Hidden home security cameras are an integral part of any home security system (or smart home). These hidden security cameras are great because they give you the ability to keep an eye on your babysitter, nanny, or kids when you are away and they can help deter criminals.
A security camera is best installed in an inconspicuous space, so it blends into it's surroundings. The last thing you want, is a thief to know they're being recorded. If that happened, they may figure out a way to disable the cameras and possibly get away with their crime.
Features Look for in Hidden Security Cameras
- Video Quality
Many cameras nowadays are in 720p, 1080p, 1440p and better. Honestly, 720p is acceptable for most modern home security systems. A good 720p camera can see most everything and record small enough files that your DVR or computer don't get overloaded too quickly.
I suggest sticking to the big brands in hidden home security cameras: Foscam, Armcrest, Nest, Zosi, ect. Don't buy cheap off name brand cameras, because they will likely not last.
- Wifi or POE
Wifi cameras are easier to set up because they only need a power cord ran, so if they're close to an outlet, it could be a real simple set up. Power over ethernet cameras only require one cables as well (an ethernet cable), however, you have to run that back to a switch or router, which can be a pain. That being said, POE cameras tend to be much more reliable, because they're not relying on a wifi signal. Choosing which to use in your home will depend on your layout.
- Motion Detection
Recording an empty room is usually unnecessary. That's why motion detection is an important feature to have. Basically, it ensures the camera only begins taping when movement is detected by the device.
Unfortunately, motion sensitivity on a camera isn't perfect, because, unlike a normal motion sensor, light changes can be seen as motion. That being said, it is still a nice feature to have.
If a camera doesn't feature motion detection, you can alternatively just use a program (like Blue Iris) to enable that feature.
- Time Scheduled Recording
Time scheduled recording is not among the most common features of found in hidden home security cameras, but it comes with some models and some programs. Time scheduled recording is very useful if you want to record a particular area at the same time, every day. The device would still record even if there was not any movement detected.
If you wanted to get complicated, you could even enable motion detection at a certain time each day. Then, if motion was detected at that time of the day, it would record. If motion was detected at other times, it wouldn't.
- Audio Recording
If you want to listen to your recordings, be certain the camera you purchase can record audio as well. While most devices come standard with microphones, certain lower end models may not. In addition to that, some models come with very low end microphones making them near impossible to use. It is always recommended that you read reviews and/or ask questions about a camera, prior to purchase.
- Still Images
Virtually all hidden home security cameras are able to take still images. However, if you are looking to record a combination of still images and video, be certain to check the model specifications/features prior to purchasing.
More often than not, this is a software setting, not hardware related.
- Dual Functionality
Now, I want to preface this bullet point saying this isn't necessary whatsoever, but if you want to your security cameras to be hidden, then dual functionality may be important to you.
If you have researched hidden cameras, you may have noticed some cameras come in the form of a daily household/office product. For instance, some nanny cameras are available that look like a toy teddy bear, doll, wall clocks or other common bedroom and household items. For the office you may find hidden cameras in the form of ballpoint pens, pencil sharpeners and even coat hooks. Dual functionality is the ability of an item to not only function as a hidden home security camera but also as its’ original purpose (e.g., wall clock). Again, not necessary, but it's an option.
How to Set up Security Cameras So They're Hidden
First, set up your hidden camera in a way that it has a direct line of sight of whatever you want recorded. The best way to do this is by hooking the camera up to your network, then viewing what it views on your home with an app.
Next, consider the sound quality. If you want to record crisp and clear sound, you need to put your camera in a place that it can "hear" what's going on (eg. Don't place the microphone behind an object).
Third, ensure it has enough space to run a power cord or ethernet cable. You definitely don't want to mount a camera only to find out your cable isn't long enough.
After that, connect your camera to a network (if applicable). Some security cameras have internal storage, while other cameras record via wifi or ethernet.
Fifth, check if your eyes are naturally drawn to the spot where you'll mount the cameras. Certain layouts and items attract attention. Avoid any such areas where someone is likely to look at quite often. After all you want hidden home security cameras, not blatantly obvious ones.
Next, ensure you protect your camera from any elements. If you plan to mount a camera outdoors, make certain your camera is weather resistant and positioned in a way ensure it doesn't get damaged. It is recommended you purchase a camera that is specifically designed for outdoor use if that's where you want it.
Some of Our Favorite Security Cameras
Foscam R2B 1080P Pan And Tilt Wireless Camera
- 110° wide viewing angle
- Pan and tilt operation, so you can see virtually everything.
- Night vision up to 26ft with WDR which automatically lightens faces that are too dark to see.
- High quality microphone for crystal clear recordings.
Amcrest IP2M-841 ProHD 1080P (1920TVL)
- 90° viewing angle
- Pan and tilt operation, so you can easily adjust the camera
- Night vision up to 32ft
- 10ft power supply, so you can put this camera a ways from an outlet.
Arlo Smart Home Security Cameras
- 100% wire free. These are completely wireless, because they are battery operated.
- Wide fish eye viewing angle
- Weatherproof - designed to be used both indoor and outdoor.
- 720p HD recordings.
Nest Cam Security Camera
- Very small, easily concealable design
- 1080p recordings
- Easy set up
When you look at the different types of hidden home security cameras, you'll realize they're available in many different shapes and sizes. In order to make certain you are making the right selection; before purchasing them, identify the locations in your home that you would preferably want to install your hidden security cameras. That way, you ensure, you're buying the correct ones.
Ideas on Where to Hide Security Cameras
In order to make sure you are utilizing your security cameras to their maximum potential, you'll want to put thought into where you want to put these cameras, prior to purchasing. Here are a couple of placement options to spark some ideas:
Curtain rods: Curtain rods are above everybody’s field of vision. Most of the people don’t pay much attention to them, so you could easily hide a camera near them.
Television: If you have a large entertainment center with lots of equipment, a camera could easily go unnoticed there.
Light Fixtures: Light fixtures are a good option, if you know how to splice power cords, because they offer an inconspicuous location and easy power access.
Hidden home security cameras are available in various shapes, sizes, and prices and enable you to monitor and protect your smart home easily. These security devices enable you to safeguard what matters most to you. They give you the peace of mind to know your home and family are safe, even when on the go.
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