Disappointed with battery powered Argus PT
First of all, while I don't like it, I understand the need for no web server in the battery powered models and no direct access to the sdcard data or video stream.
What is so disappointing is FORCING the customer to be completely tied to you app and/or cloud service for getting motion recordings and images. You could at the very least allow for FTP transfer to a customer's own equipment in the same way you allow for emails to be sent. Whether the video is uploaded to your AWS bucket or a customer's own site should be no difference in power requirements.
Due to this direction of ReoLink, I will no longer buy anymore of your products and the Argus PT with solar panel and two additional wired cameras I just purchased will be returned.
I will also be looking for replacements of my other ReoLink cameras as the time comes to swap those out for newer technology.
I used to recommend your product all the time but will not any longer.
All brands have limitations and have had firmware and app problems. If you want to use cameras that work with other systems they need to be ONVIF and RTSP. Most if not all of these are wired ethernet or coax. I don't know of any battery cams that have this, maybe a few do. Some of Reolink's wired cameras are ONVIF and RTSP, they will work with other brand systems or third party software like Home Assistant or Blue Iris for computers. Contact other major brands like Ring, Eufy, Arlo, Nest, Blink, Lorex, etc. and ask them if their battery cameras work outside their own system. Let us know what you find out.
Ring and other brands do require you to pay subscription fees Cloud service for full functionality. Reolink is one of the few companies that do not "force" you to use their Cloud service for their cameras to work. You can save videos from the SD cards to your phone, take the SD cards out and download to your computer or get their NVR. You don't need their Cloud subscription unless you want it for backup and have a little easier way to manage videos. THANK YOU Reolink for this!!!!
You obviously didn't comprehend what I wrote. I clearly stated that I completely understand not having direct access for everything you just described about ONVIF, RTSP, etc.. Please read again what I wrote.
What is wrong, is the fact the ONLY options you have to retrieve the videos are ALL manual and completely tied to their APP or cloud. With the exception of the option in the camera config to use email or push notification. Either way, it still makes it a pain in the rear to access or do anything with the video clips.
The one thing that they could have included in the firmware which would take up no more battery power than it does to push the video to their cloud, is to provide an option for the clips to upload off a sdcard to something such as an FTP server. Then a customer could easily script what they wanted to use the clips for their needs. As it stands with what they currently provide, EVERYTHING is a manual process and there is no way to automate retrieving the videos for any kind of use.
It is absolutely to wrong direction to take and I stand by my original post!!
I will add Reolink is making good technology advances in their products, 4K, human vehicle detection, etc. Watch YouTube reviews. I like LifeHackster and The Hook Up. They show side by side video comparisons. This makes Reolink look pretty good. The Hook Up compared 2021 4K cameras and his choice is Reolink for best value. So when you say you are getting rid of your Reolink cameras for something better, well....
I will add if you want a generic system where you can swap out various brand cameras then wired cameras with NVR, DVR is the way you should go. Brands like Dahua, Hikvision make some of the more advanced security cameras. Their night vision is among the best. But these are also more expensive. By the way, the USA banned Dahua and Hikvision from government contracts do to hacking and spying vulnerability, just so you know.
I don't mind pushing a few buttons on the app and going through a few hoops to get the clips I want. You seem to be more tech savvy than me. So you are right, I don't understand your frustration. If you find a brand that does what you want, by all means let me and others know.
Okay, I read your original post several times. Just maybe I'm beginning to understand. The most sophisticated and detailed program I know of is what I mentioned before, Blue Iris. Their PC program and phone app is a favorite of camera tech people who want more than basic system control. You might contact them. If their software does not do what you want, I am clueless who does.
Jose last edited by
You could at the very least allow for FTP transfer to a customer's own equipment in the same way you allow for emails to be sent. Whether the video is uploaded to your AWS bucket or a customer's own site should be no difference in power requirements.
I fully endorse that request. The usual 'to prevent battery drainage' mantra is a complete nonsense on this regard.
