This NETGEAR Arlo Smart Home VMC3030-100NAS security camera can be added to an Arlo base station system (not included). Motion activation initiates automatic recording and alerts you via e-mail or app notifications.
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Arlo is the beginning of something great.
Posted by: BygSii from: on
Went to look at home security cameras since I live in a shady part of the city. There are lots to choose from. D-Link, Dropcam, Belkin even has their own. Then I saw the Netgear Arlo. Netgear has made great networking products in the past, mostly with their network routers which I use at home. Initially, I couldn't justify the $500.00 price tag, and just wanted the two camera system. The cameras themselves are $160 each (March 3rd, 2015), so realistically I saved $140.00 by purchasing the four camera system. Now let's get into details.
- Very easy to set up. Plug in the base that looks almost like a Netgear router itself, plug it into your router, turn it on. Put the batteries in the camera, and press "sync". Your done!
- Interface. I set Up a camera by my garage looking out into the street and one looking by my front door. From the website or app, I can rename the cameras, give priorities, adjust the motion sensing up or down, choose the recorded lenth of video. What's nice is that when you receive a message either through text or email, and start watching the camera, it will record as long as you watch. You can set it to record anything from 10 secOnds to 2 minutes, or manually record as long as you like. Of course, there are more options for Premire and Elite members, but I choose to stick to the basic free membership. I am allowed 1GB of online storage, and a continuous seven day storage, so on the eighth day, if any video was recorded on the first day, it will be deleted from the cloud. I'm fine with this, because I can pick and choose what videos to save to my computers before the cloud erases them after seven days. I just wish Netgear would come out with a software update to allow all motion from video recording, of say like a 3:30 minute timeframe, instead of manually having to Record for 3:30 minutes, or being able to catch the motion on a whim at work and watching to record activity until it's over. I can check video feeds on my smartphone from work. Android or Apple, no word on Windows.
- Size. I do want to note, that these cameras are about the size of a soap bar. Pretty small for what they offer.
- Picture quality. 720p looks very good for being completely wireless.
- Instalation. Screw in a screw, drop the magnetized connector, connect camera.
- Weather. It's snowing and below 20 degrees right now, both cameras outside are having no issues with the cold.
Now the Cons:
- Batteries. These cameras take four CR123 or CR123A (same thing) a piece. Finding them is hard, and when you do, buying them is expensive. I recommend finding some rechargeable CR123 batteries. The battery life is rated at 4 to 6 months. I have heard reports of less than that. I have heard reports of only a few days battery of constant video survelence. From my experience, I have probably watched over 3 hours of video, and recorded over 30 minutes of video from my street view camera, and it's still showing a full battery. So far, I think the battery life is good.
- Mounts. It's nice that Netgear includes six magnetized indoor wall mounts with anchors. What is upsetting is that they only supply you with one outdoor mount. The outdoor mount has longer screws, uses three instead of one screw, and has a proprietary tripod mount for securing the camera. I used this one for installing the one on my garage looking out over the street. If you want more of theses mounts, Netgear will be selling them for $20 on April 1st. So for now, the Arlo camera on my garage looking towards my house is only held on by the magnetic mount. I'm scared that if strong wind were to swing by, it could send my Arlo camera flying.
- Audio. No audio going to or from the cameras, but I'm ok with that.
- Subscription based. The free subscription works fine for me. There are two different paid subscriptions at $10 and $15 each. Both offer more cloud storage and a longer back catalogue of video recordings. I don't need these because I'll just save a video if I need to. Scheduling would be nice, as it allows you to schedule video at certain parts of the day instead of just motion off or notion on, but I can't justify $10 for that feature.
Overall, buy these of you want an easy use security camera with great picture quality and wireless everything. Don't buy these if you want 24/7 survelence, hate the idea of cloud storage, or don't want to be on a ladder changing out the batteries every few months.
204 out of 212 found this review helpful.
Nanny/Pet Cam at best, zero value as Security Cam
Posted by: Doug from: on
Initially this seems like a great product, none of my issues are with physical build quality of the product.
I purchased the 4 camera system and took it home and installed it that evening, setup is fairly simple and straightforward, the interface on the mobile app and web client are both good in my opinion. The issues began to present themselves when I started reviewing footage the next day to see how the system performs. I had 3 cameras mounted on the front of my house, 2 approximately 10-12 feet above the ground, mounted outside of a window, aimed at my driveway and the sidewalk in front of my townhouse, and one 8-10 feet, above the front door.
