Keeping you and your family safe should always be your number one priority. If you can acquire an additional piece of equipment that helps with that, why shouldn’t you jump on the opportunity?
Alarm clock cameras were engineered for the sole purpose of improving your home security.
These cameras are designed to blend into their surroundings seamlessly. While hidden, they can record what’s going on within their field of view and alert you to any potential abnormalities that could be symptomatic of something more sinister.
In this article, we will take a closer look at alarm clock cameras in order to learn more about how they can help you. We will also talk about how alarm clock cameras vary from one another.
We are also going to discuss some of the top alarm clock cameras that are currently available to see if they can work well inside your home.
The Factors to Consider When Shopping for an Alarm Clock Camera
Obviously, shopping for an alarm clock camera is going to differ significantly from shopping for a more conventional camera. Image quality and range still matter a great deal, but you also have to take into consideration which security features the camera possesses so that you have a better idea of how well it can safeguard your home.
Included below are the factors and features you need to keep in mind when looking for an alarm clock camera.
This may be an obvious point, but it remains one worth repeating: Make sure that the camera you’re getting is disguised well or else it will be quickly detected.
The point of getting this type of camera is to use it to record the events taking place inside your home discreetly. It won’t be able to accomplish that if it’s spotted right away.
Before you go and purchase any specific camera, check out how it fits inside the room you intend to use it in.
Will it blend in well with the surroundings or will it stick out like a sore thumb? The good news here is that the vast majority of alarm clocks equipped with cameras look no different from the standard items.
One more thing I do advise you to check out is the placement of the camera. Look at the face of the clock and see if it’s obvious that there’s a camera embedded inside. If you can’t see anything even while knowing there should be a camera there, that means it should also be undetectable to anyone with ill intentions.
The primary purpose of the hidden camera is to help you see if anything suspicious is going on inside your home.
Identifying suspicious activity is not enough however. The camera should also be able to provide a clear enough image of the assailant so that you can identify that individual and do something about his/her actions.
What all this means is that you need a camera capable of capturing video in high resolution.
Instinctively, you would assume that a higher resolution translates to a better camera, but that is not necessarily the case.
As pointed out by CNet, the ultra-high definition cameras tend to take up more bandwidth. Because of that, the cameras may lag. If the camera lags at an inopportune time, you could end up missing out on the crucial bit of footage that lets you know some form of criminal activity is happening inside your home.
On top of that, high-resolution cameras also consume batteries faster.
The sweetspot for camera resolution is about 1080p.
With that kind of resolution, you should be able to easily identify the objects and faces that pop up on the video feed. At the same time, maintaining that type of resolution should also not prove too taxing for the camera. Some lagging may take place, but those slow-downs should happen infrequently.
I would also try to seek out an alarm clock camera that features an adjustable resolution. Thanks to that feature, you can just adjust the resolution of the camera based on how the video is showing up. You ca lower the resolution if the video is lagging too much or increase it if you need a better view.
A camera that records video footage in color will also be more helpful. If the suspicious individual is bringing any unusual items inside your home, the camera will be able to pick up on that.
Having a camera that can be hidden in plain sight that is also capable of recording high quality video is not enough. You also need a camera that can provide an adequate view of your home interior.
To make sure you get a hold of a camera with a sizable view, you need to take a look at what kind of lens it is using.
Picking out a good camera lens is pretty easy. You just have to seek out the one that offers the widest field of view. A lens that can provide a 180-degree field of view would be ideal, but you don’t need to set your standards that high.
Anything that can come close to 180 degrees is more than acceptable. You don’t want to go with a camera that offers a field of view narrower than 120 degrees though.
If you find yourself having to choose between two very similar alarm clock cameras, you can use the lens quality as the differentiator.
A security camera will not be particularly useful if you cannot view what it’s seeing. The same goes for alarm clock cameras.
Manufacturers are aware of that and that’s why most alarm clock cameras you’ll see are designed to link up with smartphones via apps.
