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Here is a system that is easy to install, affordable, and very effective allowing you to monitor your home from anywhere in the world.

The Logitech Alert system gives you a great video security system at a good price.

 
 
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Logitech Alert 750 review

An easy and affordable home security video monitoring system
 

Manage and monitor up to six inside and outside (with night vision) cameras from any computer, anywhere in the world.

Part 2 of a series about the Logitech Alert and home security cameras in general; please also visit

1.  How to Best Set Up Video Monitoring at Your Home
2.  Logitech Alert 750 review 1
3.  Logitech Alert 750 review 2

4.  Logitech Alert 750 review 3

 

 

The Logitech Alert 750 system allows you to connect up to six cameras to your home's LAN without needing to run complicated wiring.

The cameras will trigger when detecting motion and will record audio and video when motion is present.  The system can send you alert messages when motion is detected.

You can even remotely manage and monitor your system from anywhere in the world.

Priced very fairly, this is a great solution and easily implemented, suitable for anyone wishing to add an extra layer of protection to their home for whenever they are leaving it unoccupied.

About Logitech and its Alert Video Monitoring System

Logitech was founded in 1981 in Switzerland, and debuted with a range of mice, something that, at the time, was a very new type of product, predating the introduction of both the Mac and Windows.

Since then the company has expanded into a broad range of computer peripherals and related digital products.  Chances are you've owned at least one or two Logitech products yourself over the years - maybe a mouse, maybe a webcam, maybe a keyboard, maybe a Harmony remote control, or any one of many other devices they have made over their almost 30 year life.

More recently, I renewed my acquaintance with Logitech through their wonderful Squeezebox digital music servers and system (click the link for my review of this product range).

At first it seemed an unusual new business area for Logitech to offer home security systems, but it draws on their extensive digital imaging background; first with scanners and more latterly with webcam devices, and related expertise with audio products too.

The Alert system is actually their second product range released.  The first - the WiLife series - is now being superseded by this new model series, which is sufficiently improved and enhanced as to justify a complete new brand.

So although the Alert product range appears new, it draws on a wealth of prior experience.

The Logitech Alert Video Monitoring System - Overview

You can connect up to six cameras, either indoor or outdoor models, through your home's wiring and computer network, and then monitor and manage the cameras either from a computer connected to your home network or optionally (for an annual $80 fee) from anywhere in the world.  Simple remote monitoring, on your phone, is provided for free - the $80 product gives you full control analogous to being in your house.

Each computer simply plugs into any mains power outlet.  They use a special technology to then transmit their data over your home's mains power wiring, and then via an adapter into your router and from there either to your computer or over the internet to anywhere else in the world.

Motion detection capabilities in each camera cause them to automatically record both sound and video whenever they see motion.  The recordings are both stored on a micro-SD card in the camera and also on a computer on your LAN.

The bottom line result is that the external cameras - if visible - may even deter many burglars before they choose to break into your house, and will detect and advise you realtime any time motion is detected.

Indeed, here is a dramatic video from a Logitech camera system that combines the recorded video footage of a burglary with the homeowner's call to the police at the time the burglary was underway.

The homeowner received an alert at her office, so started remotely monitoring her camera system.  She saw the two burglars in her house, called the police, and stayed on the line giving the police updated information about where the two burglars were.  Best of all, she happily got to see, at the end of the recording, multiple armed police entering her house, arresting the two burglars, and clearing the house of any other potential miscreants.

A nightmare start but triumphant end to the experience, all due to the Logitech camera system.

You can see additional clips from real security systems detecting real burglars on Logitech's site here.

Other non-security uses for the system as well

There are many other uses for a Logitech Alert system, particularly for people who are away from their house for an extended time.  You could have a camera monitoring your basement to check for flooding.  You could have a camera monitoring any other part of your house or property if there are issues or concerns associated with it.

You could use the system as a 'nanny cam' setup to observe the actions not just of illegal intruders but also of people with conditional permission to be present in your house (make sure you don't run afoul of any local laws restricting such monitoring).