Problem #1-Motion detection is terrible, I made sure the cameras were aimed properly when setting them up, utilizing the mobile app to look at the camera view as i adjusted them, making sure I was covering the desired field of view, etc. When reviewing footage intermittently over the next day and a half, I found that the motion detection was rather spontaneous, sometimes the cameras would turn on for someone walking a certain path, other times a car could go by and they wouldn't turn on. I had an extra camera that I placed in my living room just out of curiosity and found the same thing, sometimes it would turn on when I walked in the front door and up the steps, sometimes it would not. Sometimes it would capture my dog walking around, other times, no. I ended up with an abundance of 10 second video clips of people or cars leaving the frame, which leads to problem #2...
Latency. When the motion detection does work, it seems that there is an excessive amount of time between the camera detecting the motion and starting recording, again, the majority of clips captured were things leaving the camera view, so you have 1-2 seconds of someone walking away and 8-9 seconds of nothing but empty frame.
Problem #3-Record Time/Battery life. So out of the box, the cameras are set up to record in 10 second intervals. Honestly with a security camera, if I'm going to rely on motion capture, I'd like to have at least a 30 second clip from when motion is detected. Now this is possible, at a price. You can set the record time up to 2 minutes. The factory 4-6 month stated battery life is a 4 minutes per day of those 10 second clips, 4 minutes=240 seconds/10= 24 events per day on average for 4-6 month battery life, or 4 minutes per day x 120-180 days= between 480-720 minutes of recording. So if we wanted 30 seconds and still averaged that 24 events per day we'd end up with 12 minutes per day which would translate to 40-60 days of battery life. These cameras take 4 CR123 batteries each. So $20-25 every 6 weeks for batteries is going to add up, call it $150 per year. So cost is going up...and here comes problem #4...
Cost- So in addition to the battery cost, the 4 camera system comes with 4 silly magnetic mounts, OK if you're using this indoors, maybe they'd be alright, they hold the camera sturdy and there's nothing wrong with them per se, they just don't make sense for outdoor use as someone could throw something at the camera and knock it off then steal your camera. The system does however come with one single adjustable outdoor mount, this one attaches to the camera via a screw post and is rather nice. So here's why this is included in the cost section, the nice mounts cost $20/each (maybe $15 online somewhere), seems to me that they include one in hopes that you'll prefer it to the magnetic half sphere mounts and go spend $60 more. Also included in cost is the subscription based web-DVR setup. 7 days worth of DVR/Archive is included but if you want more, it'll cost you. So lets look at the real cost of this system over 6 months, I paid $510.69 with tax for the 4 camera system, plus $75 ($150/year) for 60 day DVR, plus $60 for 3 more of the secure mounts, plus estimated $100 for batteries over that timeframe...$750 so far for 6 months. And after the initial investment, if you want more than the 7 day DVR, I'd estimate its going to cost most people at least $250 per year to have this system.
Final thoughts, for $599.99+ tax, I went out 2 days later and bought a 4 camera wireless (powered cameras, wireless signal to DVR) system with a 1TB hard drive and free web based viewing and reviewing. I really wanted to like the Arlo system, I think its built well and super easy to install and user friendly. It just doesn't work well or financially make sense for me.
139 out of 147 found this review helpful.
Posted by: G2THENO from: on
I bought these cameras for my vacation condo in Florida which doesn't require constant video recording like i have at my primary residence. These do a great job and allow me to check in while I'm away. Running wires in a condo would be a nightmare. These cameras are completely wireless, which is perfect for my needs. I like the fact that when i leave i can setup the cameras on their magnetic mounts inside the condo and when i am staying there i can remove them. Reduces the Creep factor (don't like being watched in my own home). I can't give you solid feedback on battery life yet i haven't had them long enough but initial impressions are very good.
Issues-Recording on motion sometimes doesn't trigger fast enough. Eg. when i walk out of my elevator into the condo the system snaps a picture and emails to me along with starting video recording(10-60 seconds) and sometimes nothing is there. i am hoping this will be fixed with a software update . 8/10 times it works perfectly.
Setup is super simple.
Image Quality - 7.5/10
46 out of 47 found this review helpful.
All that I hoped for!
Posted by: Anne from: on
After doing quite a bit of research on the Arlo system, between articles and non-bias reviews, I figured I'd go for it, because why not? You can return it if you hate it anyway...
My husband, who is NOT tech-computer handy was a bit leery of helping me set this system up. He just told me a few minutes ago that he was surprised and very happy that it went so well and wasn't difficult at all.
