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EyeSpy247 EyeSpy247PTZ review

Kat Orphanides
19 Jun 2010
EyeSpy247 EyeSpy247PTZ
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
180
inc VAT

Although the EyeSpy247PTZ camera is unremarkable, the web-based security monitoring service it comes with is outstanding.

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EyeSpy247 is an online security monitoring service that takes the hassle out of configuring and viewing your IP security camera over the internet. The EyeSpy247PTZ camera is designed to seamlessly integrate with this web-based monitoring system. It’s intended for indoor security use, and isn’t toughened for exposure to the elements.

'PTZ' stands for pan, tilt and zoom. It pans and tilts alright, but the zoom is digital rather than optical, and so pixellates badly as soon as you go above 1x magnification. It also has body heat motion detection, a connector block for external monitoring inputs like door sensors, a built in microphone and a 3.5mm speaker output.

Faces and events on camera were clearly identifiable and colour balance was better than that of many IP cameras, but we noticed significant pixellation along smooth edges. Although the box claims that the camera has "night vision LEDs", it isn't infra-red; it just has four ultra-bright white LEDs. They effectively illuminate their surroundings after dark, but also draw attention to the camera, so your intruder will know they’ve been rumbled. They're painful to look at, kept switching on and off for no apparent reason under all light levels and came on even after we tried to deactivate them.

We were impressed by EyeSpy's remote monitoring service, which takes all the effort out of configuration by setting up DDNS domain forwarding, email alerts and mobile phone video streaming for you. All you have to do is enter a user name and password in the camera's interface and it'll automatically link itself to your account on the EyeSpy247 website, give you a one-year account worth £25 and start monitoring its surroundings. It even seamlessly reconnected itself when we moved it to a completely different router and internet connection. A simple scheduling page allows you to determine exactly when content will be captured and whether you'd rather capture video or still images, as well as when alerts are sent. It's easy to view captured security footage or a live feed from the camera.

By comparison, it comes with particularly poor Windows control and monitoring software, with a recorder that is prone to crashing and a player that has trouble loading saved video files. It also took a long time and many mouse clicks to make the camera pan around the room. The camera's built in web interface is good, though, and worked well with both Firefox and IE. You can monitor the video stream, pan and tilt the camera and switch its lights on and off, although panning was still slow.

Although it's more expensive than Solwise's SEC-C1062W, the EyeSpy247PTZ isn't too badly priced compared to most pan and tilt cameras. It works well enough when left alone, although we disliked its unpredictable lights and poor Windows software. EyeSpy's web-based monitoring interface did a lot to make up for this, making this a good buy for users who don’t mind paying a subscription for hassle-free web access to their camera.

Details

Rating****

Networking

Wireless networking supportYes

Other Features

Night visionno
Weatherproofno

Buying Information

Warrantyone year RTB
Price£180
Supplierhttp://www.amazon.co.uk
Detailswww.eyespy247.com

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