D-Link vs. Dropcam Shootout

Author: Derek Ward, Published on Jan 29, 2014

D-Link is not happy.

Over the last two years, upstart Dropcam has received a ton of coverage from dozens of publications, including IPVM (see our 2 Dropcam tests - original camera and new 'Pro' camera). 

Meanwhile D-Link, who reports selling far more IP cameras than Dropcam to consumers, is ignored. Worse, D-Link emphasizes that they offer recording for free via on-board SD card while Dropcam requires paying $100+ per year.

So, who is better for home use? The incumbent D-Link or the upstart Dropcam?

In this report, we decide, doing a test of D-Link's 720p DCS-2132L and contrasting that to Dropcam. Beyond the normal video and bandwidth analysis, we focus on two key areas of importance for consumers:

  • Which is easier for non technical people to setup? By how much and why?
  • Which is better for non technical people to access, search and download recorded video?

*-**** ** *** *****.

**** *** **** *** *****, ******* ******* *** ******** * ton ** ******** **** ****** ** ************, ********* **** (*** our * ******* ***** -******** ************ '***' ******). 

********* *-****, *** ******* ******* *** **** ** ******* **** Dropcam ** *********, ** *******. *****, *-**** ********** **** **** offer************ **** *** **-***** ** **** ***** ******* ******** ****** $100+ *** ****.

**, *** ** ****** *** **** ***? *** ********* *-**** or *** ******* *******?

** **** ******, ** ******, ***** * **** ** *-****'* 720p***-***** *** *********** **** ** *******. ****** *** ****** ***** *** bandwidth ********, ** ***** ** *** *** ***** ** ********** for *********:

  • ***** ** ****** *** *** ********* ****** ** *****? ** how **** *** ***?
  • ***** ** ****** *** *** ********* ****** ** ******, ****** and ******** ******** *****?

[***************]

Competitive ********

****'* *** *-**** ****** ** ******* *** ******************* ***** ********* *******:

  • *****: ***** *** ********** **** ******* **** *******, ********* ***** ** first ***** ********** ******* **** ** ******** ********, ******* *** ****** ** ***** router ****** ******* *** ** ** ***** ** ******** *****, and ****** ** ************ ******. ******* ******** *** **** **** to **** *** ****** **** ***** ******** *** ***, ***** launches *** ****** *** ***** ******* *** ***** *******.
  • **** *****: ******* **** ***** **** *-**** ******* ** ******, **** ****** latency. ** ******* ******* *** ******** *** ****** *********.
  • ******** *****:******** ***** ** ******* ** **** *** ********. ******* ***** requires ******* ******* ** ** *********, *** ***** *** ***** not ****** ***************. ***** ** ** ******** **** **** ** Dropcam ****. ***** ****** ** ********** **** *******************, *** **** ** ********** ******** **** *** ******'* *** interface, ***** * ******** ***** *** **** *********.
  • ***** *********:*-**** ****** ******** ***** ********** ****** ** ******** **** *******, including*****,*******,*****, ******************. ******* ****** **** * ****** **** ******, **** ** outdoor ******.
  • *****: *** *-**** ***-***** ***** *** ~$*** ******, ******** **** ********* **** *******, **** ** ********* *******. ******* cameras **** *** ~$***-$*** *** ******, ********* ********* (********/***), **** ********* ******* ** $*.** ** $**.** *** cloud ********* *****. ******* ******* *******, **** **** ***** ** available.