I use Blue Iris now with other webcams, including reolink cams which have the built in web server. I like the ability to centralize everything and go to one place for viewing clips. Had hopes that the battery powered line from ReoLink at least had some way to remote access and transfer clips, whether the camera did it directly via ftp or an API to grab the captures off the SD card, via automation so everything could be consolidated on prem.
Even though I would still be using BI for my other cameras, I can create a web site for my personal use which would allow me a single place using a standard web browser, and not a closed source vendor application, to view my recordings from many sources. As it is now with these cameras, I am forced to use ReoLinks app on my phone, tiny screen, or install yet another vendor app on every computer I use just to see the ReoLink clips.
I am one that avoids the use of anything cloud based if at all possible, and that is another turn off for the direction ReoLink has gone with these devices.
It seems to me they are trying to starting to get their customers used to having to use the ReoLink access and storage solutions with the intent of changing their entire product line as they move forward. Have seen this happen with MANY companies in the past.
Would be nice if Cynthia would chime in and give an honest answer.
Thanks for explaining further. I am sorry for not understanding. Having a system without Cloud is the most secure way to go. I don't want the Cloud and don't want subscription fees. You are correct, too many companies have proprietary products and require subscription fees for cameras to work. But I looked on Google Play Store, there are over 10 million downloads of the Ring app. Obviously a lot of people are willing to pay subscription fees for cameras and an easy to use app. In 2017 it was discovered Ring customer video data was being rerouted to foreign servers not related to Ring. In 2020 Ring fired several employees for improper viewing of customer videos. Reolink app has over 1 million downloads. I hope Reolink never requires subscription fee. I hope Reolink makes cameras widely compatible rather than restrictive. Cynthia will you please respond to family?
Cynthia last edited by
Reolink battery-powered cameras can’t work with third-party software due to the hardware limit. All Reolink battery-powered cameras don't support ONVIF protocol, RTSP stream, and related communication protocols that third party software requires.
In addition, most third-party software doesn't have the battery management option that allows the camera to enter the power-saving sleep mode when no motion is detected, thus they can't work together.
That is why we recommend you to access Reolink battery-powered cameras via Reolink software.
We will also forward your feedback to our R&Dteam, hope that they can make improvements in the future.
Thank you Cynthia for responding.
You obviously did not bother to read the part where it was asked why can't ftp be allowed just like email? No additional drain on the battery any more than what email could be doing. This way, captures could be sent to an ftp site for processing.
Also, even an API to the cloud for downloading any captured images/videos would suffice. But as it appears, you want to lock in and control/own everything and not give the paying customer any options.
So how do you respond to this??
Crimp On last edited by
As one of the people who helped "Kickstart" the original Reolink Argus, I viewed that as an experiment and quickly learned the major differences between cameras with inexhaustible power and battery powered units. The PIR sensor rather than image processing to bring it to life. The short recordings. The limit on live viewing. Came to realize that battery cameras are not for me. All my Reolink's are now PoE or connected to a nearby electrical outlet. All my RLC's record to internal SD Card and FTP recordings to a server. No "Cloud".
Like mdunning, I would be interesting to learn if there are ANY battery power cameras (I view solar as still 'battery') that support protocols such as FTP, RTSP, ONVIF, etc.
I started to (try to) calculate what sort of solar/battery unit would be required to use a regular RLC camera "wirelessly". Looks like a camera might need as much as 2,880 watt hours to run 24 hours. (12 watts x 24 hours. Older cameras with less processing used less current.) My enthusiasm did not survive trying to find a solar/battery combination that would run the camera and charge a battery at the same time. With the right solar/battery combination, Blue Iris or FTP would work with any brand of camera supporting the right protocols, and Reolink's cameras are attractively priced.
Cynthia last edited by
Thanks a lot for your feedback. At present, it is mainly due to the limitations of camera hardware that these cannot be achieved.Thank you very much for your suggestion, we will forward to our R&D team.They'll see whether we receive similar feedback and put it into schedule. It will take time to evaluate the request and to achieve it.