Pan and tilt options proceed to roll out to consumer-level sensible safety cameras, with EZVIZ the newest to supply such a mannequin within the type of its new C8C cam.

The {hardware} is introduced in an uncommon globular design, the underside half of which might rotate by way of 352 levels horizontally and 95 levels vertically. In different phrases, with a normal mounting, you possibly can place the lens to see something beneath the airplane of the digital camera. Two small antennae emerge from the white higher half of the sphere—2.4GHz Wi-Fi solely is supported.

This review is part of TechHive’s coverage of the best home security cameras, where you’ll find reviews of the competition’s offerings, plus a buyer’s guide to the features you should consider when shopping for this type of product.

The unit has no battery and must be permanently connected to AC power, but that’s to be expected for the price. The recently reviewed Reolink Go PT costs almost $250, although it connects to LTE networks instead of Wi-Fi, providing much wider latitude when it comes to installation.

A small pigtail adjacent to the EZVIZ camera’s power cable allows you to connect the system to ethernet instead of Wi-Fi if you prefer, but the system does not support power over ethernet (PoE).

ezviz 8c8 primary EZVIZ

The EZVIZ 8C8 pan/tilt home security camera carries IP65 protection from the elements.

The mounting bracket allows you to install either on a (vertical) wall or the underside of your eaves (horizontally); the all-plastic setup isn’t the sturdiest, but it seems reasonable enough given the price tag. On the plus side, the camera is rated for IP65 protection against dust and water, which should be plenty for the average home environment. (You can read all about IP codes in this other story.)

EZVIZ app Christopher Null / IDG

A handful of basic features are placed front and center in the app’s interface.

Setup is undertaken through the EZVIZ app, which handles all the company’s smart home gear. I encountered similar setup errors with the C8C as I did when setting up EZVIZ’s smart plugs, as the C8C’s “automatic” Wi-Fi setup failed to connect to my network. Fortunately, a second process, whereby you manually select the camera’s temporary wireless network before bridging it to your home network, worked without complaint. For the first day of use, I encountered nothing but error messages when attempting to connect to the camera to watch live video or playback clips; after that, things settled down and the system became somewhat steadier. That said, I encountered frequent “network is unstable” errors throughout the course of my testing.

Pan and tilt features are the big draw here, and EZVIZ’s no-frills interface makes this a pretty easy operation, as is using the system’s few additional functions. Naturally, users have the option to snap a photo or begin recording video on demand while viewing the live stream, and the system can be configured to begin recording based either on human detection or on any type of movement. Six levels of motion sensitivity are available, and I found the higher sensitivity levels to be quite capable at pickup up and recording motion.

The unit supports two forms of night vision, including the standard infrared (black and white) version and a color version which is illuminated by a spotlight. There’s also a “smart” mode that defaults to IR but switches to the spotlight if motion is detected (in order to keep the spotlight from being activated all night long). Both modes are reasonably capable, though the range of the spotlight isn’t huge. You’ll get better clarity in the standard IR night mode. As well, that spotlight can also be used for an on-demand “Active Defense” mode, which blinks the light repeatedly as a sort of deterrent against intruders. (However, there’s no speaker on the unit, so there’s no siren and no way to speak to people through two-way audio.)

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