About the battery life - I've only had it set up for a day, however these cameras are activated by motion. If you have the camera pointing somewhere where there will be motion ALL DAY LONG then you will defiantly drain the batteries. You can also set motion sensitivity, so for instance, if you have plants moving in the breeze, you can change the sensitivity to essentially filter that out so it doesn't record when the plant is moving. So, if you are using it like we are, to detect and record motion when there isn't usually motion, then you'll be fine battery wise according to the many other reviews on other websites. Also, the other reviewer that said the batteries are $10 each, clearly doesn't know how to do a google search for products. You can get these batteries for about $1 each when you buy in bulk - each camera takes 4 batteries, so yeah, it will be $4 to replace them every 4-6 months, but that's not bad considering you didn't have to hire someone to drill holes in your house and run wires and all that.
Cloud storage - the fact that this system doesn't require the use of a DVR or computer is cool. At first, I thought that it was weird and I would want more control over my own storage space, but it's actually really nice to not have to deal with another device.
The system does require you to hook up it's wifi hub, but it's sleek and small and just plug it into your existing system and go. I will add though, that my existing routers are in the basement though, and when I hooked this up initially in the basement, by the time I got the cameras outside and to the back of my property, the signal wasn't strong enough. When I brought the hub onto the ground floor it worked absolutely fine. The pipes and other metals in the basement aren't too kind to wifi.
Overall my household thinks this is great, my non computer savvy husband finds the app easy to use and so do my kids. I am very glad I made the purchase!
63 out of 67 found this review helpful.
Easy Setup, Avg functionality, Poor monitoring
Posted by: Spamhater007 from: on
Here are my thoughts on the device.
5 Stars for Setup - can't get any easier than this.
5 Stars for complete wireless setup - absolutely no wires
3 Stars for wireless distance good reception, works well up to 50-60 feet, after that connection drops quickly so does video quality.
3 Stars for video quality, I would not call high-definition
1 Stars for field of view - states 130, but real world view is 90 two cameras barely cover 180 - see pictures
1 Stars for dependable recording - you must have a good internet connection that is up all the time - ONLY records to the internet, nothing local, if Internet is down, so is your monitoring.
0 Stars for other use - these cameras will only work if you have an arlo account, internet access, and the cameras connect to the base.
0 Stars for motion recording - motion recording only sets off when action crosses FOV, delay from motion to start of record, usaully equals activity has already moved out of FOV, or just get few of activity.
0 Stars for more than 5 cameras - you can only record to the cloud, more than 5 cameras you have to pay subscription.
0 Stars for monitoring - cannot actively monitor without running the batteries down very quickly. NO 4 camera constant monitoring, unless you want to spend $25 on batteries every 2 days.
0 Stars for simutaneous monitoring and recording - if you or someone else is viewing the camera feed live, it will not record any motion detection, the viewer would need to select record.
1 Stars for logging and viewing - takes about 2 minutes to get to live video feed. Far to slow to catch something in realtime
0 Stars for stated battery life - based on using the lowest video setting and very limited motion detection (5 mins per day)- no one ever would buy a HD camera only to reduce it the lowest settings.
4 Stars for Indoor Battery life, these perform well in a constant temprature.
0 Stars for Outdoor Battery perfomance indication, well below freezing tempratures, batteries will quickly report low or out. Must climb ladder, and re-seat batteries, to reset low battery warning.
2 Stars for Outdoor Battery life, iinstalled in Mar where temps -0 Batteries have lastest 1 month in a camera effected by pet traffic. 2nd camera seems to be holding up ok, 2 months.
I have tried multiple WiFi Cameras, these work comparitively well, much easier to setup and use. After trying many WiFi cameras was going just bit the bullet and get a lorex, swan, or q-see system, then saw the Arlo. Wish I just went with my original choice of a wired system.
This system is perfect for the NON-serious security monitoring. Not meant to replace a video recording system.
80 out of 87 found this review helpful.
Doesn't replace live video
Posted by: Broncos777 from: Chicago on
I like that its wireless and super easy to setup. From start to finish installing base router + two cameras it took me just under 2 hours. Would have taken less if cameras worked at original angles. Leading into what I don't like.
I didn't like that camera best picks up motion from the side vs head on. Creating slight challenge when placing cameras. I also don't like that the camera records 10 seconds of motion, which is delayed by 3-5 seconds. You can make up for this by loading the app to view live motion, but the alerts you get on your device are only 10 seconds. I need at least 30 and can't find adjustments in settings.
