Customer Reviews: LaView 4 Channel Compact Surveillance System with Cloud Storage, 500GB HDD, 4 x 600TVL Bullet Camera LV-KD5144C-G5
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on May 17, 2014
Overall, I'm very impressed with the delivery time, packaging, performance, and the price!

First off, when I saw the great pricing of the LaView system, it made me stop putting off the purchase of a home DVR system and just buy it, like now! When the the LaView system arrived at my door in a day, I was impressed with the packaging and the quality of appearance of the components.
Onto installation- after a few days of proudly staring at my purchase looking neat in the packaging, we installed the system one weekend with little trouble. We did initially think the wiring was too short for us, but it ended up working perfectly and we did find out that LaView offers 120ft cables for those who need them. The camera mounts were cool, easy to use and able to adjust and secure to exactly the desired angle.
Once installed we discovered out new favorite past time! People watching from inside the comfort of our own home! The cameras worked great in the day, and had good coverage, angle, and clarity for our use. At night, we did notice that with 0 ambient lighting (our backyard is a pit of darkness) the cameras were not super crazy see-in-the-dark perfect. However in conjunction with the motion activated security light on one corner of the house, the camera performed better on the other side as well. I think they just need some ambient lighting to function properly, even if its not direct light.

So far so good! I love the system and the fact it didn't cost me much makes it all the more enjoyable! I no longer mistake possums for ninjas attacking my house at night, I now know when to play possum (play dead) when my in-laws come over. It's also really cool to be able to check the cameras via my smartphone so when a expensive package is delivered I can ask the unemployed neighbor to take it inside in exchange for a cold beer. Very impressed and happy with my purchase!
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on May 3, 2014
I really like the unit. It is small and almost looks like a router. The manuals and quick start guides that came with the DVR allowed me to connect everything on my own. It was actually very easy, I thought it was going to be hard but now that I see how everything is connected it makes perfect sense and there is nothing so simple than just connecting cables on the right place. I did called tech support for remote view and they helped me out. They did everything for me. I'm happy about the unit and they helped me set up it up with my Dropbox account. I can share the videos to the police via Dropbox no matter what the size is. I would recommend this unit because is very easy to setup the cameras look good and the tech support is also good.
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on January 31, 2015
I paid $140 for this system during Black Friday sale. I hired someone to install it professionally ($100). So I paid total $240.(hint: I suck at installing anything.) This is my 1st security system and it's great for the price. I also have to option for 4 more cameras. If you are looking for top of the line picture quality you will probably not like this system but the quality is still very good. The feature of watching my cameras thru my iPhone is a plus. I had a problem with my iPhone not connecting to my cameras and technical support responded within 3 days through email with the correct solution.
Recommend this product for 1st timers. The picture I took came out blurry, the quality is better then picture shows.
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on July 22, 2014
Great DVR - HORRIBLE offsite access. I can't find enough hatred to express how disgusted I am with the remote access software which gives every impression of being malicious software intent on making changes to any computer I use to access the cameras.

The website you use to access the camera system rarely works, and it also installs a Chinese rootkit add-on that malwarebytes and Norton dislike.

If all you want is a great DVR that works right out of the box then this is for you.

If you want ease of use to view cameras when not at home? Do NOT buy this system. Even the web app is slow, flawed, and rarely works.
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on August 15, 2014
Installing this system couldn't be easier, the toughest part is routing the cables from the DVR to the cameras. The free app for android allows me to see the cameras output on my phone and tablet, which is great! I was able to have my tablet in hand while adjusting the camera angle to see the results immediately. Setting up the DVR via the included mouse and a spare monitor is not too difficult. Once you enable DHCP and get the DVR on the local area network, then you can do almost everything remotely.

Then comes the documentation and software. Typical of products coming from china, the documentation is written by someone with English as a second language (or perhaps third.) Not all of the software options and functions are explained, only what is absolutely necessary to get your system up and running. It would be helpful if there were a section or another manual that FULLY explained all the options and functions, and even better if it gave examples. Getting to view camera output in your favorite browser is not generally a problem but the menus and screens are different in Internet Explorer and Firefox/Chrome. In Firefox and Chrome, you can not change any DVR configuration settings because the that menu item is not present as it is in Internet Explorer. However, all three browsers give full functional control over your DVR when accessed via LaView's remote server, "LaViewCloud." Access through LaViewCloud is always a bit sluggish when compared to local access and LaViewCloud is not always available for some reason, ie maybe the server was down for maintenance. The other option for system maintenance is to use the included IMS200 software. This software seems to work to an acceptable level but the included PDF manual has the same faults at the other included PDF manual previously discussed.

In conclusion, this is a fairly decent entry level system at an affordable price. Documentation has lots of room for improvement but the hardware performs up to expectations.
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on March 17, 2015
I got this system during an Amazon Lightning Deal for $148.99 and it was an excellent purchase. I just installed the four cameras over this past weekend and it was a fairly simple task, save for all of the attic crawling I did. The cameras and DVR box look very well built with high quality materials. The unit came with everything I needed to get the entire system working.

Each camera connects to a BNC and power connector. The cables used to connect the cameras to the DVR box are very long and should be adequate for most average sized homes. My house is pretty small so I ended up having to spool a lot of cable to keep things neat in the attic. Each cable has both the video signal and the power supply combined with the connectors splitting off at each end. This makes installing much more convenient as you only have to run a single cable to each camera.

