Arlo|Smart Home Security|Wireless HD Security Cameras

Questions before purchase - Motion Detection range, zone and reaction times

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kimmmie123
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Hi,

 

I currently own a set of the very old Arlo HD wireless (that were first launched and manufactured by netgear). I think that these cameras are even before the essential models and therefore no longer for sale. Bought at least 5 years ago. 

 

I´m thinking of upgrading to the ULTRA 2 and my questions are. 

 

1. Does the motion detection range increase between my old version and the ultra 2. At the moment i get reliable detection at max 15 feet. 

 

2. Does the zone of motion detection increase in Ultra 2. My old camera only detects motion in a relatively narrow cone at the centre of the screen and therefore will miss any movement around the periphery. i understand that the ultra 2 has a wider field of view of 180 degrees. does motion detection work over the entire 180 degree field of view.

 

3. The reaction time is quite slow on my old camera. If i run across my garden by the time the camera is activated i am no longer in shot. has this improved in ultra ?  

 

4. The old camera records for 1 minute. if the motion continues longer hat 1 minute it often does not record again. has this been improved in ultra 2? 

 

If anyone can help before i spend to upgrade i would be grateful.

 

 

Model: VMB5000 | Arlo Ultra SmartHub
StephenB
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One thing to keep in mind is that all the newer cameras (including Ultra) require a paid subscription to get cloud recordings.

 


@kimmmie123 wrote:

 

1. Does the motion detection range increase between my old version and the ultra 2. At the moment i get reliable detection at max 15 feet. 

 


Motion detection range is pretty similar in all Arlo cameras - it's limited by the PIR sensors, not the optics.  The range depends a bit on camera placement, and the size and temperature of the object being detected. 

 


@kimmmie123 wrote:

 

2. Does the zone of motion detection increase in Ultra 2. My old camera only detects motion in a relatively narrow cone at the centre of the screen and therefore will miss any movement around the periphery. i understand that the ultra 2 has a wider field of view of 180 degrees. does motion detection work over the entire 180 degree field of view.

 


I haven't extensively tested this, but the motion detection is matched to the wider field of view.

 

But none of the outdoor cameras "work over the entire field of view".  All Arlo cameras that use PIR are most sensitive to motion at the edges of the field of view, and are more sensitive at the bottom of the field of view than they are at the top.  Motion that crosses the field of view is detected more reliably than motion within the field of view. 

 

To give an example:  If you aim a camera up a sidewalk, then you often will miss someone walking up the center of the sidewalk, because they aren't ever crossing the field of view.

 

So your comment on the camera only detecting motion in the center of the field of view isn't really correct.  The cameras aren't designed that way.  Do you have a skin on the camera?  Many of the skins will reduce motion sensitivity.

 


@kimmmie123 wrote:

 

3. The reaction time is quite slow on my old camera. If i run across my garden by the time the camera is activated i am no longer in shot. has this improved in ultra ?  

 


Reaction time is similar if the camera is battery powered.  If you connect it to AC, then the Arlo Foresight feature will give you earlier video on the Ultra.  Foresight is continously capturing video, so you get about a 3 second lookback when it detects the motion.  Since this uses a lot of power, the feature needs AC power.  Foresight isn't available on your older cameras.

 


@kimmmie123 wrote:

 

4. The old camera records for 1 minute. if the motion continues longer hat 1 minute it often does not record again. has this been improved in ultra 2? 

 


"Record until motion stops" should give you a longer recording on the Ultra (up to 5 minutes).  

 

kimmmie123
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Thank you for your comments.

 

I do have a skin made by wasserstein which does have extended edges at the front to shield the lens from raindrops etc. I will try it without the skin to see if there is any improvement. 

 

My cameras are all wired to the mains using the tiny USB ports hidden inside the battery casing. I found that batteries were too unreliable and needed replacing on a frequent basis. They definately did not last 6 months. 

 

Your comments about the motion detection are very useful and i will consider this when aiming the cameras. Thank you. 

Model: VMB5000 | Arlo Ultra SmartHub
StephenB
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@kimmmie123 wrote:

 

My cameras are all wired to the mains using the tiny USB ports hidden inside the battery casing.

 Unfortunately that still won't give you the foresight feature. The cameras that support it are listed here: https://kb.arlo.com/000062053/How-does-the-Foresight-feature-work-on-my-Arlo-camera

LandJS
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Just a couple comments.  I have 7 ultras and placement does matter so if you can check placement before making it permanent.  The 25 ft. for detection is fairly accurate for most of my cams, however lowering one driveway cam from 8 ft. to 7 ft. increased it to 35 ft. for cars but not for people.  People have always maxed at 20 to 25 ft.  My cams are all set for 180 wide.  This does lead to some warping at the outer edge and dropping the width does improve pic quality but defeats one of the reasons I went with Arlo.  At 180 I need fewer cams for full coverage.  As for skins I have the Wasserstein on all of mine, unhooded where my house has overhang and hooded where there isn't.  I tried with and without after hearing some mention possible issues but over 2 1/2 years I have found no difference in my use.

StephenB
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@LandJS wrote:

 As for skins I have the Wasserstein on all of mine, unhooded where my house has overhang and hooded where there isn't.  I tried with and without after hearing some mention possible issues but over 2 1/2 years I have found no difference in my use.


I don't use any skins myself.  But there have been issues reported here with some skins (on some cameras) interfering with night vision.  Not sure if any interfere with the PIR sensors, but it seems to me it is possible.  So I think it's worth @kimmmie123's time to test motion detection on the existing cameras w/o the skins, and see if it improves.

 


@LandJS wrote:

People have always maxed at 20 to 25 ft.  My cams are all set for 180 wide.  ...  At 180 I need fewer cams for full coverage.  


That's my experience with the Ultras also (and generally with the PIR).  I also find that vehicles can be detected from further away.

 

FWIW, the Essential Indoor camera I have will detect people at a further distance (using pixel processing).  It'd be nice to have a powered outdoor camera added to the lineup.  Arlo of course is known for WiFi, but I think there are people who'd want to include some powered cameras in their camera mix.

 

I'd like to see a wireless charging arrangement - mounting the camera on the outside of a window, and putting the charger on the inside.  A limited use case to be sure, but still could be of interest to a lot of people.   

LandJS
Prodigy
Prodigy

adding a wired cam would be nice but imagine that would require a hub change from Arlo.   There have been wired systems with add on wi-fi cams for quite awhile now.  I have seen some mention of hood issues which is why I tested my situation and everyone should, just don't rule them out.  I have 2 hooded ones on the ends of my house and even at night they pick up cats including a black one and gray one at 20 - 25 feet even showing up in the 3 sec lookback before the light comes on.

StephenB
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@LandJS wrote:

adding a wired cam would be nice but imagine that would require a hub change from Arlo.   


Or not use a hub.

 

Though I agree that allowing ethernet pairing in the hub (in addition to the closed wifi)  would require a firmware change in the hub.

 

If the ethernet wasn't on the home network (which is pretty common in wired security systems), then Arlo would need a dedicated switch/hub to connect all the cameras.  I wouldn't be interested in that myself (too much impact on my wiring).

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