Distinguished Testers of Reolink Keen
- Baron Heimbach from Havertown
- Joseph Heenan from Glasgow
- Tom Gray from Woking
- Stuart Wood from Essendon
- Scott Brown from Berlin
- Casey France from Natchez
- Pierre Karadia fromSutton Bridge
- Jane Blue from Murphy
- Mike McPoyle from Harrisburg
- Aaron James from Memphis
- Adam Phillips from Lakewood
- Miles Szkoda from Erie
- Patrick Mexican from Nashua
- Scott Jones from Peoria
- Allen Drennan from San Diego
- Anders(A2) Gerdlind from Norrövägen
- Joshua Lyon from Irving
- James Edwards from Mesa
- Jeff Chism from Lakeland
- Wayne Shieh from Concord
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I find this camera very good for use with pets, children and indoor surveillance. The resolution is decent for a battery powered wifi camera with onboard storage. The 2 way audio feature might make this a great option for a front door bell camera given the external sensor.
- WiFi enabled
- Onboard storage
- decent resolution to pick up details
- 2 way audio
- setup was easy
- included camera and sensor mounts
- packaging was great, camera shipped fine
- Battery life is not good at all
- Batteries in package were nearly dead
- CR123s are not a good choice for this device. Why not use 18650s and include a cheap charger. A CR123 has about 800mah while an 18650 can have 3500mah greatly extending the life of the camera and the standby time.
- Sensor mount was a little weak, I would be hesitant to use it.
- No option for ac power adapter, batteries are the only power option.
Over all I think it is a decent camera however I think changing up the battery source to 18650s and/or adding an AC adapter would make this camera very nice. Additionally support for us in application like BlueIris is necessary to be able to effectively market this camera. Not everyone uses Reolink apps and NVRs.
The camera was delivered in well designed secure packaging and was an indication of a possible quality product.
Once open the camera was very easy to connect to my wifi router, it was not immediately apparent how the sensor was to be used with the camera as no instructions came with the kit, however; once the supplied batteries were installed in camera and sensor the connection was instantaneous, the sensor was super sensitive, the temptation was to put the sensor near an entry point but if you do that then the camera needs to be pointing at that point as once there is a detection the camera instantly takes a picture, I tried this approach and found that having a glass panelled door the camera would close down its shutter to compensate for the light coming through the door and thus producing a very dark unusable picture of people entering the property, once I realised this I moved the camera to cover a full room and placed the sensor in a spot so that a picture would be taken when someone was in view of the camera, that sorted the quality and coverage of the camera was excellent and there was enough rotation of the camera head to suit my room, audio was clear and works two ways but you need to be aware of some lag due to the internet and wifi connection.
The batteries operate the camera very well but the software indication in the app is not accurate and gives incorrect readings of battery levels, in first use the temptation is to keep checking the camera and this runs down the batteries very quickly (in a week in my case) that said if you leave the camera to do it's job of monitoring the area and don't keep looking at it then I got nearly 4 weeks out of a set of batteries, I now use the camera plugged in with a 5v adapter and only insert batteries if I need it temporarily placed in a different area, the power pack also allows me to monitor the camera when I want and it's good for use as a baby monitor too.
The app works well on my iPhone and also my Samsung pad but the best thing for me is that Reolink are one of the few manufacturers who provide MAC OS software, however; I had to manually add the Reolink Keen but it works well once added, as for the phone app I have no issues, it's easy to set up, use and monitor the camera from the phone or pad.
I was in contact with Reolink a number of times to seek advice and also to point out issues I had with the camera, their replies, help and advice were both timely and helpful (can I thank Sarah for her polite and very friendly response, 👏👏).
Would I recommend this camera, the answer has to be yes I would, its small issue of battery life may be sorted out at some point but it would not be a concern for me as it can be used plugged in.
In summary -
Decent indoor camera. I'll probably be buying a couple more for my house, because of the picture quality, wide angle of view and convenience offered by wireless.
Setup was really straightforward, took less than 5 minutes once I had the updated Reolink beta app. Good to see the app prompts to change the camera's default password. Can be set up on a private wifi network that doesn't have internet access.
Picture quality is good - can see a lot of detail. Camera has a wide angle of view so can be put in the corner of the room and can see the whole room. Lack of wires and mounting bracket gives a lot of flexibility to placing the camera.
The motion sensing works well, and good to be able to review recordings.
The camera is made of black plastic; the motion sensor is made of white plastic and probably blends in at home a bit more - it would be good to get the camera in white colour.
It would be helpful if the camera could see down a bit lower - I placed the camera on a high shelf, and it has difficulty seeing low enough to capture activity near the camera.
Per other reviewers, it's really important that I can see the camera through the Reolink desktop app. Only being able to review through phone app is limiting.
Batteries only lasted 30 days, not the 180 days claimed. The battery type used are not commonly available in the shops here - they have to be bought online. It would be great if I could buy rechargeable batteries to use in the camera.
