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TRENDnet TV-IP322P for $350 until 3-29-12 (recommendation?)


 
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dlaflamm
Member


Joined: 24 Apr 2011
Posts: 12
Location: New Hampshire

PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 11:49 am    Post subject: TRENDnet TV-IP322P for $350 until 3-29-12 (recommendation?) Reply with quote

Does anyone have any experience with this camera (below) or could you at least comment on it based on the specs alone? The price looks good, but after lurking here for the last few months I've learned that you often get what you pay for with network cameras. I've been reading here, as well as the reviews on Buellwinkle's blog. Thanks to everyone for all the great info!

Need/Use:
My current need is for an outdoor megapixel camera for home use. Night vision would be nice, but not critical since my primary purpose is to monitor my young kids when they are playing in my side yard where the view from inside the house is limited. It is 100 feet from the house to the far edge of the yard.

I just finished installing a mount for my flat screen that allows us to position the flat screen in the living room so it rotates to be viewable from the kitchen (open concept). The idea is to be able to monitor the kids outside while dinner is being prepared.

I also would like to keep a high res camera pointed towards a large pond that we overlook. It is a protected water body and just this morning there was a boat racing around that definitely exceeded the allowable motor size. I'd like to be able to capture the registration number. We can view roughly 30 acres of the 47 acre pond. There is about an acre of land (unobstructed view) between the house where the camera would be mounted and the edge of the water. I don't know how far across it is to the other side. I suspect we would need around 4MP(?) for this one.

One PTZ camera mounted on a corner of the house that could patrol would work, as would two separate cameras. Trying to balance expense and meeting needs. The corner that could "see" the pond and yard has a light there now, so there is power available if I don't end up going with PoE.

Background/Experience:
I have a three low quality ip cams installed inside and have them setup to view on my phone and tv/pc. I have a home server that I plan to upgrade soon so Blue Iris will run better on it with additional cameras. I am not using Blue Iris right now because it slows the server down too much. I use the built in camera servers when viewing on my TV (via HTPC) and use the full version of IP Cam Viewer on my Android.

I don't have a PoE switch yet, but plan to get one soon.

Budget:
In the near future, I have about $700 I can spend. I understand this may only get me one camera and there will always be trade-offs. I'm looking to the experts here for advice.

Thanks in advance!

-David


http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16881102050

$100 off w/ promo code EMCNGHG29, ends 3/29
TRENDnet TV-IP322P 1280 x 1024 MAX Resolution RJ45 SecurView Outdoor PoE Megapixel Day/Night Internet Camera
Network Camera: Yes
Type: Wired Camera
Ports: 1 x 10/100Mbps PoE Auto-MDIX RJ-45 port
Networking Protocol: TCP/IP, IPv4, IPv6, UDP, ICMP, DHCP, NTP, DNS, DDNS, SMTP, FTP, HTTP, HTTPs, Samba, PPPoE, UPnP, Bonjour, RTP, RTSP, and RTCP
Model #: TV-IP322P
Item #: N82E16881102050
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
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JohnnyC
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Joined: 20 Nov 2008
Posts: 670

PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 8:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For starters, you won't find a 4mp ptz camera or a ptz megal pixel camera for $700. I have an axis ptz mp camera good for 720p with 18 optical zoom and I can almost read the credit cards when zoomed in at a gas station located 300 feet down the street. The camera hs great detail, but costs over $2,000. Axis now has 1080p ptz camera that insane when zoomed in for fine detail, but it costs over $3,500. These re serious ptz mp cameras. If you can settle for vga, you can find a used panasonic bb-hcm-581a and stick it in a dome for about $700. I had a 581a and it was a super great vga camera with great optical zoom. I sold it for $500 which included a cooled and heated pelco dome. The panasonic can see great in color in very low light. The axis mp ptz does not (in low light color). I prefer color over b/w night mode.

As for pumping the video to a tv, i use a video card in my server that has an hdmi output and i run a cable directly from the video card to my large screen samsung tv's hdmi input.

