Customer Review

226 of 234 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great system with very few flaws, November 18, 2010
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This review is from: Logitech Alert 750i Indoor Master - HD-Quality Security System (Camera)
I try to keep up writing reviews for products I buy, especially the items that I myself do a lot of research on, before buying. So I'll break this down as best I can. I live in a 2-story, 2800 square foot home. And for the longest time, I've wanted a surveillance system to make me feel safe both when I am at home and away. The Logitech camera system and software does it right, with only a few minor issues, and I stress minor.

I have an Apple router but run Windows 7 on my PC; I'm also using the free application on my iPhone. I had zero problems with the software install, even when it came to Window's firewall. I'm currently running 2 indoor cameras and 1 outdoor camera...but, I actually plan on using nothing but outdoor cameras for my entire system (to include for inside surveillance). And that's about the only real issue I have with the system. The indoor camera works awesome and does what it should. It delivers good quality color video and even over the iPhone application or over the web (from Logitech's website), all of my friends all have said, "Wow, that looks awesome!" BUT, and it's a big BUT, once the sun goes down, the indoor cameras are very limited. Shy of the bad guy turning on all of the lights in my house, then committing his crime, the indoor camera is of little use during nighttime hours. And at first, I was okay with that because I'm home at night and it's actually the daytime when nobody is home. But then I bought the outdoor Logitech camera and WOW, what a difference because it holds the very same quality as the indoor camera, but also does a phenomenal job at night. So with that, I'm going to return the indoor cameras and use the outdoor cameras for outside as well as inside. But I still want to give my review on the indoor camera as I've been using it for about a month now.

Pros:

Color Quality. Again, great color quality. Even using the digital zoom, I was impressed at how good it looks. My wife being the glass half empty type of person commented that you can't see the face of the person all that well. But my reply was - but you can sure as heck see his race, clothing description, weight, height, hair color and most importantly you can see if he is or isn't wearing gloves...hence, you could see clearly where he may have left evidence (fingerprints, DNA, etc).

Included 2GB media card. This is a great feature!! This means that if bad guy breaks in and thinks he's outsmarting you by stealing your computer (with the footage of him), you can still revert back to the camera itself to retrieve the footage saved to the media card. Another great thing about the camera media card is that your home computer does not need to be always on to be recording. For example, my computer goes into sleep mode after about an hour of inactivity. So if my computer is in hibernate mode for a full day, the cameras are still recording footage and will sync to my computer when it awakes. For it to work seamless, I just leave the Logitech software running in the task bar (background).

Software. Logitech did it right with the software. It was a very easy install, features are clear and I love that you can customize each camera you have on your network. For example, out of the 3 cameras I have, I only want 1 of them to send off text message alerts. Again, it's nice that the alerts are not just a system feature, but rather an individual camera setting. You can also adjust the duration of alerts to save yourself from getting thousand texts. For me, a 5 minute window is perfect, just as long as I get the initial text, I wouldn't be concerned about getting 20 more in under a 5 minute or however long of a window you choose. I also like the way the software saves all of the recorded video. With 3 cameras going, I've been getting a lot of recorded footage. The software not only allows you to use choose a given date and time to research, but if you were to search out for that file in Windows explorer, the software does a great job by saving the footage under the name of camera (for example "Living Room"), then the month (10 for October), then the day within that month. Being a police officer, I really like that if I had to turn over crucial footage (if my home was burglarized, etc), all of the footage would have clear a folder structure and time stamp that would make sense to any other investigating officer.

Alerts. This feature sealed the deal for me buying this system to begin with. You select a zone in which if motion occurs, an alert will be sent. For example, although my camera has a pretty wide shot of my living room to include front door, my only concern is if movement is picked up at the front door. Once motion is detected, a text message is sent to my phone. The alert text message is awesome; it says what camera picked up what motion and at what date and time...simple and efficient. BUT, I will mention alerts in the Cons section, so please read on.

Camera size. Again, I have both the indoor and outside camera and was very impressed by how small they were. I also lucked out that I have power sources on top of my potter shelves, so I was able to plug in the cameras without any wires being run down walls, etc. And because the cameras are small, I've actually told friends that I have the cameras and it still took them a while to actually figure out where.

The "wow" factor. I'll admit it, I'm that guy who loves his tech toys, who loves showing off new technology and how I make it work for my family's safety. The first day when I showed all of my police friends the system, everyone was amazed. I should get a kick back from Logitech on all of the potential customers I made for them. Being able to open the iPhone app and show my friends that I have 24/7 surveillance of my home, felt very cool. The iPhone app also works very well over 3g cell service (not just wi-fi).

