Swann have been around for quite some time with home security offerings and today we’re going to look at the snappily titled, SwannSmart SWADS-450IPC Wi-fi network camera with secure cloud storage. A webcam with night vision, remote viewing via apps and cloud storage.
(to give it it’s full name) has a built in microphone, a stand that can be affixed to most flat surfaces but there’s another cool trick up it’s sleeved.
Software wise things look promising with apps for both iOS, Android along with connecting your from PC via web browser and of course no device is completely days without some sort of cloud integration.
It;s not made clear on the Swann website just what wireless network compatability the SWADS-450IPC but I’m going to put my money on Wireless B/G whilst not great for range it’s stable enough. I’m a little mystified why it’s not mentioned anywhere in the tech specs, nor is the speed of the wired connection.
Cloud services are a paid for experience but do allow you to have cool features like motion detection, alerting you when movement happens in a certain part of the picture, access to recordings over the internet and a few more tricks. So if there are nefarious wrong going on just before someone wises up and turns off the webcam, at least your recordings will be accessible.
The unit itself is small, lightweight with fittings to allow you to hook to a wall, ceiling or anything similar indoors with the camera being adjustable on a swivel. It;s fixed focus unfortunately but clear enough for most.
As this is just a first look we don’t want to give too much away but the results are quite promising.
We been testing against the following criteria:
- Ease of setup
- Picture quality
- Video streaming quality and reliability
- Is the night-time mode useful or a gimmick?
And of course we’ll be posting some sample videos for you to take a look at.
Alas the technical specifications don’t mention the focal point of the camera so it’s really hard to work out the best placement. With this in mind I simply plonked the review unit outside of the window and took a few pictures so you can get an idea of picture quality.
SwannSmart Video Quality
Video quality is a scant VGA 640 x 480 with a frame rate of up to 30 fps so whilst you wont be using it for your latest cinematic blockbuster for those just wanting to keep an eye on things this should do just fine.
. Just in case anyone was wondering, No, I wasnt intentially going all Benny Hill and walking past the camera faster, the frame drops I can only attribute to the weak signal near my back door. Granted there are 2 thick stone walls but iDevices have yet to struggle on my B/G/N network setup.
Given placement right next to the router and plonked outside the office window the results were a little more promising although not without frame drops. All the video is relayed via SwannSmart servers which does introduce anywhere between 5 – 10 seconds of lag
SwannSmart Night Vision
SwannSmart’s night vision mode is effective up to 12 meters but the focal point I found is a lot less than that. Don’t expect military grade night vision with heat maps but more of a passable illumination of a focal point.
I figured for testing i’d put it pointing at my back door to try and simulate keeping an eye on an entry way. Unfortunately because it’s a fixed focal point and the frame rate isn’t the best the results are lacking. Unless someone or something comes right up to the camera you won’t be getting the best amount of detail. That being said not every situation is going to need that and for a general purpose “keeping an eye on things”
Handy hint, don’t place this in front of a window looking outside. Those LED’s reflect off the window confusing the camera whether it’s day or night time.
Right now you can pick up this web camera for £59 from the usual retail outlets including Amazon but using the link below will help support the site.