As technology improves we continue to see the advancement of home security systems, they go hand in hand. The better the technology, the more others want to take it away from you. That’s why I have spent the last two months reviewing the best indoor home security camera.
I think it’s important to focus on what makes a good security camera with today’s technology. Ideally, you are going to want to want a “wireless” camera. So I am only going to review WiFi cameras today. The first thing you’re going to need to look at is your wireless router. You need to make sure your router has a high enough bandwidth to accommodate the new camera system. If you are still using 802.11n you should be fine, but you should consider upgrading to the new standard 802.11ac.
The main cameras I am going to look at today are the Amcrest UltraHD 2K, the FDT 1080P HD, and the YI Dome Camera 720P. As you can see, they are all different resolutions. I think this is a good indication of how sometimes technology gets ahead of us. You see a higher number, and you think to yourself “bigger is better”, and that’s what these companies want you to think.
With indoor cameras, it’s hard to find a good spot to get the best point of view. You have TV stands, bookshelves, furniture in the way, it’s not always ideal. You could mount the camera on the ceiling, but that can bring a lot of unwanted attention to the device. Outdoors cameras always look good, but indoors it’s considered impolite. That’s what makes PTZ so desirable. PTZ stands for “Push To Zoom”, which is a term adopted from the days where you would only have security cameras at your bank, and one operator watching them.
These days we call it “Pan/Tilt”. This allows you to focus on what is going on at any angle. You can place this on a bookshelf, out of the line of sight, so it blends in seamlessly. It really is the standard for indoor security.
The Amcrest UltraHD 2K is very good at pan and tilt. With a 90-degree viewing angle, this camera will allow you to easily see what is going on around your home while you’re away, sort of? Some purchasers have mentioned that the 2k version is actually only 85.5-degrees, a five percent drop from the 1080P version. Another very useful feature
Another very useful feature are the infrared LEDs behind the black circle on the front of the camera. Todays CMOS sensors are getting better and better at picking up low levels of light scattered off of the moon and stars in the night sky, unfortunately, this doesn’t help us inside the home.
That is where infrared technology comes into play. The Amcrest 2k boasts up to 32 feet of infrared light, but in practice seems to only be around ten feet. Still pretty good for indoor purposes. The infrared light is invisible to the human eye, making this option perfect for watching a newborn. The 2k pixels of resolution is made possible by the 3-megapixel sensor. This camera is perfect for a standalone solution with its ability to take microSD cards. One problem many users have run into is the user interface. When this camera is installed, you have the ability to view and manage the recordings with a web-based user interface. It’s very slow and difficult to learn. Amcrest has promised updates to the user interface, but at the time of this posting, nothing has been seen yet.
Up next is the FDT 1080P HD. As I already mentioned in the post, you can see that the FDT can only produce a 1080P stream. This is due to the 2-megapixel sensor used by FDT. It is really hard to say if the 2k on the Amcrest is worth the extra $20 in price. Another thing you need to look at again is the capability of your router. These larger sensors require more and more bandwidth in order to stream these larger resolution videos. If you only want to use the onboard storage, it’s not a problem, but with that, you won’t be able to view the videos on your phone live.
The night vision on the FDT is reported by the manufacturer is 26 to 30 feet, which to our surprise, most users have reported that it does exactly that. So if you have a larger home, this could be an option for you.
One downside is the mobile app this camera comes with. It is sad how these companies come out with a great product, perfect in every way, except when it comes to its execution. It seems that every time you go to use the app, the camera will get dropped from your phone’s memory, causing you to have to “re-install” the camera often.
The FDT and the Amcrest both come with a speaker and microphone, a very handy feature if you do decide to watch your children with either of these solutions.
Up last is the YI Dome Camera 720P. Last but not the least, the YI camera has all of the same features as the previously mentioned cameras. One major difference is the camera sensor. This camera is only capable of streaming 720P videos. You are losing a lot of texture and quality from the image, but we think that it makes this camera the best option. If you only need one camera in your home, and you don’t care for the ability to stream multiple cameras, then look at the Amcrest or FDT, but if you plan to expand your home security system over time, then the YI is the best option.
720P might sound like a downside, but trust us, it’s not. If you want to have multiple cameras on the same network, you are going to need a lot of bandwidth. That’s not the case with the YI 720P. Since you’re streaming at a lower resolution, which means a lower overall stream size, you might run out of outlets before you run into bandwidth issues.
If we were talking about outdoor cameras, it would be a different story. With outdoor cameras resolution is key. You need to make sure you get the most detail from your images as possible. You might need to get the license plate off of a car that’s parked 40 feet down the street. You need to get all the detail you can get. Not so with indoor cameras. Since everyone and everything is so close to the camera in the first place, the detail doesn’t matter as much.
That’s why the YI Dome Camera 720P is our pick. With a 112-degree field of view and 360-degree area cover, this is the one we picked. It is packed with extra features that make up for the lower resolution. Such as the built-in “baby crying detection”. If your child needs your support, you will quickly get an app notification directly to your phone letting you know how much your child missed you.