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Re: Arlo Ultra charger change disappointing

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Manuelacuna Tutor
Tutor

I was waiting very exited the new cameras Ultra, the first thing, those new cameras are a lil bigger than the Pro 2, i was expecting that ones are a lil bit smaller. Also a lil bit heavier. But the most dissapointed thing was the charger input that is totally different from the old models, all of u guys who are using Arlo products from years (its my case im an Arlo user around 3 years ago) the most tedious part having Arlo cameras are changing batteries, thats why 2 years ago I kept buying Arlo products and bought solar panels for 2 cameras (the highest installed) and a few days before i bought 2 more cuz i was thinking to buy the new Ultra cameras but  now when I bought the cameras 4 of them (999.00 usd) I have the surprised that the charger input its totally different and my solar panel from Arlo are useless from the new cameras, so I have to charge the new cameras one by one all the time that I have to charge them. Arlo developers should ask all Arlo users, also make a survey which are the preference with cameras and the use. Cuz now we have to wait the developers release a new input charger with the new Arlo cameras... 

Dionysius Star
Star

How does the charger cord thickness of the Ultra compare to the Pro2?  I was able to run the slim charger cord of the Arlo Pro2  through our windows with no problem.  That way all of the cameras are plugged in and you cant see the cord at all.   Is the new charger cord thicker?  I am concerned I wont be able to run the Ultra cord through our window seals.

 

 

 

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Manuelacuna Tutor
Tutor
Its slimer than Pro2, but it is totally different
PhylumT Apprentice
Apprentice
The have concerns about the charging as well, having the camera charge the batteries and the charge time being hours, adds a LOT of downtime that I didn’t have before. I used to use recharging batteries and kept 8 charged batteries so I could just go up the ladder and change there. Now I have to take a camera down for hours at a time to charge.
Guru jguerdat Guru
Guru

What's your typical recharge time? I was told that the design is supposed to be about the same as for the Pro cameras so ~3 hours. Mine is plugged in so haven't needed to charge but my initial charge was many hours, maybe 6-8.  You may want to open a case with support to try to address this - my guess is that it's the cable that's the issue, not the charger itself.

 

https://www.arlo.com/en-us/support/contact.aspx

PhylumT Apprentice
Apprentice
I don’t know total charge time, but I charged a camera from 87% to 100% and it took almost 2 hours. Had cameras for a few weeks and will have to charge them for the second time after out of the box, my main camera will likely be in the 30-40%.
AncientGeek Hero
Hero

They are planning to release a charger and spare batteries as well as an Ultra specific solar panel.

 

https://www.arlo.com/en-us/images/Documents/ArloUltra/Arlo_Ultra_Accessory_DS_09Nov18.pdf

 

Personally, I won’t try an Ultra until those are available.  Spare batteries and a stand-alone  battery charger should be a requirement for First Shipment of a system like this.  That’s the beauty of having swappable batteries.  Customers visit the camera once to swap the battery and the camera stays in service all but for the few seconds it takes to swap the battery.

Comiotmoto Star
Star

If the solar hasn't been improved from the current generation, then don't plan on using it. The solar panel is the poorest rated accessory they make with an incredible failure rate. The reviews at Amazon say it all. Hopefully the new Ultra solar panel will be better and they will release an upgraded model for the other cameras that actually works.

AncientGeek Hero
Hero

@Comiotmoto wrote:

If the solar hasn't been improved from the current generation, then don't plan on using it. The solar panel is the poorest rated accessory they make with an incredible failure rate. The reviews at Amazon say it all. Hopefully the new Ultra solar panel will be better and they will release an upgraded model for the other cameras that actually works.


I have been very fortunate in that regard.  I have four solar panels deployed and they all have worked fine for me.  I get the occasional error message about an incompatible charger, but that goes away.  Of course they do not work below freezing due to the low temp shutoff for charging or on cloudy days, but overall, I’d buy them again.

Comiotmoto Star
Star

@AncientGeek wrote:

@Comiotmoto wrote:

If the solar hasn't been improved from the current generation, then don't plan on using it. The solar panel is the poorest rated accessory they make with an incredible failure rate. The reviews at Amazon say it all. Hopefully the new Ultra solar panel will be better and they will release an upgraded model for the other cameras that actually works.


I have been very fortunate in that regard.  I have four solar panels deployed and they all have worked fine for me.  I get the occasional error message about an incompatible charger, but that goes away.  Of course they do not work below freezing due to the low temp shutoff for charging or on cloudy days, but overall, I’d buy them again.


That's great, maybe they already made a running change to them. I would love to try another one but I'm just too scared after continuing to read endless complaints. Your experience since you have 4 of them gives me hope.

Guru jguerdat Guru
Guru

The solar panel is totally changed from the cable aspect. The first panel had USB connections on both ends which lead to folks having trouble getting them properly seated and sealed. The Ultra panel has a sealed, permanent connection at the panel and the same magnetic connection as the AC charger. This will help prevent the issues that caused so many problems with the first panel.

 

No, I have no idea if the Ultra panel itself is the same one.

zincyellowcobra Luminary
Luminary

I’m similarly frustrated. I had to keep 1 of my 4 cameras inside to charge the four batteries, one by one which took a bit of time. That meant I had 1 camera down all day Just to use it as a charger, not a camera. I have a large Pro 2 system so had invested in 10 extra batteries plus 4 dual Arlo branded battery chargers.  I could replace a majority of the batteries at the same time. It was totally worth the additional investment to me.  

