q see camera system

Home Security…Where to Start?

So you’ve decided to get your own security system set up for your house for ultimate protection, but not sure what to look for?

Well, don’t feel alone.

With so many systems out there and different companies to choose from, it can all be a little confusing.

Really, where should a guy start?

First, you should figure out what you need for protection. Do you need just one camera or several?

Do you want to be able to see footage from your smart device so you can stay protected no matter where you are?

Do you want a DVR or NVR and what the hell is the difference?

Confused by TB hard drives and PoE?

What does it all mean and what do you really need to purchase to ensure a kick ass security system?

These questions led me to many interesting systems and information on what to look for to give me exactly what I need in my quest for surveillance.

DVR or NVR?

Defender Pro SentinelFirst let’s look at the difference between analog/DVR, and IP/NVR systems to decide which may be right for your security requirements.

First, the analog or DVR system (which stands for digital video recorder) is connected with coax cables and does not need an internet connection for recording. DVR’s have an internal hard drive for recording and storing the video footage and uses the analog cameras.

The price range of these systems are anywhere from $200 dollars all the way up to $1300 dollars depending on whether you just purchase the DVR itself or an entire system.  If you’re interested, you can read in great detail with our review of the Defender Pro Sentinel 8CH H.264 1 TB Smart Security DVR with Smart Phone Compatibility.  You can also check out the 16 Channel 2TB Q- See QTH916-16BU-2 on Amazon.

A network video recorder or NVR uses an IP camera, which is a digital video camera that sends and receives information through a computer network.

Where the DVR has to have every camera connected directly to the DVR, the IP cameras can be connected with PoE technology, or Power over Ethernet, which is a way to run power and video over the same line.

This technology uses cat5e or cat6 cables and is for wired Ethernet Local area networks (LANS). With a price range of $200 to $400 dollars, both the Night Owl’s NVR10-441 (read our Night Owl security camera review HERE) and the Zmodo SPoE Security System come with 4 Channel NVR with IP Cameras and 1TB hard drive installed.

night owl nvr10-441 systemBoth the DVR and NVR use storage on the TB hard drive, or terabyte, meaning the space is equal to 1024 GB, which is basically a ton of space, and more than enough storage for all your video surveillance needs.

Most surveillance systems come with a 1 TB hard drive, although the more expensive Q-See mentioned earlier, with the 16 CH, or 16 Cameras, comes with 2 TB.

Let’s talk about the channel and cameras for a minute. When the product says “Channel“, this is just the number of camera’s that can be connected and record onto that particular system. These range from the 4,8,16 or 32 Channel systems.

GW Security CameraAs mentioned before, depending on if the system is DVR and uses the analog camera, or the NVR using the IP cameras, you want to make sure it is either an indoor or outdoor or both an indoor and outdoor camera as to where you will place it.

A nice option is the GW Security 5MP 2592×1920 Pixel HD 1920 Outdoor Indoor Network PoE Power Over Ethernet 1080P Security Dome IP Camera with 2.8-12mm Varifocal Zoom Lens. Here’s our full review of the GW Security camera if you want to read a lot more on this option. This 5-megapixel super high-resolution dome camera can be used indoor or outdoor with the option to change the angle of view.

This is a waterproof and vandal proof camera with 30 Infrared LED with up to 80 ft distance. There is motion detection with email alerts and the power of Ethernet with remote mobile or PC viewing.

Now that we have some basic knowledge on what to look for, let’s take a closer look at some of the security system options that are out there and what might fit your needs.

A Couple NVR Choices

We’ll look at a couple NVR choices first. As stated before, two in a good basic do it yourself and don’t break the bank category are the Night Owl’s NVR10-441, which is a 4 channel full 1080p NVR with pre- installed 1 TB hard drive.

1080p is basically a high definition indoor and outdoor day or night vision IP camera.

This NVR is a network video recorder software program that records video in digital format and then stores the footage on the 1 TB hard drive in this device.
For extra security and peace of mind, you can use on a smart device such as a phone or tablet and view live feeds or re-play video or even take snapshots.

This feature is used with both apple and windows.

So whether you are away at work or on vacation, or even just out to dinner, nothing can make you feel more secure than to sneak a peek at our home and belongings on your phone and have that piece of mind that all is well.

