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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: 4 Apr 2019 21:01
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Hey all,

Just wanted to follow up with the Reolink Go...

I've had it mounted in a tree facing the front of my cabin and my power shed for about the last 3 weeks. I haven't purchased the solar panel for it yet. But, so far the battery life is pretty darn good. Only dropped down to about 85% over 2.5 weeks. I'm sure I'll be up at least once a month over the summer that I can re-charge it.

I love being able to on demand pull up the live video stream and check on things! I get Push Notifications via the app when it senses movement as well as emailed still pics.

I can also turn off the motion detection via the app when I'm there. Much nicer than having to remove the multiple locks off my old game camera. (Actually, most of the time, I would just throw a towel over it)

I purchased the pay-as-you go 2GB/Month T-Mobile plan for $10/Month and so far I can give the Reolink two thumbs up!

PS: Wouldn't you know it... After I purchased and setup this new Reolink, My old game camera started sending me texts again So I moved that to a different location and I guess I'll keep using that as well.

Wilbour
Member
# Posted: 5 Apr 2019 01:52 - Edited by: Wilbour
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Quoting: SCSJeff
I purchased the pay-as-you go 2GB/Month T-Mobile plan for $10/Month


Found it. Tablet only plan I see.

toyota_mdt_tech
Member
# Posted: 5 Apr 2019 08:29
Reply 


I like the Reolink Go, but they only use T Mobile, no coverage, I have plenty of Verizon, ATT and even sprint.

SCSJeff
Member
# Posted: 5 Apr 2019 09:09
Reply 


Wilbour, not sure about exactly what the web shows anymore. When I looked a month ago, I found the "bring your own device plan" (was hard to find though. Had to google it to get to the right section of T-Mobile's site). At any rate, I went into the store and got mine (of course it took the guy quite a while to find the sim only plan that I told him was available

Toyota, the Reolink works with AT&T also. Albeit, not as cheap of a plan as T-Mobile's... (Actually, it works with any of the 3rd tier plans that use AT&T or T-Mobile's network as well)

aktundra
Member
# Posted: 11 Jul 2019 18:11
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The SPYPOINT camera works great! I have only 1 bar LTE at the cabin. It sends the photos no problem. I did add external antenna. I like requesting photo updates, checking the weather and seeing traffic on the river. I like the camera so well, I’ll probably buy another for an in town security camera for my airplane.
DE0A42353EE7464C9.jpeg
DE0A42353EE7464C9.jpeg


toyota_mdt_tech
Member
# Posted: 12 Jul 2019 08:22
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aktundra, is it battery powered, does it have a solar panel also? What is the exact model of your spypoint? I al collecting all known good options and will narrow my final choice down.

jhp
Member
# Posted: 12 Jul 2019 09:12
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Just throwing out a six month review of my Spypoint.

I have the Spypoint Link S solar. It runs on 8 AA batteries and has a separate built-in battery and small solar cell that keeps it charged. You can also plug the camera in to recharge the internal battery.

Since January I've only ever seen the batteries drop to about 70% charge but to be fair it was in January and the temps were in the -20f and it was cloudy and snowy for several days.

Since March I think, I've never seen the battery drop below 100%, it always reports the solar is in use and charging. I have been averaging 150-200 pics a month.

The only complaint I can have is that when you ask it to send you a picture at it's next check in, sometimes it sends me 3, or 6, or 9. I think it's a software bug or something because I have the camera set to take 3 pics when it detects motion. It's harmless and doesn't hurt anything.

I too have really bad cell service due to heavy tree cover and being like 8 miles from the nearest tower, on a good day i can get 1 bar on my phone, on a meter it fluctuates between -120dB and -115dB. The Spypoint reports 1-2 bars and has no problems maintaining a connection without the external antenna even. I get pictures that are motion-detected usually within a minute or maybe 2 of them being taken which is more than I could ask for.

Other than that I have no complaints and will be buying another. I also have the steel security box for it which is pretty sturdy but slightly overpriced.

The only other thing I can think of is that they are Canadian-based so if you sign up with your credit card for the monthly service and you have foreign transaction fees, something to be aware of.

This is the exact model:

https://www.spypoint.com/EN/products/solar-cellular-trail-camera/product-LINK-S.html

They make two models for the US - one that works on Verizon (Link-S-V) and one that works on everything else (Link-S). Just get the right one you need.

