Deep in the Inspect-a-Gadget lab, our elves don’t always get out and see the light of day that much; they’re quiet reflective characters who sometimes prefer the dim light of the backlit keyboard to any form of more natural solar radiation and sunlight.
This introspectiveness leads the elves to have an unusually strong predeliction for webcams, video doorbells, home monitoring systems, bodycams and all manner of Internet of Things (IoT) devices that sport a camera lens.
During UK Covid-19 lockdown #2, the nice people at D-Link took pity on our elves and sent them its Full HD Outdoor Wi‑Fi Spotlight Camera, snappily named the DCS‑8627LH as it is.
Not quite as ‘almost fisheye’ lens as a Ring, this product has a nice 150° wide-angle lens with full HD 1080 pixels at 30 frames per second. There’s a 400-lumen spotlight for colour night vision and AI-based detection that will pick up a person, glass-breaking, motion & sound.
The D-Link Wi-Fi Spotlight Camera has an IP65 weatherproof housing, but the installation advice does recommend that you install it ‘under the eaves’ of the building you live in.
IP65 equates to: capable of withstanding water jets at water volume of 12.5 litres per minute — so that’s rain & moisture, not full water submersion, which is fine, unless you live on a submarine… where, to be fair, front door security is unlikely to be one of your main daily concerns.
“The camera carries IP65 rating as there are openings on the bottom of the camera: a covered slot for the SD card and a series of holes for the ‘loudspeaker’, the location of these opening is to ensure that the camera can cope with rain which usually does come from above (although we do get a a spot of horizontal rain where I live!), but it definitely should not be submerged,” explained Paul Routledge, D-Link country manager, UK and Ireland (UKI).
Based on the IP-65 rating the camera will function without issue when mounted on a wall or tree or fence post as long as it is correctly orientated.
One caveat with this product is that it’s cable-powered to your mains, which is great for not having to worry about battery life, but it does mean you’ll need a way of trailing a cable outside.
There’s two-way audio (so you can speak to it and listen for replies) and a quite piercing 100 dB siren, just in case you really want to put the willies up your postman or the next round of Jehova’s witnesses who come calling.
Mr (or Mrs) Dinky
The mobile app is simple to install (we used the Android version) and you get to name your device when you install it. We challenge you not to call it Dinky, Mr Dinky or Mrs Dinky in honour of D-Link. The app provides live video view and there’s also a free mydlink™ cloud recording service and microSD card slot. Users can also log in online via a browser and view their camera and use all of its functions from https://www.mydlink.com/
The device also has a a wide operating temperature between -25°C and 45°C, very useful if you have recently moved from Greenland to Saudi Arabia and want to use the same home security camera after moving house.
According to D-Link, this device has, “Integrated AI-Based Motion and Sound Detection AI-based motion and sound detection processes information in real-time, intelligently distinguishing between human and non-human moving objects.”
A Passive InfraRed (PIR) sensor further enhances the accuracy of motion detection, which reduces false alarms.
The integrated microSD card slot and optional free/paid mydlink cloud subscription allows you to store videos and snapshots locally or remotely to your personal cloud storage. You can even playback and download recorded videos from anywhere in the world on your smartphone or tablet.
With the built-in microphone and speaker, you can talk to family members while viewing them on your screen