It can be used without an internet connection, just recorded to your computer and viewed later. This system has good cameras and has excellent daytime viewing and decent night vision.

Another thing to note on the Night Owl is the different configuring abilities for each camera making personalization of security easier.

Another NVR system worth looking into is the Zmodo 4 channel NVR with 4 x 720p IP cameras and a 1 TB hard drive.

zmodo camera systemThis unit uses 4-720 IP cameras which at 720p megapixel at 1280×720 pixels give a wider and crisper image and video, than a standard analog can.

These cameras also cover more space with more detail with the 2.8mm wide angle lens. They are for use indoor or outdoor and are designed to withstand even harsh or severe weather.

Also great at night with infrared night vision for up to 65 feet. This NVR also includes 1 TB hard drive, although can support up to 2 TB hard drive giving up to 50 days of recording time from these 4 cameras.

swann security systemSticking with the same price range, but looking at the DVR, a security system like the Swann SWHDK-880508-US 8 Channel 720p DVR with 8x Bullet Cameras is a good option to look at.

This system has everything you need from the top of the line DVR with 1TB hard drive to the 8 clear resolution cameras.

Swann offers a free SwannView Plus app, to access the DVR system from your 3G/4G smartphone or tablet. Using SwannLink ‘peer to peer’ technology will allow you to easily connect your mobile device to the DVR in minutes so you avoid any network configurations.

Also in this price range is the Lorex LHV10041TC4 a 4-Channel 1 TB Cloud Connect with 4 – 720p HD Cameras.

Lorex lhv10041tc4Not only do the high definition 720p resolution, ensure an excellent recorded video, but thanks to the advanced picture correction technologies Lorex offers, you can also be confident that the images from the Lorex home security cameras stay clear and vibrantly strong in any conditions.

They also boast of an anti-glare feature to always give a clear image, even in difficult lighting conditions. Their SmartIR auto light helps with any wash-out effects.

The night vision, or Clear Night Imaging technology range is up to 130 ft. in moderate lighting and up to 90ft in total darkness, giving you confidence that even on the darkest nights, your surveillance is still working for you.

Read our Lorex security camera review HERE.

Mid-to-Higher-Price Point Security Systems

samsung p5122 security systemJumping in price to the $400 to $1000 range, you can look at the Samsung SDS-P5122, a 16 CH DVR that comes with 12 indoor/outdoor cameras that are easily customized to monitor and notify you of any motion or if the camera is being tampered with via your iPhone or Android smartphone.

Samsung security offers their free iPOLiS app so you can easily check your surveillance anytime and anywhere.

q see camera systemAnother high-end product as mentioned before, the Q-See QTH916-16BU-2 16CH 720p Analog HD DVR with 12 Bullet, 3 Dome, 1 Pan-Tilt and 2 TB HDD. Not only does this system come with different cameras it also comes with extra storage on the DVR with the pre-installed 2 TB.

The bullet and dome cameras provide up to 100ft of night vision and the entire system can stream live video to a PC, MAC, iPhone or Android, and also email alerts when any motion has been detected.

All these units come with everything you will need to get started including the cables, HMI cable, a mouse, and remote and start up guide.

These companies also have customer service available and many have videos you can view and learn everything you need to get the exact product for all your security needs.

They also have guides for the installation process, but if you feel like this is just way too much work and you don’t want to set the security up yourself, many of the companies also offer installation options.

Summing It All Up

Extra security is always a bonus in giving you the confidence your belongings are safe. Low-cost options that also allow for the convenience of instant viewing with a smart device make deciding to have your own surveillance a no brainer.

With a little reviewing of each of the products listed and the knowledge of what you should be looking for, you too can create and install the perfect security system for your house or business.

You Might Also Like:

night owl reviewlorex reviewgw cameras reviewdefender review

GW Security Camera

GW Security Cameras

Why do I need one?

I started looking for a kick ass surveillance camera to put in my driveway to keep watch over any shady scumbags that might be hanging out, looking to walk away with my stuff. I don’t want anything that is going to break the bank, but I want to have confidence in the system I buy.