CabinBuilder
Admin
# Posted: 12 Jul 2019 15:36 - Edited by: CabinBuilder
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Quoting: aktundra
I like requesting photo updates, checking the weather and seeing traffic on the river.

river view

Nice picture BTW. I have similar setting.

aktundra
Member
# Posted: 14 Jul 2019 13:13
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[img=null]Toyota -
I have the Link Dark. It’s battery powered. I have Lithium double A’s installed now. You can also hook it to a 12v battery (with a kit). I haven’t found a need yet to. We will see how it does in winter, but battery usage is minimal so far. I opted not to get the solar panel one. I have bad luck with small solar panel things (solar panel lights for example). If I need to I’ll tie it into my existing power system.

The bad reviews I read about SPYPOINT included transmitting issues and poor customer service. I can’t speak to these, but I bought because it worked here in Alaska for my friend and good luck he had with it.

Whatever you get, it’s addicting to check on the place when you’re gone... I like getting my daily photo fix. null[/img]
D673CA1899404FB09.jpeg
D673CA1899404FB09.jpeg


jhp
Member
# Posted: 25 Nov 2019 11:06
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Just got an email about this, BOGO on the Link-S solar model for Black Friday.

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

I had a few hiccups a couple weeks, back, it stopped sending me pics. They had done an upgrade on the website and migrated the access to a different URL and there was also a firmware upgrade I needed to put on the camera. After that update, all is well again.

toyota_mdt_tech
Member
# Posted: 25 Nov 2019 15:37 - Edited by: toyota_mdt_tech
Reply 


Quoting: jhp
Just got an email about this, BOGO on the Link-S solar model for Black Friday.


JHP, I like it, few questions. What was the cost? I see Link S-V, different?
Can the solar panel be remover and mounted elsewhere. My camera would be on a tree with sunlight for afternoon on the other side of the tree.

Do they do Verizon? I have an existing plan. I did purchase the Reolink Go, but not sure if I will use it, it ATT.

jhp
Member
# Posted: 25 Nov 2019 18:16
Reply 


The SpyPoint Link S-V is the one for Verizon networks. I'm not sure if you can use them on an existing plan, they come with a pre-activated SIM (I dont remember seeing a slot for a SIM card off the top of my head) and the service is already set up.

There is a free plan that gives you 100 photos a month and 7 day history online. Of course, all the pics are still kept on the card in the camera.

If you read the PDF rebate form it says "Valid barcodes: 887157017033 (LINK-S), 887157017040 (LINK-S-V)" so the deal should work for both.

Google says they're all running about $499.99 between Amazon, Bass Pro, Cabelas, etc. Not the best per-unit price I've seen but 2 for 1 is worth it.

The solar part is attached to the camera body, it can't be removed. My camera faces west in heavy tree cover and it still gets enough sunlight that the internal battery stays charged up. I'm still on my first set of AA's.

toyota_mdt_tech
Member
# Posted: 25 Nov 2019 21:21
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Thanks JHP, looking into it right now as we speak. I will do it if I can get the 2 for one, but one at that price, no deal. I would never spend half a grand on a single game camera.
I'd do the Cuddieback Cuddie Link system, multiple cameras, one base transceiver.

I did just buy the Reolink Go with solar panel too. Not sure which unit I will use yet.

SCSJeff
Member
# Posted: 26 Nov 2019 07:28
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Toyota...

Regarding the Reolink Go and the solar panel...

I contacted support about whether I can leave the solar panel hooked up below freezing temperatures. Their answer was YES, the battery has a built in protection that prevents charging if temperatures are below freezing. (Not sure if that's true or not?, But, the Argus Camera does advertise the same)

So while that may mean your battery can drain down to the point that the camera will stop working (in my experience, it will last 3-4 weeks), it does at least protect the battery from being damaged

Brettny
Member
# Posted: 26 Nov 2019 08:20
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I looked into the spy point link S...until i saw the price. $500 is to much for me. At this price point we are damn close to a small solar system (that can be used for other things) and a wifi system with cell to wifi setup.

toyota_mdt_tech
Member
# Posted: 26 Nov 2019 08:32 - Edited by: toyota_mdt_tech
Reply 


I have been eyeballing a Moultrie cell camera, and its a cell, get app for phone, no set up fee, no monthly bill, pics sent to phone. Has a $50 rebate to boot. So far, this is the best deal and compatible for my needs. I see it does have a solar panel with batteries built in, claim you runs indefinitely.

jhp
Member
# Posted: 26 Nov 2019 08:49
Reply 


I've seen them as low as $399 which is on par with other cameras that include solar and external cell antennas. If you are looking at a non-solar camera and add-on solution it gets expensive pretty quick if you buy the manufacturer's solutions - solar panels go up to like $40, batteries another $25, dry box, cables and so on. A DIY solution is about the same but you'd get a nicer panel and battery for sure.

