While in our previous reviews we have covered the Zmodo Pivot Cloud and the Honeywell Lyric C1, now we will review one of their direct competitors: the iSmartAlarm Spot. Compared to the Zmodo Pivot Cloud and Honeywell Lyric C1, the iSmartAlarm Spot, is fairly older, released in early 2016.
However, that doesn’t render the iSmartAlarm Spot obsolete, as it also packs some nice features we will discuss further below. First things first, being the oldest of the bunch, it is also the most affordable. So, for those looking for a wireless security camera with a tight budget, the iSmartAlartm Spot is worth considering.
The iSmartAlarm Spot may not have the looks of newer security cameras, even when we compare it to the Lyric 1. However, it also features a 720p HD video resolution with a very decent night vision infrared Cut Filter. iSmartAlarm claims that the Spot can see up to 33 feet away in the dark, although in our experience the effective range is around 20 feet or so.
As we all know, iSmartAlarm is a famous brand for many security devices. So, one the biggest values in getting the Spot security camera is the ability to integrate it with the broad range of iSmartAlarm devices.
Let us begin this SmartAlarm Spot Security Camera review by discussing its Key Features.
720p HD Video Quality
Although many newer (and more expensive) smart security cameras use 1080p HD or even 4K video resolution, 720p HD video quality is still pretty decent by today’s standard. Equipped with a very decent IR filter night vision technology, the iSmartAlarm spot can also perform well during the night. Especially considering the affordability, the iSmartAlarm Spot offers an excellent video quality.
Motion and Sound Detection
The iSmartAlarm Spot features a decent passive infrared motion detection technology and sound recognition. We have to say that the included sensors are fairly limited. The motion detection is not fully automated, so you will still have to arm or disarm the camera after you receive a notification. The sound sensor can detect distinct sounds like alarms and sirens, but no more than that. However, as we have mentioned, you can pair the Spot with other iSmartAlarm sensors to increase the capability.
Local and Cloud Storage
The iSmartAlarm Spot is capable for a local storage feature through microSD, although the package doesn’t include a microSD card. You also get a 30 10-second clip cloud storage service for free. One of the more interesting recording features from the Spot is the ability to record time-lapse footage, although the usefulness of it as a security camera is questionable.
While the iSmartAlarm Spot also offers integration with Amazon Alexa and IFTTT recipes capability, the fact that it can integrate with so many iSmartAlarm products is highly valuable. If you own an iSmartAlarm CubeOne hub, for example, you can easily integrate the Spot with other sensors and devices for an integrated smart home security system.
The iSmartAlarm spot also offers a two-way voice communication feature. You can share access with up to four different devices. If you happen to own an iSmartAlarm CubeOne, you can link up to 10 different Spot security cameras at once. If you need a lot of internal communication (i.e. an office setting), this is a very useful feature.
Our iSmartAlarm Spot Smart Camera Review
As with the Zmodo camera and Lyric C1 camera, the iSmartAlarm Spot is also a wired-only, outdoor-only security camera, making them direct competitors. So, installing the iSmartAlarm spot is also very easy: plug the power cord into your power outlet, place the Spot where you need it, and you are basically good to go with the physical installation.
Now, you will need to download the iSmartAlarm app. With this one app, you can also control different iSmartAlarm products, including other cameras if you have any, such as the iSmartAlarm Keep or iSmartAlarm iCamera. Connecting the Spot to your Wi-Fi network is fairly simple, and you can follow the step-by-step instructions provided by the app.
From the app, you can view footage from your Spot. You can adjust the camera resolution (to save data usage), view your bandwidth speed, or use the two-way audio communication feature. As mentioned, you can also use the time-lapse recording feature here if you are interested. You can also fine-tune the motion/sound alert sensitivity, although as we have mentioned, they are fairly limited.
The iSmartAlarm Spot cannot pan or tilt, making it more limited compared to the Honeywell Lyric C1, and especially to the Zmodo Pivot Cloud. So, it can only capture footage within its 130-degree of viewing angle. As a result, you will have to consider placing it in the right spot to get the most of it.
You can view stored video from the app, where you can view 30 event-based footage saved in the cloud, or view recordings from your local microSD (not included).
Because we happened to own an iSmartAlarm CubeOne and several iSmartAlarm sensors, we tried integrating the Spot with the other devices. As expected, the integration works flawlessly, and you can even use iSmartAlarm’s wide range of sensors to increase the Spot’s capability.
Pros and Cons
- Very affordable, probably one of the cheapest options available today
- Very decent 720p video quality with excellent night vision
- Motion and sound detection with two-way communication feature
- Intuitive app, very useful if you have other iSmartAlarm products
- Seamless integration with iSmartAlarm devices, and can integrate with Amazon Alexa and IFTTT-enabled devices
- Design a bit obsolete, cannot pan or tilt, and not very durable
- The app can be a little confusing to navigate with
- Limited motion and sound detection capabilities
Let us end this iSmartAlarm Spot review with a verdict. The Spot is definitely one of the most affordable security cameras around, and the affordability is definitely its main highlight. It sports very nice features from a 720p HD video quality, motion and audio detection, and two-way communication.However, the features it offers are still pretty limited compared to its competitors.
Yet, if you happened to be a fan of iSmartAlarm and already owned their other products, the Spot is an excellent choice for its flawless first-party integration. Definitely one of the best choice for those looking for an affordable smart security camera.