I decided to check out the GW Security 5091IP, 5 Megapixel 2592×1920 Pixel Super HD. At first glance this security dome IP camera with 2.8-12mm varifocal zoom lens offers Pixel Super HD 1920P outdoor or indoor network Power over Ethernet 1080P which should be exactly what I need for some high quality video surveillance.

Let’s break all this down and see what it means and figure out if it’s going to work for my security.

Internet Protocol camera

GW Security CameraFirst, what do GW security cameras have to offer, and are they going to fit the bill when it comes to top notch surveillance? It’s an IP vandal resistant and weather proof dome camera, or Internet Protocol camera, a type of digital video camera that can send and receive data through a computer network and the internet, unlike analog which does not.

This is also ONVIF compliant which is a standard for how IP systems in security products can communicate with each other.

Giving different technology systems and software the ability to communicate with one another means that we can use this camera with equipment we may already have or will buy in the future no matter who the manufacturer may be.

Thanks to the 5 megapixels you can rest assured that the picture viewing will be top of the line and clear with excellent day or night images including resolution up to 2592×1920.

With the 2.8-12mm varifocal zoom lens recording real time 1536p and 1080p resolution at 30 frames per second this is sure to make recorded video play back sharp and easily viewed.

Also 48 IR or infrared lights give up to 130 feet of night vision even in complete darkness so we won’t miss anything any time of day or night.

Power over Ethernetethernet cable connection

Power over Ethernet is a must for my security needs. Unlike a digital camera security system that needs not only a power supply connector, but also a network connection, Power over Ethernet uses just one cable and a network connection.

This gives both power and network from that one cable making installation more convenient and easier in the long run. Not only will it save time, it also saves any expense possibly needed for an electrician to install electric cables.

Since you don’t need an electrical outlet, you also can put the GW 5091 IP dome camera in any location to fit your specific needs moving it around with ease.

What’s in the box?

Now we should look at what comes with this camera and what we may need to make sure it is working at its best. First, this GW Security Camera comes with the IP camera, mounting screws, a specification sheet, and a user guide on CD.

back of the cameraGW Security also offers a 1 year warranty. So great start, but we should also look at any other options we might want to make sure we are doing everything we possibly can to keep this an outstanding security system.

As is, this camera will do everything we may want as it connects directly to the internet router and can be operated from a PC computer. In some of the GW security reviews there were concerns that this product does only work on windows and not Mac. That’s a problem for me.

Several reviewers, however, suggested using a virtualization service to run a version of Windows 10. hmph.  Not my favorite idea.

Another option is to invest in an NVR system, which is a network video recorder. This is a video software program and computer that records video in digital format to disk drive.

The Bottom Line509 close up

There you have it, the GW Security 5091 IP camera at a price range of under 200 dollars is a great option to get yourself started on the road to superior security for your home. As long as you use PC.

If you’re a mac guy like me, you may want to look elsewhere.  By the time you buy an NVR on top of the camera… you can get a full system at a better value.

That said, not everyone prefers mac and this won’t be an issue.  Hooking one or more of these cameras up in the driveway or around the house will ultimately set you up for some major top of the line surveillance.  It’s a good camera, you just may need to do a little extra work to get it set up.  Check out Amazon.com to see the latest pricing.

Defender Pro Sentinel

Defender Home Security System Review

Home Security

A man’s home is his castle right? That man has the right to keep his castle safe with any and all means available to him. Maybe you already have some experience with home security or just need to update the system you have and want to replace with a smart home security system.

Or are you just trying to figure out where the heck to begin with a security system around your castle like me?

There seems to be a lot of different options and who knows which will work right for my needs, but I came across the Defender Pro Sentinel 8CH H.264 and it looks to be worth checking into.

Claiming to be an easy to use system that functions just like a computer, seems like a pretty good place to start. With the ability to view anytime and anywhere with remote viewing with internet and a smartphone or tablet.

I can receive email alerts with photo when motion is detected and I can record over 4 years’ worth of footage thanks to a 1 TB hard drive in the system. With video compression H.264 I can also maximize my storage space.

Why Defender?

Defender Pro SentinelBefore we get more into what the Pro Sentinel 8CH is and what it can offer, let’s look at why we would choose a Defender home security system. Defender prides themselves on being leaders in do-it-yourself affordable security for both business and home use.