Other *** ******

**** *** ***** *** ******** **** **** ****:

  • ****** ***** ** ****: *** ***-***** *** * ********** ****** **.*° ********** ***** ** view ******** ** *** ********* **** ***° ** *** ********.
  • **** ***** ****:****** **** ******* ******** *** *** **** ****** (*** ******* to *******), *** ***-***** ******** * **' ***** *****, ******** it ** ** ****** ** *** ** *** *** *****. However, *** ******** ******** ***** ** **** *' ****, ** users ****** ****** ** ******** ****** ****** ** *** ****** must ** *********, ** **** ********.
  • **** ** ************:** ***** **** *-****'* ********* ** *****, **, *** ***** to ********, ****** ****. ************ *** ****** ** ~*-**', **** subject ******* **** ****** ** **** ***. **** ***** *** be ********** *** **** *** ** ***** *****, *** ** likely *** ***** ** ** ** **** *** ** **** small ******** ********.
  • ** ******* ********:***** ******* ** ****** ******* ** * ** **** *** ***** to **** ** *** *** **********, ** *** * ***** card, ** *** ** *** ******** **** *** ******. ***** will **** **** ** ****** *** **** ***** ** ****** recordings, ***** *** ** **** ** *** ** **** ***** in *** ******** ***** *** **** *** *** *********.
  • ** **** ********* ******** *** *********:***** ******* ******** *** ********** *********, ***** ***** *** ** about * ******* *** ****** *** ** **** **** **** limits. *-**** **** **** ****** ** ****** **** ** * future ******, *** *** *** ** *** ** ******* ** reducing ********* *** ********** ***********. *-**** ** ******* ** *** suffer **** **** **********, *** ** ******* ********.
  • *************: ********* *********** ** *** *-**** ***** *** *** ****** than *********** **** ** *******, ** ** ** **** **** most. **** ***** ** ******* ***** ** ********* ** * limited ** ****.

***************

******* ** * *** ****** *** *** *** ********* ******** than *-****. *** **** ***** ********* *** *-**** ** *** offering ** ******** **** *******.

** *** *** ************ ********* ** * ****** ** ****** member (*** ** *** **** ** ** ******* ** ** hours ** **** ********* *******), ******* ** ******* *** *** to **.

** *-**** ******** ********* ********** (**** ******** **** * ***-*********, ready ** ** ** ****, ******** ****** **, ********** ***********), it ***** ****** * **** ********** *********** ** *******.

*********/*************

** **** ********** ** ****** *** ** **************** *** ******* *** *************:

**** ***** ***** *** ********** ** ***** *** ***-*****'* ** card *************:

Physical ********

** **** * **** ** *** ******** ************ ** *** DCS-2132L ** **** ***** *****:

Image *******

** ******** *** *-**** ***-***** ** *** **** *** ************ **-********* ******* ***** ******* ******* ******* ***** **** **** *******.

** *** *** ******* ***** ******* ** ******* ** *** vast ********** ** *** (*-**** ******, ******* ****) ***** *********** difficult ** ** **********. 

** **** *****, *** ***-***** ** ********** ***********, ******* *** the ***** ****** **** * *** *****.

** *** *****, *** ***-***** ** **** ******* **** *** UBX1301 *** ** *** **** ****** **************, ****** ** ********* ** ******* ******* ** *** ******* and *****. 

*******, ** ****** *** *-****'* ** ***** ** ******* ********* from ~*-** ****. **** *** ******* ** ***** ** ~**' (5m), ** *** ********* ** ******* *************** ** *** **** subject. ** **', *** ******* ** **** **********, *** ** cannot ******* * ****. ** ~*', ** *** ***** ** see *** **** *******'* **** **** ******* *** ** ****** IR *****. **** ***** ** *** ******, **** ***** *' away, *** ******* ** ******* ******* ******* ************.

*********

********* *** ***** **** ******** ** ***** ******* ****** **** the **** **********. 

*** *-**** ***-***** ******** ** ***, ** "***** *******" ** it ** ********* *******. ** **** *** *** ** *** ******* ** ***, using *.********, *** *** ********* ******* ** *** ********** **** *****.

*********, ** **** *****, ***** **** *** ******** ** ***, faster **** *** ***, ***** ** *** *****, ** ******* to ** ***. *-***** ******** ** ~** ** **** **** light *** ********.

