In recent years the home security market has exploded with a wide range of affordable, easy to use solutions. No longer limited to the commercial and retail worlds, residential security camera systems are fast becoming a reliable way for homeowners to keep an eye on their belongings while away, observe the activity of their pets and loved ones, and keep updated on occurrences in and around their homes.
With many solutions available, it can be difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff and find a system that’s easy to setup and manage without the need for expensive technical installations.
The Reolink IP camera system offers homeowners a convenient, all in one home security camera system with simple setup and configuration that can be managed remotely from anywhere in the world via a streamlined smartphone app. In this review we’ll break down the features and benefits of the Reolink home security system and help you decide if Reolink is the right home security option for you.
What is Reolink?
Founded in 2007, Reolink is a leading manufacturer and supplier of high quality, affordable and user friendly home security systems. Offering a wide range of high definition IP camera and network video recorder devices, Reolink camera systems are designed with ‘plug and play’ DIY installation in mind to provide homeowners with reliable, intelligent and straightforward home security solutions.
Reolink engages an expert team of R&D professionals to develop security solutions that are simple to install without technical expertise, with accurate high-definition cameras that contain a variety of smart sensors to detect intruders, suspicious activity and home invasions.
Reolink offers two different types of camera systems. PoE, or ‘power over ethernet’ cameras draw their power and communicate with a base station through standard ethernet cables. Wifi cameras are powered by traditional power outlets, but aren’t limited by the need for ethernet cables back to the base station and can be placed anywhere around the home.
Both the PoE and Wifi camera solutions offered by Reolink connect to an NVR, or Network VIdeo Recorder, that acts as a base station for the cameras to record and store footage collected by multiple cameras. Users are also able to control and manage their camera systems via a PC or smartphone app in lieu of an NVR, which is convenient if only one camera is required.
Reolink Camera Options
The first type of camera offered by Reolink, the PoE, is designed with reliability and redundancy in mind. Transmitting both power and video over the same cable, Reolink PoE cameras are ideal for DIY enthusiasts that want to set up a permanent camera configuration within their homes.
PoE cameras never need a power adaptor, meaning they can be placed anywhere up to 330 ft away from the base station, and are waterproof with a solid aluminium body and an IP66 waterproof rating to enable use outside in environments where snow, rain or intense cold and heat are common. Video footage gathered by PoE cameras is transmitted back to the NVR, where they are stored for later review.
Reolink Wifi cameras are the first dual-mode Wifi security cameras available on the market, operating on both 2.4G and 5.8G bands to reduce interference from neighbouring Wifi networks, a key issue in the use of Wifi cameras. Reolink cameras are cable-free, removing the need for messy cabling around the house and are ideal for homeowners that don’t have the capacity to install lengthy wiring systems in their home.
Reolink Wifi cameras are simple to set up- requiring only a standard power plug, users install the cameras anywhere within 250 ft of their wifi router to create a flexible network that can be adapted and relocated to the needs of the user. With a built in expandable 16GB SD card memory, the Wifi cameras record and save up to 400 motion detection triggered events on a single card. Recorded events can also be uploaded to an FTP server to be reviewed remotely. Reolink Wifi cameras are also water and weatherproof, with an IP66 waterproof rating.
Both types of Reolink cameras employ the same high quality camera hardware. Capturing images in 4 megapixel super HD, the Reolink cameras record in a resolution of 2560 x 1440, allowing for crystal-clear, super sharp video in both recorded and live streamed video.
Also embedded into the camera are 36 ultra bright infrared LED’s, providing a night vision viewing distance of 100 ft to provide 24 hour vigilance against security threats. An 80 degree viewing angle on each camera offers a wide recording range and reducing the amount of cameras needed to securely record all corners of the home.
The NVR base station offered by Reolink to manage their PoE camera solutions contains a 3 terabyte hard drive pre-installed, providing continuous 24-hour recording, seven days a week. Users are able to alternate between continuous recording or motion triggered event recording to save hard drive space for longer recording. Supporting up to 16 cameras at once, the Reolink NVR can also be expanded with an external hard disk up to 4 terabytes.
Requiring zero configuration, users simply install PoE cameras in the desired locations, connect them via ethernet to the Reolink NVR, and are ready to begin recording.
The Reolink App
Both the PoE and Wifi camera systems offered by Reolink offer unparalleled user interactivity via the custom Reolink app. Available for both iOS and Android in app form and via a PC desktop app or browser app, users are able to locally or remotely access their security system.
The Reolink app provides functionality such as live video streaming, captured footage review, multi channel viewing at any time, live capture to mobile device, and schedule video recording.
Reolink app users are also able to manage the capture settings of their security system and receive push notifications when motion events occur- the Reolink system can even be configured to email photos or video clips up to 30 seconds in length directly to the homeowner when motion is detected.
Reolink Pricing & Availability
Reolink systems are available via the Reolink website and various online retailers such as Amazon. Basic Wifi IP camera systems start at $94.99 USD, and PoE solutions are priced beginning at $69.99 USD. If you’re searching for a standalone, easy to configure indoor or outdoor home security system that offers remote surveillance in all light conditions, with or without cables, Reolink is an excellent, competitively priced cost effective solution.