 

I loved that Pro camera batteries lasted WAY longer than the CR123 batteries did in the 1st gen cameras. Unfortunately, the Ultra batteries discharge as a displeasing rate comparatively which means I will have to replace batteries much more frequently, cough up $$ to add outlets near cams to plug them in or try the solar panel again.  I think it’s too soon on the solar panel... I still feel the pain of that purchase and want user feedback for new panels before taking that plunge again. 

 

I am very disappointed in the design change of the battery itself considering the investment I made in spare batteries for my Pro 2 system. I don’t know the technical reason for the design change, however, I’m sure Arlo has one. What frustrates me over and above that is my Arlo branded dual chargers are not compatible with the new batteries.

 

Arlo should reconsider the # of charging cables provided per camera. If you buy a 4-camera system, there needs to be a minimum of 2 charging cables - ESPECIALLY in consideration of the proprietary design change of cables. I would love the option to purchase a magnetic charging adapter to attach to the ends of my Pro 2 charging cables. 

 

The accessories really should have been released at the exact same time as the camera release, period. That or delay the release of the cameras. It would have alleviated some of our frustrations. Right now, Arlo’s suffering from this “stacking” of complaints that tip the scale hugely for some of us — tipping in the wrong direction. Admittedly, I suffered that stacking effect that drove me into a rant here and on Best Buy’s site.

 

I commend Arlo’s engineering team, especially @JamesC, as they really stepped up quickly, listened to their consumers and rapidly deployed firmware updates addressing many of the problems. That gives me confidence in the longer term experience and ultimate viability of the Ultra cameras. 

 

 

Askntell Aspirant
Aspirant

Reply to disappointment to ultra mag charge. 

The outdoor charge cables and solar  charge only worked 10 percent of the time with arlo pro.

im hoping the mag charge for outdoor works flawlessly. 

Model: VMS5340 | Arlo Ultra 3 Camera Kit
Guru jguerdat Guru
Guru

The solar panels and outdoor chargers for the Pro worked fine for me. Many issues are a result of moisture in the connectors since they are a pain to connect properly. With the magnetic connectors, the moisture problem will be a relic of the past.

Askntell Aspirant
Aspirant

I’m glad to hear that. I as well got irritated by individual charging with my pro cameras. I’m still keeping them but I ordered the ultra, 

i bought the outdoor arlo pro charge cable on line. It was not sold by arlo but was advertised as the go to arlo pro outdoor charge cable. I don’t like drilling extra holes in my garage. So I took off my dawn to dusk security light. Drilled and tapped added conduit inside it to run power from inside my garage,thru my security light.

making it a very neat and clean setup to power my camera. When the camera did not charge in cold or wet weather, my time and effort was wasted. So I’m going to be waiting like many for the Arlo ultra mag charging cables to hit the market.

Model: VMS5340 | Arlo Ultra 3 Camera Kit
Guru jguerdat Guru
Guru

Moisture is one thing, cold is another. None of the Arlo cameras want to charge when the battery is below 32F/0C. It's a chemistry thing, not Arlo-specific. If the camera can keep the battery warm enough, the battery can be kept charged which implies AC power at all times.

AncientGeek Hero
Hero

@jguerdat wrote:

Moisture is one thing, cold is another. None of the Arlo cameras want to charge when the battery is below 32F/0C. It's a chemistry thing, not Arlo-specific. If the camera can keep the battery warm enough, the battery can be kept charged which implies AC power at all times.


I have had good luck with the black silicone skins in terms of lowering the ambient temperature at which Arlo cameras will continue to charge via solar.  At least 10°-15° lower if the sun hits the camera directly.  However, POE or other powered cameras are by far the best option for operating in extreme cold.  I have excellent experience with my Axis cameras in this regard.  Wherever I can run POE, I place an Axis Camera.  Of course there are many other brands, though I prefer Swedish cameras to low cast Chinese cameras...I just don’t trust the extreme low cost options to be secure.

John5822 Aspirant
Aspirant

Have been looking at the new ultra  cameras and see they have a different mounting  bracket, do the ultra also mount on the ball type  bracket from the arlo pro  2?  Also see a new  power cable for the ultra, do they also accept the power cord from the arlo pro 2 ?  If they don't work with the pro 2 items this would be a complete waste for me after having  everything  wired for previous version, can't understand reasoning for changing  the simplest things on a already expensive system

Model: VMS5440 | Arlo Ultra 4 Camera Kit
Sensei michaelkenward Sensei
Sensei

@John5822 wrote:

.... do the ultra also mount on the ball type  bracket from the arlo pro  2?


If you mean the magnetic "dome", then no. In its wisdom, Arlo has redesigned the Ultra's magnetic mount.

 

However, the Ultra cameras, like everything Arlo, will work with the industry standard "camera tripod" thread. The cameras actually ship with a smaller and neater permanent screw mount.

 


@John5822 wrote:

Also see a new  power cable for the ultra, do they also accept the power cord from the arlo pro 2 ? 


Again, they have changed it. The Pro 2 connector is not good with an Ultra. The new connector may actually be more water resistant. But that does not help people with older outdoor power adapters and cables.

 

You didn't ask, but in the same power area, the Ultra batteries are also a different design from those in the Pro 2 and lights.

 


My Arlo hardware: Q Plus, Pro 2 (X2), Security Light, Ultra, Doorbell, Chime
John5822 Aspirant
Aspirant
Thanks for your info, seems if arlo is going to completely redesign everything with new upgrades its not worth the cost then, since the base station, batteries, mounts and cords don't work with the pro its both worth going with anymore arlo products, maybe if they add the features to the pro series like the 180 view, the lights and the 4k theymay sell more of those but neighbors i talked with who have arlo are very disappointed in these changes. Thanks again for your input
Model: VMS5440 | Arlo Ultra 4 Camera Kit
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