Cons:

Price. Well I mentioned the "wow" factor when I showed off the system to my friends. Well, I got the same expression when I told them how much. For me to get 6 cameras, all of them being the outdoor cameras, is a bit pricey. But, I will say that the software being free is nice. It's also nice to know that each camera comes with that 2GB media card (another plus that make the high costs seem understandable). And although I'm not that interested in audio, again, if you're going to pay the big bucks for a camera, at least it gives you color and audio as an option.

Night time quality. Again, if all you care about is crystal clear footage in the daytime, then the indoor camera is for you. But for me, I began to get frustrated that for so much money, I was only getting daytime footage. For a bit more money per camera, I feel that it was well worth it, to be able to see what's going on in my home 24/7.

Logitech server. This is a tough one to explain, but I'll do my best. When you install the cameras and software, the alert system is dependent on Logitech's servers / service. In the month that I've been using the camera, I only had 1 time that their servers went down. In that time, the cameras in my home were recording as they should BUT the alert notification system will not work if Logitech's service is down or disrupted. Although it was only down for a few hours, I was still very unpleased given the fact that the alert system is what it's all about. I don't want to come home to find my house has been burglarized and didn't get a text because the servers were down. Instead, I want to get a text message telling me someone is there, that way I can call the police and increase my chances of getting the suspect while he is still in the residence. The alert service has only been disrupted once, but makes me nervous for what's to come down the road as these cameras begin to sell.

Alerts. Again, read my Pros section about the alert function. Where I had a problem is how long it can take to get the alert text message. I've done some very extensive testing and it ranges between 40 seconds to 4 minutes from when my phone gets the alert text message. Now 4 minutes may not seem like a long time, but a skilled criminal can do A LOT in just a few minutes. I'm not too happy about the variations on alert times, especially since there appears to be no rhyme or reason as to why sometimes I get the notification in under a minute, but other times over 3 minutes. Clearly, it has to do with Logitech servers.

Plug outlet requirements. Although I get why you have to plug in your unit to the actual wall, it doesn't mean I have to like it. It's been a little bit of a challenge with some of my cameras to find a good discreet location coupled with having an available outlet there. I'm guessing that at some point, Logitech will begin selling overpriced extension cords or power bars that allow the cameras to work even without being directly plugged into the wall. I believe a read few reviews from people that have done this though; I would live to get their reply or feedback in this review thread.

Thanks for reading!
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Comments

Tracked by 5 customers

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Showing 1-6 of 6 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 19, 2010 8:21:05 AM PST
That is a very informative review, thanks for posting. One comment; I have found that I am able to use my cameras in some power strips. I have seen that some do not work as well. I don't know that there is a definitive way for Logitech to determine which are good and which are bad, hence the blanket statement to plug directly into a wall. I would try out a power strip and see if the camera works through it and if it does, then great, if not then you can always go back to the wall outlet.

Posted on Mar 2, 2011 7:17:14 PM PST
Random Fool says:
first of all, thanks for the extensive review. I have a little question regarding the size of the cameras. I ordered the indoor system but would like to add additional cameras and I'm leaning towards the outdoor type since it has the night vision. I'm just wondering how big they are compared to the indoor type and if they're small enough to be put on a shelf without looking like an eye-sore. Would appreciate your insight. Thanks again.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 31, 2011 8:37:50 AM PDT
W. Nichols says:
Sorry for the delay. The size of the night camera compared to the daytime is rather different (apples and oranges). However, I would compare the night time camera as being similar to a sub sandwich. All of mine are sitting on a shelf and are NOT an eye sore. In fact, friends of mine often can't even see the camera even while looking for it. Hope this helps.

Posted on Apr 26, 2011 7:54:00 AM PDT
drbobo says:
The problem with this system is that it requires an internet connection to work as it sends video to Logitech's servers, which can then be viewed on a computer (PC or Mac) or iPhone. I like using SecuritySpy as it runs all the cameras locally and will also act as an internet server if you want to view your cameras offsite, again with computer or iPhone.

Posted on Oct 10, 2011 7:47:25 AM PDT
Dr. Si says:
Thanks so much for this excellent review. Just setting up my system not and so far it works great!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012 12:30:51 PM PST
DRS says:
Could you just use a POE switch and skip all the power adapters?
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