In the age of porch stealing package pirates, many of us are looking into home security options and you would be hard pressed to find a better option than the Logitech Circle 2 Wired Camera at $179.99. It offers an easy to use app-controlled WiFi connected camera with 1080p HD 180° wide-angle recording accessible in real time via live streaming from your phone. It is night vision capable, weatherproof, and a built-in speaker and microphone allow you to communicate with visitors at your door.
Extremely Easy Set-Up
Right out of the box you can plug the Circle 2 Wired Camera in and get it going via the app. Choosing where to install it affects how you will set the various settings. The app tries to take care of this for you by giving you a simple three-option choice: Is your camera behind a window, unobstructed, or plugged? Then the night vision settings automatically calibrate towards that. I tried using the wired camera both behind a window by my front door, and also wall mounted outside above my garage with the included wall mount and hardware. Both were very easy to set up.
From the app, you can choose how much you want to be alerted. Do you want to be alerted every time activity is detected? You can choose between high and low activity alerts. This is the difference between being alerted when a bird lands on your porch or when the UPS guy shows up. Circle Safe Premium services will also tell you when it is a person versus a passing squirrel for example. However, the standard free availability was more than satisfactory for us because you get a little pop up on your phone or Apple Watch showing you what triggered the alert. Like this:
What Does it Record?
The Circle 2 Home Security Camera does NOT continuously record. You can access the live feed as you like, and download screenshots, but if nothing is registered as happening, it will not be saved for you to review later. Only events that trigger the camera to record will be accessible. So if you hear a jostle in the house at night and want to take a peek at the live feed, you can, but you won’t be able to rewind the last five minutes unless something triggered the camera to record it. This is really a non-issue but if you are not expecting it, it can be confusing trying to rewind the last few minutes so we thought we would save you that expectation.
Events and live stream offer a 1080p HD picture in a 180° wide angle view. The picture is quite good and you can zoom in on it as you like. At any point, you can download a screenshot. Smart Alerts are pushed through to you your phone. You can choose to set those however you like, controlling for what, how often, and even where you are when you receive the alerts. Within the app, you can access blue, grey, and yellow bubbles. Blue means it is pretty sure there is a significant event happening like a person. Grey means a light event, like a cat passing far off. Yellow, is the “Day Brief.” This is where the app compiles a quick and downloadable time-lapsed version of all of the day’s events. Here is a brief compilation of those various events:
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Night vision works great with a few caveats. First of all, it works within 15 feet. Secondly, if you have it behind a window, the infrared illumination that the camera uses to see at night reflects off the glass and causes poor, if any, picture quality. You will need to address this by turning off night vision in the settings. When testing it behind a double-paned window, I just turned a porch light on and recorded outside as normal. When I installed it outside over my garage, the night vision worked beautifully. One more consideration about window placement is that interior light at night reflects off the window and records the inside of your house rather than the outside where it is pointed, a serious privacy and security consideration to remember. Some of these issues can be resolved with purchasing the $40 window mount (highly recommend).
Built-In Speaker & Microphone Is Great For Scaring the UPS Guy Or Cooing At Your Pets
This feature basically makes this security camera also an unofficial smart doorbell device. You get an alert when someone comes to your house and from there if the camera is mounted outside you can communicate with them. The microphone is very sensitive and I could hear footsteps of someone walking about 30 feet away which is incredible. However, the built-in speaker is less powerful. Your voice comes out sounding clear and crisp but at about the level of a cafe conversation voice. So you need to use a robust voice to get the person to hear you, especially if they have a car running or other ambient noise. Letting someone know that you can’t come to the door, but please leave the package, is a great perk of this very versatile security camera. You can also disable both the speaker and the microphone for privacy concerns if the camera is in the interior of the house rather than the exterior. Or you can keep it on and tell your furry friends what good bois they are throughout the day while you are at work.
The Circle 2 Wired Home Security Camera is an incredibly intelligent WiFi connected security camera system that can differentiate movements of a swaying tree versus a UPS delivery. The Camera offers excellent video resolution at 1080p, a wide-angle 180° view, night vision, a built-in microphone with speaker, and the app offers a subscription-free 24hr storage of the footage with the option to download clips at any time with premium add-on options available but not absolutely essential to a great user experience. It also works with Alexa, Apple HomeKit, Google Assistant, or any Chromecast device, desktop browsers as well as iOS and Android apps for smartphones. All of this comes in at a base price of $179 with the option to purchase various mounting accessories or multiple camera packages.