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Arlo Ultra - Pre purchase questions

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ErrolC
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Hi, I am trying to determine whether Arlo is suitable for a rural location. We are trying to secure a field and a barn. The field is 60 metres across and we want detect entry into the field. I was thinking of using the Ultra via my wifi hotspot to give me coverage but I am not sure that they have enough range or coverage. We need to use wifi as we cannot lay cable. Any ideas? 

Model: VMC5040 | Arlo Ultra Wire-Free Camera
StephenB
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@ErrolC wrote:

We are trying to secure a field and a barn. The field is 60 metres across and we want detect entry into the field. I was thinking of using the Ultra via my wifi hotspot to give me coverage but I am not sure that they have enough range or coverage. We need to use wifi as we cannot lay cable. Any ideas? 


The Ultra can't connect directly to a hotspot; it needs to connect to a base station that in turn connects with ethernet to the internet.  If you want a direct connection to WiFi, then a Pro 4 or an Arlo Essential is what you'd need.

 

The internet connection needs to be continuous, and you'll need between 1 and 3 megabit uploads (depending on which camera).  Arlo does offer a camera that connects directly to mobile LTE (the Arlo Go), but it is quite expensive. Resolution is 1080p.

 

Motion detection uses passive IR sensors (PIR) - the nominal detection range is about 7-8 metres.  So if you'd need to place the camera near the entrance to the field.  It wouldn't be practical to deploy enough cameras to cover the entire perimeter.  

jguerdat
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If they can be protected from weather, the indoor cameras (Q or Essential Indoor camera) could be a solution. They don't have as wide coverage but will potentially detect motion better at far distances due to the use of pixel change motion detection as opposed to use of a PIR sensor which limits people detection to ~25 feet.

StephenB
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@jguerdat wrote:

If they can be protected from weather, the indoor cameras (Q or Essential Indoor camera) could be a solution. 


They need AC power as well as protection from weather.

 


@jguerdat wrote:

 will potentially detect motion better at far distances due to the use of pixel change motion detection as opposed to use of a PIR sensor


The pixel processing of course only works when the scene is lit.  The indoor cameras also use PIR sensors.  

 

I don't know how far away the pixel processing will detect people.  Mine will detect them (at least sometimes) up to about 15 meters (aimed through a window from the third floor of my house).  

jguerdat
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AC power needed - absolutely.

 

My Q is on the 1st floor, looking through a double-pane window out onto the street and get detection at least 50 feet away, probably more. Lighting may or may not be an issue - obviously for a dark field with no moon or other exterior light detection would be difficult. However, if it's that dark, any person would likely be using a flashlight which would trigger a recording. The recording may only see the flashlight and not provide the person but could be useful as a timestamp.

StephenB
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@jguerdat wrote:

Lighting may or may not be an issue - obviously for a dark field with no moon or other exterior light detection would be difficult.


My Arlo Essential Inside Camera is similarly aimed through a window at the street (though from an upper story).  

 

Over the past month, it has only triggered after dark once.  That was during a storm. The recording didn't pick up anything anyway, since the light reflected off the glass back to the camera.

 

Every other motion recording has happened during the day.

ErrolC
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Thanks Stephen, that helps a lot. I will configure accordingly. So I should be able to have an add on hub to connect cameras that are too far away from the first hub? I assume that they will all connect to the same cloud portal for me to review? Also, can the Ultras be configured to record continuously for a period of time, then changed to motion as needed? Can you mix hardwired and wifi? I apologies for the number of questions but I am trying to overcome various physical challenges and use cases.

StephenB
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@ErrolC wrote:

So I should be able to have an add on hub to connect cameras that are too far away from the first hub? I assume that they will all connect to the same cloud portal for me to review? 


You can do that.  But the hubs are separate (not a mesh).  Each hub needs an ethernet connection, and each camera is paired with a specific hub.  You can use powerline networking or a wifi extender to get ethernet to the hub.  Though a cable is better.  

 

Also, the hubs aren't rated for outdoor use.  Likely they will work fine if they are sheltered from weather, as long as they also get good air flow. 

 


@ErrolC wrote:

 Can you mix hardwired and wifi?


Not sure exactly what you mean by that.  But all the cameras (including the indoor ethernet ones) can be in the same account.  You can also include cameras that are paired with a base, with cameras that are using your normal wifi.

 


@ErrolC wrote:

 Also, can the Ultras be configured to record continuously for a period of time, then changed to motion as needed?


No.  You can get a continous recording subscription (CVR) as an add-on.  You still get motion alerts (which can be scheduled), but you'd also need an arlo smart subscription to get cloud recording.  The CVR subscription is for specific camera(s) and requires that the camera be AC powered. CVR is also 1080p.  People who use it have complained that there are sometimes gaps in the timeline (generally short ones).

 

I played with CVR for a bit a couple of years ago, and found it clumsy to use.  It's not something I needed, so I dropped it.

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