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Small Cabin Forum / General Forum / Anyone have luck with wireless outdoor cameras to monitor their cabins?
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SCSJeff
Member
# Posted: 14 Mar 2019 15:30
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justins7,

That's awesome about the Reolink! I appreciate your feedback. That really helps me decide on the Reolink.

Jeff

toyota_mdt_tech
Member
# Posted: 14 Mar 2019 15:50
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OK, I am going to do something, dialing in on a unit. I would like to try cuddielink, but don't want to spend that much to experiment, the Reo link sounds good. I would do large battery with solar. You said itr does video, can it be set to pictures only? I would like an easy way to turn it off. How cool would it be to communicate to it with your phone to turn it off while you are there.

I may have more questions for you later Justin. Thank you.

justins7
Member
# Posted: 14 Mar 2019 16:42
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No problem. I'm glad to share what I've learned, since these things are tricky.

The Reolink doesn't take stills, as far as I can tell.

You control it from the phone app. If you turn off PIR (motion sensor), then the camera is effectively "off." However, in either mode (PIR on or off) you turn on live view through the phone, and within a few seconds you see a live feed.

When I first get to my cabin I invariably forget to turn off PIR, and within minutes I get an alert on my phone saying that the Reolink Camera detected motion. Then I remember to turn PIR off while I'm there, so it doesn't eat up batteries and bandwidth. (And it captures a short video clip of me walking past the camera.)

I haven't yet figured out how to use their cloud storage, since their software is not that user-friendly and I haven't needed it. The phone app keeps any recorded clips for at least a few days (maybe more), so I just download any clips and it goes right to my Photos folder on my iPhone.

I do wish they made a separate, larger battery that you could just nail to a tree or keep under a rock. It seems like manufacturers never get the point that we want long-term power. However, that being said, the included battery is pretty robust. And I've looked into bigger USB solar panels that could feed right into the camera, but I haven't needed this yet. Even in winter light, with the Reolink solar panel mounted at barely an angle (since the mount broke and it’s been too cold to get up there again), the solar panel is keeping the battery at 100% (as indicated on the phone app).

SCSJeff
Member
# Posted: 15 Mar 2019 09:58
Reply 


Justins7,

How's the motion detection range on the ReoLink? I think the docs say 30'... I think the range on my current Lt. Acorn is supposed to be like 50-75'. But, during cold weather, it's only about 30' or less...

However, I wouldn't mount the Reolink on the same chest height tree that I have my Lt. Acorn on. I'd mount it up higher (either on my cabin or the shed) aimed down a bit.

Basically, I'm wondering if the ReoLink would pick up an ATV or Truck at a farther distance than 30'?

Regarding still pics... If it acts the same as their WiFi Cameras, I turned off the push notifications for the app and set the camera to send me emails of the still pics on motion (mainly because rain or snow at night causes a lot of false alarms. Assume the Go's PIR sensor isn't subject to that problem?). Therefor, if it uses the same app for the Go, I assume it could be configured the same???

justins7
Member
# Posted: 15 Mar 2019 11:12
Reply 


I'm not sure about the ability to take stills. I'd have to look into that.

Mine is mounted on a tree about 10-12' high, tilted down a bit. It seems like 30' is the range, but it's only picked up deer on the periphery and also maybe 20'-30' away, walking into the frame. I don't think there's been any other movement further away (that I know of), so I am not sure about the limits. I haven't gotten any false alarms from rain or snow or extreme sunlight changes (which my Spypoint cameras are constantly picking up).

It's a great setup if you have decent cell reception (I actually only get 1-3 bars on my phone, but the Reolink usually connects remotely most of the time, with an occasional need to try reconnecting several times. So it has a robust ability to connect to cell towers).

Hope this helps.
Cheers, Justin

SCSJeff
Member
# Posted: 15 Mar 2019 11:48
Reply 


Thanks Justin!

I'm going to pull the trigger on it then. I'm on top of the mountain and cell coverage is great for both Verizon and AT&T (Usually full bars or close to it). T-Mobile coverage WAS great for 2G. Since that doesn't seem to be existent out there anymore, I'm assuming their 4G is good (if not better).

I'll post with a followup review in a month or two.

SCSJeff
Member
# Posted: 15 Mar 2019 12:34
Reply 


FYI: From ReoLinks website:

https://reolink.com/product/reolink-go/

Get email motion snapshots when there are motion events.

Lippy667
Member
# Posted: 20 Mar 2019 16:18
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I have a Bigfoot Camera up on our property. Works decent, which for $200 (amazon) I think was a pretty good deal. It works off a cell signal, our property is pretty out there in northern MI, but I get a signal without buying the larger antenna. I don't know how to post a picture, put just got a bunch of photos today of an eagle landing right in front of the camera eating lunch. Sends the photos to email or texts to my phone.

https://www.bigfootcameras.com/

justins7
Member
# Posted: 21 Mar 2019 11:34
Reply 


I looked into the Bigfoot Cameras but I believe they are 3G, which is slated to be eliminated in the next few years.

Everything is moving towards 5G, so even 4G cameras (like the Reolink and Spypoint) will be obsolete eventually (like everything).

Lippy667
Member
# Posted: 21 Mar 2019 21:25
Reply 


I asked about that before getting it, I don't remember the specifics, but they are shutting down certain frequencies(?)of 3g but not all. And their signal is supposed to be good for the foreseeable future. There was a section on the web page that talked about it. I may have the terminology wrong, but was told it should work for a long time. They said they we're sticking with the 3g as it worked best in rural areas.

Anyway, has worked well for us, but we set it up before the new remote software was out so haven't tried that new feature yet.

Jebediah
Member
# Posted: 22 Mar 2019 09:30 - Edited by: Jebediah
Reply 


Quoting: justins7
Everything is moving towards 5G, so even 4G cameras

Yes Spypoint is now replacing their Spypoint L4g with the link dark free of charge if its still under warranty....because of the cell service upgrade to 5G...if you are not under warranty and have proof of purchase you can buy the Link Dark at 50% off....They are sending me a new Link Dark replacement and you can keep your l4g as a stand alone......I have both the Link Dark and the Link4g now for a few years...only issue like others have said is multiple pics are taken when its set at 3....I received 20 one time, not a biggy as I'm on a plan....

Jebediah
Member
# Posted: 22 Mar 2019 09:40 - Edited by: Jebediah
Reply 


I thought I should mention, they just caught 4 thieves in Nova Scotia....because of cellular trail cameras.........

aktundra
Member
# Posted: 22 Mar 2019 11:47 - Edited by: aktundra
Reply 


As winter winds down (Early!), this is just the thread I needed to watch the river thaw.

I ordered the Spypoint Link Dark and Booster antenna.

Thanks for all the feedback, hoping to add my experience soon.

jhp
Member
# Posted: 22 Mar 2019 13:29
Reply 


Quoting: aktundra
I ordered the Spypoint Link Dark and Booster antenna.


Just making sure you saw the mail in rebate this month

https://www.spypoint.com/EN/promotions/

aktundra
Member
# Posted: 23 Mar 2019 11:49
Reply 


JHP -

Thanks. I only saw the rebate because of this thread! Thanks for everyone willing to share information.

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