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Although I can pay ADT more money per month to add viewable cameras into my alarm system, I am looking for the way not to do so.

[b]Goal:[/b] To setup 1 to 2 cameras that can be viewed from a web browser or iOS whatever. Just during the day.
[b]Budget:[/b] A few hundred dollars if necessary.
[b]Reason:[/b] View dog during the day.

For the past 4 years, my wife has worked from home 5 days a week. A little less than a year ago we got our puppy Oliver, and she was able to stay home with him obviously. That has now changed, and while she will still be working from home here and there, she will primarily be in the office.

Now Oliver is fully house trained. He goes outside and can hold it, etc. We just really want the cameras to monitor him from time to time. Make sure he does not have an upset stomach, or is up to no good, etc. Good thing is my parents live about a 3 minute car ride away, and if they need to, they can come let him out, etc.

Truth of the matter is he should be fine, so this does not have to be a super elaborate set up. Just 1 to 2 cameras either of us can log into here and there to check in on things.

As I said, have a full ADT alarm system, just would prefer not spending more money with them, as it is already a decent fee per month.

Not sure if it matters, but I do own a Synology DiskStation DS211j.

[b]SUMMARY: [/b]I am looking for advice on all facets of going about this project.
Good brands of camera. Best way to set them up. Any other lessons learned others may have from already doing this.

I started looking into it on my own, and it is a tad overwhelming, lots of choices.

TIA for anyone who can help.

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Posted

No offence but my advice would be to stop worrying about the dog so much :) Failing that, these wireless web cams can be hooked up to the internet for remote viewing:

http://www.y-cam.com/product-range/

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[url="https://www.dropcam.com/"]https://www.dropcam.com/[/url] :dog:
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Posted

Thanks for the recommendations. Like the looks of that second one.
@ jakem, it is just as much the fact he is getting into his deviant stage. I would like to keep my couch if at all possible. :laugh:

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Posted

Any IP camera can do what your asking. Just find one that gets good reviews and falls into your budget. Depending on how much you want to spend you can even do 2 way audio through them so you could talk to the dog. Pan and Zoom, etc. etc. Maybe you can get buy with one if you can do pan and zoom.

Are you looking to store this video - then look to http://www.ispyconnect.com/

Or if your looking to have multiple IP cameras all available from 1 interface, etc. They don't even need to be IP cameras if your can connect them to PC I believe. So like any usb camera could be used - they have a listing of supported hardware on the website, etc.

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[quote name='BudMan' timestamp='1349623359' post='595231539']
Any IP camera can do what your asking. Just find one that gets good reviews and falls into your budget. Depending on how much you want to spend you can even do 2 way audio through them so you could talk to the dog. Pan and Zoom, etc. etc. Maybe you can get buy with one if you can do pan and zoom.

Are you looking to store this video - then look to [url="http://www.ispyconnect.com/"]http://www.ispyconnect.com/[/url]

Or if your looking to have multiple IP cameras all available from 1 interface, etc. They don't even need to be IP cameras if your can connect them to PC I believe. So like any usb camera could be used - they have a listing of supported hardware on the website, etc.
[/quote]
Okay cool, did not realize basically any IP camera can do this. Do not see the need to record the video I am thinking, perhaps but right now does not seem to be a necessity, but I like the idea of the 2 way audio, definitely. Will look into cameras that do that. (Y)

Where I need to put at least the one camera is nowhere near a PC in my house, but I could hardwire it to a switch and/or get it setup wirelessly, although I imagine that is not going to be the best of video streaming.

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Posted

if IP camera just needs a connection, no pc - be it wireless or wired. depends on what you get.

Any IP camera provides a video feed via http page. So you just have to access the page, some have specific apps for phones/pads/etc

You just open the port on your router (port forward) and then can access from anywhere on the planet.

edit: quick google for ip camera with 2 way audio

http://www.amazon.com/Wansview-Network-Two-way-Infrared-Functionality/dp/B008KWB3HO

Less than $100, pan zoom and 2 way audio. Night vision, etc. Just find one with good reviews and in your budget and you should be good to go.

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Posted

Thanks, in my research I found this one.
[url="http://www.amazon.com/Foscam-FI8910W-Wireless-Network-Camera/dp/B006ZP8UOW/ref=pd_cp_p_0"]FOSCAM F18910W on Amazon[/url].
A bit more expensive, but the latest model from this Foscam company. They get solid reviews across the board, and also does 2 Way Audio According to [url="http://foscam.us/products/foscam-fi8910w-wireless-ip-camera.html"]their website[/url].

Think I am going to go with it.

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Posted

There you go! Lets us know how it works out.

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[quote name='DirtyLarry' timestamp='1349632792' post='595231785']
Thanks, in my research I found this one.
[url="http://www.amazon.com/Foscam-FI8910W-Wireless-Network-Camera/dp/B006ZP8UOW/ref=pd_cp_p_0"]FOSCAM F18910W on Amazon[/url].
A bit more expensive, but the latest model from this Foscam company. They get solid reviews across the board, and also does 2 Way Audio According to [url="http://foscam.us/products/foscam-fi8910w-wireless-ip-camera.html"]their website[/url].