They not only offer a lifetime customer support team to help with everything from deciding the right system for you with interactive product tours, they also have video tutorials to help in setting up your equipment.

Whether you are just beginning and trying to find what will work for you or trying to get through the set up process, they are there to help.

Defender wants you to avoid having to hire a professional installer therefore not only supply the video tutorials to help along the way, they have created features to make the process easier for you such as auto start.

This feature ensures recording to automatically begin as soon as the DVR is plugged in. They also offer a 30 day money back guarantee and free shipping over $250 in the contiguous United States.

The Defender Pro Sentinel 8CH H.264

Let’s look at what this security option has to offer the home or business owner. This DVR has a Pentaflex function, which means it can simultaneously run live, record and playback video to ensure the most security options are available to you. Very cool!

With video compression H.264, which was developed for use in high definition systems. This format is used for recording, compression, and distribution of video and allows the Pro Sentinel with the 1TB HDD to hold up to 4 years’ worth of footage.

This unit offers use of up to 8 cameras and gives the option to customize each area as you wish and the ability to name each channel for ease. Whether it is front of Castle, Moat, Battle field, Dungeon or Tower, you can name each area as you wish.

A masking feature allows you to block a section of the area out for added security, while still viewing the surrounding space, such as seeing the drawbridge but not the security key pad.

Defender also offers the covert feature that allows protecting an entire channel from public viewing, only authorized viewers can see the action in that location. King of the castle is the only one with access.

Another feature is the picture-in-picture function, as well as digital zoom and sequence switching. All areas are also stamped with a date and time so you can easily search specific footage.

Use your Defender wireless security system by simply downloading the ClearVu® app and scan the QR code and you can monitor remotely from where ever you are from your smart device.

What’s Included?

Backside/Inputs of Pro SentinelSo what are the goods that come with the Pro Sentinel to get us started? We’ve already talked about the 8CH DVR with the 1TB HDD. Next is 2 BNC to RCA Connectors. A 10ft. RJ-45 Ethernet Cable and 4ft. Power Adapter and 6ft. RCA video cable.

An instruction manual on a CD, a USB Mouse and IR remote controller with batteries, along with a quick start guide.

A few things you will need that aren’t included are a broadband router and broadband internet connection. Also, don’t forget, this is a great choice for those that are just replacing a DVR and already have cameras, or want to pick and choose their own cameras separately as they are not included with the Pro Sentinel.

Defender Security System Reviews

We should take a minute and go over a few reviews on the Pro Sentinel and maybe even find a tip or two to consider after our purchase.

Most reviewers agree this a great purchase for the money, and several have purchased this unit to replace another from Defender. Set up seems to go smoothly for most, although several mentioned the manual is on CD not in booklet form and they found this difficult to use.

Another concern was the replay speed was only 16x which they felt was too slow.

A few tips mentioned was to write down the username and password when starting as resetting was a bit of a project. Also a good idea to purchase a power backup device such as a surge protector in case of power loss.

Keep in mind that the unit should not be installed in a warm area such as an attic as it can overheat and would need to be replaced.

Final Thoughts on the Defender Pro Sentinel

I believe with all the positive information, and ease of use that comes from the Defender DVR, at a $200 to $400 dollar price range, along with some top notch cameras this would make an excellent security plan to put in place.

The cooler choice, of course, would be a couple dragons in the moat around the castle, but for now we’ll have to give the Pro Sentinel a try to keep our enemies at bay.

Lorex lhv10041tc4

Lorex Security Sytem LHV10041TC4

Does home security have to be difficult?

What’s a guy to do when he wants a quality security system for his home, but doesn’t want to break the bank or spend a month figuring out how to install? This guy started looking at great inexpensive options on home security systems that even a dummy like me can install.

This search brought me to the Lorex LHV10041TC4 a 4-Channel 1 TB Cloud Connect with 4 – 720p HD Cameras.

Sounds complicated right?

Well, not really when we break all this down and figure out what is really involved.

Who is Lorex? 

Lorex lhv10041tc4Let’s first look at who this company is and why we should trust their system. Lorex is just one of the many companies from FLIR technologies, a company founded in 1978 that originally did infrared imaging systems in vehicles.

Their continued commitment led them to expand into other areas, including Instruments – which provide devices for images, measuring, and assessing thermal energy for not only commercial and industry, but also other scientific applications.

