Netgear Arlo Q VMC3040 Review

The Netgear Arlo Q is on par with the best security camera, especially in terms of daytime video quality, though it is less effective at night.

Our Verdict

The Netgear Arlo Q is fairly easy to use and offers excellent daytime video recording, though its nighttime quality is less impressive.

For

  • This security camera's daytime video quality outperforms most other cameras in our review.

Against

  • The Netgear Arlo Q's nighttime performance is below average.
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Netgear Arlo Q image: This security camera can sit on a shelf or be mounted to a wall, and the flexible power cord makes it easy to do either.

Netgear Arlo Q image: This security camera can sit on a shelf or be mounted to a wall, and the flexible power cord makes it easy to do either.
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Netgear Arlo Q image: The nighttime video this security camera captures isn't as clear as that of other cameras we tested, but it shows enough that you can see movement.

Netgear Arlo Q image: The nighttime video this security camera captures isn't as clear as that of other cameras we tested, but it shows enough that you can see movement.
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Netgear Arlo Q image: You can connect several of these cameras to your Wi-Fi and app account so you can keep track of video from all around your home.

Netgear Arlo Q image: You can connect several of these cameras to your Wi-Fi and app account so you can keep track of video from all around your home.
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Netgear Arlo Q image: You can view video clips stored in the cloud for up to seven days, or longer if you upgrade your service.

Netgear Arlo Q image: You can view video clips stored in the cloud for up to seven days, or longer if you upgrade your service.
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Netgear Arlo Q image: This security camera's website has a community section where you can ask questions and get answers from staff or other camera owners.

Netgear Arlo Q image: This security camera's website has a community section where you can ask questions and get answers from staff or other camera owners.

The Netgear Arlo Q is on par with the best security camera, especially in terms of daytime video quality, though it is less effective at night. This Wi-Fi security camera comes with an easy-to-use app for your smart device and several of the best security camera features, such as an excellent field of view.

We weren't able to change the quality of the resolution, but we found this wasn't an issue because the motion was smooth, and the 1080p video resolution provided a consistently sharp and detailed image. There is little to no latency between movement and when it appears on video.

The Netgear Arlo Q also performed well in low light, but it was not nearly as effective in a dark room or at night. This security camera's lights kicked on and illuminated the dark room it was monitoring, but its visible range isn't as far as Netgear claims. The sign we placed 16 feet away from the camera was barely visible in the image. The 25-foot range set by Netgear was too far away for a clear image, and we could only read the sign when it was placed close to the camera.

The Netgear Arlo Q, like any security camera, goes into action when there is something to record, and this camera has a quick response time. It switched on instantly when it detected a noise or motion in our tests. You can use the two-way audio feature to communicate with a family member or let a visitor know you're home.

This security camera did give us some trouble during testing. On our first attempt to connect the Netgear Arlo Q to Wi-Fi, it failed to recognize the connection. However, simply resetting the camera fixed the issue and we were able to connect to Wi-Fi. We also lost connection to the router twice during our testing.

Netgear Arlo Q isn't compatible with smart home hubs, like our top pick, Nest Cam Indoor, but you can schedule recording. You can program your wireless security camera to record when you're away from home. You can also set it to record for special events like when your family leaves on vacation. 

You receive notifications if anything happens while the Netgear Arlo Q is on and hooked up to your Wi-Fi. This is one of the few Wi-Fi security cameras we tested that lets you use 5GHz Wi-Fi, to prevent 2.4GHz devices from interfering with your connection.

Netgear Arlo Q's basic service plan gives you seven days of free cloud recording. That's only up to 1GB of storage, which isn't a lot when you consider that a home security camera with local storage supports up to 64GB microSD cards. You can upgrade for more space, but that involves selecting a plan that costs more.

This security camera includes a standard one-year warranty, during which time you can return it if there are defects. If you have questions or concerns after purchasing the camera, you can contact Netgear via phone, live chat on its website or email. The website also offers FAQs, tutorials and articles for answers to common questions. Phone support is free if you have an Arlo subscription, but nonsubscribers have only 90 days of free phone support after a purchase.

Netgear Arlo Q competes with the best security cameras if the room has plenty of light, but it doesn't record as impressively at night. Setup for us was tricky, but once it's up and going, it works well. You have a lot of options for support from Netgear, but unless you subscribe to one of its cloud services, you have to pay for help by phone after the first 90 days.