By Alan J. Pierce EdD
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Providing Classroom Resources on New & Emerging Technologies
D-Link Security Camera DCS8300LH Review (MSRP $ 69.99)
D-Link’s DCS-8300LH is a HD WiFi security camera with a 137 degree view of its surroundings. This camera records in 1080p resolution so you will have no problem recognizing people or animals in the videos that it records during the day. See images 1-4. It automatically records motion and stores what it records on a Micro SD card that you insert into the camera or it can transmit its recordings to a paid cloud storage account that you can setup through the free “mydlink” app that you download from the Apple or Android store. If you decide to use SD storage you need to supply your own micro SD card and the camera can actually support up to a 256GB card.
The My D-Link app can send you push alerts to your smartphone or tablet so you can instantly view what is going on in the camera’s viewing area. Since it allows for two way communication you can literally tell your pet to get off the couch or hold a full conversation with the occupants in the viewing area.
Reasons to Drool
The quality of the video in bright or low light is very good. With an MSRP of $69.99 it is certainly very reasonably priced. This camera will also work with D-Link’s smart home devices and also work with Amazon’s Alexa, Google Smart Home, and IFTTT home automation.
Not So Cool
Setup was very frustrating because the manual didn’t cover the update to the mydlink app that changed the way you setup the recording function of their new cameras. To get this camera to record you now need to setup automation. This video (Automation Setup) will walk you through the procedure and if you still have a problem doing the setup you can call D-Link at 1(877) 453-5465.
The manual indicates that the camera’s night vision can actually see 16 feet in total darkness. I installed the camera at the top of a staircase and I was very disappointed by the camera’s night image. See image 1 and 6. It was installed in place of a much older D-Link camera that had excellent night vision.
If you look at photo 3 and 4 again you will notice that the hinge that connects the base to the camera only bends one way. To position the camera if you are mounting near the ceiling at a corner wall requires you to rotate the base so the camera can give you the coverage you want. To then correct so your image isn’t at a weird angle, you actually need to rotate the camera housing. A hinge design similar to older D-Link cameras would have made wall or ceiling installation much simpler.
Image 5 - Smartphone Screen Shot during Daylight
Image 6 - Screen Shot at Night - Look very closely and you will see a person barely visible in the image