The setup for the system is pretty easy as well. Just follow the getting started documentation to log into the system for the first time. The DVR box will pretty much configure itself when the cameras are all plugged in. If you are uncomfortable changing all of the settings, you can certainly run with the default settings without a problem. Just keep in mind that, by default, the motion detection recording isn't configured. The DVR box will record everything from every camera. That may be fine for some, but I have concerns about the 500gb hard drive filling up too quickly.

I set my DVR box to record each camera at 30 fps with a high bitrate in D1 resolution. The image from each camera is very good and it is easy to identify someone through them. The video recoding quality is very good as well. You do have the option of recording at lower resolutions, frame rate, and bitrate if you favor the quantity of the video over the quality. You also get a sub-stream for each channel that is a lower resolution, frame rate, and bitrate that is used for lower bandwidth situations like a mobile phone or crappy hotel wi-fi. Remote connection to the device can be very confusing for people who are not technologically inclined.

The system comes with a wired optical mouse that you'll use to configure the DVR box while plugged into a monitor or screen. This is the only way to manipulate the controls on-screen. I am not sure if you can configure it to accept a keyboard as well, but that would make things much easier than dealing with the on-screen keyboard.

There is a web-based portal that can be used to access the DVR box from a computer and web browser. It is also possible to fully configure the system through the web portal. However, there's a catch. The software depends on an ActiveX control that is only available on Windows; and more specifically, Internet Explorer. Chrome blocks the installation of the ActiveX control and you will not be able to install the control on any browser running on you Mac unless it is through a virtualized windows environment running Windows and IE. You can view the cameras and recordings without the ActiveX control but you will lose the functionality for configuring the DVR box.

The cloud feature is really excellent. It will save videos to your cloud storage based on a trigger like motion detection or a system alarm. However, it only has compatibility with DropBox and Baidu. Given that the free DropBox account only has 2GB, it's going to fill up pretty fast and you'll either have to constantly purge videos, or pay for more space. It would be perfect if compatibility with OneDrive, Google Drive, or any of the other cloud storage services available. I have a 200GB OneDrive account that I got for free through a promotion that I would like to use for this but I can't.

Overall, it's an excellent system and is fairly inexpensive given the features that it provides. My biggest complaint is the software that runs the DVR box. I am a Software Engineer by profession and I was very frustrated with the software's dependance on specific technologies that are not available across platforms. I'm also not a fan of the UI/UX. It is confusing and cumbersome. It also changes drastically between the ActiveX enabled site and the other, watered-down, version of the web portal. Configuring the device with just a mouse is tedious and a pain in the rear.
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on August 2, 2014
The system works, but thats about all i can say. The recorded video is clear enough, and night vision works decently indoors with some ambient light. But the user interface is complicated and glitchy. The system clock gains about two minutes a day requiring weekly clock adjustments. And the mobile apps look cheap and don't perform. I usually have to refresh the connection three or four times before it finally connects and shows me the live feed. I had hope for viewing it on the computers on my network via an ip link, however thats restrictive as well. Theres no option to go full screen, and if you download a video clip it comes in a .dav format that is difficult to find any program that can play it. Had this been half the price in a dusty box in harbor freight i'd be happy. But for how much this costs it wasn't worth it. I will probably be replacing when i save enough money for a new system.
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on August 4, 2014
The system is good and the tech service (via phone) was awesome. I only gave it three stars because of the cameras. They are 600 TVL and I had to upgrade to 800 TVL to get a clear enough picture to identify someone in the recording. Other than that the system is really worth it. Even with paying for new cameras I would recommend this system.
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on November 27, 2014
I have done a lot of research and finally got the LaView Cube camera system. It was shipped quickly and arrived in great condition. Great YouTube tutorials make it easy to go back and watch again in case you miss something. HDMI out is perfect for hooking up to HDTV as a monitor; I just select a different input on remote and BOOM live feed of cameras. iPhone and Android app for remote viewing. Easy to use interface and straight-forward plug and play operation. In fact, the wires even have little tags on them that say "camera" on one end and "DVR" on the other...couldn't be easier!!

I got the 500GB HD option, but not sure if I really need it because Cloud storage is also an option using free DropBox. Since I have it, I'm going to set it up as a redundant back-up...just in case.

For the $$$ you really can't go wrong.

Insider Tip: When you're ready to pull the trigger, go to LaViewUSA Facebook and see if there are any promo codes to use as they post them often. sure to check Amazon's "open box" inventory. I got mine there and although the box had been opened, the cameras, DVR, everything were all still sealed! Save me $60.00 just like that. Making my out-the-door price less than $150 !!
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The manufacturer commented on the review below
on December 7, 2014
Had to return this. Its way too hard to set up. Quality in the cameras is lacking big time. No phone support on the weekends. And the video tutorials only show unboxing, no other support for this model.
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The manufacturer commented on this review (What's this?)

I'm sorry to hear your frustration and its unfortunate that we did not get a chance to help you set up the system before you returned it.
It is our goal to provide surveillance systems that are easy DIY set up and we have technical support for additional help.
Our tech support is definitely there to help customers like you and many other customers who need professional help on setting up their system to view, to record and to view remotely, etc.

Best Regards,
LaView Customer Care

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