Nowadays our homes are becoming filled with more and more expensive and precious items along with our loved ones. Even the cameras we buy to watch over and protect our most prized possessions are expensive, but what if they didn’t have to be? What if we could have high-quality security cameras that didn’t empty our wallets as much as the tech they’re meant to protect? Meet the Blink security home system.
Blink strives to be an affordable and completely wireless security system for any home. They provide indoor and outdoor solutions for any size apartment or home since the system is “modular.” I’ve been using their 2-camera indoor system for about a month for this review, and there are several pros and cons that I want to discuss. So let’s dive into all that is Blink.
Blink comes with 3 different main components: the sync module, the indoor camera, and the outdoor camera (the XT). Unless you plan on buying both the indoor and outdoor versions at the same time, then, of course, you only get 2 of the aforementioned products. The sync module is what actually will connect to your wireless network and make sure you can communicate with your cameras on your phone. Both the Blink and Blink XT look very similar in design with a 2-inch square build and a small lens with a round nub (the motion sensor). The main differences between the two cameras are that the regular Blink is white while the XT is black with some extra front-facing flair.
Some other accessories you receive in the packaging include micro USB cables as these could be used plugged in for “infinite” power. You’ll also get Double AA batteries for the cameras for fully wireless operation, wall mounts for the cameras with all necessary hardware and lastly, of course, instruction booklets. You get everything you could possibly need within the initial box of the Blink System, so much so that the accessories part of the Blink website are limited to just signs for your window or yard, and color accents for the XT.
Before you actually place or mount your camera where you want them, you will want to open the back of each and get the app ready. It is really easy to setup your account and cameras for use — taking all of 5-10 minutes. Download, set up a simple account, add the sync camera via taking a picture of the QR code on the back, add cameras via the QR code located on the back. Really, everything about this camera system and experience is about being simple to setup and simple to use for anyone — that’s why you don’t have to worry about mounting wires, or any intricate internet settings for the cameras.
With everything being so simple and inexpensive, you may think that the app experience or camera quality leaves much to be desired. My experience would beg to differ. When you open the app, you’re presented with the last picture you’ve taken from the camera, along with the health of the module and security status. Within the settings, you can control the ability for each camera to react to movement or not when armed (really useful to me since I have a roommate), take a real-time photo, or start watching live from each camera.
One gripe I have with the app is that it doesn’t let you endlessly view your live feed from each camera without asking you every certain-amount-of-time if you want to continue watching, I’m still here Netflix. Another thing I don’t like about the camera is that their mounts only allow for vertical movements, which means placing a camera in a corner will reduce the field of view, as you can tell by my kitchen camera. Both of these probably have beneficial effects for us as the consumer, such as better battery life for the cameras (remember they run off AA’s) and a cheaper camera price overall. These are just some things I wish were different.
The quality of the cameras is technically HD, as Blink will remind you all over its website. The HD though is simply 720p, which may not be up to the likes of some FHD 1080p Nest or RIng cameras, but it’s enough to recognize who’s in your space. For me, I know which people should or should not be in my home when I’m not there. The Blink system allows me to quickly confirm whether or not it is someone who has permission to be there or not. However, the camera won’t be able to show you a mole on a person’s cheek or anything delicate like that.
Once I put the Blink system on an alternate network (apparently some smart home products don’t like dynamic wifi channels), the performance of each camera was smooth. You can easily jump between cameras for live feed views, change settings, and take real-time photos with little to no lag. There is at most a 3-second delay when clicking on the live feed button until live view begins, where you get both video and sound.
Once setup you’ll also able to get notifications when motion or any other trigger is noticed. The notifications come timely so you don’t have to miss any current action, and you can look at the recorded video stored in your unlimited cloud storage at any time. You can even easily share the recorded video through typical smartphone sharing options, or even the police.
Some features that are worthy of putting the Blink system on your radar include motion detection, cloud storage, temperature sensing, Alexa support, and up to two years of battery life (using the AA batteries). There’s also a light on each camera for those times when the area is rather dark, but that might be a little startling if you’re trying to sneak a peek of a room. The biggest selling point of the Blink camera system is, again, the fact that these are small, wireless, and come with easy to mount options.
For this whole package, you have different payment options, starting at $100 for a single sync module and an indoor camera. The package I reviewed was the 2 indoor camera setup which retails for $170. After you buy a starter kit (since you’ll need the sync module) you can add individual cameras currently for $90 a piece. The XT waterproof/outdoor cameras start at $130 which may even be worth it for using indoor, say near a bathroom or other humid areas. The pricing of the Blink system is one of the best features of these cameras. Now you can have a complete surveillance package without breaking your wallet.
Having a secondary sync module to connect to an outlet and refract your wireless signal may not be ideal but being able to have the Blink system virtually wireless is amazing. If you don’t need super high definition quality of the cameras or many other extra features, these would be great to have around a house, apartment, or even business. I’ve enjoyed having the Blink cameras around to keep my place secure all the while knowing I can add more if need be for not a lot of money. Blink may be the best budget security camera system available! Let us know if you’d trust your home with Blink.Buy from Blink