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This review is from: D-Link DCS-6045LKT PowerLine HD 720P Day/Night Cloud Camera Kit
Pros: For the most part, this camera kit is full featured. There are several pros and several cons, so please go beyond just reading my overall rating and title…
Probably the best feature of this kit is the software package, called D-LINK D-ViewCam, which mirrors the capabilities of some industry grade systems I have experience with using (Avigilon, Ocularis, Blue Iris). This is server and client software bundled together which provides you a full spectrum of security recording and playback features, suitable for even a small-medium business environment. The viewer is extremely user friendly, allowing up to 32 simultaneous camera feeds. Cameras can be individually configured for recording schedules, motion and sound activation with user specified trigger zones, watermarks, and image quality settings. User accounts can be added and configured with limited amount of restrictions to limit privileges, like deleting records and viewing specific cameras. Storage retention is a global setting for all cameras, and can be set to a disk space percentage or number of days to retain footage. The system is designed to incorporate digital input/output devices using event triggers and actions – if there is motion on camera “x”, send a signal to device “y” and pop up an alert on the screen. Unfortunately, I do not own any such devices to test the digital output beyond a popup alert. These are just some of the main features of the D-ViewCam software suite. In my opinion, your money is going towards this software license and the camera is thrown in for free.
As for the camera, it’s fair quality. I wouldn’t recommend it for business applications, as the picture is grainy even at 720P. For home use, it gets the job done. It provides a wide angle, which is definitely necessary indoors to cover a room wall-to-wall. The IR emitters are decently bright, and will illuminate a small room. However, in total darkness situations, I recommend complementing this camera with an auxiliary IR lamp, sold online. The camera is not made for outdoors, and will eventually fail in high humidity, or hot/cold environments. The powerline feature is a plus, as you don’t need an Ethernet connection to the camera itself, and don’t have to worry about wireless signal quality. Just plug your network router into the powerline transceiver, and the camera into an A/C power outlet. The microphone audio is clear enough to listen to a quiet conversation from another room. The SD card slot is handy if you do not have network storage in which to record to. On that note, you can record video or still images using FTP either locally or across the Internet. Please note, this is not a motorized PTZ camera. Also note, you do not need to use the D-LINK software to use this camera. Overall, I give the camera 2-ish eggs.
Again, this camera is not PTZ! However, it is manually adjustable. Pulling up the camera view on your mobile device while adjusting the position and focus is the best way to go about setting it up.
D-ViewCam software is only compatible with D-LINK cameras. If you have a mixed manufacturer environment, like I do, you are out of luck for consolidating your cameras into a single environment without third party software.
Other Thoughts: For Android users who don’t want to use the D-LINK Cloud app and service, I recommend downloading IP Cam Viewer Basic to use with this camera.
Thank you to Newegg.com and D-LINK for providing the review sample!
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Pros: The Archer C3200 is very easy to setup. Although there is no included setup DVD as with other TP-LINK routers, it really is not needed, which equates to one less disc in the landfill. There is a small technical support pamphlet, and a quick start guide included with the power adapter and 4ft CAT5e cable in the box.
Overall, the web GUI is very organized and easy to navigate. They’ve cleaned up the menu significantly since the last TP-LINK router that I reviewed, which was an Archer C7. The menu is divided into three sections; Quick Setup, Basic, and Advanced. Within those sections you will find either the essentials of setting up a router, or you will find a plethora of options and advanced settings which allow you to really customize the functionality of this router. I’ll go into more detail in a moment.
The C3200 can broadcast up to SIX different SSID’s across three different bands with the optional guest networks enabled. Each SSID can have its own security settings. The three primary SSID’s can have their own channel number and width settings, as well as the transmit power can be adjusted from low to high. The guest networks will follow the global settings for channel widths and power, DHCP or static addressing, and other settings like MAC filtering, bandwidth control, and parental controls. Guest networks can have client isolation enabled and local network access disabled, which is an added layer of security for password-less open networks.
The C3200 has two USB ports, of which one is 3.0. These create a great way to quickly and easily setup your own personal media server, or FTP internet accessible storage device, or even a turn a wired printer into a wireless one. The ability to control access to the USB device is done through a user chosen set of credentials. You can even limit access to a specific file/folder on the drive. However, there can only be one username built into the access list at time, which is very disappointing.
There are a ton of other features that advanced users will find useful, like allowing NATing, MAC device filtering, custom WAN MAC address, VPN tunneling, advanced routing rules, and creating a DMZ. There are some useful built-in diagnostic tools like ping and traceroute for troubleshooting network connections, as well as a detailed system log with SMTP ability. There is also remote management ability built into this router with unique login credentials. One of my favorite features is the hour-by-hour on/off schedule for each of the three wireless bands. This allows you to only broadcast certain SSID’s during times of peak traffic in your home, like weekends and evenings, as well as disable Wi-Fi altogether when you’re at work or asleep to help prevent intruders.