This company also provides thermal imaging camera cores and components for other companies to use in their products. FLIR has also expanded into not only local law enforcement security but also public safety and military uses.

Along with these security applications, they also have a marine line to not only make life on the water safe, but also lots of fun.

In conjunction with these other amazing systems, they also focus their attention on home security systems, providing everything one would need to keep their business, home and belongings safe with all their top notch security components, without a hefty price tag.  Wow.

Technical Jargon

Now that we know this company really knows their sh!t, let’s look at what the explanation on this camera system really means.

First is the high definition 720p HD recording cameras which give a 30fps (frames per second, the same as television), or real time frequency rate where the imaging system shows consecutive images per channel.

Basically the cameras are using their advanced image sensors to provide sharp detailed viewing, while streaming in real time with HD DVR channels adding to the quality of this surveillance.

Speaking of the DVR, this state of the art system allows you to not only view, but also store the video using the pre-installed 1 TB space on the hard drive.

You can choose and customize the recording settings to either run continuous, scheduled, motion only, or a combination of continuous and recording with motion alerts. There is also a backup feature to copy live video to the USB flash drive. I

t’s as easy as picking the channel, and clicking the icon to start real-time backup, never missing any important activity.

For added peace of mind, Lorex also offers a no-fee free app on the FLIR cloud to keep track of activity anywhere you are right from your smart phone or tablet.

You can instantly connect to your cameras by scanning the DVR’s QR code and begin safely and securely viewing to give you peace of mind, even when you are far away from home or business.

FLIR cloud is available for Android or Apple and can be used to monitor on a PC or Mac also with no recurring fees.

What’s Included?

So what should we expect to get out of the box to get us started on our road to security?Lorex camera

We’ve already discussed the DVR system with pre-installed HD. We also get an HDMI cable, a remote control, a power adapter, mouse, Ethernet cable to connect the system and a quick start guide.

We get the 4 bullet cameras which offer the 720p resolution. These cameras are not only weatherproof and built to withstand extreme outdoor temperatures, they also have a vandal resistant design with lightweight polycarbonate protected housings with a stand to hide the cables out of sight and away from possible intruders.

They come with a mounting kit and Allen key, and 4- 60 ft BNC cables for installation.

Looking for a simpler system?  Try the GW system.

What else it does:

Ok, we know what comes with this system and how awesome it is we can securely view with our smartphone, but what else does this system have to offer to convince us it’s the one for us?

Well, thanks to the high definition 720p resolution, we can be sure to get an excellent recorded video, but thanks to the advanced picture correction technologies Lorex offers, we can also be confident that the images from the Lorex home security cameras stay clear and vibrantly strong in any conditions.

They also boast of an anti-glare feature to always give a clear image, even in difficult lighting conditions. Their SmartIR auto light helps with any wash-out effects.

The night vision, or Clear Night Imaging technology range is up to 130 ft. in moderate lighting and up to 90ft in total darkness, giving you confidence that even on the darkest nights, your surveillance is still working for you.

They also offer a digital zoom with click-and-drag, which allows you to get a better view of the action simply use the easy digital zoom icon on your menu within one or more channels. You can also move the cameras around in split screen where you move to another channel without changing any cables, again, you just click and drag.

Don’t have an internet connection? This is not a problem with the option of connecting a TV or monitor directly to the DVR allowing to watch playbacks when it’s convenient for you.

Pros and Cons

Lorex dvrEverything has positives and negatives about it, and the Lorex LHV10041TC4, is not an exception.

According to the many Lorex security system reviews and comments made about this item, the negatives were mainly about the hardware not being too exceptional, with cheap mounting hardware and having to purchase own screws.

It was also mentioned the cameras were a cheap plastic, however Lorex Technology Inc., says their designed for longevity and they stand by them. Others also mentioned the night time viewing was not great and the sensors only worked for about 70ft.

Others mentioned they spent a lot of time running cable. However, this cheap (and inept) dude would rather spend a whole day running cables then paying someone else my hard earned cash to do it for me… so we can take this as a pro as well.

Speaking of the positives, we can also include that most who have used the system claim that not only is it a decent price, and runs well, the installation was easy with using the plug and play with minimum setup on the menus.