The app indicates that the camera can zoom, but I don't think the hardware is capable. The app should disable the camera zoom buttons.
Thanks very much for your support of our product and taking time to write this review for us.
Currently the Keen only have black color available, we will forward your advice to our product manager for evaluation.
The reason why client software is not supported is mainly because of the battery life, the client software will keep the camera in working mode all the time, as a result, the electricity will run out soon. All the features of the Keen can be managed by the App.
And 180 days claimed is when the camera is in Standby mode completely, for constantly working, the batteries will last 10 hours for day session or 5 hours in night mode.
Zoom is currently not available on the Keen, we will improve that in the App in the future, thanks for your suggestion.
If you have any more advice or feedback on our products, you are welcomed to contact us, we will make our best effort to improve our products.
Packaging and accessories: The camera is supplied in attractive retail packaging. Opening the box, all included items are presented and safely held in individual compartments cut into foam. As well as the camera and PIR, a comprehensive accessory pack is provided that includes 16GB MicroSD card, 5x Panasonic branded CR123 lithium batteries and adjustable wall/ceiling mounts for both the camera and PIR. Drill templates are provided for both mounts along with mounting hardware. Alternatively, the PIR mount can be installed using the 3M branded adhesive pad. Finally, a self-adhesive video surveillance warning sticker is included.
Initial look: The camera is finished in black plastic and feels fairly light weight yet sturdy enough. The pan and tilt head has some play in the drive, but that is common to just about all domestic CCTV products with pan/tilt functionality. The silver band around the waist of the product is a nice touch. Two adjustable antennas are on the back of the device. I assume these are for the Wi-Fi connection, but one could be for the 433MHz PIR link. The PIR is a low-profile unit and has adjustable sensitivity control. It’s not clear if the PIR is coded to the camera, as such using two cameras in close proximity may potentially cause triggering of both cameras by either PIR, or perhaps other 433MHz devices triggering the camera such as wireless doorbells or alarm systems.
First time setup: The first-time setup could have gone better. Battery installation in both camera and PIR was clear and simple. Using the smartphone app (in my case on a Samsung Galaxy S7 smartphone), the setup process was very straight forward following the voice prompts and scanning the 2D barcodes. The whole procedure took just a few minutes and worked first time. Despite the wireless access point being some distance away, the link to the camera appeared very solid. Equally, connecting to the camera via the Swisscom and Sunrise 4G+ networks here in Switzerland worked perfectly first time with no port configuration required on my home cable modem/router.
Application: The app works very well, although I found it odd that some configuration was made directly with the icons on the preview feed (push notifications, Wi-Fi and camera name and login details) yet the remainder of the configuration is made on sub-menus via the maim device settings menu, also linked to from the icons on the preview screen. The quick access to enable push notifications is good though. Alarm setup is simple and effective and the local alarm sound is plenty loud enough. The push notifications are very useful, but I couldn’t easily cancel them on my Galaxy S7. It would be good if they could be cleared by swiping them off the notifications screen as with pop-up notifications from most other applications. It would be nice if the push notifications had an option on them to directly deactivate them or mute them for a set period of time without going into the app. Also, a double back to exit the app without the pop-up confirmation would make things a little smoother, but this is a small ask. ONVIF compliance for use with third party software such as Blue Iris would be very welcome although most users won’t need this, it would be very useful for those with existing CCTV systems.
Video and Audio quality: Despite the small lens, video quality is excellent and with the various configurations available that allow several resolutions, framerates and bitrates, the defaults of which all of which seemed well chosen. During the day, an IR cut filter keeps colours vivid and the image sensor has a good dynamic range. Image is true and sharp with a wide angle. At night, the IR illuminators work very well and are more than adequate to give 10+ meters of coverage. The night-time image remains sharp, something which many budget camera struggle with – Not so with the Keen. Again thanks to the good dynamic range of the sensor, even when objects are close up to the camera with the IR enabled, the subject does not become washed out. The audio quality from the camera, both recorded and the using the 2-way functionality was good. The latter especially so considering the small size of the speakers in the unit.
Pan and tilt: The pan and tilt function is smooth and fast with preset positions being available which is always a welcome feature for quick-scanning several locations (eg: moving between a door and a couple of windows). No optical zoom on the camera but I wouldn’t expect it at this price point.
Recording and playback: Configuration of the record function is very straight forward and searching for recorded videos is simple thanks to the intuitive timeline. On a couple of occasions, the timeline did not load correctly and didn’t show the recorded videos, but exiting and reconnecting fixed this in each case. I’d like to see the ability to automatically push the recordings to a NAS or FTP server. This would make the camera very useful where there is a chance that the unit itself could be stolen along with the memory card inside.