**** **** ***** ********** ******* (**** *** ****) *** ****** by ******* *** *** *******.

Test **** *********

**** **** * ******** *-**** ** ******* **** ** **** **** *** *** *** *** ****** ** **** test.

Comments (11)

***** **'* **** **** *-**** *** **** ***** **** ***** access, *** *********** ** **** ***** ******** ** * **** problem. **'* ************* ****** ****** **** ** ****** *************, *** think **** *** ***** *** ** **** ******* **** ******* access *** **** *********.

**** *******, ***** *** ** ********* '****** **************', ** ** ******* *** ******* ****** ** *** ***** FoV.

**** ****, ******* '******' *** ********* ***** ** ******* ****** and *********** **** (**: **** ******* ** *** ****** *** '****** ******'), *** it ***** ***** ** ****** ** * **** ***** **** mask *** **** **** *** ***** ********* **/******** ** ** altogether.

****** ******* ******* ** ** ********* ** *** *-****?

******* "********" ****** *****'* **** *** **** ******. ** *** over *** **** *** ****** ** *** ******** ** *** five ** *** ******. ******* *** ** **** ***** ** ideal.

* **** ** **** *** **** ***** * **** ****** my ******* *** * **** ********* ** ** *** ****, quickest, ******* ****** * **** **** **** **** ** ** roughly * ******** ******.

* ******* *** *** ********* *-**** **** ******* ** **** article. *** *** *** *********** ** *** ***** *********** *** bandwidth *********** ** ******* ******? *** ***** *** ******** ** live **** *** ******* **** *** ******** ***** ** ******* comparing ** *-****?

*******, **** **** **** ********** ** ** *** ***** *********** is ****** *******. *** *** ********, **** **** *** ***, is *** ********** ** *** ***** ** *** ***. **** said, ** ***** ** ******* ** ****.

**** *******, ********* ****** ** ********** ** *** **** ** all. **'* ******* *****/* **** / *****, ********* ** * relatively **** ***********.

** *** *******, ******* *** **** ***** *** ** ****** significant (* - * ******* ** ******). ******** ***** ****** is ***** ***** (*** *** *** ** *** ********** ***** **** *******). *********, **** *-****, *** *** ***** ** ******** ** finding *** ********* **** ****.

***** ** ****** ********** ** ****** ** *********** ******** ** Dropcam ****** *********** - *** ***** ****** **** *-*** - what ** *** *****?

****, *** ****** ****** ******** **** *** *** **** *-***, no?

**'** **** ******** *********** *** ** ********* ***** *** * post.

**** * ******* ** ****** *** *********** ****** *** *** Dropcam. ***** **** *********** *** **** **** ******** (****** *********, motion *****) **** ******* *****.

* ***** ** ********** ** ****** **** ****, *** **** because * **** ******* ***** ******* ** *** ******** *** some ** *** ********** ****. **** **** *** ***** ******* thus ***, *** ** *********** ** * ****** ******** * would **** ** ****.

* ** ******** *** *** *********** ** *** **** ****** of ***** *** **** ******?

*** ****, *****, ****** **** ********* **** ** ** ****, I ****'* ******* **** *** ****** ** **** *** ******** - ****://****.**/*****

* ** ***** **** **** ********** ** ** *********** ******** though, ********** ** **** ***** *** **** ********

**** ******

*********

** ***,

*'* * ******** *** (**) ******* **** **** ********** *** a ******** *******. *********** ***** ************ ** *** ** **! High ******** ***** **** *** **** ***** **********!

* ***** ** * ********** ** ******* *** ************* ** CVR ******* ******** ******* ** ***** ******* - *** **** a ***** ******** **.

**** ***** *********** **** **** ***********. ********** *** **** ***** storage.

* ***** *** **** ******* **** * ***** ******** *** North ******* *** **** **** ** ******* ** ************* *********** if **** **** ** **** ***** **** ******* *** ********* outside ** *** ***.

Login to read this IPVM report.
Why do I need to log in?
IPVM conducts unique testing and research funded by member's payments enabling us to offer the most independent, accurate and in-depth information.