Some boast they get the 130 ft. even at night. The movement and sensing is good and the FLIR app, is easy to use. Most agree that this system is a great price for everything you get.

A Couple Tips to remember

closeup of Lorex cameraWhile reading the pros and cons, this simple do it yourselfer likes to pay close attention to helpful little hints that others suggest.  Basically because it will save this dumbass hours of time learning these lessons on his own.

So with that little confession, the first tip I found was very IMPORTANT.  That is, the cable ends are different and we need to make sure the one that plugs into the camera and the one into the DVR are being run in their correct direction.

Running these cables in the wrong direction will add double the time, if not done correctly to begin with. Sounds simple, but let’s be serious, it’s easy to botch it all up so pay attention from the start.  You would think this is a 50/50 proposition, but I seem to fall more in the 100% run incorrectly.

Another little tip was to buy a steel fish tape, also known as draw wire or draw tape, to help pull cables through the narrow spaces making installation quicker and easier. Simply, smarter.

Final words about Lorex by FLIR LHV10041TC4

Not only has this company won 6 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) Innovation Awards, they are a global leader in DIY security.

With this and the fact that it is affordable being in the low-range price group ($200 to $400,  MSRP of $399 as of this writing) of home security cameras, we can take comfort in knowing with a little effort in the installation we can soon be on our way to finding total confidence that our belongings are safe. (Try amazon.com to get a better price)

We can take satisfaction in knowing we have done all we can do for our personal safety with our own ingenuity some help from Lorex.

night owl nvr10-441 system

Night Owl Security Camera System Review

Why a home monitoring system?

I’d like to think I would only need to find a security camera to check out the wildlife hanging around outside the house, or just to look like I am the up-to-date techie in the neighborhood with the newest gadget for my home.

Although with the increase of break-ins and burglaries, even small town homes are no longer safe from the threats of local thieves. Any home or business can feel the threats from scumbags looking for free stuff to quickly and easily walk away with, without any threat of being caught.

This brings this home owner to the conclusion it is time to get some cool new contraption, and figure out how the hell to set it up to keep a constant sharp eye on my property.

Keeping a sharp watchful eye took my search to some sharp owl eyes, specifically the Night Owl System. The product NVR10-441, a 4 channel full 1080p with a pre-installed 1 TB hard drive looks like the perfect place to start.

Ok, that’s great, but who the heck is Night Owl, and what does all that crap mean?

Who is Night Owl Security?

night owl nvr10-441 systemFirst off, we should look at what is Night Owl Security, and why would I want a Night Owl camera for my home? The company was founded in 2009 and has their headquarters in Boynton Beach, Florida. This rapidly growing security manufacturing company prides itself on engineering and designing uncomplicated products that are cost effective for not only businesses, but also for the home owner.

They offer 24 hour technical support in both English and Spanish to help with any solutions you may need. They also have many detailed videos from their team to quickly and easily help you with your product information and how- to guides ranging from registration to installation making the entire process from start to finish glide by with ease.

Night Owl’s support system continues with several options through their customer service and support center. After creating an account and registering your product, you are then able to find all the help you may need.

Other than the useful how-to videos, you may also contact them directly for assistance. They have a dedicated technical team that is ready to help with any issue big or small ranging from general issues such as password resets, repair and service, or even if you are on the fence about which system to buy, they will help guide you in deciding on the perfect system for your needs.

Technical support is always there for you to help in any configurations or troubleshooting that may arise. Night Owl also boasts about their unique EZ return process without hidden fees or shipping costs for all their security products that are covered under warranty.

Along with all the support, Night Owl’s products come with all the cables and accessories you will need to do it yourself, or if you prefer they also offer installation services in the continental U.S.

What about the NVR10-441?

I’d like to think with all the help from the excellent service provided by this company, we can figure all this crap out and be that “do it yourself guy”, so let’s get back to the NVR10-441 and figure out how does Night Owl security work?

We should first learn what the product is and if it is the right product for our needs.

This is a 4 channel full 1080p NVR with pre- installed 1 TB hard drive. Let’s break this down a bit to see what we are actually getting.

• 1080p is basically a high definition indoor and outdoor day or night vision IP or internet protocol camera.

