The VueZone is Netgear’s early attempt at making completely wireless battery powered camera’s. The VueZone cameras use a very efficient wireless mesh network protocol giving them the freedom of long lasting battery power, needing only two CR123 batteries to run for up to six months.

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What the system includes:

  • VueZone motion detection camera
  • VueZone base station (connects to your router)
  • 2 wall mounts (innovative)
  • Base station power adapter
  • 2 CR123A batteries
  • 5 ft. Ethernet cable

Pros:

  • Completely wireless
  • Very compact
  • Motion detection
  • Easy setup
  • Inexpensive
  • Mobile remote viewing

Cons:

For the VueZone, there are unfortunately a lot more negative things to say than positive. Although the price for the VueZone cameras has gone down significantly since they were first released, it doesn’t change the fact that these cameras are seriously lacking in video quality. And I’m not just talking resolution here either, they also have a very low frame rate, poor ISO, and no audio recording, so as a security camera they are probably not going to help you identify anyone.

They have two basic recording modes, 640 x 480 at 3fps and 320 x 240 at 6fps. I’m not 100% sure, but I’m thinking my flip phone camera had a higher picture quality than that. They also have very unreliable motion sensors that will cause your camera to record video of false positives. On top of that, even when the motion detection is working when you want it to, it tends to have a delay in the video causing you to potentially miss whatever it was detecting. If you’re looking for cameras to use as home security, consider talking with a security professional at Protect America about setting up some high quality wireless surveillance cameras.

How It Works

Because they use the ZigBee mesh network protocol, they use very little battery, giving them up to six months of battery life. That’s of course assuming you only use about 5 minutes of video a day. These cameras are also super compact and easy to mount pretty much anywhere. They each come with two mounts and adhere to the wall using sticky pads. They are also pretty easy to set up, so it’s pretty likely that you will have your cameras up and running in a matter of minutes. All you have to do is stick the cameras where you want them and connect your ZigBee bridge to any spare router port. After you set that up you’re going to want to create an account so you can view your video feed from either their desktop app or from your smartphone. The cameras are designed for remote viewing, so you will be able to view your video feed even if you are not connected to your local network without having to do any advanced network troubleshooting. Viewing your video feed on your smartphone using their proprietary app will require a paid subscription. The subscription is pretty cheap; less than $4 a month, but their online portal doesn’t work well and has no options for sorting by date, forcing you to sift through all of your videos to find what you’re looking for. You can circumvent their portal by forwarding all of you footage to a local network attached storage drive (NAS), but you probably wouldn’t need very much storage, considering how low the resolution is.

Our Opinion

Despite these cameras being a lot cheaper than they were released, they are still probably not worth your money. Unless you specifically need a camera that runs on battery and runs on the network, but you don’t need quality video, you might want to go with a newer camera with higher quality video. In fact, Netgear does have a much better wireless battery powered camera model called the Alro Pro, which records in 720p, has similar battery life, and even records great at night. These cameras are a lot more expensive, of course, but if you’re planning on using your cameras for home security, you’re probably better off investing a little more to keep you home as safe as possible.

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Cameras are one of the best ways to prevent break-ins from occurring. If you don’t want deal with all of the troubleshooting and monitoring, you should consider getting professionally monitored security with cameras installed through Protect America. You shouldn’t let the complicated setup of self-install cameras on the market put your family in danger. Get a free quote and talk to a professional about home security and video surveillance today.