Check to see what kind of app is paired together with the camera. The app has to be one you can use easily, or else it won’t do you much good.
You should be able to see what’s going on inside your home using the app paired up with your camera, but you won’t always be able to do that.
If you’re busy at work, you won’t be able to keep a close eye on the streaming video. This is why it’s important to have a camera that is capable of storing plenty of data.
Many alarm clock cameras work by recording footage continuously. That’s a good feature because that means they are keeping watch over everything going on. However, if the camera doesn’t feature a ton of storage space, footage may be overwritten quickly and you may miss out on seeing something important.
To get around that potential issue, try to acquire an alarm clock camera that is compatible with larger SD cards. With an SD card onboard, the camera should be able to store more footage without having to constantly record over itself.
You can come home at the end of the day, take a look at the recordings and feel secure knowing that everything important was captured.
Notably, not all alarm clock cameras can work with all SD cards. As much as possible, try to get a camera that can work with the largest SD cards that are currently available.
We don’t all have the same working schedule. Most of us work the conventional daytime schedules, but others have to spend their nights away from home.
If you can’t be around at night to keep close watch over your home, your alarm clock camera should be able to do that for you. That is exactly why night vision is such an important feature for alarm clock cameras.
With night vision active, the camera will still be able to clearly see its surrounding even when asked to work with a small amount of light.
Thankfully, night vision is a common feature for alarm clock cameras. You should have little trouble finding one that offers night vision.
Last up, you will want your alarm clock camera to be capable of detecting motion. That feature will make it even easier for you to detect any kind of abnormal activity.
According to The Spy Store, motion detectors typically remain active for two minutes after they are first triggered. Look for that in the camera you’re purchasing.
We are now done learning about the factors that separate alarm clock cameras. Let’s now move ahead and use that knowledge to carefully evaluate the items included below.
Versatility and adaptability are two traits that are important to see in alarm clock camera. You want them to be capable of adjusting to your needs and not the other way around.
The Hidden Clock Camera from HOSUKU is a perfect example of a gadget designed to cater to your specific needs.
You can tinker with its resolutions. The resolution can be as low as 640p or it can go up to 1080p. Having that ability to adjust the resolutions is going to come in very handy when specific situations arise.
Set the camera to the lowest resolution when you know you won’t be able to head home for an extended stretch, or take it as high it goes if you’re noticing some strange activity.
You also have the option to adjust how long this alarm clock camera records events taking place inside your home. By adding a sizable SD card, you can essentially have it record things taking place inside your home all throughout the day.
This camera can also zoom in on specific spots if you’re monitoring things via the app and notice something amiss.
The 150-degree wide angle lens gives this camera a large field of view and it remains capable of detecting suspicious activity even with low lighting thanks to the night vision and motion detection features.
Given this item’s weight, you probably won’t want to take it on the road with you. If you just need added security for your home though, this camera should provide more than adequate service.
- Features three different resolution settings
- Offers digital zooming
- 150-degree wide angle lens
- Capable of monitoring your home all throughout the day with the right SD card inserted
- Not the most portable alarm clock camera
Bad actors often like to use the cover of night to put in motion their plans so that they can evade detection. You need an alarm clock camera that will protect against those potential night attacks.
Oddly, the best and worst features of the Hidden Clock Camera from ELValley are related to its nighttime performance.
Let’s start out with the positive. In terms of seeing at night, you won’t find many alarm clock cameras that can exceed the kind of performance this item delivers. Even in total darkness, this camera will be able to clearly see what’s going on directly in front of it.
The night vision feature of this camera is definitely worth highlighting. The only real issue is that you’ll have to activate yourself. For some reason, this camera will not automatically trigger its night vision.
If this camera catches a glimpse of any suspect activity using its motion detection sensors, it will quickly send notifications to your smartphone letting you know that something’s wrong.