John
New jersey
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dlaflamm
Member


Joined: 24 Apr 2011
Posts: 12
Location: New Hampshire

PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 9:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, John. Maybe 2 non-PTZ cams would work, buying one with my existing budget now and one later. For now, I should focus on the more important cam for the side yard to watch the kids.

So...I guess my questions are morphing into things like...

How do I determine what lens specs I need to cover the side yard? I mentioned the yard goes out about 100 feet from the house, but I didn't mention the width -- which is around 50 feet (at least the part they'll play in most of the time).

I think the side yard camera should double as a security cam, so megapixel makes sense to me. Also, VGA just seems like it isn't nearly as future-proof. The ACTi XXX-1231 series appears to be recommended a lot here, but I don't quite understand the difference between the prefixes yet...(?) I remember reading that they came out with some new cams recently. Happy to provide some access for a review if I end up getting one of those.

Is night vision still an option in this price range for an outdoor megapixel cam without PTZ? I'm trying to figure out what other trade-offs I might need to make.

I'm hesitant to buy used this time -- I'd rather play it safe and have a warranty.

I'm still hoping for some thoughts (from anyone) on the trendnet camera on sale.

I've seen your gas station photos elsewhere on this site -- impressive!

Again, thanks!

-David
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buellwinkle
Wizard


Joined: 28 Mar 2008
Posts: 2504

PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 6:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The ACTi 1231 has two versions, the ACM which is less expensive and the TCM which costs about $80 more and has faster frame rate, h.264 compression and WDR. I have both and frankly, save the dough and get the ACM, it's not like you need the features of the TCM as 8fps is more than enough for home surveillance. Image quality, night vision is the same on both.

Doesn't matter what your lens requirements are, this camera has a varifocal lens so you can go very wide at 3.3mm or go telephoto at 12mm. Good camera for a beginner because you don't have to worry about lens selection, you don't have to worry about illumination or even worry about what software to use, it's ready to use outdoors and 1.3MP resolution is pretty good for home use. You do have to worry about a mount, doesn't come with one. They make two common ones for wall or eave mount, costs about $15. Also, any generic mount you find on ebay will work, some are even much cheaper and better as they offer more options. Also, it comes with an A/C adpter which makes it nice to bench test it, but you should consider a PoE switch. Trendnet makes a nice 8 port one for about $60 shipped. This powers and connect the camera all on one ethernet cable.

What's also great is they provide their NVR Enterprise edition software for free, works very well even on the slowest PC's, even an Atom processor Nettop. They also provide an iPad/iPhone app to view all the cameras through their NVR software. The NVR software is all web driven, so you can do just about anything at home or on the road. Motion detect is handled by the camera so you are not flooding your home network with lots of camera traffic all the time.

Also their support thas been very good. In the US they are based in Irvine, CA.
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For network camera articles and reviews, visit my blog at http://www.NetworkCameraCritic.com
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JohnnyC
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Joined: 20 Nov 2008
Posts: 670

PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Opps, sorry about all the typos in my last response. I was highly intoxicated..... Well, actually i was eating a veal parm sub while attempting to type my response on my iPad. The iPad's screen did a great job as a plate after the stupid sub dumped on it while typing.

John
New Jersey
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dlaflamm
Member


Joined: 24 Apr 2011
Posts: 12
Location: New Hampshire

PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 7:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JohnnyC wrote:
Opps,


Are you still eating it? Laughing
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dlaflamm
Member


Joined: 24 Apr 2011
Posts: 12
Location: New Hampshire

PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@buellwinkle
Perfect -- just the info I was looking for. Thanks!
I've read "varifocal" describing cameras in this forum before, but honestly didn't know what the heck it meant in practical terms. Makes sense now, of course. I appreciate you weighing in on which model to get too. All great info -- thanks for taking the time.
Best,
-David
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JohnnyC
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Joined: 20 Nov 2008
Posts: 670

PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

dlaflamm wrote:
JohnnyC wrote:
Opps,


Are you still eating it? Laughing
Lol

John
New jersey
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40th Floor
Enthusiast


Joined: 10 Oct 2008
Posts: 221
Location: Texas

PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 1:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Vari-focal is like zoom, but you go up to the camera and zoom manually. A real zoom only makes sense if the camera has pan and tilt.


