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  • Panasonic BB-HCM531A Outdoor Pan/Tilt PoE Security Network Camera (Silver)
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Panasonic BB-HCM531A Outdoor Pan/Tilt PoE Security Network Camera (Silver)

Available from these sellers.
  • Outdoor High-speed pan/tilt control with presets, PoE (802.3 af compliant)
  • Progressive Scan
  • Simultaneous MPEG-4 and JPEG recording onto SD card with audio
  • 0.09 Lux Color Night View Mode
  • Built-in Web Server/IP Address (IPv4/v6)
1 new from $979.95 2 used from $779.95

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Product Details

  • Product Dimensions: 9.8 x 8.8 x 7.5 inches ; 11.8 ounces
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds
  • Shipping: This item can only be shipped to the 48 contiguous states. We regret it cannot be shipped to APO/FPO, Hawaii, Alaska, or Puerto Rico.
  • ASIN: B000P7X438
  • Item model number: BB-HCM531A
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Date first available at Amazon.com: April 7, 2007

Product Description

Panasonic Outdoor Pan/Tilt PoE Network Camera

Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

I am very pleased with the result.
R. Beckley
Makes a great stand-alone security camera.
A. Madar
The install was fairly straightforward.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

50 of 50 people found the following review helpful By A. Madar on June 7, 2008
For an outdoor IP camera, this camera rates high with me and even more so after comparing it with the Toshiba IK-WB15A IP camera. I set it up as a weather cam, but found it did really great as a security cam. With a 2GB SD memory card in it, I have seen over 10,000 images on it. I record every passing vehicle, triggered by motion, and every 60 seconds for the weather. Looking forward to getting the MegaPixel version soon.

Down side of this camera, no optical zoom options in this body style. The camera has a 10X digital zoom which is not something I see as not being good for much.

Now the good side:
Nice sharp images during the day time, even of moving objects like cars and people running past the camera.
Automatically adjusts the shutter speed at night, and does good in low light level, but not good enough for sharp images of moving objects at night.
Multiple alarm settings (5) really nice and easy to set up.
Records a great sharp image of moving objects in day time. I see all who drive by! Makes a great stand-alone security camera.
SD Memory card slot, with 2gb, I have about 10,000 images on it.
Multi view Screen, view 4 cameras at one time.
Can view and move PTZ over cell phone/PDAs.
Fast PTZ.
PTZ limits are nice and wide, both up and down, and side to side.
Audio I/O are located where they are protected from the weather, unlike the Toshiba IK-WB15A, that you cannot use if you use the sun shield.
Built in mic, very sensitive!! Not only can I see you, but I can hear you!
POE, makes for easy installation! Would not have it any other way. Love it!
Small body size.
Good WB control, the colors are true.

In general, I am very pleased with the way this camera works.
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43 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Gyropilot on December 2, 2009
As others have indicated, this camera is truly an exceptional value for the money. Everything about it is of high quality from start to finsh... even the packaging it comes in is first rate. I love Panasonic products.

When doing my research on which brand and model of networked security camera to buy, I was a little concerned about not having an IR capable camera (such as this model). But after reading the excellent low-lux specifications and good reviews, I took the plunge and bought 5 of these. After using them for a month now, I'm nothing short of thrilled!

With the "Color Night View" option enabled (it's turned off by default), the camera will automatically slow down the image refresh rate to compensate for low lighting conditions, which has the effect of brightening the image. Even on dark cloudy nights I can still clearly see the area around our home and detect when anything is amiss. The only drawback to using the Color Night View mode is that fast moving objects can appear blurred due to the slow image refresh rate. But even with this minor shortcoming, I can still see if someone (or some critter) was moving around in the darkness on the camera's images. However, since we have motion activated lights outside around our home, it pretty much makes that a moot point!

I'm currently running all 5 of these cameras using two TRENDnet 8-Port 10/100Mbps PoE Switches which have 4 PoE ports each. I'm recording the video feeds using the excellent i-Catcher Console software from i-Code.
Read more ›
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30 of 30 people found the following review helpful By D. Coral TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 21, 2010
This is a great camera; however considering the current price of this BB-HCM531A outdoor camera there are two better options for price/value/features:

1. The newer Panasonic BB-HCM735A outdoor model costs just a little bit more than what this one is currently selling for, but the 735A has a completely updated feature set. The 735A uses the new MOS sensor with better low light capability, higher resolution options, H.264 streaming, shock detection, etc. The 735A has the next generation technology that Panasonic is starting to incorporate in their product line, so why purchase this one that is 3 years behind and costs almost the same as the BB-HCM735A.

2. If cost is a factor and you're not installing the camera directly exposed to rain, consider the indoor version of this model, the BB-HCM511A. It costs a lot less (much better value!) and there is not much different between the two cameras except that this 531A model comes with a plastic cover to protect the cable openings in the back. Some degree of weather protection can be achieved with the cheaper 511A model (for accidental moisture) using some tape over any exposed connector openings plus a layer of silicone aquarium sealant over the tape. But if you know that your location is going to get dripping wet for sure, then I'd stick with the outdoor model.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on November 12, 2009
Verified Purchase
This is an extremely effective, practical and easy-to-use camera. Bought two from Amazon. Installation is a snap. It comes with a sun/rain visor (not pictured), wallmount base, CD-ROM and all the associated screws. All you need is a drill and some anchors. LAN ports and audio ports are easily accessible at the rear. I run mine using Power Over Ethernet. You *will* need PoE injectors. These can be bought separately; I used the TrendNet ones. Note that the software does not seem to be Mac-compatible.

Once the hardware was installed, I popped the CD-rom into my laptop. The Panasonic software installed quickly and easily. It found the cameras in seconds. The images are viewed via a web browser. The software came with the ActiveX controls necessary to view the images.

The software is actually remarkably thorough, straightforward and finished. In a word, it was professional. I was viewing images within minutes of installation and adjusting the settings to suit my needs. You can set triggers, day/night mode, time, video streaming, multiple cameras and so on very easily. Everything is laid out. A basic level of technical/computer skill helps.

The image quality is nothing short of outstanding. I've used several different makes and models - from the Home Depot Swann cameras to $1200 PTZ Day/Night dome cameras - and the Panasonic image quality is easily the best of the lot. Clear, detailed, excellent depth, jitter-free and true. The field of view is limited, as with most security cameras, but the range of motion is impressive. Basically, you can adjust the camera and/or the lens to focus on any spot you want; just don't expect to have a 90-degree field of view.

I had to swallow hard when buying this camera because of the price. But I can honestly say it's worth every penny. Only question now is durability. Let's see how long it lasts.
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