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Eufy SoloCam E40 review: The security camera you should buy now

Expert Reviews Best Buy Logo
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
120
inc VAT

The Eufy SoloCam E40 is a flexible, reliable and easy-to-use smart security camera with no ongoing fees

Pros 
No subscription needed
8GB of internal storage
Sharp imagery
Cons 
Setting motion zones is fiddly
Web dashboard is basic
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Wireless security cameras are common these days, but few get as much right as the Eufy SoloCam E40. Many are tied to overpriced subscriptions or require you to pay to unlock the full feature set, and even then they mostly cost upwards of £150.

Not this camera. The Eufy SoloCam E40 comes with all the features ready to go, has local storage so you can retrieve all your motion-triggered clips without having to pay extra, and it doesn’t cost the earth.

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Eufy SoloCam E40 review: What do you get for the money?

The SoloCam E40 will set you back £120, and it’s a fairly simple thing. In the box is the camera itself, which has a rechargeable (non-swappable) battery built in, and a small plastic bracket for mounting the camera on a wall. There’s no wireless hub included because you don’t need one; the SoloCam, as the name suggests, is a standalone unit and connects directly to your home Wi-Fi network.

As with a lot of other outdoor Wi-Fi security cameras, the Eufy SoloCam E40 can be mounted pretty much anywhere you like, either indoors or outdoors. It’s weatherproof to the IP65 standard and so should withstand dust and rain without any problems, and its rechargeable battery means you don’t have to worry about running cables to keep it powered up.

Eufy says it will last up to four months on a single charge, depending on clip length, frequency and resolution. Recharging is done by simply removing it from its mount and plugging in via micro-USB cable.

Other key features include the ability to capture video footage at up to 2K resolution, automatic infrared night vision via a single LED and person detection. The SoloCam also allows you to control various features and view the feed using the Alexa and Google Assistant voice assistants. Alas, HomeKit is not supported.

The Eufy SoloCam’s main attraction, however, is that you don’t have to pay for a subscription to access any particular feature. Instead of being stored by default in the cloud, video clips are recorded straight to the camera’s 8GB of onboard storage (included as standard). Cloud storage is available at extra cost but isn’t required.

The only big feature the SoloCam E40 misses out on is a floodlight, although it does have a 90dB audio alarm that can be triggered either manually or automatically, depending on your preferences.

Eufy SoloCam E40 review: How well does it work?

Setup and installation is a doddle. You simply download and install the Eufy Security app to your smartphone or tablet, add the camera – connecting it to your home network in the process – and you’re ready to go.

Screwing the mount into the wall is probably the most demanding thing you’ll have to do but, if you can find a wooden surface, that’s pretty straightforward as well.

Using the camera is mostly a doddle, too. The SoloCam E40 and accompanying app works as it does with most other security cameras. You get a view of all your cameras on the main page – in my case that’s just the one – then you can dive in to view the live feed or tap the Events icon to see your list of motion-triggered video clips.

In the settings, you can choose to have these events generated by any movement or just the appearance of people (referred to as “humans” in the app) in the frame. It’s also possible to set activation zones and adjust the motion detection sensitivity so that movement in a particular area of the frame – a waving tree branch, for instance – doesn’t generate a plethora of false positives.

Once video clips have been generated, you can filter these, too, making it easier to sort through long lists. Other settings include the ability to optimise for battery life by restricting clip length to 20 seconds or dropping the resolution from 2K to 1080p. I found that by optimising for quality and clip length, the battery comfortably lasted a month and a half but struggled to reach a full two months. If you want to hit the manufacturer’s claimed four months, it looks, at the very least, as though you’ll have to restrict your clip length.

All of this worked flawlessly when I tested it. Notifications were only generated when required and video quality was impressive as well. Visuals were crisp and clear and, with the 2K resolution, I found details such as faces were easy enough to pick out. Night vision footage was decent as well, although the image was, overall, softer.

Eufy Solocam E40 review: What could it do better?

Generally, I was impressed with the performance and the features of the SoloCam, but there are a couple of areas that could be improved, and those focus on the app and accompanying web dashboard.

Setting up motion zones in the app, for example, proved incredibly fiddly. Adding a motion zone to the image drops a shaded area bounded with a series of “handles” or nodes onto the frame. By dragging these nodes around the screen, you set the areas in which you want motion to be detected.

Attempting to do this precisely on the screen of my phone, however, proved an exercise in futility. Most of my attempts to tap and drag a node resulted in me dragging the zone around, and it took two to three attempts to reposition each node. Annoyingly, the node would often spring back to its original position if I ended up placing it too close to the edge of the frame.

This might not be such a problem if the web dashboard on the Eufy Security website allowed you to set motion zones using your mouse. Alas, it’s a rather basic affair, only allowing you to view the live stream from your camera. You can’t change settings or even view locally recorded video events.

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Eufy Solocam E40 review: Verdict

Still, these shortcomings are more irritations than deal breakers and, otherwise, the Eufy SoloCam E40 is a cracking security camera.

It combines great image quality with easy setup, a rechargeable battery for flexible positioning, a generous 8GB of onboard storage and no requirement for an ongoing subscription.

With reliable person detection and with the added bonus of a built-in alarm thrown in for good measure, there’s very little this security camera lacks. At a price of just £120, it’s an astonishing deal as well.

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