Android Police

Camera Reviews

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FrontRow review: An interesting concept, but not a great buy at $399

Cameras are absolutely essential to our lives these days. After all, what would we do without our Snapchat Stories and Instagram selfies? How else would we communicate with the outside world? There's a reason why cameras have been crammed into everything from smartwatches to quadcopters; the ability to capture our memories so easily and in such great detail, then share them with anyone we'd like to, is simply amazing.

Ubiquiti Networks, a company most famous for its WiFi equipment, thinks so too. Nearly two months ago, it debuted the FrontRow, a camera that you wear on your body so that you can capture great moments without compromising your own live experience.

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Reolink Keen and Argus review: Affordable wireless security cams, but full of compromises

We've been taking a thorough look at smart monitoring cameras here on Android Police, but the overarching complain in most of them from us and you, the readers, is always the price and the paid plans. That's why for my next two reviews, I will be focusing on two camera makers that don't require you break the bank to buy their hardware nor to use it. The first brand is Reolink and I'll be reviewing two of its cameras: the Keen ($119.99) and the Argus ($99.99), both of which offer MicroSD storage. (The second brand is Amcrest, which I'll review in a week or so.)

In many respects, the Keen and Argus are similar: both are battery-powered, both have 1080p live streaming, motion detection, and night vision, and both need a MicroSD card for storage.

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Arlo Go review: An expensive niche camera

Netgear's Arlo Pro cameras are popular options for home security because they have wireless connectivity, long battery life, and support for local storage. The recently released Arlo Go takes the wireless aspect to the next level by adding an LTE modem for connectivity almost anyplace. That means you don't need to put the camera near your Arlo Hub or your regular WiFi network. It comes at a price, though.

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Nest Cam IQ review: Impressive but expensive

Google-owned Nest gained notoriety for its smart thermostat, but Google's acquisition of Dropcam instantly catapulted Nest to the forefront of this product category. Nest has traditionally made very good cameras, and they come with a premium price tag to match. That's still the case with the new Nest Cam IQ, which packs a 4K image sensor, new software smarts, and a $300 price tag. You could get two cameras from another maker for that price, and I think most people probably will. However, the Nest Cam IQ is leading the pack when it comes to facial recognition and image quality. This might be the camera you've been waiting for in terms of features, but it also might be far too expensive as a long-term commitment.

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EZVIZ Mini 360 Plus review: An adorable 360-degree camera, but a little light on features

Everyone and their mother seems to be making a stationary home security camera these days, but there are also an increasing number of 360-degree cameras. These small motorized units might be a preferable option, depending on what you need to keep an eye on. I tested the Yi Dome Camera a few months ago and found it to be overall pretty neat, but perhaps a little gimmicky. Lately, I've been using the EZVIZ Mini 360 Plus, which is very similar to the Yi 360. It's a low-cost camera that can rotate to get a full 360-degree view of the room.

The Mini 360 Plus is a touch cheaper than many home security cameras, and the design is cool.

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Yi Dome Camera review: A cool gimmick that still needs some work

You don't have to look far to find a home security camera with big names like Logitech, Google, and Netgear all offering up systems for keeping an eye on things. There are also some newer players with cameras you might want to consider. For example, the Xiaomi-funded Yi Technology. This Chinese firm has released a few home cameras, but the new version of its Dome Camera stands out from the crowd. Unlike other cameras, this one can actually rotate to get a full 360 degree view of a room, and it has built-in motion tracking. Unlike the old Dome Camera, this one also shoots 1080p video.

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Netgear Arlo Pro review: Great at a few things, but just okay at the rest

Consumer security cameras have become a huge product category in the last couple year with the likes of Google, FLIR, and Logitech taking a swing at home monitoring. Your options are greatly reduced if you need a camera that operates for long stretches on battery or in the great outdoors. This is something Netgear has attempted to address with its Arlo security cameras. The new Arlo Pro adds a few features to the lineup, bringing it to parity with standard wired cameras. However, the wireless aspect means you'll have to make some compromises.

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Logitech Circle review: A great all-around home security camera (after some updates)

Logitech has been making cameras of the web variety for years, and it recently got into the home security camera market with Logitech Circle. The initial reviews were alright, but Logitech was lacking some important features that other cameras had. I guess it took the criticism to heart because a series of app and firmware updates have added lots of new stuff to the existing hardware. It's actually gotten much more capable, and the pricing remains competitive. Taking another look at Logitech Circle, it's a great option for home video monitoring.

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Blink home security camera review: An interesting proposition that falters in execution

When I first heard about the Blink security cameras, I was immediately impressed and intrigued. Having tried both the Piper and Canary in my pharmacy, to more or less mitigated results, the Blink seemed like the perfect solution.

Piper (full review) suffers from one major flaw: the camera doesn't turn itself back on after a power failure if the back-up battery is empty (and since we have lots of blackouts here in Lebanon, I got tired of buying new batteries every two or three weeks). It also doesn't have a native scheduled arm/disarm feature; I really shouldn't have to manually arm and disarm my cameras when a simple time-based schedule is easy to implement.

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Deep dive: A closer look at the Google Pixel's camera

The Pixel phones have been out for several weeks now, and a lot has been said about the camera. I will try to comment on some of the things that I’ve felt have been a bit overlooked, in a deeper dive into the Google Camera 4.2 on the Pixel XL. Most of the issues, if not all, should also apply to the smaller Pixel phone.

A note on pixel size, sensor size, and aperture

Starting with last year’s Nexus phones, Google has been advertising “bigger pixels” in their camera sensors, frequently pointing out their 1.55µm size in marketing materials. Relatively speaking, they’re larger than the ones on most other phones and should lead to lower noise, at least according to common belief.

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