What I'm saying is, you get to $500 really quick if that's what you need. I use mine for security before I had power and not really wildlife so I'm ok with that because I wanted remote notifications and to not have to worry about driving hours round trip to swap out batteries. So far I've had almost a year (minus a few days I guess) of relative peace of mind knowing that if someone was on the property I'd know about it within a few minutes of it happening.

If I just wanted a cell game camera and it wasn't important there are lots of great options $250 and less.

Reolink Go is a new solution since I bought this camera, if I had that as an option I definitely would have bought one to test out. The Arlo looks ok too but seems to just cost more overall.

I really hope this company comes out with an outdoor camera and one with cellular option. I have a couple of their indoor 1080 cameras ($25) and they work remarkably well for the price. If you want an inexpensive dog cam, or front-door cam check them out.

https://wyze.com/

JDH83VT
Member
# Posted: 26 Nov 2019 10:36
Reply 


I have had one of the Spypoint Link-Micro units since June or July. Someone had mentioned them earlier in the thread, so i figured I'd offer some input. It has its quirks and lacks some features, but it's been reliable enough to give me peace of mind when I'm away. I planted it right in plain sight on the front of the camp facing up the driveway figuring it will also aid as a visual deterrent. The battery life seems good so far (still at 75% after 5 months); it's been cold, but the winter will be the true test. The picture quality on transmitted photos is compressed but decent enough (the high res versions from the card are pretty good). It snaps photos randomly at times and the temp sensor is finicky, but nothing crazy other than that. One thing I wish it would do is offer the ability to take a picture on demand or at least take a picture at a desired time every day. I think I paid around $150 for it on Amazon, so for that price point I guess I can't complain to much. Hope this helps. I attached a few pictures that were sent from the camera.
Daytime
Daytime
Dusk
Dusk
Night
Night


KelVarnsen
Member
# Posted: 26 Nov 2019 10:40
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Quoting: JDH83VT
One thing I wish it would do is offer the ability to take a picture on demand or at least take a picture at a desired time every day.


I just set up my Spypoint Link Dark this weekend. Love it so far, but the on demand feature would be awesome and is sorely lacking. If you set the camera for timelapse you can get time of day pictures, but then you lack the motion triggered pictures. They need some sort of hybrid mode.

Brettny
Member
# Posted: 26 Nov 2019 10:56 - Edited by: Brettny
Reply 


How do these spypoint link mico cameras fair in below freezing temps?

I dont have lithium AA batterys in any of my cameras but have never really got a pic below 32*f. My best cold weather pics still come from a old moultre A-5 thats about 7yrs old and was a low end camera at the time. It takes C batterys.

JDH83VT
Member
# Posted: 26 Nov 2019 11:12 - Edited by: JDH83VT
Reply 


KelVarnsen
I didn't know there was a timelapse mode (or maybe its not an option on the cheaper cameras). I'm going to have to check that out.

Brettny
So far, so good with the cold weather pics. We're at a pretty good elevation on a Mountainside in Southwestern VT and it's been pretty cold. It's a small sample size because it hasn't seen winter yet, but its been down as low as 5 or 10 degrees a couple times with no ill effects... I think a couple of the pictures I posted were taken in 10 degreeish temps. The original batteries I installed (regular energizers) are still in the mid 70% range, though I might switch to Lithium before it gets really cold.

toyota_mdt_tech
Member
# Posted: 26 Nov 2019 15:52
Reply 


OK, put the Moultrie into my amazon cart, went back to check on it and priced was reduced by $50, so I just bought it for the Verizon network for $129. I will get some lithium ion AA batteires for it. Set it up next spring and report back.

Brettny
Member
# Posted: 27 Nov 2019 09:53
Reply 


Whst moultee toyota?

Moomps
Member
# Posted: 27 Nov 2019 09:54
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I now have 2 Spypoint cameras. My original Link-EVO crapped out recently and they shipped me a new one. The old one was over a year old and they just replaced it. The new one is great. I also have a Link Micro that works great. I'm very happy with Spypoint - the equipment and the support.

toyota_mdt_tech
Member
# Posted: 27 Nov 2019 21:35 - Edited by: toyota_mdt_tech
Reply 


Quoting: Brettny
What moultee toyota?