The underside of the router has two mounting holes for wall or ceiling mounting, however, the antenna design would limit your broadcast range if the router is not flat/horizontally mounted.
Cons: I only have a couple complaints with this router. Firstly, DD-WRT firmware is not currently supported. If you are not familiar with DD-WRT, just think of it as jail-breaking your router with new software. But unlike jailbreaking, some and most manufacturers will support this on select devices. Doing so will unlock a fair amount of features not usually found with consumer router interfaces, as well as improving security against intruders and hackers.
Secondly, I did experience some client disconnects on the primary 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands when, and only when, the guest networks were enabled. In other words, when all six SSID’s are broadcasting, occasionally some of my devices would be blocked from connecting to the primary SSID’s. This could be temporarily remedied with a router reboot, or disabling the guest networks. At no time were any LAN connected devices ever disconnected. I have seen this same thing occur with another Wi-Fi router review, but never with a TP-LINK product. I can only wonder if it was caused by interference caused by the very many SSID’s and devices within my home. I attempted to troubleshoot with Wireshark, but my packet snooping device itself was kicked along with several cell phones and a laptop, so my trace ended before I could get any data that pointed to an issue. I really hope TP-LINK can reproduce this in their labs, and pinpoint the cause, because I believe this could just as easily be a firmware issue within the device.
Lastly, I still am asking during every router review for manufacturers to start building PoE ports into their devices. Again, so many homeowners are turning to grassroots security devices, including PoE cameras, that this could pose a significant gain in this realm. It would allow the flexibility to locate security cameras where AC power just isn’t reachable, or practical, but a CAT5/6 connection could be run instead.
Other Thoughts: Despite the few cons listed above, I truly would recommend this router to any homeowner looking for a tri-band router with long range, good surrounding coverage, and a rich list of advanced features. If you do not use or need a dedicated guest network, you might never experience the disconnect issue that I had even seen.
Thank you to TP-LINK and Newegg.com for the review sample!
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Pros: Price per capacity, this is one of the top 5 or 6 drives on the market; similar to the Kingston V300 240GB, Crucial M500 240GB, SanDisk Ultra-II 240GB, and Corsair Force LS 240GB. Formatted capacity is 223.57GB - or roughly a 6.9% loss from raw.
Basic everyday performance is not too shabby, either. On a near empty drive, reads and writes compare similarly to other drives of this capacity at ~525MB/s read, and ~500MB/s write (formatted NTFS @ 16Kb block). However, when the data becomes larger, performance drops quickly... see cons below.
Updating firmware via downloadable OCZ SSD Guru software was super simple. Click the Maintenance tab, then click the Update button. That's it! There is also Over Provisioning and TRIM support built into the SSD Guru package, if you so need it.
This SSD is built on the latest triple-level NAND flash tech, aka TLC. This allows for higher density, but sometimes at the expense of performance!
OCZ has a fantastic ShieldPlus warranty program. They cover return shipping cost and do advanced replacement service should you have a warranty claim. Most manufacturers would never do that!
Cons: For only a couple dollars, you can get another 10-16GB more capacity by going with the Crucial BX100, SanDisk Ultra Plus, Adata SP920, or Samsung 850 Evo.
The Trion 100 is a poor performer compared to other SSD's in this capacity. The effective speed is cut in half when the drive has reached >60% capacity. Also, during larger (2GB+) write jobs, performance suffers a major blow. For that reason, I would not use this drive for large data. I think it's best served as an O.S. drive only.
There are no accessories included with the drive (no bracket, no SATA cable, no hardware.)
Other Thoughts: This SSD is targeted at the very budget conscious casual PC user that is looking to upgrade an older machine from a conventional HDD (while using SATA 3 6gbps). You're not going to find this SSD at the top of any benchmark lists. The only list it will top is GB/$. I personally would feel better off with the OCZ ARC 100 that uses the Barefoot 3 controller, or a competitor like Samsung 850 Evo, Sandisk Ultra-II, or Crucial M500 - All are fantastic SSD's for this bracket.
I updated the firmware from 11.1 to 11.2 just prior to reviewing this product. At time of this review, I have 61 power-on hours and 31 power cycles on this drive. I have written a total of 194.87GB of data to the drive.
From my research, this is first OCZ labelled SSD that is purely a Toshiba made product, including the new Toshiba A19 flash controller driving it.
Thank you to Newegg.com and OCZ/Toshiba for providing the review sample!
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