A remarkable camera for simple, high quality security video.
A couple of years ago, we installed a couple of WiFi enabled cameras. They’ve been a real lifesaver – both figuratively and literally – because we can watch over areas of the house while we are away. Our main concern was actually not so much for security, but for safety. You see, my fiance’s grandmother lives with us and sometimes she isn’t so light on her feet. She has had a couple of falls and as much as we try to watch her and stay home with her, there are times that we both have to be away and being able to check on her is invaluable. Even though we have those two cameras, coverage is minimal. We have discussed adding cameras to our home. That’s when we started testing the Flir FX.
For starters, the Flir FX is multi-purpose. You can use it as a stationary, security camera, or you can detach it from its base and take it on adventures. It’s sort of a cross between a DropCam and a GoPro. When fully charged, the camera has a four-hour battery life and will record 1080P video. It has a super wide-angle lens (160º) and night vision up to 65 feet. You can use the Flir FX as an intercom with it’s 2-way audio stream and you can of course, stream live video easily to your mobile device.
Given that I have some experience with WiFi security cameras and streaming video feeds, I was very eager to test the Flir FX out. I placed it in an in conspicuous place in our living room – one of the places that didn’t have video coverage and also one of the most vulnerable. The vantage point of the camera is such that it can see both ingress/egress points in the house and the sliding glass door that goes out to our patio. The entire room is in view because of the camera’s wide-angle view.
One of the main features of the Flir FX is the SmartZone feature. The SmartZone is set-up so that you can select specific areas that you want monitored and whenever an object moves in that area, you will receive a notification and the camera will record. This is very helpful if you have a high-activity area, but one area of concern. For example, with our living room being the hub of our activities, there is constant movement going in and out of the room. But, we can focus the Flir FX in on the sliding glass door and know if there is movement coming or going out of that space.
One thing that I really like about the Flir FX is that it has the ability to check temperature and humidity. We also have a smart thermostat in our house, but it’s great to have additional sensors, like the on in the indoor base of the Flir FX. The indoor base comes equipped with a temperature and humidity sensor, but some of the other accessories, like the outdoor stand, only includes the temperature sensor. It’s very helpful when monitoring a specific area of your home or office.
Now, I’ve discussed a lot about the features of the camera, but of course, the most important part of the camera is the video quality. The video does record 1080P, which I mentioned, and I’m happy to report that the quality is exceptional. Even though the quality of the video is wonderful, it can fluctuate depending on the quality and speed of your internet connection and your WiFi network. Also, one thing that is a little jarring is the fact that the video feed is on a two-second delay.
I also really like the app for the Flir FX. It’s simple and very easy to navigate. When you first open it, you select the camera that you want to view. Then, you are taken to a screen that allows you to show actions and recording options. Even though the camera will automatically record when movement is detected in a SmartZone, you can also tell the camera to manually record from the app. You can also view past recordings, share them, or delete them from the SD card in the camera. The actions allow you to use the intercom, take a snapshot, view the RapidRecap of the day, and change camera settings.
Set-up was very easy. Each Flir FX camera comes with a QR code stuck to the bottom. When you start up the app for the first time, it asks for access to your camera and directs you to scan the QR code, which connects the app directly to the camera. Very, very easy set-up in comparison to other camera apps. One thing to note is that the ‘owner’, or the person who sets up the camera first, has primary control over the camera and its settings. Many people can connect to a single camera using the app, but only one can change settings.
The Flir FX is truly a remarkable camera and highly recommended by the reviewer. Its app interface is easy to use and the hardware is very high-quality.
For more information on the Flir FX, visit http://www.flir.com.