In our previous review, we have covered the Honeywell Lyric C1, which as we have mentioned, one of your best options if you are looking for an affordable smart security camera. Now, we will review a direct competitor of the Lyric C1: the Zmodo Pivot Cloud security camera.
First, the Zmodo Pivot Cloud is slightly more expensive than the Lyric C1, although still relatively affordable. It features a 1080p HD video resolution rather than 720p found on the Lyric C1, and has a 360-degree motion sensor. What’s interesting about the Zmodo Pivot Cloud is the 120-degree viewing angle, and the camera has a pannable center that allows it to auto-rotate, making the effective field of vision close to 360-degree.
With the package, you also get four contact sensors you can install on your doors or windows, which will alert the camera to rotate and capture footage when the door has been opened. The Zmodo Pivot Cloud is also equipped with two-way audio communication feature with the included stereo Bluetooth speaker and anti-noise microphone.
So, on paper, the Zmodo camera is a better product with richer features compared to the Honeywell Lyric C1. Yet, is that truly the case? Let us begin this Zmodo Pivot Cloud Smart Camera review by discussing its key features.
This is arguably the most interesting feature from the Zmodo Pivot Cloud, which is where the name ‘Pivot’ came set up. Without the rotating pivot, the Zmodo camera already covers a very nice 120-degree viewing angle. With the ability to rotate, the 360-degree motion sensor, and the included door contacts, the Zmodo Pivot can virtually cover a 360-degree viewing angle.
Four Door/Window Contact Sensors
Included in the package are four door/window contact sensors. With them, when the door is opened, the Zmodo Pivot Cloud will automatically rotate and capture the footage of the said door. You can fine-tune the rotation and viewing angle with the app, and to send you alerts. A very useful feature in combination with the auto-rotating pivot.
1080p HD Video Resolution
As mentioned, the Zmodo Pivot Cloud offers a 1080p HD video resolution opposed to 720p offered by its main competitors: Honeywell Lyric C1 and iSmartAlarm Spot. You also get a decent night-vision technology on the camera, although we feel it’s not as good as that of the Lyric C1’s. Overall, you will always get a clear and sharp footage from the Zmodo Pivot Cloud without much issues.
Local Storage and Free Cloud Storage
Included in the package is a 16 GB micro SD local storage, which you can expand with a bigger microSD card when necessary. Having a local storage is useful when your Wi-Fi connection is interrupted, so you can use the stored footage for evidence when necessary. As the name ‘Cloud’ suggests, the Zmodo Pivot Cloud also offers a 36-hour worth of free cloud storage.
The Zmodo Pivot Cloud operates mainly when detecting motion. In combination with the door contact sensor, you can fine-tune your alerts and viewing zone with the Zmodo Pivot app. So, when the Zmodo Pivot detects any motion, it will rotate when necessary, capture the footage, and send you an alert.
Our Zmodo Pivot Cloud Security Camera Review
As with the Honeywell Lyric C1, the Zmodo Pivot Cloud requires a hardwired setup. So, you will need to place it close enough to your power outlet. So, installing the Zmodo Pivot Cloud unit itself is pretty straightforward: plug it into your power outlet, place it where you want it, and you are basically good to go. We also tried placing the door contact sensors on four different doors and windows to test the capability.
After you’ve setup all the physical units, as usual, you will need to download the Zmodo Pivot app on your Android/iOS device. We have to say the Pivot app is not as well-designed as the Lyric app we have tried before, although it still works as intended. Yet, connecting the camera unit to your Wi-Fi network is pretty straightforward, and you can follow the step-by-step instructions in the app without any issues.
The 1080p HD video quality is very clear, and the camera is equipped with night vision infrared that can reach 30 feet. So, the video quality is overall better compared to the Lyric C1, although the Lyric C1 performs a little better during night time with a slightly better night vision. The rotation pivot works wonders this time around. With the original Zmodo Pivot, the common complaint is that the rotation speed is too slow. It is addressed now in the Pivot Cloud model and is working as intended.
For example, when our Pivot Cloud detected a motion, not within the 120-degree viewing angle in front of it, it will rotate to face the spot of the detected motion. If doors or windows with the contact sensors are opened, it will also rotate. You can fine-tune the viewing spot of each door with the contact sensor to your preference.
In our opinion, however, it doesn’t look as elegant as the 1st generation of Zmodo Pivot. It still looks better compared to the Lyric C1, however, with the circular design and all-white finish. The major downside we found is the lack of any third-party integration support. So, you wouldn’t be able to use it together with your existing smart home hubs.
Pros and Cons
- 1080p video resolution with excellent night vision technology
- Rotating pivot, can cover 360-degree of viewing angle
- Included door/window contact sensors-Easy to install and use
- A lot of sensors from motion to temperature and humidity
- Two-way audio communication capability with built-in Bluetooth speaker and noise-canceling microphone
- Free 36-hour cloud storage with optional subscription
- No third-party integration, including IFTTT
- No audio sensor included
Let us end this Zmodo Pivot Cloud review with a verdict. The Zmodo Pivot is an excellent option if you are looking for an affordable smart security camera. Besides its affordability, the key highlight of the Zmodo Pivot Cloud is the ability to pan 360-degrees. In conjunction with the motion sensor and the included door/window contact sensors, the pivot rotation feature is very useful.
As a result of the rotational pivot feature, you can cover a lot of grounds with just a single Zmodo Cloud Pivot, and you won’t need to buy several security cameras at once.