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Wifi Cameras

Wifi cameras are extremely popular, but part of our commitment is to provide what is best for people, rather than just the easiest thing to sell.

Wifi cameras are generally a bad idea for security. Wifi cameras are by definition less secure than wired cameras. They will still need to be powered, so you'll need to still run a cable or risk it with a power cord exposed. Wifi cameras are also extremely popular, so much so that that thieves have started making Wifi Jammers.

Here's an article from Arstechnica about this vulnerability affecting Comcast cameras, but the problem is more pervasive than any one brand. Any surveillance camera that uses a wireless communication method is susceptible to wireless jamming.

The 3 wireless technologies: radio, wifi, and point-to-point line-of-sight beam technologies.

1.Low Quality Radio Frequency Cameras

Radio Frequency cameras send analog video over radio signal - they are essentially the video version of a walk-talkie.

We don't recommend (or sell) the radio frequency technology because it doesn't actually work for security - the resolution is too low and the connection too prone to static.

Here's a sample review for one of Amazon's best selling wireless cameras that uses Radio Frequency.
170 reviews, mostly negative.

Here's a actual size image of what that the video looks like with this technology.

Same view, taken with our HD cameras

2.Consumer Grade Wifi Cameras

We do sell one of these, but it is important to know how Consumer grade Wifi cameras works, so that you use it for what it was designed for.

Just like with radio frequency cameras, consumers are often disappointed with wifi cameras, as see by these reviews:

Why people are often disappointed with Wifi cameras

1. Wifi cameras only work where you have wifi signal and connect back to your wifi router- which is why wifi cameras need to be used indoors, as exterior walls block wifi.

Here's what the average signal strength looks like in small home:


As you move away from the yellow sections of this signal strength map, your connection are more likely to drop for a second or two. You don't notice when you watch a video from the internet this because it pre-loads the video. With security cameras, you cannot preload video. So moving an IP camera further away from the router will make it more likely to drop connection (resulting in missing sections of video) or have be a slower connection (making the camera unable to transmit HD video in realtime and have to switch to low-quality video).

You can notice, if you go to the direct reviews of any of these wifi cameras on Amazon, that there seems to be an equal number of people saying that it works well as those saying that it does not work at all.

The people who cannot get it to work are using it in the red sections of the wifi heatmap and the people who are using without a hitch are using it in the green or yellow parts.

2. More than 2 Wifi cameras can slow down your router and make your internet seem slower.

A wifi camera connects back to the router wirelessly and then the router communicates through a Cat5e cable to the NVR. Most people get their routers from their cable company or ISP, because the cable companies often buys it for their customers and wants to do so as cheaply as possible, your router may be very low quality. The more computers, tablets, and laptops that you have connected via wifi, the slower they will all run. Transmitting 1080P HD video uses 300 MB of data every minute. This can have a drastic impact on your network performance. it will vary wildly by router, but as a general rule, a single wifi camera will work perfectly while 4 will make your network crawl to a halt.

3. You still have to wire it.

Normal HD IP cameras have 1 wire that sends power and video. Wireless cameras still need power, so you will still need to wire them. Most people wire them to a wall socket, which is easy unplugged.

4. The biggest reason not to get a Wifi Camera For Security Reasons is that anyone can buy one of these:

You can buy one of these at a Radio Shack and many other places online. It blocks wifi signals, bluetooth, GPS and other signals.

It is portable and fits in your pocket.

Since most alarms run on one of these wireless technologies, it is a favorite item of people who are going to break into a home.

Because of this product (and the many more like it), we recommend never using wifi cameras for security purposes.

DIY Hackers can also put together a jammer for under $20.

Also, here's 3 different videos by 3 different people who are using different methods to disrupt or disable wifi networks with smartphones or wireless landline phones. One of them in narrated by a 12 year old.

Example Video 1: How To Build A Portable WiFi And Bluetooth Jammer with a Wireless Landline Phone

Example Video 2: How To Jam Wifi with an Android Cell Phone

Example Video 3: How To Jam Wifi with an App called "Wifi Kill"

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  1. The Cube Pro 3.0 WiFi - 48030 - 3MP Indoor Camera with 2-Way Audio

    The Cube Pro 3.0 WiFi - 48030 - 3MP Indoor Camera with 2-Way Audio

    In stock.
    Usually ships the same business day if ordered before 2PM EST.

    $319.00


    Resolution

    3mp

    3MP @ 20 FPS
    2048 x 1536

    OR
    1080P (2MP) @ 30 FPS
    1920 x 1080


    Weather

    weatherproof

    Indoor Only


    Temp

    temperature rating

    Temperature rated from -22°F to 140 °F at below 95% humidity.


    Lens

    fixed lens

    Fixed: 4mm
    75°


    IR

    infrared

    Infrared night vision up to 30 FT


    Special

    special features

    Wi-Fi, Micro-SD Card Slot, Built in Microphone and Speaker

    Digital Zoom Only

    Learn about the 4 types of Zoom


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Q: What's the range of a Wifi camera?

The range is not actually a function of the camera, as much as it is of your wifi router. There are different speed and ranges for the different levels of wifi on router. The camera is receiving the signal (and transmitting back), but has to be in range of the signal that your router is transmitting.

So, the distance actually depends upon what router you have and your environment as walls, microwave ovens, cordless phones, and other appliances can shorten the range. Here’s a the approximate ranges in different environments for different speeds.

So, you’ll need to find out whether you have a B, G, N, AC router.

A B router will have an average indoor range of 115ft and an outdoor (unobstructed) range of 300 ft.

A G router will have an average indoor range of 115ft and an outdoor (unobstructed) range of 460 ft.

An N router will have an average indoor range of 230ft and an outdoor (unobstructed) range of 820 ft.

Inside the camera is a N wifi receiver (it will also work with G or B because it is backwards compatible - but B is pretty slow, so I would make sure you’re using a G or N router if you want HD video.), so if you have an AC router the camera will use the N connection speed and range.

You can also buy wifi range extenders (here’s a model for example, but you'll need to get one that’s the same brand as your router).

A final note about maintaining wifi cameras:

Although installation may seem easier with Wi-Fi cameras - Wi-Fi cameras require more maintenance than wired cameras. Wireless cameras by nature are less reliable than a wired cameras, we recommend wiring cameras whenever possible. All of our Wi-Fi equipped cameras are also able to be wired with Cat5 for optimal performance.

Wi-Fi cameras are not battery powered or equipped - they require power via ethernet or by a DC power adapter - please keep this mind for installation.

Point-to-Point Line-of-Sight Beam Wireless

If you have needs that go beyond consumer grade wifi, we carry military grade Wifi solutions (not available in stores) that can transmit up to 3 Miles but require line-of-sight (no obstructions).

You can add this sort of wifi to your NVR / cameras, these technologies only really works outdoors, and probably won’t fit your needs if this is for home use. They are surprisingly not as expensive as you might think, but they are difficult to setup.

Here's an excellent promo video on the product:




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