Editor's Note: This product has been moved to our Security Cameras Review. You can still read our original review below, but Top Ten Reviews is no longer updating this review.
The final home security system in our comparison is produced by Swann, a prominent player in the residential security systems industry. This native Australian company began in 1988 as a manufacturer of modems and has continued to innovate its way into several markets around the world, including home security solutions. The kit that we reviewed did not compare well with its similarly featured competitors, earning only modest scores in usability and customer service while offering little in the way of features. The system is worth a look, but it ultimately falls behind our higher-rated video security systems.
Only two cameras are included with the Swann home security system, significantly limiting the flexibility of this surveillance kit. The two cameras also have a lower resolution than most of our top-rated products, coming in at 640 x 224. This resolution indicates that the picture produced by these home security cameras falls somewhere between the quality of a VHS tape and an early DVD. The picture is still in color and the cameras contain infrared LEDs that activate at night for 24/7 surveillance, but limiting the system to two cameras greatly hurts this product in our comparison. Motion detection also comes standard.
Strangely, the storage space on Swann’s DVR falls between the standard 500GB and 250GB sizes with a capacity of 320GB. H.264 compression is also not available with this home security system, limiting the longevity of the DVR’s hard drive. However, they still claim that you can record continuously for up to two months with this hard drive by using only one camera at its lowest settings. This system comes with a monitor which connects directly to the home security cameras. Unfortunately, this monitor is one of the few ways to view the feeds from the cameras themselves; you cannot transfer the feeds over a network with this system.
As it lacks the ability to view footage from any location with an internet connection as many other home security systems do, Swann’s video surveillance system can be inconvenient to use on a regular basis. Setup and use are easily managed however, making this one of the more intuitive and simple residential security systems that we reviewed. It also has sufficient documentation in user manuals and an online FAQs section.
This is not the most feature-filled or flexible home security system available, but Swann’s surveillance kit still has positive attributes. It is easy to set up and use and it is backed by an above-average array of customer support. Unfortunately, these benefits do not outweigh the system’s overall poor performance. Look at some of our higher-rated products for a more complete residential security system.