Related Reports

Blink XT Outdoor Totally Wireless Camera Tested on May 11, 2017
Running wires for cameras outdoors is one of the biggest challenges, especially for consumer or DIY installs. Now, Blink has released an outdoor...
48MP 180 Camera (Digital Watchdog) Test on May 10, 2017
Camera resolution continues to advance, with Digital Watchdog offering the MegaPIX PANO 48MP 180° camera, the highest resolution mainstream camera...
Alarm Circuits Guide on May 09, 2017
Alarm circuits are a fundamental element of wired burglar systems. Designing the alarm circuit greatly affects its performance. In particular,...
Hanwha 9MP Fisheye Camera Tested (PNF-9010R) on May 09, 2017
12MP sensor fisheye panoramic cameras are becoming increasingly common. We have tested Hikvision's DS-2CD63C2F as well as Panasonic's SFV481 4K...
Smartphone Controlled Kevo Lock Tested on May 04, 2017
Smartlocks are a growing market, with millions sold. Kwikset's Kevo is one of the most common choices, using the Unikey smart phone access control...
Hack Your Access Control With This $30 HID 125kHz Card Copier on May 01, 2017
You might have heard the stories or seen the YouTube videos of random people hacking electronic access control systems. The tools that claim to do...
Last Day - IP Networking Course May 2017 on Apr 26, 2017
Today is the last day to register for the May IP Networking Course. This is the only networking course designed specifically for video...
Xandem Next Gen Intrusion Tested on Apr 26, 2017
Xandem's "full coverage motion tracking technology" is unlike any intrusion technology we have seen. We bought their new system and tested it...
Axis Lowest Cost Outdoor IR Camera M2025-LE Tested on Apr 24, 2017
Axis has lagged offering low cost IR cameras while their Asian competitors have made IR standard even in their most entry level cameras. Recently,...
Ring Floodlight Cam Tested on Apr 20, 2017
Ring has released their latest entry, the Floodlight Cam, calling it the "Evolution of Outdoor Security", touting motion activated floodlights,...

Most Recent Industry Reports

Avigilon New COO James Henderson Profile on May 23, 2017
It has been nearly 2 years since the infamous Bryan Schmode 'resigned' as Avigilon COO. Now, Avigilon once again has a COO, promoting James...
Aura's 'Invisible Ripple' Next Gen Intrusion Detection Tested on May 22, 2017
Aura Home is a startup intrusion detection system, but it claims new, high-tech sensing that monitors the 'invisible ripples' movement creates,...
Pelco Shutting Down Clovis Line, Laying Off 200 on May 22, 2017
Pelco's Clovis facility once turned out some of the industry's most popular products. Now, the facility is mostly building "obsolete" equipment,...
IP Camera - 15 Year Shootout on May 22, 2017
How far have IP cameras come? We bought and tested 4 cameras across the past 15 years to understand how much and where performance has...
Remote Video Monitoring Providers Directory on May 19, 2017
Remote video monitoring can help integrators generate RMR plus end users lower their security costs and/or improve response to critical...
Axis Criticizes OEMs: "When You Buy An Axis Camera, An Axis Camera Is What You Get!" on May 19, 2017
When you buy a Honeywell camera, you likely get a Hikvision, Dahua or some other company's product. The same goes for easily 100 different...
Hackable 125kHz Access Control Migration Guide on May 19, 2017
Despite being one of the most popular credentials, 125 kHz credentials are easily copied and insecure as we showed in our test results, video...
Forget The Backdoor, "ALL HIKVISION PRODUCTS" On Sale on May 18, 2017
Less than 2 weeks after the Hikvision Backdoor was confirmed, Hikvision has launched a sale "ON ALL HIKVISION PRODUCTS". In this note, we examine...
Amazon Techs Installing IP Cameras Tested on May 18, 2017
In 2015, Amazon started offering video surveillance installation. Now, Amazon has made it a lot easier, with automatic add-on options and...

The world's leading video surveillance information source, IPVM provides the best reporting, testing and training for 10,000+ members globally. Dedicated to independent and objective information, we uniquely refuse any and all advertisements, sponsorship and consulting from manufacturers.

About | FAQ | Contact