D-Link HD Wireless Outdoor Cloud Camera DCS-2332L full review
The DCS-2332L is D-Links highest specification outdoor camera. D-Link state it has a housing which is weatherproof and protects from rain and dust. The resolution is specified to be 720p (1Mp) and there is an additional infra-red night mode that is combined with an infra-red LED. See all webcame reviews.
The camera itself is solidly built and includes an easy to assemble mount. The mount is adjustable and uses a ball and socket joint which can be secured to point in any direction. Also included are screws to mount the unit on a wall. The ethernet port is sealed with a rubber bung and the entire front of the device is sealed. To test the waterproofing we placed the unit under a cold running shower for five minutes and the unit remained functional. There is a small Wi-Fi antenna that connects via a standard screw in port which means that a larger or directional antenna could be used to boost the signal. See also SwannSmart Wi-fi network camera review.
The setup of the device is straightforward and requires that the unit is connected via ethernet. During setup you can set a password and choose whether to select Wi-Fi connection or ethernet. It is only possible to use Wi-Fi and retain the weather sealing as to connect the ethernet you need to remove the rubber-sealing bung. There are two options after setup to connect to the camera. The first option is to use the My-D-Link web portal, which is accessible from any web browser and provides basic viewing functions. However the most useful option is to connect to the cameras internal web portal which provides access to all the cameras functions. This can be done from inside the network by typing in the cameras ip address or from a web browser outside on the internet. External access requires a few extra steps which are ; setting up a static IP for the camera, registering with a DDNS service and forwarding the ports in your router settings. Luckily D-Link provides a free DDNS service which allows you to type in a single web address which will always link to your home IP, which is most likely dynamic and therefore changes from time to time (unless you pay for a static IP from your broadband provider).
The camera itself does seem to live up to its 720p moniker as the picture seems crisp and sharp even in its fullscreen mode. Don't expect iPhone 5s video performance as the sensor in the unit is 1/4” size which is the smallest sensor commercially available. To put this in context the sensor area is only 7.68mm² compared with a low quality compact camera which has a sensor area of 28mm² or an iPhone 5s at 17.94mm². The 1/4” is the standard size to use in security cameras of this type, however it would be nice to see higher quality sensors appearing in these devices. The image quality in this DCS-2332L unit is considerably sharper than that found in its pan and tilt cousin the D-Link DCS-5222L.
D-Link claim the internal infra-red LED will light up objects 5m away in the dark. We tested this and the unit uniformly lights up a 5m area. The LED light is noticeably dimmer than the DCS-5222L tilt unit which has an additional three LED units. However, we did use an external infra-red LED to light up more distant areas which worked well. This could be useful to light up a whole garden or other dark area at a greater distance from the camera.
D-Link HD Wireless Outdoor Cloud Camera DCS-2332L: Specs
- Focal length 3.45mm, F2.0 , H.264/MPEG4/MJPEG compression, 1280x720 resolution, CMOS sensor 1/4 inch, power consumption 5.3w, 802.11n, 10/100 ethernet, speaker out, microphone, IP65 weatherproof housing, H.264/MPEG4/MJPEG simultaneous triple format compression