You could use the system to monitor wildlife in and around your property.

Some people have used their systems to monitor their front porch to protect against people stealing parcels delivered there, and others have monitored vehicles parked outside to detect car prowlers.

And you could use any camera as a way of checking to see if your home has lost power in a storm - if you get no image, that means either you've lost your internet connection or your power.

Logitech Alert Pricing

You choose a 'Master System' with one camera plus the related hardware and software to create a network, with two options being available, featuring either one internal camera (the 750i system, listing for $300) or one external camera (the 750e system, listing for $350).

You can then add additional cameras as needed, either internal (700i, listing for $230 each) or external (700e, listing for $280 each) up to a maximum of six cameras total on one system.

You can probably find the equipment for less than full retail, for example on Amazon, where a Master system is currently available for $270/$320.

Note - do not confuse the new Logitech Alert system with their earlier Logitech WiLife system.  The two systems might look the same, but they use incompatible systems.  WiLife is being discontinued, and the Alert product range is superior in all respects.

Visit their website for full information on the products available as part of the Logitech Alert system.

The Logitech Alert Video Monitoring System - What You Get

Logitech offer two models of their Alert video monitoring systems.  One comes with an external camera, the other comes with an internal camera.  You can then buy additional cameras to grow the system up to a six camera maximum.

There are several differences between the internal and the external cameras in terms of their appearance and mounting hardware, but inside they both have the same video camera, microphone and electronics.

The external cameras are slightly more ruggedized for outside use in the rain/snow/sun/etc, and also have two infra-red LEDs that you can set to automatically switch on at night, giving the camera an enhanced ability to see in the dark.  An external camera is shown on the top of this page.

The internal cameras (see image at the top of the second half of this review) are more compact and designed for friendlier internal locations.  They also do not have the infra-red LEDs to help in the dark.

There is of course no reason why you couldn't use external cameras inside if the night vision feature was important to you (which it quite likely might be).  But we'd recommend against using internal cameras outside unless you could be sure they'd be protected against the weather - our feeling is they are not completely waterproof.

You can mount the internal cameras either discreetly or prominently, and either in their freestanding base or using suction cups onto a window (facing either towards or away from the glass) or in various other ways.

Our test unit was a Logitech Alert 750i Master System, plus an external 700e camera.  The units both come in easily opened cardboard boxes.

Inside the Master System box is a video camera, mounting hardware, a power supply/transmitter, a receiver, two 10' connecting cables, a 2 GB Micro-SD card with a Micro-SD to SD adapter, a CD with software (Windows XP/Vista/7 required), and three different manuals/leaflets (a 'System Requirements and Support Guide', a 'Getting to Know' guide and a 'Getting Started' guide).

The system comes with a one year limited warranty.

The two power supply/network adapter units are much bulkier than typical 'brick' or 'blister' type power supplies.  This means they will take up more space on a power strip - but you shouldn't use a power strip anyway.  You should plug them directly into the wall, because power strips sometimes have filters on them that interfere with the transmission and receiving of the data signal by the unit (if you know your power strip has no filtering and no surge protectors on it, then you could use one of those with no problems).

The units are multi-voltage so should work anywhere in the world.

If you choose to add external Logitech Alert 700e Outdoor Add-on cameras, you get a second box that contains the external camera, a mounting bracket, a 20' connecting cable (instead of 10' with the internal camera), a power supply/transmitter, a 2GB Micro-SD data card and Micro-SD to SD adapter, and a guide relating to the add-on camera.

Part 2 of a four part series on home security/video monitoring systems; please also visit

1.  How to Best Set Up Video Monitoring at Your Home
2.  Logitech Alert 750 review part 1
3.  Logitech Alert 750 review part 2

4.  Logitech Alert 750 review part 3

 

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Originally published 19 Nov 2010, last update 19 Dec 2013

You may freely reproduce or distribute this article for noncommercial purposes as long as you give credit to me as original writer.

 
 
 


 


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