Wyze Image Quality Tested vs Axis, Hikvision And Nest

By Ethan Ace, Published Aug 27, 2019, 09:19am EDT

With Wyze's new AI feature, it is strong at analytics, but how good is the camera's image quality? Is it just as good as incumbents like Axis, Hikvision, and Nest?

free image1 2

To find out, we tested the Wyze Cam V2 against $100 options from each, the Axis Companion Eye Mini L and Hikvision's Value Express D12F dome, along with popular consumer/DIY option Nest, examining:

  • How does daytime image quality compare to Axis, Nest, and Hikvision?
  • Does the Wyze Cam meet its 30' IR range spec?
  • How does it perform in the dark, with IR on?
  • How does it perform in low light color (~2 lux)?
  • How does compression/quantization compare to others and does it impact image quality?

*******

**** *** **'* ***** quality ** ******** ****** all **********, ******* **** modestly ** ****-*** ******* to ******** ** *** light *** ***:

  • ** ****-*** *******, ** provides ***** ******* ***** to ***-**** ********** ****** and ******'* **** ***. However, ** ******* **** overexposure ***** ******** ******* of *** **** *****, not **** ** ***** models.
  • **** *** ***** (~* lux) *** ****/** (~*.** lux) *******: ** *** light *** **** ******, subject ******* *** *********** lost ****** ~**' ********, with ********* ********* ** 20'+, ***** ***-**** **** and ********* ****** ******** details ** **'+ *** detection ** **** **'.
  • **** *** ***********: ** was ********* ** ******* a **** ******* ** both ****** ********* (~*,*** lux) ** **** ** darker ***** ** *** test ***** (~** ***).

** *** **** ***** quality ** '**** ******' for ***'* *********** (*** often ** ** *** those ******* * $** camera), **** ** ***** makes ***** ** *** testing ***** **** ****'* image ******* ** * significant **** **** **** even ***-**** ********** *********.

Pricing *** ************

*** **** *** ***** for~$** *** ******** ** Wyze's *******, ************* **** ********* than **** ******* ***-**** commercial ******. *** *******, the ********* ***** ******* series ***** ***~$**-***, ***** ****' ****** cost ********* ***** ***** for~$*** ******.

Quantization ****** **** *******

** *** *****, *** Wyze ***'* ************ (******** from ********** *****) ******** 30-33, ********** ****** **** the **-** ***** **** in **** ********** ******. By ********, *** **** Cam ******** * **** low ~**-** ************.

**** ****** ************ ****** contributes ** ****'* ***** quality ****** **** *****, as **** ***** *********** artifact ****** ****** **********.

Daytime ******* ***** ** ********** ******

** ~**', ~** ***, the **** ****** ******** clear ******* ** *** subject, ****** *** ******* to ***********. *******, **** overexposed *** **** ***** past **** *, ****** most **** *********.

Moderate Overexposure In Daytime Images Reduced Detail 10

** ****** ******** (~**' / ~** ***), **** losses **** ******* **** its ********** ***********. ****, the **** ****** ***** overexposes *** **** *****, not ** ***** ** others.

Moderate Overexposure In Daytime Images Reduced Detail 20

Weak ** ************

** *****, **** ** on, *** **** ***'* integrated *********** ******** **** illumination ** ~**', **** almost ** ******* ** the *******, ******* ***** specified *** ~**' *****.

Weak IR Illumination At 20' Distance (30' Specified)

Poor *****/** ******* (~*.** ***)

** *****, **** ** on (*.** ***), *** Wyze ****** ** ********** dimmer **** ***** ****** tested, ********** ***** *******. Note **** *** **** cam ** **** ***** is ******* ******** **** Wyze ****** ****** ******* are ********* ****.

Weak Dark IR Image Details At Close Range

** **', **** **** not ******* ******* ** the ******* ** **** chart, *** **** ****, while *** **** *** Hikvision ****** ******* **** recognizable *******.

No Subject Details At 20'+

*******, ******* ***** ***** of "******* ** ** 30 **** **** **** in ***** ********.", *** Wyze *** ** ****** black ** **** *****, with **** ****** ********** of *** *******.