A good PTZ adjusts its pan/tilt increments to very small, precise movements the more it is zoomed.


If you can get H264, always get H264, even if you think you don't intend to use it (you should). Today, a camera without H264 is a camera not worth getting.

Always go for a minimum frame rate of 30 FPS. If you use H264, the extra frames have minimal impact on bandwidth. If a camera can't do 30 fps at X megapixels, it can't really do X megapixels. Always go for 30 fps (or 25 if CCD and PAL), even if you think you don't need it. If the camera can't do that, the camera is underpowered.


I would not get a Trendnet camera (no telling what company makes those). Nor would I get an Acti camera (two reasons, more than I have space and time here). Network cameras are never as good as one would expect given their cost. And even the good ones always have inexplicable shortcomings that leave you wanting better, evermore.
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dlaflamm
Member


Joined: 24 Apr 2011
Posts: 12
Location: New Hampshire

PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

40th Floor wrote:
I would not get a Trendnet camera (no telling what company makes those). Nor would I get an Acti camera (two reasons, more than I have space and time here). Network cameras are never as good as one would expect given their cost. And even the good ones always have inexplicable shortcomings that leave you wanting better, evermore.


Thanks. So without going into detail on why you wouldn't get an ACTi, can you suggest another brand worth a look? I'm definitely leaning heavily towards ACTi now, but won't pull the trigger on a purchase until probably the end of this week.
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buellwinkle
Wizard


Joined: 28 Mar 2008
Posts: 2504

PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 11:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are better cameras than ACTi for sure, but not sure there's better for that price and features. If you're budget magically grows, I love Mobotix cameras, starts at $1,500 for their day/night camera but very sharp, clear images. Also, from Axis, in the $500 price point, you will not get an outdoor, varifocal, day/night megapixel camera and Axis does not make a single camera I know of with built in illuminators. Frankly, I replaced my two Axis camera at home with ACTi because I wasn't happy with them, not because Axis doesn't make a good product, but because for the price point I purchased at they were not that good. Johnny has some serious Axis cameras but they cost 2-3X what you are looking to spend.

The problem with most camera brands like Axis, Avigilon, Arecont, Mobotix is few put an IR illuminator in them. Putting in an external illuminator is a PITA. You have to run seperate power for it, usually 12V, you have to setup a photocell or timer and some come with it, some don't and they are expensive. Not unusual to spend as much or more for the illuminator as the camera.

There's another brand of cameras we are installing in our community and don't know much about them but they got good reviews from another forum member called OpenEye and the security company that works on our access control system swears by them. We are waiting for poles to be installed but I'll let you know my opinion once they go up. SImilar price range to ACTi.

http://www.openeye.net/products/cameras/camera-models/cm-715i/

Also, at ISC West this week, companies make announcements of new products, so we'll see that the future is bringing us.
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For network camera articles and reviews, visit my blog at http://www.NetworkCameraCritic.com
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dlaflamm
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Joined: 24 Apr 2011
Posts: 12
Location: New Hampshire

PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 3:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks. I wish my budget would magically grow! Too many unexpected expenses associated with my new home at the moment -- they reduced my original budget significantly in the immediate future. In the first six months we've had to replace the washer and water heater, the furnace needed emergency repair, and we discovered mold and drainage issues the inspector missed. Geez!

Anyway...those OpenEye cams look like they might be a good value. I look forward to your reviews.

The ISC West event this week looks like a good reason to put off the purchase for a short time. I realize I could be chasing the next best new cam for a long time -- but this event is happening now and won't delay me much and could introduce new options.

I'm still leaning towards the ACTi cams for now.

I appreciate everyone's input/advice!
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dlaflamm
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Joined: 24 Apr 2011
Posts: 12
Location: New Hampshire

PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2012 10:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Any new thoughts now that ISC West is over? Any new cameras that might be an alternative to the TCM/ACM-1231? I read Buellwinkle's blog post. Sounds like it was worthwhile.
Thanks again!
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