Think I am going to go with it.
[/quote]

When you get frustrated with that one and decide to return it come back and look at DropCam... it might be $149, but it works great, has alerts and if you want it to record, sure it has a monthly fee, but at least then you don't have to worry about setting up software/storage.

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[quote name='xendrome' timestamp='1349644864' post='595232101'] When you get frustrated with that one and decide to return it come back and look at DropCam... it might be $149, but it works great, has alerts and if you want it to record, sure it has a monthly fee, but at least then you don't have to worry about setting up software/storage. [/quote]
Hmmm, you know, I have liked the DropCam one since seeing it, and I do admit, I am trying to save some money going with this one.
Can you elaborate on the possible reasons I would get frustrated with this other one?
I have no issue spending the extra money if it pays off in the long run.

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[quote name='DirtyLarry' timestamp='1349646199' post='595232141']
Hmmm, you know, I have liked the DropCam one since seeing it, and I do admit, I am trying to save some money going with this one.
Can you elaborate on the possible reasons I would get frustrated with this other one?
I have no issue spending the extra money if it pays off in the long run.
[/quote]

Well you won't have to worry about the reliability of the hardware, all of the wireless internet cam/PTZ units I have tried would fail/lock up, lose settings, etc. Then you aren't going to have to worry about running some type of DVR software on a server (Google Vitamin D DVR) and the hardware that goes along with it.

I'd recommend getting the Dropcam from Amazon, I believe it's free shipping or Prime 2 day if you have Prime... and it comes with a 14 day trial of the DVR functions. If you don't like it in say, 7 days.... then just do a return on Amazon.. no loss, they even pay the shipping I believe.

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Posted

The dropcam looks slick and all, but I don't see any tilt or pan on it. So it is clearly going to to have a more limited viewing area. And the cost is $$60 more than the foscam he found, which has like 1000 reviews 4.5 stars.

I would go with the foscam before the slicked up more expensive dropcam - thats me, maybe the foscam has 900+ users fooled?

The foscam also has ethernet, so he does not have to worry about wireless if he doesn't want too. Kind of hard to loose wireless settings when not using them ;)

He could go with the 2 pac and be only spending $28 more than the dropcam ;)

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[quote name='BudMan' timestamp='1349673059' post='595232821']
The dropcam looks slick and all, but I don't see any tilt or pan on it. So it is clearly going to to have a more limited viewing area. And the cost is $$60 more than the foscam he found, which has like 1000 reviews 4.5 stars.
[/quote]

It has a pretty good FOV... 107 degrees diagonal and I'll point out the Dropcam is HD... 1280x720

Foscam is only 640x480 and the optics aren't great. here is a demo of the Dropcam at a quick-stop type store... - [url="https://www.dropcam.com/demo/038e23d79f574b8998067e451d4e9e8e"]https://www.dropcam....8067e451d4e9e8e[/url]

oh and kittens - [url="https://www.dropcam.com/demo/6c459571deff42ba9007952dbe93c392"]https://www.dropcam.com/demo/6c459571deff42ba9007952dbe93c392[/url] who can resist that?

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I'm cheap. When I go away, I leave one of my laptops open, and just remote into it and use the webcam software. :laugh: I'm looking into getting an IP cam soon, though.

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Posted

Do you need HD to check on your dog? Not taking home videos here

300 degree pan, 120 degree tilt also to see the whole area.

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[quote name='BudMan' timestamp='1349701558' post='595233215']
Do you need HD to check on your dog? Not taking home videos here

300 degree pan, 120 degree tilt also to see the whole area.
[/quote]

Well, you get what you pay for... plus the convenience of being able to take a dropcam and plug it in anywhere in the house, or take it to a new location, plug it into a PC to configure the Wifi settings then plug it in to power. Done, no port forwarding or dynamic DNS needed.

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I use mine to watch my cat...because I'm a loser and have nothing better to watch.

I have a cheap clone of the Foscam.

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I don't show it having a wired connection, so how can you say you can drop it anywhere? The foscam has both wired and wireless. Nice that it sends signal to server if your actually watching. But if not watching that upload stream is sucking away at any bandwidth caps you have along with your upload pipe when you might want it for other things.

If you have to contact the camera to view - means your only using your isp bandwidth and or any caps when your actually watching it.

I agree the thing looks slick - and clearly it is designed to look good. The apple sheep must love it, except it doesn't have apple logo and cost 2x more than it already does ;)

I agree you get what you pay for. If I put up cost vs features - and what I need, I would save a buck and get more features.

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If you do end up going with the Foscam be sure to at least look into the Synology software. Not sure how great it is since I dont have any cameras on my network but their audio and photo apps worked great on my ipad as well as when I logged in from a PC (for some reason I can no longer log into my diskstation from outside my netowrk but thats for another day/thread).

