby monitor.

Design
There are virtually endless options available for security camera design, but the most common models are bullet shaped, dome shaped or mounted circular. Most come with mounting stands and attachment cables, but not all include them in their packaging bundle; you should look into it before you buy because you may need to pick up additional components to make your camera compatible with the rest of your system.

Resolution
Resolution among surveillance cameras varies, and you generally pay more for higher image quality. Before you buy, know if you’re looking for night vision compatibility or if color is important to you. The average resolution for the models we looked at was around 640 x 480 pixels, but you can invest in a sharper picture or a camera with greater range for better outdoor monitoring.

Audio
Most in-home models come with built-in microphones, which is ideal for listening in on little ones or keeping an ear on pets. A lot of security cameras also come with two-way audio capabilities, which let you talk to people on the other side. A number of outdoor models don’t rely on audio surveillance, and we’ve identified which surveillance cameras include mics.

Wireless Capability
Many in-home surveillance systems are wireless compatible, and you can utilize your Wi-Fi connection to stream live video to your mobile devices or computer. Some tech providers offer apps while others require you to use your browser to log in and view the real-time footage. Most outdoor models don’t have wireless capability and require that you hook your cables up to your DVR or monitor to review the video feed.

Indoor/Outdoor Capability
This is really just a question of where you’re setting up your security cameras. If you’re using it exclusively as a baby monitor or for keeping an eye on your cat while you’re out of town, you can probably get by with an in-home model, which doesn’t have the weatherproofing and durability of some other cameras. Outdoor surveillance cameras should be capable of handling extreme temperatures as well as rain and snow.

Choosing the right security camera has a lot to do with what you’re expecting to get out of your surveillance system. When you’re making a decision about something that’s going to play such a big role in the safety of those around you, it’s important to do your research beforehand. You can read our reviews to see a number of options for you and what you can expect from each of them.