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Night Owl Security Camera Review 2022: Pros, Cons, and Verdict

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Review Summary

Our Final Verdict

We give Night Owl Security Camera a rating of 4.3 out of 5 stars.

Editor Rating: 4.3/5

Build Quality: 4.7/5

Image Quality: 4.4/5

Features: 4.0/5
Price: 3.5/5

If you’re in the market for a home security system and want to make just one purchase and then forget about it, the Night Owl Security Camera might be exactly what you’re looking for. The system is a little expensive to set up, but you won’t have to spend more once you have the cameras.

The company also offers multiple cameras with a few of its packages, so you can get a complete security system instead of a patchwork job. The cameras come with a 1 TB hard drive to store all the recordings, which is enough for about 500 hours of video.

They have options for night vision and human detection, among other features, so you can customize your system to exactly what you need. There’s also an app that enables you to view everything from your phone, but compared to some other home security apps, it’s a little subpar.

Still, once you purchase a Night Owl Security Camera system, you won’t have to spend another dime, and that’s a huge benefit that most other systems don’t offer.

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Night Owl Security Camera — A Quick Look

Night Owl

Pros
  • Don’t need an additional subscription
  • Two-way audio enabled
  • Works with up to 10 cameras
  • 300-foot Wi-Fi range
  • Easy to set up and use
  • Night vision options
  • Human-detection features
  • Adjustable settings
  • Wired and wireless options
Cons
  • Buggy app
  • Expensive up front
  • No monitored surveillance options

Specifications

Brand name: Night Owl
Connectivity technology: Wireless
Indoor/Outdoor use: Both
Video quality: 1080p HD
Recording capability: Up to 1 TB
Phone app compatibility: Android 4.3+ or iOS 12.4+

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The Video Quality

While Night Owl Security Camera does not have a 4K image like some other cameras, with a 1080p-HD recording capability, it’s more than enough quality to make out what’s going on in the video.

Also, while you can find cameras with higher recording quality, if you’re storing the video yourself, know that higher quality takes up more storage.

1080p-HD is a great mix of quality without going so high that the needed storage space to hold the videos are also high.

Managing and Keeping Recordings

You don’t have to pay for any cloud storage or to keep recordings with Night Owl, but you will need to invest in their DVR box.

Depending on the box that you get, it can hold up to 1 TB of data, which is enough storage space to hold 500 hours of video. Considering that you can set the camera to only record when something is happening, that can be enough storage capacity to hold video for quite a while!

Even better, since you’re in control of the storage, you get to decide which videos are worth saving and which ones are worth removing. That’s a level of control that most other systems don’t always give you; automatic video deleting is typical after 30 or 60 days.

Subscription Options

Unlike many video camera services, Night Owl offers no subscriptions. In many ways, this is both a good and bad thing.

While it’s nice that you’re not roped into a month-to-month or year-to-year subscription service after you purchase the camera, it would be nice to have a monitored surveillance option. As it is, it’s completely up to you to monitor everything.

That’s not a huge deal, but sometimes you will miss things, and you don’t want it to be the time that something is happening. Still, once you purchase the cameras and storage box, you won’t have to spend more money to use your Night Owl cameras.

The Upfront Cost

Since it doesn’t get any more money from you after you purchase its cameras, Night Owl makes sure it gets that money up front. That means you’re spending more for these cameras right out of the box, and there’s no denying that.

In the long run, you save money compared to cameras that have a mandatory subscription service, but if you don’t have the upfront cash, that doesn’t matter that much.

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FAQs

When you’re looking for a video system, it’s common to feel overwhelmed. So, here are the answers to frequently asked questions about the Night Owl security camera system.

How many cameras can go on one system?

Each system has enough channels for 10 cameras. If you need more, you’ll need to connect them to another DVR device, and you won’t have everything all in one place.

Is there a Night Owl doorbell option?

Yes! Night Owl offers a standard doorbell that enables you to record and communicate directly from it. You can also mount one of its standard cameras there, and there is two-way audio to communicate.

Are the cameras plug-in or battery powered?

Night Owl offers both plug-in and battery-powered cameras, giving you the versatility to get exactly what you want from your security system.

person monitoring security camera

Image Credit: Andrey_Popov, Shutterstock

What the Users Say

One of the best ways to figure out whether a product is worth it or not is to see what other people say after using it. We went through dozens of reviews to get a consensus of what people think about Night Owl security.

For the most part, users are happy with their Night Owl security systems. They note that the cameras are extremely easy to set up and use, which is a big deal because they don’t come with any sort of professional installation options.

Users also highlight the effective human-detection system on the models that offer it, and they love the ability to control what recordings they keep. Their favorite thing by far seems to be the fact that you don’t need a subscription to use this system.

However, it’s not perfect, and there are a few complaints. First, the app seems to be a bit subpar. Users complain that it’s plagued with bugs and crashes often. It does seem like Night Owl patches the problems, but it’s only a matter of time until it happens again.

Another complaint is that the auto-detection features don’t always start recording right away, but you can always go in and change the sensitivity levels to get more video. The tradeoff is that you will end up with more footage than you really need on your DVR.

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Conclusion

While the Night Owl Security Camera isn’t perfect, it is an option to consider if you don’t want to deal with any monthly or annual fees after making your purchase.

The app is buggy, but the developers are constantly working on it, so there is hope that they’ll get it right at some point. Still, the selling point for this system isn’t the app, it’s the lack of monthly fees and the massive 1-TB storage system that you get to manage your recordings.

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About the Author Robert Sparks

Robert’s obsession with all things optical started early in life, when his optician father would bring home prototypes for Robert to play with. Nowadays, Robert is dedicated to helping others find the right optics for their needs. His hobbies include astronomy, astrophysics, and model building. Originally from Newark, NJ, he resides in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where the nighttime skies are filled with glittering stars.

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