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I wound up getting the DropCam.
Sure, I do not need HD to watch my dog, but also thinking down the road, i.e. baby cam, the HD may come in handy.
It also seems that DropCam is more favorably reviewed, but not by much.
Finally while looks do not matter a damn thing to me, they do to my wife. She has a crazy disdain for ugly looking electronics. :laugh:

However reading a comment made by Budman really has me second guessing the decision. I absolutely prefer that it only activates when I call on it too. So the DropCam runs 24/7 all the time? Meaning there is no way to turn it on and off as needed?
If so, think I may be returning it for the Foscam. I do not like the sounds of that. Especially when I am home, no need for it to be continuously running. :huh:

[quote name='Dot Matrix' timestamp='1349701386' post='595233211']
I'm cheap. When I go away, I leave one of my laptops open, and just remote into it and use the webcam software. :laugh: I'm looking into getting an IP cam soon, though.
[/quote]
Not a bad idea. :laugh:

[quote name='BudMan' timestamp='1349673059' post='595232821']
The foscam also has ethernet, so he does not have to worry about wireless if he doesn't want too. Kind of hard to loose wireless settings when not using them ;)
[/quote]
I thought DropCam also has ethernet, which is one of the things I was looking for. If it does not, that is 2 strikes. Missing tilt and pan, .5 strike, but I thought it did it as well.

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[b]EDIT [/b]- The DropCam was still shipping on Amazon, so I requested a cancellation. IF I get the cancellation, will order the Foscam.
Two reasons why I decided to go this route...
Do not like the always on of the DropCam (if that is indeed the case).
Prefer to have the option to hardwire it (I checked, the DropCam does in fact not have an Ethernet port).
Finally, thinking about where I want to set it up, the tilt/pan feature will in fact come in handy.

So will see what happens. I have 4 hours to see if it was cancelled to order the Foscam and still receive it on Wednesday.

If the DropCam ships, I will go with it. :laugh: I tend to go with the flow, and also I am admittedly very spur of the moment.

[b]EDIT 2[/b] - DropCam is shipping, but I still may go with the Foscam. Decisions, decisions.

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[quote name='DirtyLarry' timestamp='1349735519' post='595234315']
[b]EDIT [/b]- The DropCam was still shipping on Amazon, so I requested a cancellation. IF I get the cancellation, will order the Foscam.
Two reasons why I decided to go this route...
Do not like the always on of the DropCam (if that is indeed the case).
Prefer to have the option to hardwire it (I checked, the DropCam does in fact not have an Ethernet port).
Finally, thinking about where I want to set it up, the tilt/pan feature will in fact come in handy.

So will see what happens. I have 4 hours to see if it was cancelled to order the Foscam and still receive it on Wednesday.

If the DropCam ships, I will go with it. :laugh: I tend to go with the flow, and also I am admittedly very spur of the moment.
[/quote]

Well the DropCam is always on if it's plugged in, but not sending any data, unless you have the DVR function on and are paying for that.. Then it will record motion and make it available to you for later online, my understanding is though it isn't sending any data unless someone is streaming it live.

Give it a try for a few days if it ships, and then if you don't like it just return it. The image is pretty wide, so if you stuck it in a corner, it will likely cover the whole room.

When you get it or the Foscam, let us know what you think.

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[quote name='xendrome' timestamp='1349736055' post='595234333']
Well the DropCam is always on if it's plugged in, but not sending any data, unless you have the DVR function on and are paying for that.. Then it will record motion and make it available to you for later online, my understanding is though it isn't sending any data unless someone is streaming it live.

Give it a try for a few days if it ships, and then if you don't like it just return it. The image is pretty wide, so if you stuck it in a corner, it will likely cover the whole room.

When you get it or the Foscam, let us know what you think.
[/quote]
Yeah, I edited it above, the DropCom shipped. I will see how it pans out (pun intended).
So yeah, if it is only on when I call on it, that is big. Definitely like that feature. Kind of bummed it does not also include a wired option though, swore I saw that somewhere but apparently I did not.

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I don't post often, but I stumbled on this topic and happened to have just bought two of those foscams a month ago.
So far, I love them. Video quality isn't amazing, but it does what I need them to do (cameras in the kid's rooms.) I have them wired to a switch and a computer that has blue iris software.

I'm really impressed with the onboard software for the cameras (has built in webserver.) But I went ahead and bought the blue iris software (about $40.) I have it to manage recording better, the software can do just about anything you could want, and having said that, can be very complicated to figure out.

Blue Iris reports that each camera is getting about 10fps (in night vision at least), I wish it was more, but oh well, its not terribly noticeable.

Blue Iris is working on a mobile app, but for now I have IP Cam viewer for mobile viewing and it does everything I'd like it to do. My only complaint is that when you set the IPs to the cameras, you have to use your outside ip and whatever ports you have forwarded. If you come home on wifi, you cant use the app without reprogrammig the IPs to your internal ips. I wish IP Cam Viewer had a setting, to detect if you are on your home network to use internal IPs.
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Thanks EddieF for taking the time to post your feedback. It alone has me heavily second guessing my (current) decision, however reading your issue with the IP, combined with feedback from others, has me thinking it is something that requires a bit more leg work to get running properly, where this DropCam does sound to be much, much more user friendly. So for now, am sticking with it. Hoping I made the right decision.

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