For roughly $100 per camera and the simple slwireless setup, this product will serve its purpose, as I use it to know when kids are home while I'm at work. The mobile app and alerts sent to my phone when motion is triggered & being able to turn/on and off with my smart phone is intuitive. I just wish it had a few more features on capturing more than 10 seconds of delayed motion? Perhaps that's what you get if you sign up for Arlos premium monthly subscription. From what I gather, the subscription just gives you more than 7 days of stored motion recording. (Which the average user doesn't need)
If this review helped, mark it below. Thanks!
38 out of 38 found this review helpful.
The lag is to much
Posted by: Teacher from: on
I bought this system today and will be returning it tomorrow! I was so excited about the potential of no wires, no drilling, and easy setup. All of that came true, but the lag time on the activation of motion sensor to the actual recording was to much. There is about a 6-8 second delay on the activation of the camera and it doesn't always activate. Was very disappointed to read all the problems on Arlo Community Board (something you get to read once you buy the system and create your free account). Don't get me wrong the camera quality was great and easy to set-up, but I want the cameras to record there faces when they approach my house, not the back of their heads as they are leaving. That's what it did for me. Many complaints about this on the community forums for Arlo!
41 out of 44 found this review helpful.
Posted by: captaintrips from: on
This system would be good for someone that is only interested in a one camera system that is at their front door, or something like that. If you want something that records all the time this isn't for you. There are flaws with the system I could not overlook. It will only record when it detects motion, and only then for the amount of time you have it set for, which is 10 to 120 seconds. If you have it set for 10 seconds in order to save cloud space (that's one of the other problems) once the 10 seconds have passed it stops recording even if motion continues. There is a lag of about 10 seconds before it will start recording again, during which time whatever is happening is lost. Now about the cloud, only 1 gig is free. If you need more than that you have to pay, because setting it up to record to your own hard drive is not supported. Most other systems that come with hard drives come with 1 terabyte, that is a huge difference. The motion detection is also not very good. the camera mounted over my garage would record almost every car driving down my street, but not a car pulling into the driveway. Customer support says the motion detection works best side to side as opposed to straight on. There is also a couple seconds of lag from when the camera detects motion before it starts to record. For an example of how this is a problem I mounted a camera by my front door to record as people walk up to the house. The camera had a view all the way down a 20 foot long sidewalk heading out to the driveway and the garage. As a person would clear the side of the garage, they were clearly visible, but yet the camera would not record until the person was one step from the door, and almost completely out of range for the camera. It would end up with about half a view of their head, and then they'd be out of frame as they stood at the door. All of these recording problems were with the cameras set their highest sensitivity. When I'd drop it to anything below 80 percent it wouldn't record at all. I had the 4 camera system which came with four magnet mounts (not secure at all for outdoor use) and one hard mount. If you want more hard mounts they're $20 each. It kind of feels like being nickled and dimed for a system that isn't all that cheap to begin with. Also the cameras do not appear to very outdoors friendly, even though they claim to be all weather. On paper the arlo looks really good but in practice I was rather disappointed.
34 out of 36 found this review helpful.
Posted by: Jbone36 from: on
Bought this because the design of my two story home wasn't ideal for running a wired system (my preference). Install and setup was a breeze.
The problem rests in its inability to do what people buy security systems for. For example, I mounted a camera near my front door and at an angle because the instructions say cameras pick up horizontal motion better than head on motion. Over the course of several days, the camera consistently failed to sense motion and begin recording fast enough before the subject was out of view. At best I catch the very tail end of someone entering my front door which wouldn't do me or the police any good.
My second camera is a mere 10' away from the front door camera and it doesnt even pick up motion of someone entering my front door. Not to mention it only records 10 seconds per activation. I understand this is a battery operated system, but to me, this is an unacceptable security system for any price because it doesn't work. I took mine back and will find a way to install a wired, continuous system and have peace of mind.
61 out of 71 found this review helpful.
Amazing Picture Quality
Posted by: Cliff21 from: phx,az on
I didn't want to run wires for cameras and I wanted good picture quality. Well these fit the bill in my opinion. I put one on my porch opposite of the sensor light and it picks up a great image of anyone walking up to my door. I have it setup to capture all motion and it will email me directly when it picks up motion. The android and apple apps are good as well. The setup was very easy! I need the adjust and filter out the movement on the street. Battery life seems to be good but only time will tell!