Favorite features in a smart security camera

I’m starting to consider buying an outdoor camera or two for increased security around my home. What would you consider to be must-have features, and which camera do you think best hits the mark for overall value?

Things I found necessary when trying to monitor a house we were having renovated (during Covid)

  1. The ability to crop the vision field and cut out things like passing cars
  2. The ability to save to memory (vs paying for cloud storage)
  3. POE (Power over Ethernet) to allow placing where AC power is not avail
  4. Found this link that provides a lot of background info that may/may not be known.
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The POE requirement can be mitigated with $11 adapters like this:
They seem to work with the Wyze cameras.
You just need a POE switch to inject power (about $50 for 5 port gigabit ones).
I don’t know of many cameras that will run just off solar power though (year round) without putting a beefy battery at each location. Wyze has newer outdoor cameras now with replaceable battery packs, and offer trickle charge solar chargers. I am NOT endorsing Wyze devices, I am just telling what is available from Wyze. They do offer a yearly $99 service for up to 99 cameras cloud storage (14 days and it rolls off).

I wouldn’t mind having a few extra camera’s to add to Google Home/Nest. I don’t think I want anything but fully compatible Nest cameras. Right now they’re simply too expensive. I can wait.

Can you explain what this means to you? I’m asking because I’ve noticed the current line of Google Nest Cams are no longer compatible with the Nest app.

What do you deem to be a reasonable price?

I haven’t kept up with it too much, but there was a 9to5 Google article with listed compatibility. At the time it looked like nest and Arlo cams were compatible with real time streaming in the app. I want things like zones and people/package detect.

<$100 for an outdoor wired cam. I don’t really need much. One more cam for the driveway and one for the back door would be nice. It’s not that big a deal though. I live in an urban environment where we get people checking car doors to steal things that aren’t locked up. I’ve only had this happen once to me in the 20 years I’ve lived here. Most of the time the cameras are a source of amusement. I can’t believe how many trailers seem to fall off hitches in front of my house.

It is amazing watching traffic from midnight to 5 a.m. on security cameras! You will be shocked once you get some cameras installed and start perusing the video footage.
Also, deer love to eat on our rose bushes.

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Just a follow-up, here (and I’d still be interested in hearing what people with fancier set-ups than mine are able to accomplish), we did get a security camera, just a basic Google Nest cam. Our driveway is long enough that cars going by on the road don’t trigger it.

We regularly see a couple of cats whose ownership is unknown to us. We have seen one raccoon :raccoon: . We see our packages arrive. :yawning_face:

I think my most fun with it so far was seeing my next door neighbors’ Rottweilers nosing about on my driveway while we were out of town. They have Bluetooth collars and it only fails once in a blue moon, but there they were, looking for trouble. I tapped the microphone and told them, “Go home!” They looked up, bewildered, tucked their tails, and took off through the bushes, then stood in their own yards and barked for a while!

Mine isn’t, so I have a zone set up and only have Nest set up to alert me to certain events (persons) occurring in that zone when all the phones are geolocated away from our home. The zone is also needed so that I don’t get alerted to everyone who walks by the house on the public sidewalk.

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Barely related post from the Utica subreddit: https://www.reddit.com/r/Utica/s/r9MDlSUSMu

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I’ve never had that happen to me, but I’ve seen two trailers come unhitched from vehicles driving by. I must live in the trailer hitch Bermuda triangle.

Here’s my favorite clip from my camera, so far!

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I’ve got a really basic Wyze camera setup. I don’t pay for the subscription and save only to my SD cards in the cameras.

One camera is to monitor my carport to make sure nobody vandalizes my car while it’s charging.

The other monitors the front porch to prevent porch piracy, the camera is super obvious for that reason. Really only want motion detection for my use cases.

Here is one of the most interesting front porch clips I caught:

cool … did you use https://forums.rwusers.com/t/whats-in-your-backyard-let-technology-show-you/872/8 to identify it?

It helped in that the app had been identifying summer tanagers even though I had never had a visual ID of one.
So knowing it wasn’t a goldfinch, when I started looking at yellow birds that might be in NC, it was a cinch to ID.

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