Detection Difficult At 30'+

Poor *** ***** ***** ******* (~* ***)

** ***** ****, *** Wyze *** ******** **** rough ******* *******, **** his **** ********* ******* and ***. *** ***** models ****** ******* ***** subject *******.

Rough Details In Low Light  Color

** ~**'+, *** **** Cam *** *** ******* any ******* ** *** subject, **** **** ******** legibility ** *** ***** line ** *** **** chart.

No Subject Details At 20'+ In Low Light Color

Poor *** ***********

** ****** *** *********** against ********* ** ~*,*** lux *** ~** *** in *** ****** **** beside *** ****, ***** here:

WDR Test Field Of View 2

*** ******* ** ************* washed *** ** ********* in *** **** ***, obscuring ****** *******, ***** all ***** ****** ****** display ***** ******* ** his ********. ** *** darker **** **** ** the ****, *** **** Cam ******** *** ****** details, ***** ****** ***** provide ************ ********.

Weak WDR Performance In Bright Dark Areas

Bitrate **********

**** ******** **** ********** to *********'* ***** ******* day *** *****, ****** higher **** *** **** Companion **** * ** both ******. *******, ****'* quantization ****** (**-**) *** notably ****** **** **** and *********, ***** **** average ~**-**, ******* **** Wyze ** **** ******* compressing ***** **** **** similar ** ****** *** rates. *** **** ***, with **'* **** ***** quantization, *** *** ******* bitrates ** *** ******* tested *** *** *****.

Bitrate Comparison1

Test **********

******* **** ****** **** most ******** *********, **** the ********* *******:

  • ******* *** ************ ** a ******* ** */*** to ****** ****** ****.
  • ***** ****** **** ******* in **** *** ********* models. *** ********* *** Mini *** ** ***** codec ********, *** ** always *******. ********* ******** a ****** **/*** *** H.265+.
  • *** *** ******* ** Axis *** ********* ******. Wyze *** **** **** no *** ********.

**** ******** *.*.*.*** *** used ** *******.

Comments (9)

I purchased one Wyze cam for inside the house to watch the dogs during the day. It's easy to be able to move it around do different locations and just plug it into an outlet. I even placed it under a sink cabinet to try and identify a phantom leaky pipe. Seems to work well in the app as well. not too bad IMO, for $25 on amazon.....

Agree: 4
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Informative: 3
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To be fair, you can buy 100 Wyze cameras and install them for the same price as 1 Axis camera and probably get much better angles and PPF.

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Funny: 4

SEAN, GET ON THE WYZE MONEY TRAIN!

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Funny: 4

Its a shame how bad Wyze camera looks in low light and IR mode since its made to be used in the home where lighting changes all the time. For $20 USD you can't ask for much especially since they throw in AI for free that rivals commercial cameras.

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Informative: 1
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Funny

Reading the Amazon reviews, people claiming traffic is going to China. Anyone here that has researched this?

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Funny

I Wireshark'd a Wyze cam, from default through adding it to our account, upgrading firmware, and viewing video. Export of the PCAP is here.

I scrolled threw a few hundred packets and saw no evidence of anything going to China. The majority of contact is to AWS. There are two oddities:

It makes regular contact to 216.244.65.2, which appears to be in Russia if you WHOIS search it, but Wyze says that it belongs to their P2P provider and is located in Seattle. There is a Reddit thread about this issue with details.

There are a couple of other IPs with odd WHOIS results as well. 37.120.216.82 for example shows multiple results from multiple searches. It likely belongs to the P2P provider as well.

For reference, Wyze has historically used Throughtek as their P2P provider. We have a profile post on them, as well.

Agree
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Informative: 2
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Funny

Why compare a $20 camera to a $100 camera and then conclude that the $100 camera is in fact better? Duh!

Agree
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Informative
Unhelpful: 2
Funny

Trae, the reason is that a lot of people, especially in the mainstream press, say that Wyze is just as good as more expensive cameras.

Also, to the contrary of this test, Wyze's analytics are better than Axis and Hikvision, which is the opposite of 'duh!' as you say here.

Agree
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Funny

John to be fair I am speaking about the value of the camera as a whole and not about any one specific thing like an analytic. I do get your point though.

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