Home security cameras have become more sophisticated and feature-packed in a growing competitive home automation market. Aside from camera quality enhancements, remote web-enabled recordings and pan and tilt features have become the standard for home security. The D-Link DCS-6500LH is one camera that is feature-packed at doesn’t do too much damage to the hip pocket at AUD $100.
Before jumping into the details let’s take a quick look at how this stacks up for your home or office use.
- Wide angle + 360 degree view
- Night Vision
- Field Range: 5m (16ft) – adequate for a medium size room
- Easy Navigation
- Mobile Phone Support
- Motion detection recording and alerts
- Encrypted Security
- Smart home Alexa & Google
What makes this camera attractive is the ability to provide the 360 degree view and panoramic image stitching which takes a 360 photo when you are doing a quick scan of the surroundings. But the pan and tilt user interface features can be vastly improved.
The camera itself is reasonable with fantastic viewing angles but navigating using D-Link Home App is an average experience. The App’s user interface is a disappointment. I found panning around using the ‘swipe’ scrolling the image clumsy and provided very little fine control. Switching the App to ‘tap’ mode with directional arrows to control movement improved the experience dramatically.
Bright Light Images
Night Vision, as you can see is quite good. The unit is able to capture the moment your teenage kids sneak into the house from a late night out, or when your partner sneaks into the kitchen and steals the chocolate that you have stashed away for that special occasion.
What I like about this camera is the simple fact that there are additional service charges unlike Ring and other popular cloud security devices. Video recordings can be configured to store on the phone or a microSD card (up to 256GB) that is inconspicuously tucked away under the camera head.
Personally I am satisfied with the microSD card local storage option but if you prefer saving the footage to the cloud you are constrained to D-Link’s cloud offering. The free $0/month plan gives you 1-day video retention up to 3 cameras. Paid plans allow you scale up your storage to 7, 14, and 30 days video retention.
Mounting and positioning
The list of features looks reasonably sound and overall performance is reasonable for this budget camera. Perhaps the biggest downside is that this camera is by no means small. It is large enough to catch the eye of a potential intruder but if you prefer the minimalistic look for your room then this camera isn’t going to suit you.
The unit sits stably on a table or shelf. Ideally it would be great if you could mount it vertically upside-down to around a carport or garage as well. Just keep in mind that this is an indoor camera and it needs to be shielded from the outdoor elements. The App allows an “invert” mode to flip the image for this purpose.
Out-of-the-box there are no camera fixings, accessories so mounting it can be a bit of a challenge. There is, however, a round threaded screw insert at the base of the unit. The D-Link manual does not provide any specifications – it is about the size of an M5 screw.
Overall, this is camera gets a thumbs up if you have a place for it in your house and a need to monitor it remotely. Image quality is excellent at 1080p local and cloud storage options.