Amcrest ProHD IP2M-841B Wireless IP Camera


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I hadn't really heard of Amcrest until recently, but about a year ago I was fortunate enough to start being sent some of their products to evaluate. Whilst I don't know the ins and outs, they seem to be related in some way to Foscam who are obviously a big name in the IP camera world as the following can be found on their website:

Foscam Amcrest/FDT split off from Foscam Shenzhen in 2015/2016 due to issues relating to distribution, security and quality control
as can

Important Message from Foscam Digital Technologies Regarding US Sales & Service

We, Foscam.US (aka Foscam Digital Technologies and now Amcrest Technologies), are an independent United States based distributor of "Foscam" branded products. We have been offering telephone support, US local warranty and building the Foscam brand in the US for the past 7 years. However, we are deeply saddened to report that, even after all of this, our overseas suppliers have decided to undercut us and supply to our major customers directly. For this reason, we have no choice but to suspend telephone support for all Foscam branded products. If you have purchased a Foscam camera directly from us or from one of our authorized retailers, technical support is still available via email at (e-mail address removed).

For customers who have not purchased from us directly, we advise you to please contact Foscam Shenzhen or the distributor which you have purchased from. In the meantime, we have launched our own new brand of IP cameras called Amcrest, which has superior quality products and full telephone technical support 7 days per week. We hope you can support us in our new venture. For more information, please visit www.Amcrest.com.
Amcrest appear to have a base in Texas, USA and offer UK, USA & Canada based support to customers.

This product, then, is the IP2M-841B Wireless Indoor IP Camera.







It's very much a familiar design in terms of similarity to other products on the market, but the box suggests some fairly decent specifications such as:

1080p 30fps
10m Night Vision Coverage
Pan/Tilt
2 Megapixel CMOS sensor
802.11b/g/n sensor
iPhone, iPad & Android Apps
Cloud Recording
90 Degree field of view

It retails for £89.99 on Amazon and is available in Black or White.

It arrived, well packaged, and I was quite impressed. A nice box, which gives the impression of a really premium product. The way that the camera and accessories are packaged inside the box clearly give the feeling that much thought has gone into presentation. You get the camera, instructions/CD, Power Cable and also, unexpectedly, a wall mount.

I was nervous about setting this up – having tried an IP camera in the past, configuring the thing beat me – unable to get the device to work outside of my home network. I also purchased some Netgear Arlo wireless cameras which are excellent – and idiot-proof to set up and access anywhere. If you need a simple to use, easy to set up home CCTV setup then I suggest these are considered. If, however, you are a little more ICT literate and need/want additional features and control then continue reading.

I plugged this camera in and downloaded the app. A light on the back of the camera flashes green, and using the camera on my iPhone I scanned the QR code to connect to my Wi-Fi. Unsuccessful.

Reading the manual, it appears that for some reason, if your router broadcasts at both 2Ghz and 5Ghz bands simultaneously you cannot connect without plugging an Ethernet cable in to the camera and configuring manually. It was a while ago now that I tried set-up this way, so the firmware on the camera may have been updated to eradicate this issue entirely.

I got the camera on the Wi-Fi eventually and managed to get the footage on the app with my iPhone. The app is fairly decent, and allows for full control of the camera – you can Pan, Tilt & Zoom by swiping the screen so it’s fairly intuitive. The app appears to be updated regularly, and there is a separate iPad version which works equally as well.

What did take some time was working out that in order to access the camera outside of my own LAN I needed to set up IP Forwarding. This is fairly straightforward on my Virgin Media Superhub 2AC but I did have to google and work out what I needed to do. I also needed to reserve an internal IP address to prevent it being allocated a different address each time I plug it in. If you’re buying an IP camera, then you probably know that you’ll need to do this anyway.

The cloud service is much easier, however. It provides most functionality that you would need and is much easier to set up and appears to be more 'idiot proof' like the Netgear cameras. Create an account on the Amcrest Cloud website, add your camera serial number and ensure it’s connected and then you can view the live stream and set up recording schedules. Easy.

Amcrest kindly provide 4 hours of cloud storage free of charge with the camera. The Amcrest Cloud app will give you push notifications straight to your iPhone and allow you to review both recorded and live footage. If you don’t want to pay for cloud storage, the camera has a Micro SD card slot. You can also use Surveillance Station on a Synology NAS to record footage round the clock, these two devices will happily talk to each other all day long.

In all, an excellent camera. The video quality is truly excellent. Very, very impressed.

Some other nice features that this camera offers:

- Motion Detection
- Remove areas from the motion detection area
- Time/Date Stamp
- Text Overlay
- Recording Schedules
- Two way audio (Can speak into the phone and sound comes out of the camera)

There are a few things I don’t like too:

- Initial set up procedure not simple
- There can be quite a bit of lag when Pan/Tilting remotely

In all, an excellent camera with more features than I understand or have time to write about. If you need a fully featured IP camera that is excellent in both build & picture quality then I’m pretty sure this is an excellent choice.

We actually use this camera in our nursery looking down on my the cot. The camera quite happy sticks to the wall with some 3M command strips and provides footage in a MUCH higher quality to purpose built baby monitors that you see online.

Some photos:








 
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Very interesting Christopher, if it is compattable for Linux I might look into it.:thumb::user::thumb:
 
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Well I have had a look into it but not compatible with my os but here is the conversation with one of their sales guys:-

"Hi there Jav is your Amcrest ProHD 1080P POE completable with Linux Mint Cinnamon 64bit operating system.

Jay Mills (Sales,Offers & Queries) no it is not compatible."

It is a shame so I will have to continue my little Logitech one
 
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Odd. I would have thought it would be compatible - it's all web browser based!
 

muckshifter

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it's all web browser based!
yes, it will/should work using a browser like Chrome, however, as has been in the past, the onus to getting it to work will be on you. Shame, 'cos it wouldn't / shouldn't take much for the manufacturer to cobble a bit-o-linux code together.

:user:
 

Ian

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Nice review Chris!

How have you found the push notifications? Will they alert you to movement, etc... on the app if configured that way?
 
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Nice review Chris!

How have you found the push notifications? Will they alert you to movement, etc... on the app if configured that way?
Ian.- yep. I have them disabled but just turned them on and they are very reliable. You'll get push notifications whilst the app is running in the background on the iPhone etc - so all good stuff. Lots of settings too that you can configure.

Seems to have things like face detection, and you can also select which area of the camera to detect motion within - ideal if you have something in the screen that always moves that you want to disregard.







 
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Ian

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Oh nice one, pretty configurable then :thumb:.
 

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