D-Link has added two models to its range of Internet cameras, allowing you to remotely control live, streaming video from a Web browser anywhere in the world. The wired DCS-5300 (£163) and wireless DCS-5300W (£191) Internet Security Cameras feature motorised pan and tilt operation which can be operated remotely from a Web browser or from the included remote control. The software also allows you to adjust the camera's angles, in case you wanted to scan an entire room at home or in the office for security reasons.The 101x104x118mm (346g) Internet Security Cameras are designed for home and small-business customers who want to set up a video monitoring system with viewing access available from any Internet location. Each of the two new cameras are based on a 0.25in. Charge Coupled Device (CCD) sensor and fixed-focus lens (F2.0) that allow you to capture still or moving images at resolutions up to 320x240 pixels. According to D-Link, the cameras can even operate effectively in areas of low light.
Pros: Free DDNS service; 270-degrees visual coverage
Cons: 30fps maximum; two-way communication isn't supported
The cameras include a Web server, IP address, e-mail and monitoring software, allowing you to open a regular Web browser and input in the camera's IP address to view the streaming video from a remote or network connected PC. A Dynamic Domain Name Service (DDNS) utility also comes built into the camera's Web server that allows you to create a free personal Web address.
The cameras include the capability to pan, delivering 270-degrees visual coverage, and the capability to tilt, which gives you 90-degrees of high and low surveillance. Video is captured in MPEG-4 format at resolutions of 640x480, 320x240 or 160x120 pixels, up to 30fps. Eight hours of MPEG-4 video will consume around 500MB of hard disk space, according to D-Link.
As well as for constant surveillance, the Internet Security Cameras can be set up to record at preset intervals and send e-mail alarm messages with video clips to a denoted address whenever they detect motion in an indicated field-of-view. The included software provides the ability to monitor up to 16 cameras simultaneously and the built-in microphone with audio output caters for optional remote broadcasting to a television or speakers. Unfortunately, two-way communication isn't supported, nor is watermarking for authentication purposes.
The DCS-5300W supports the 802.11b Wi-Fi standard and is compatible with both 802.11b and 802.11g wireless networking technologies. Advanced wireless security features include SSID filtering and 64-, 128- and 256-bit WEP encryption to help ensure the security of the wireless transmissions. The DCS-5300 is supplied with a single 10/100Base-T port. A camera mounting stand is supplied with both models.