By pairing it up with a large SD card, you will also enable this camera to keep watch over your home for an entire day.
- Excellent video quality even when night vision is active
- Will send notifications to your smartphone if motion sensors detect suspicious activity
- Can record for an entire day using the right SD card
- Night vision will have to be manually activated
When you first check out the features of the QiongSi’s Hidden Clock Camera, you will notice that it is remarkably similar to the HOSUKU offering we reviewed earlier.
It features the same type of wide angle lens and its resolutions can also be set at three different levels.
You can also utilize the zoom-in feature again if there is something you want to take a closer look at.
Considering the fact that this alarm clock camera is lighter than the HOSUKU item above, you can easily come to the conclusion that this is the better product.
I’m not so sure about that though.
While yes, the alarm clock cameras are certainly comparable in terms of their specs and features, this QiongSi item is arguably worse than what HOSUKU offers in two significant ways.
First off, QiongSi’s alarm clock camera has a very bright display. You want these cameras to go unnoticed. That will be more difficult to accomplish if the display is drawing a lot of attention.
On top of that, the alarm clock camera also has an app that is quite difficult to work with.
In my eyes, one alarm clock camera is clearly better than the other.
- Resolutions can be adjusted based on your needs and preferences
- Digital zoom is available
- Equipped with a 150-degree wide angle lens
- Features a bright display
- Companion app is not easy to use
It’s good to see premium specs featured in any kind of protection-focused item and you can certainly find those in the Hidden Clock Camera from COCOPP.
I want to highlight the fact that this camera comes with a 157-degree wide angle lens. You may think that seven degrees are not going to make a huge difference in terms of keeping your home secure. As far as I’m concerned though, I want as much coverage as possible, and this camera provides that.
This camera will also send alerts to your smartphone if its sensors detect anything that you need to be aware of. It’s also one of the smaller alarm clock cameras. You should have no trouble finding a spot for it inside any room in your house.
Once again, you can choose to adjust the resolutions depending on what you need. When it comes to this camera, you may not always want to max out the resolution.
This camera tends to consume battery power quickly. It may run out of juice before you get home if you keep it at its highest setting.
If you do decide to keep it at a lower resolution, you can count on it to record what’s happening for a long time. You can even pair it up with a 256 GB SD card if you don’t want it recording over itself right away.
- Makes use of an extra wide 157-degree lens
- You can make adjustments to the resolutions
- Can support 256 GB SD cards
- Camera will pass along alerts to your smartphone if necessary
- Easy to hide because of its relatively small size
- Camera consumes battery power quickly
You’ll quickly see that the Hidden Clock Camera from RecorderGear is significantly more expensive than the other items featured in this article. So, is it worth that high price tag?
There are two features of this camera that I want to take the time to highlight.
The first one is related to its connectivity. If you decide to use multiple RecorderGear products in your home, you can control all of them using a single app.
On top of that, this camera also excels during nighttime. It can see more than three feet ahead even without the aid of nearby lighting. Few alarm clock cameras can match that type of range.
This camera will also send alerts to your smartphone if it detects anything out of the ordinary using its sensors. You also have the option of inserting a 128 GB SD card inside this camera to ensure that it will record what’s taking place inside your home for an extended period of time.
It’s also worth pointing out that this alarm clock camera has a very unassuming appearance. That will help it avoid suspicion if anyone goes snooping around inside your home.
Are all those features worth the higher price tag? I think you can make a solid argument that this camera is indeed worth the higher price.
- Features terrific range when utilizing night vision
- Can connect to the same app as other RecorderGear cameras
- Compatible with SD cards that feature 128 GB of storage space
- Closely resembles an ordinary alarm clock
- Significantly more expensive compared to other alarm clock cameras
It’s never a bad idea to improve your home security and you can do exactly that with the aid of a good alarm clock camera. Now that you’ve read up on alarm clock cameras and some of the top options currently available, you should be able to pinpoint the item that will work best inside your home.