Foscam IP Camera Overview

Author: Ethan Ace, Published on Aug 25, 2011

In this update we will examine the IP camera line of Chinese camera manufacturer Foscam. Foscam has a reputation for being low-cost and average (or below) quality. Let's examine the line and its competitive positioning.

Product Overview

Foscam's IP camera range is small, consisting of eleven models:

  • Five bullet cameras
  • One fixed box camera
  • One cube camera
  • One outdoor PTZ
  • Three indoor pan/tilt cameras

Compared to most of the industry, Foscam is lagging in features on multiple counts. First, the entire line is single protocol only, with only four models offering dual-stream H.264, and the rest being single stream MJPEG-only. All cameras have a max resolution of VGA, with most using 1/4" image sensors, as well as some 1/5". None of the line currently supports ONVIF, nor is Foscam an ONVIF member, so we would not expect it in the near future. 

The only way to describe Foscam's pricing is "cheap", even when compared to the typical lower-cost brands:

Recommendations

It is difficult to recommend Foscam's cameras, since there is so little to differentiate them. With pricing this low, quality becomes a justifiable concern. We have performed no testing of Foscam cameras. Reviews and posts online indicate those with basic requirements seem to like them, but others regularly cite concerns over product support, firmware stability, and image quality. 

The lack of ONVIF compliance or many third-party integrations is also a major negative. Since most of the line only uses MJPEG, VMS generic drivers (for example from Milestone or Genetec) would be able to view and record video with little trouble. Like many of the low-cost camera manufactuers, some of Foscam's cameras are listed as compatible with Synology's surveillance station. They are also integrated with some of the lesser-used or lower-cost VMS's, such as Digifort, Blue Iris, and iCam. Blue Iris looks to be the most popular choice, especially among the DIY set, with Foscam US offering Blue Iris for order along with cameras, as well.

1 report cite this report:

Low Cost Professional IP Cameras Comparison on Oct 23, 2011
"Too expensive" is probably the most frequent complaint about IP cameras. While IP cameras have clearly come down in price in the last few years,...
Comments : PRO Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports

October 2018 Camera Course - Save $50 - Last Chance on Sep 13, 2018
Today is the last day to save $50 on the October 2018 Camera Course, register now. This is the only independent surveillance camera course,...
VMS Export Shootout - Avigilon, Dahua, Exacq, Genetec, Hikvision, Milestone on Sep 13, 2018
When crimes, accidents or problems occur, exporting video from one's video surveillance system is critical to proving incidents. But who does it...
Dahua Low-Cost 4MP Camera Tested (N44CL52) on Sep 10, 2018
4MP use continues to increase, especially in low-cost models, according to integrators in our 2018 Resolution Usage Statistics. We bought Dahua's...
Directory Of 110+ Video Management Software (VMS) Suppliers on Aug 30, 2018
This directory provides a list of Video Management Software providers to help you see and research what options are available. Listing...
Ligowave Wireless Profile - Ubiquiti Competitor on Aug 27, 2018
Ubiquiti has become the most common choice for wireless in video surveillance (see Favorite Wireless Manufacturers) but not without controversy and...
Inputs/Outputs For Video Surveillance Guide on Aug 24, 2018
While many cameras have Input/Output (I/O) ports, few are actually used and most designers do not even consider them. However, a good understanding...
Assa Aperio Wireless Access Reader R100 Tested on Aug 23, 2018
Wireless access control is frequently promoted by manufacturers as a way to cut installation costs. Perhaps the biggest proponent of this is mega...
Luxriot VMS Profile on Aug 23, 2018
Luxriot is more popular than Hikvision and Milestone products according to ASMAG which was probably even surprising to Luxriot. The company has...
Synology Surveillance Station VMS Tested on Aug 22, 2018
With so many low-cost NVRs and enterprise VMSes, is there any place in the market for NAS-based VMSes? Recently, IPVM bought a Synology NAS for...
SNMP / Network Monitoring For Surveillance 2018 on Aug 21, 2018
Surveillance systems typically rely on the the VMS to report issues, but this most often just means knowing a camera is "down" with no warning or...

Most Recent Industry Reports

25% China Tariffs Finalized For 2019, 10% Start Now, Includes Select Video Surveillance on Sep 18, 2018
A surprise move: In July, when the most recent tariff round was first announced, the tariffs were only scheduled for 10%. However, now, the US...
Central Stations Face Off Against NFPA On Fire Monitoring on Sep 18, 2018
Central stations are facing off against the NFPA over what they call anti-competitive language in NFPA 72, the standard that covers fire alarms....
Hikvision USA Starts Layoffs on Sep 18, 2018
Hikvision USA has started layoffs, just weeks after the US government ban was passed into law. Inside this note, we examine: The important...
Chinese Government Praises Hikvision Following Xi Jinping on Sep 17, 2018
The Chinese government council responsible for managing China's state-owned companies praised Hikvision’s obedience to China’s authoritarian leader...
Amazon Ring Spotlight Cam Tested on Sep 17, 2018
Amazon's Ring has released their latest camera entry, the Spotlight Cam, which we bought and tested in our Consumer IP Camera Analytics...
European Mega Security Firm Verisure Pushing Security Fog on Sep 17, 2018
The European mega security firm Verisure (Securitas Direct), with a reported 2 million customers, is pushing security fog, as shown in this BBC...
IP Camera Cable Labeling Guide on Sep 14, 2018
Labeling cables can save a lot of money and headaches. While it is easy to overlook, taking time to label runs during installation significantly...
Favorite Intercom Manufacturers 2018 on Sep 14, 2018
Intercoms are certainly increasing in popularity, driven by the integration of video and IP networking. But who is the favorite? On the one side,...
Vivotek 4MP Camera Tested (FD8379-HV) on Sep 13, 2018
Next in our series of updated 4MP testing, we bought and tested Vivotek's FD8379-HV, and entry level 4MP model claiming "top-notch quality video in...
Ascent / MONI Faces Lender Lawsuit and Debt Crisis on Sep 13, 2018
ASCMA, aka Ascent, aka Brinks Home Security, aka MONI, aka Monitronics is being sued by a group of their lenders who allege: As of June 30,...

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