Orientation and tilt is a popular feature for home security cameras because it allows the user to get a more complete view of the area they are monitoring. In many cases, the pan and tilt cameras can even lock onto an intruder and track them to capture a full video recording of their crime. But these advanced features add to the cost of the camera, creating a higher barrier to entry into DIY home security than fixed-angle cameras. EZVIZ, however, makes pan / tilt within reach of even modest budgets with its C6W security camera.
The C6W has a globe shape similar to EZVIZ’s C8C outdoor cameraexcept that here the camera is located in the upper half of the body rather than the lower part. This top part rotates 360 degrees to provide a panoramic view no matter where the camera is placed, and the camera lens itself tilts 75 degrees up and down. Placed in a central location, the camera can cover almost the entire room.
This review is part of TechHive’s coverage of the best home security cameras, where you’ll find reviews of the competition’s offerings, as well as a buyer’s guide on the features to consider when purchasing this type of product.
But the location of the camera will be largely dictated by access to an electrical outlet, as the C6W does not use a battery and therefore must be permanently connected to the mains. Normally this isn’t something I would fault a camera with, but here that requirement negates the 360 degree spin benefit because a good part of that panoramic view is the wall behind the camera it’s plugged into. . There is an Ethernet port on the back of the camera base in case you want to connect the camera to your router rather than using Wi-Fi, but that will likely limit your placement options even further.
You have a few options to store the captured video. The camera supports a 256 GB microSD card, which you must provide. You can also record the video on EZVIZ’s CloudPlay service, which offers seven days of storage for $ 9 per month / $ 90 per year or 30 days of storage for $ 16 per month / $ 160 per year. Both plans support up to four cameras, and the camera comes with a 7-day trial.
Camera configuration is done through the EZVIZ app. Once you have selected the camera, the app takes over the process and prompts you to follow a few steps to connect to your network. It went smoothly and the camera was up and running in just a few minutes. However, during my week of testing I intermittently received ‘network is unstable’ errors when trying to open the live stream, play recorded clips, or change camera settings. Notably, we encountered the same issues with the EZVIZ C8C.
That said, when the app was running, it offered direct camera control. Below the live stream viewer are seven buttons: video history, snapshot, record, definition, pan / tilt, speech, and privacy mode. Their functions are self-explanatory, but to be clear they allow you to view recorded clips, manually capture screenshots and videos, change the camera resolution, rotate the camera, use the microphone. from the camera to talk to someone in the room and turn off the live power without turning off the camera.
Pan / tilt makes it easy to use the camera select function. You simply use a virtual joystick to direct the camera to where you want it to look. The camera moves smoothly and precisely and without noticeable motor noise, which is important for capturing clear audio with your video. You can also turn on auto-tracking, which will follow a person’s movement and use 4X digital zoom to keep them in frame.
The camera has six levels of motion sensitivity, defaulting to the median which I found just to capture human movement. You can configure motion detection to monitor only humans or any type of movement; I opted for the former so that it ignores family animals and is always accurate. You can ensure even more relevant alerts by hiding areas of motion detection so that the camera only alerts you to activity in certain parts of the room, such as entry and exit points. Motion alerts are transmitted to your device 24 hours a day or on a schedule, and you can choose to accompany them with a soft or “intensive” warning tone from the camera if you want to make sure you don’t miss them. .
The camera has a maximum resolution of 2K and, unsurprisingly, it delivers incredibly crisp video with vibrant colors. If you want to save bandwidth, you can go from 2K to 1080p without compromising too much on video quality. In low light, the camera turns on its infrared LEDs to record black and white night vision video. Clarity and contrast were also excellent in this mode.
There are a multitude of customization options in the menu of the EZVIZ app. Some of these, like the ability to adjust the backlight, are not essential to using the camera, but can help you tailor the experience to your liking. Others, like the ability to record audio with your video or turn on night vision, are essential for capturing useful and usable security footage and ensure more central placement in the app.
Still, the C6W is a solid pan and tilt camera for under $ 100. This is a good option if you are looking for an easy way to monitor your home, kids, parents or pets while you are away, as long as you are willing to bank on EZVIZ to solve its application issues in the near future. future updates.