Arlo|Smart Home Security|Wireless HD Security Cameras

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bbdude
Tutor
Tutor

I have owned an ARLO Pro 2 system with 2 cameras for almost 1 year. Both cameras have external AC power connected. Camera 1 is ~30 ft from the VMB4000 Smarthub. Camera 2 is ~6 ft from the VMB4000 Smarthub. The link reliability to Camera 1 has had frequent dropouts that last days/weeks and then usually resolve (come back to reliability) for some unexplained reason. The link reliability to Camera 2 (which is closer to the Smarthub) has been consistently solid. I am close to the point of replacing the Arlo Pro2 system with some other brand of security camera due to the poor wireless signal integrity. I've talked to Arlo phone support and have heard suggestions like move the hub away from windows and furtther away from my WiFi router, move the cameras, etc. My WiFi router is near the center of my house and the Arlo smart hub is near the external wall closest to my 2 cameras. I have lots of windows in my house, so it is hard to get the smarthub near the cameras and far away from my WiFi router. At this point, I have no plans to move into a grass hut with no glass windows or solid walls or no other electronics, etc 🙂
 
So, anyway, my question is: If I upgraded to an Arlo 4K Ultra system (which would mean replacing the 2 cameras and the VMB4000 with a VMB5000 Smarthub), have any significant improvements been made to the VMB5000 Smarthub <-> Arlo 4K Camera signal/link integrity which might resolve the problems I described above?

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michaelkenward
Sensei Sensei
Sensei

@bbdude wrote: 
So, anyway, my question is: If I upgraded to an Arlo 4K Ultra system (which would mean replacing the 2 cameras and the VMB4000 with a VMB5000 Smarthub), have any significant improvements been made to the VMB5000 Smarthub <-> Arlo 4K Camera signal/link integrity which might resolve the problems I described above?

My temptation would be to wait until they officially release the Ultra system, in a month's time.

 

As things stand, today's answer to that question may be wrong tomorrow.

 

The firmware is very much "work in progress" with regular updates and the promise of things to come, such as the ability put Ultra cameras on the older hub. Who knows where we will be when the Ultra starts leaving Amazon's warehouses?

 

Is there something strange about the geography of your setup? I have a Pro 2 camera that is also around 30 feet from the hub and it rarely loses the connection.

 

 


Just another user
Arlo hardware: Q Plus, Pro 2 (X2), Pro 3 (X3), Pro 3 Floodlight, Security Light (X2), Ultra (X2), Doorbell, Chime
jguerdat
Guru Guru
Guru

I agree with Michael. I have cameras easily 30 feet away with no issues. 

 

One way to try to check is to use a WiFi analyzer app on your phone to monitor WiFi strength from the base as you move around. That may provide some clues.

 

Also, don't forget that things in the wall can affect the signal strength even though you can't see them. And then there's mirros or other metallic objects in that path. A small change in base position can make a big difference. You can easily use a WiFi or powerline extender to move the base without needing lots of wiring. I don't know why moving away from windows would be a useful thing unless they're metallized.

 

Finally, have you swapped cameras around to verify that it's the location and not the camera?

brh
Master
Master

@bbdude 

Great advice from both the above posters. Previously, before the Ultra system, I needed to have 3 base stations in my house for the signal to prevent dropouts to the cameras mounted at the corners of my house, but with the Ultra system, I have 3 bars of signals on the Ultra cameras at each corner of the house with only one camera that must penetrate bathroom tiles that gives me less signal strength.

No need to get rid of the Pro system. You can hook the cameras to the Ultra Smart Hub and keep the Pro base included in your account to have an indoor siren, which, unfortunately, the Ultra Smart Hub does not have.

 

Brian

bbdude
Tutor
Tutor

Thanks for your responses Michael, Jguerdat, and Brian. Yes, I have tried swapping cameras and actually wound-up warranty replacing the camera that was 30 ft from the Smarthub. Initially, the replacement camera seemed to resolve the problem, but later I went through more fits of that camera going off-line for hours/days at a time (similar symptoms as before).
 
Brian mentioned that he previously had to have 3 base stations with his Arlo Pro system, but was able to get acceptable link to all of his cameras with just 1 Ultra Smart hub. So, that is encouraging. I'm still not clear if my particular problem is low signal strength or interference.
 
Just curious, do the Arlo Smarthubs use a standard 802.11 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz WiFi signal? Jguerdat suggested using a WiFi analyzer app on my cell phone to monitor WiFi strength from the base as I move it around. Would I be able to tell the difference between the signal from the base station and my WiFi dual-band router (Netgear Nighthawk X10 AD7200 / R9000) or for that matter, my multiple neighbors WiFi routers ? I have the Netgear Genie App on my cell phone. Would that work?

brh
Master
Master

@bbdude 

Currently all the Arlo base stations work on 2.4 Ghz, although Arlo says that 5 Ghz is coming soon to the Ultra base. Try moving the camera that is causing you problems to several locations and see what happens.

 

Brian

RChobby
Virtuoso
Virtuoso
I have 5 pro 2s, the furthest is 225 feet from the hub with a solid signal. And that is going through 3 walls of my house. Odd that you have such short range.
QuadT
Tutor
Tutor
I solved the range problem by purchasing a second base. You do need an ethernet port in the new location for this solution though