Brett, this is the unit I got, Moultrie XV7000i. I got mine from Amazon for $129.95. It was 159 in the AM, by noon, was 129. Kicker is, there is a $50 rebate on this too. Not sure if I can apply it, but I'm going to try. (mail in rebate in first link, print it up)

Retail is $179.95

I just signed up for my Moultrie Mobile acct and when my camera shows up Friday, add in the info to activate it. I can turn on or off with phone, so its disabled when I am there. Go to the first link to get more info.

Now mine was for Verizon, ie XV7000i, I see they have the XA7000i, I assume its AT&T?

So far, this is the best deal I have seen, been looking for this for a long time. Something that wont cost you a cell bill each month, require a SIMS card etc.

The neighbors just west of me have these on their property right now. Works great.

I just ordered another one from Amazon. 129 with 50 rebate, impossible to match.

Technical Features for Moultrie XV7000i Integrated Camera
The Moultrie XV7000i Integrated Camera comes with 20 MP resolution and a trigger speed of just 0.3 seconds. The invisible IR flash covers the entire detection range. This camera offers 1080p HD video recording along with the detail images even when game is in motion with the help of up to 32GB SD card storage capacity (Sold Separately). Also features Illumi-Night 2 Sensor for the brightest and clearest nighttime images. The app and Bluetooth connection helps to control all the camera settings using smartphone and the camera operates on the Verizon 4G cellular network..

The XV7000i has LED array which produces nighttime infrared flash that will illuminate subjects up to 80 feet away. It comes with 12 x AA battery which can work into extreme harsh conditions and lasts up to 3 months..

XV7000i Integrated Camera Features:

Product # MCG-13309

Resolution: 20.0 MP
Trigger Speed: 0.3 Seconds
Full HD video: 1080p
Detection Range: 80 Feet
Invisible Flash
Flash Range: 80 Feet
Illumi-Night 2 Motion Sensor
Quick Camera Response
Verizon 4G Network
Operates on 12 AA Battery
Up to 3 Months Battery Life



toyota_mdt_tech
Member
# Posted: 1 Dec 2019 14:19
Reply 


Camera is here, 2nd one enroute.

I have also added the large remote battery option and also picked up a large 10W solar panel with a MPPT charge controller. The plan is to have it work year round without ever having to put in batteries. I did pick up lithium battery's for the camera, ie 12 AA units.

I am going to get this all set up here and working (dry run). It appears I can turn it off via the internet when there or on site by connecting to it via bluetooth directly (probably be close to the camera) with my smart phone and the Moultrie Mobile APP which I have already downloaded on my phone.

I did get a second solar panel kit to keep Mule battery charged too. The Battery Tender may have overcharged it. Needed a new battery, water level was down. New battery is a sealed unit, but want to try another unit. It was 4 yrs old.

Mr RoC
Member
# Posted: 4 Dec 2019 08:43
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A little late to the conversation but our first Cell Cam was a Spypoint Link-S for our cabin. All was good at first than it stop sending pictures. CS sent a new one but that stopped sending pictures. Was told it may be due to the migration to their new website.

The first week of November ago I updated the firmware to v2.10.33 and the cam started to send pictures again.

After some hard decision making I took the chance on the Spypoint Link-S BOGO. Bought a unit from Sail with 20% off sale, pretty much the only reason I gave it a second chance - would not have if at full price, and now waiting for the second free one to arrive. That'll be a total of three cellular units for our cabin. So far the the one I just bought from Sail is sending pictures but the transfer time is not consistent as I once experienced. In the past I got pictures within 2 minutes. Right now this unit is sending anywhere from 1 min up to 10 minutes from time it took the pictures.

I was looking into the Reolink GO but the last time I checked Canada was not supported but then again Shawn James of My Self Reliance installed one at his off grid cabin recently, I should check again.

Brettny
Member
# Posted: 4 Dec 2019 09:54
Reply 


At 3 data plans would it be worth just one data plan, a small solar system and real Wi-Fi NVZR based systsm?

Mr RoC
Member
# Posted: 4 Dec 2019 10:54 - Edited by: Mr RoC
Reply 


What is nice about the Spypoint Cell Cam is their basic 100 photos plan is FREE and each camera will have it's own plan. There are additional plans that can be bought but for my needs 100 photos per month is plenty.

There is some controls as to how and how often pictures are taken and sent but videos clips cannot be sent over cellular or live feed like the Reolink.

These types of cell cams are perfect for off grid, no internet access and primary residence is several hundred KM or Miles away.

Brettny
Member
# Posted: 4 Dec 2019 12:22
Reply 


How much a month does it cost per camera on appoint?

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