• The NVR is a network video recorder which is a software program that records video in a digital format that is stored on the 1 TB hard drive in this device.

• 1 TB, or terabyte, means the space is equal to 1024 GB, which in other terms is a ton of space to use and plenty for a kick ass home security system.

• This has PoE technology, or Power over Ethernet, which is a way to run power and video over the same line.

This technology uses cat5e or cat6 cables and is for wired Ethernet Local area networks (LANS). Offering wide viewing angle cameras with night vision of up to 120ft with view and playback footage that can be accessed from a smart device with the Night Owl app.

The DVR connects to the TV with an HDMI cable or Night Owl provides a CD-ROM to easily install on the computer to monitor or effortlessly configure each camera for your specific needs.

Although microphones are sold separately we can also hook up Night Owl security with audio for extra convenience and extra data in our security footage.

Extra security is also found using a smart device such as a phone or tablet to view live feeds or re-play video or even take snapshots.

This feature is used with both mac and windows.

What’s Included?

We already talked about the 4 channel NVR with 1 TB Hard drive. You also get the 4 indoor/outdoor cameras, with the 4-60ft bundles of needed camera cable, a 6 ft. HDMI Cable, and an RJ-45 Ethernet cable.

A wireless mouse and remote with batteries, a DC 15V/4A NVR power adapter and mounting hardware and screws, along with Software CD, a quick setup guide and 3 Night Owl security stickers.

Are Night Owl Security Systems Any Good?

Are they worth the time and effort? Let’s take a look at the night owl security reviews and the beneficial and unsatisfactory aspects of this product.

We’ve already looked at all the great qualities of the company, so now, the product itself and what it offers.

Customers like that it can play on a computer or use the app for their phone. Whether we are away at work or on vacation, or even just out to dinner, nothing can make us feel more secure than to sneak a peek at our home and belongings on our phone and have that piece of mind that all is well.

You can view these live feeds and also take snapshots.

The feed can also be recorded and played later from the computer or the DVR system. The NVR10-441 can be used without an internet connection, you just won’t be able to view live or play it remotely.

This system has good cameras and has excellent daytime viewing and decent night vision. Another positive was the different configuring abilities for each camera making personalization of security easier.

The complaints are mostly about technical issues, such as using the mouse in the configuring. Many people  have had issues with the mouse needing to be closer to the unit to work.

This is easily remedied, however, by setting the program on the computer and doing the configuring from there instead of the TV.

Several comments were made as far as viewing at night. Most said it was a good picture at night, however there were some complaints that the picture was good, just not as good as daytime viewing. In my mind I’m thinking “duh, of course it’s not as good as daytime viewing.  Have these people ever seen nighttime footage????”.  But maybe that’s just me.  If you’re looking for a comparison system, you might try the Defender system.

Although this system has the capability for audio, the microphones are sold separately.

A Few Tips

To go along with the pros and cons of this system, I think it’s always good to look at the tips and helpful hints to make our experience with the Night Owl system even better.

Many have helped in weatherproofing their product by mounting the cameras under the eaves and hiding the connections behind or under the camera.

Another tip is to rename each of your cameras for easier retrieval of footage on that particular camera, instead of camera 1, you can name it, “Toy Cave” which is obviously the garage. “Playground”, aka back yard, you get the idea.

Set this system up on your computer, whether Mac or Windows, it’s just easier than the television. Don’t try to be a hero and end up spending 3 times as long as you need to. Make the set up less difficult for yourself and use the set up wizard, enough said.

Viewing is always better and more fun on your phone, so you will definitely want to download the free app. Also make sure you have all the latest downloads/patches/upgrades for your product.

Final words about Night Owls NVR10-441

This system is in our mid-range price point for security systems ($400- $1000 bucks).  Specifically it is listed at $429.99 MSRP as of this writing.  I have found it for less on amazon.com, so it’s worth checking there.

At this price point, it makes the NVR10-441 a cost effective choice in a new home security system. Not only is it a convenient system, it seems to have a fairly easy setup, offering smartphone access which is really a must for any busy guy or just someone who likes to keep track of his stuff.

Over all, tech savvy or not, this system has all that anyone could need in looking and feeling more secure with a constant watchful eye over home and belongings bringing consistent security and peace of mind.