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I came across an opportunity to review the Dropcam Pro, and can say it has been a pleasure to review it, and find out everything it can do. One thing you will like off the bat, is that when you order one, it comes with 2-Day Free Shipping and a 30-Day Money Back Guarantee.
So here is what it looks like:
Let’s break it down a little and find out what benefits you can get out of powerful cam like this one.
- 130° Field of View (big enough to cover any play room, or keep an eye on the pets, or obviously a nanny cam for the baby)
- 8X Zoom (one of the kids said he didn’t do it? and blames it on his brother, you will be able to see the proof!)
- Superior Audio Quality (pick up the faintest of sounds, and be able to clearly talk back if you have a mic)
- Excellent Low Light Vision (I was amazed at the picture, that is was able to capture great images in the dark as well)
- Able to use their CVR (Cloud Video Recording) for 7 days of coverage, or 30 days. (optional, monthly fee)
- Scheduling (the ability to turn the camera off and on certain days of the week)
- Watch free live streaming video via iOS, Android and web apps anytime, anywhere.
- You can invite your friends to view your stream (example, to have a friend or relative keep an eye on a pet for you), or you can make it public for the world to see (maybe stream a puzzle you are putting together, or maybe the baby making its first steps, who sees it, is up to you)
- With a 1 year warranty on parts, and the ability to operate on two WiFi connections 802.11b/g/n 2.4GHz & 5GHz is awesome.
- Supports the three major wireless security settings: WEP, WPA, WPA2
So how much does it cost? The Dropcam Pro, the one I reviewed is sold for $199.99. The Dropcam (I will be giving one of these away thanks to Dropcam) is set at $149.99. Is there another camera I can find that has the power and features as the Dropcam Pro?, no. For the amount that it does, nothing compares based on what I have seen.
Setup was easy. Took it out of the box, plugged it in the computer to set it up. Although you have the option to do it on your Android or iPhone without needing the computer. Once I assigned it the right wireless network, and typed in the password, it was connected. Very easy to do.
Just a couple of things that didn’t hit the mark with me. The USB cable that comes with it is White, you can feel it is a quality USB cord, well insulated and durable, however I wish it came in Black, to help it blend better. The other thing that brought it down to a 4 out of 5 rating was that you have to use their CVR (Cloud Video Recording) to store or review video that has passed. You will always be able to see a live stream free, however if you want to retrieve any recordings, unless you are part of the Cloud, you can’t. The cloud is a little expensive in my opinion, it doesn’t take away from the quality of the product, but at $9.99 a month ($99.99 year) for 7 days of recording, or $29.95 a month or ($299.99 year) for 30 days of continuous recording. The Dropcam does not give you an option to record it to your own Hard Drive, your own purchased storage, or any free services like Dropbox.
Overall impression? I really like it for the power and features it carries at a price point that I think is fair for a product of this caliber. Still don’t like the white cord, and the fact that you can’t record to local storage, or other cloud services that you may already have. I am hoping a black cord, and the feature to record your own, might appear one day.
Where to buy? You can grab it from Amazon (if you have gift certificates to use) for $199.99 and get free super saver shipping, or directly from Dropcam’s website, with free 2-day shipping included.. Also be sure to check them out on Twitter, and Facebook. ~Tom