After a successfully positive review of the Blink Security Camera that runs on 2x AA lithium batteries for up to 2 years, I am excited to share with you yet another battery-operated WiFi camera.
FREECAM is manufactured by LSVT (Shenzhen Leshi Video Technology). Founded in 1993, it specialises in video surveillance for over 20 years. Freecam products are distributed in Singapore by Jit Technology (集电科技有限公司) based in Shenzhen. It recently set up an office here and will be distributing more innovative products from China across the South-east Asian region. It will also offer warranty servicing. Its solar-powered home security camera, C310, is quite popular in USA.
In this article, I am reviewing the Freecam C330/C330A.
- Product model C330/C330A mobile WiFi camera
- Lens: 2.1mm/110°
- Video codec: H.264
- Video resolution: 720 x 576
- Audio: Two-way with microphone
- WiFi: IEEE802.11b/g/n (2.4GHz)
- Night mode: Infrared LEDs
- Motion detection: Passive Infrared (PIR) 5m range
- Charging source: Micro USB 5V 1A
- Typical Battery life: Up to 30 days standby, 1 week recording of up to 20 minutes of events.
- Storage: Maximum 32GB Micro SD card
- Dimensions: 84 x 74 x 118.7 mm
The only difference between the 2 variants is the 2-way audio (C330A). I like the clean design of the camera, with easily accessible buttons and durable matt-plastic finish.
The camera is operated remotely via DoBy smartphone app. After creating an account with your email address, I paired the C330A camera without a hitch. China apps are often not exactly pretty in the UX, but DoBy is functional and the app response is good. It allows me to set a schedule to detect movement and trigger recording. Under low light, it enables infrared to illuminate and continue to detect movements.
The recording resolution is 720×576, and the footages appear quite clear and heavily sharpened. You certainly can’t use them to zoom in for digital forensics, but what I like about the Freecam C330A is that I can watch the events live with a lag of less than a second. I can also have 2-way conversation over the camera, with decent audible sound quality. Playing back recorded footages is also relatively speedy without waiting too long to watch them. In comparison, I have been using Beseye Pro security camera at home since the last time I reviewed. It stores the footages at the cloud server, takes time to load the footages, and live events are delayed by about 10 seconds. The 2-way audio is unusable because the party could not figure out the sound bites at all. However, the strength of Beseye is on the facial intelligence and data analytics.
When I tested the C330A camera by activating the motion sensor 24/7 (even when someone is home), the battery lasts about 1 week. When I reduced the period to only times when no one is at home resulting in very few recording events, it lasts for about 3 weeks. It all depends on how frequent the camera records motion-sensor footage. When battery is low, just remove it and charge using standard micro USB charger. It might be more tedious to recharge if the camera is mounted at a higher viewpoint, hence I recommend using this camera for adhoc surveillance so that you can deploy this camera anywhere without problems of locating a power point.
A few issues:
– Unable to create multiple schedules for motion detection
– Unable to disable IR as an option
– The camera triggers some static speaker noise whenever it detects movement and wakes up from sleep.
– Storage of video is on the camera itself, and can be easily removed by perpetrators.
Comparing this to Blink Camera, the Freecam C330A is easier to set up and is a better product for watching live events, thanks to the 2-way audio feature. Blink is better as a security camera because the footages are stored remotely, so even if perpetrators destroy the camera, the footages remain safe. Also, the battery life of Blink is a lot longer.
With battery-operated security cameras like Freecam C330A, consumers can position them at any location without limited by power source. The video storage is on the camera itself, so the C330A might be ideal only for home use low-security monitoring. I have replaced Beseye and am now using C330A as my in-house surveillance camera because it works more reliably, plays back recorded footage much faster, and live video feed is without time delay.
Retailing at S$138, the app UI may not be as polished as the established brands but the product works well for me and I highly recommend if you needed a simple surveillance camera without fussing over power socket.
Jit Technology (Singapore) Pte Ltd
200 WOODLANDS INDUSTRIAL PARK E9 SINGAPORE (757877)
Contact: 8393 8088
Launch Event in Aug 2017
Jit Technology will be participating in the Blockbuster SuperMum Baby Fair from 25 – 27 August, Suntec City Convention Centre, booth G20. Freecam C330A and Mee Robot will be on demo and sale. First 10 customers daily will receive a free microSD card.