Battery life: Battery life for my supplied camera hasn’t been so good, but I understand there is a firmware update due to correct the calibration for the voltage reading. That said the camera managed a week before going offline with dead batteries. It would be nice to be able to have the option of an external DC power supply (support of 5v USB supply would be excellent) and also the option of using 3.7v Li-Ion rechargeable batteries. Battery life in the PIR should be plenty with the CR123 in there giving a long life.
Summary: Overall I’m impressed with the camera. With a few small tweaks to the app, fix of the battery issue and ability to push recordings off-site it could be really good. It represents a very good system and stands up well against its peers from the likes of Netgear and such. Support from Reolink has also been exemplary.
Thanks very much for taking time to write such a detailed review for the Keen, we really appreciate it.
Currently the Keen only supports Reolink App, the main reason why it does not support computer software is because of considering the battery life.
The electricity of the batteries shown on the App now is not very correct, we will update the firmware to solve this issue.
And we feel honored that you are satisfied with our support, it’s our duty to provide good support to our customer.
Any suggestion or further help, please feel free to contact us, we will be very glad to help.
Have a nice day!
Having owned a series of other Reolink products, expectations were high from the outset. Expectations vs reality weren’t far short; I was quite impressed by the fact that Keen can confidently emulate most of the functionality of a conventional wired CCTV camera, but without the wires. That’s right – none at all, although the option to have a Micro USB supply would be favourable.
SETUP – The initial configuration process was very quick and simple indeed. It was just a matter of scanning the QR code on the back of the camera, entering the Wi-Fi credentials and then pointing another QR code (on my phone’s screen) towards the Keen. I feel that the voice prompts from the camera were a significant contributor to the streamlined setup. The vocals are loud, clear and easy to understand. There is also a Micro SD card included, which means you can start recording right away.
In terms of connectivity, Keen works well in all areas of the house; a credit which can be attributed to the dual antennas. However, I understand that this is subjective to individual circumstances – some may intend to use it in buildings of various sizes. But for your average-sized house, it’s faultless. The situation of these antennas also does not impact the aesthetic of the camera whatsoever.
It’s sleek. Really sleek. I’m glad it’s not white like most of Reolink’s other products – I could imagine a white product losing its visual flair, since it could start to appear dirty after being frequently handled. Its dark colour also makes it quite inconspicuous – it doesn’t catch your attention from afar. That’s good thing from my point-of-view, because it can be discreetly placed.
The two-way audio intercom makes it ideal for use as an intelligent baby (or pet) monitor, and its portability makes it easy to move from room-to-room, which is especially useful for this application. Audio transmission can capably facilitate a crystal-clear dialogue, even when the interlocutor is not immediately close to the camera.
It’s robust and somewhat weighty, but weighty in a good way. It’s not too heavy that it becomes an inconvenience, but it has a reasonable weight which denotes robustness and quality. It doesn’t feel cheap and empty like some other similar competing (non-Reolink) products do.
GENERAL FUNCTIONALITY OF APPS
As for the companion applications, these are reliable and functional. I have tried the mobile app and Mac OS X client and found both to work well, despite crashing once or twice with Keen (never crashed while using with my existing Reolink cameras). I did liaise with customer service on one occasion to provide feedback on a trivial shortfall of the software (the DNS providers being only available in Chinese language). Much to my amazement, my feedback was implemented quickly. While dealing with customer service, responses were quick and informed.
FORCED PASSWORD CHANGE
It’s really reassuring to see that Reolink takes security seriously by forcing the user to create their own password of a specific length. With IOT devices being a lucrative and vulnerable target for hackers, it’s really great that Reolink does not allow the default password to be used after setup, especially for those who are less technologically astute and don’t understand the implications of doing so. This makes me more confident to use Reolink products over others.
ZOOM AND FOCUS – Zoom and focus also did not work on the Android app. I didn’t actually need to focus the camera for any reason, I just thought I’d point out that it didn’t work, in case the need arose. Zooming, however, is something I’d definitely like to see addressed.
BACK BUTTON IN APP
While not an issue specific to Keen, it would be nice to be able to use the back button on my phone to go back to the previous menu in the app. When I use the button on my phone, it says ‘are you sure you want to quit?’ – I don’t want to quit, I just want to go back!
NO BROWSER APP
I did liaise with Reolink last year to express my desire for a browser-based web application for viewing footage and tweaking various aspects of the settings. My request was actually pertinent to using the RLC-423 and RLC-411 in conjunction with an NVR; but it’s a little disappointing to discover that this little gem still doesn’t have a web interface. However, it’s perfectly possible to use the PC, Mac, mobile apps to view footage. It would be nice, however, to be able to view footage from computers where it’s not possible to install the viewing software, e.g. at work. I did navigate to the device’s internal IP address on my network, and there did seem to be a network-related control panel of some description, but it seemed like some sort of internal interface rather than a Reolink-branded, purpose-specific application intended for consumer use. This control panel did not appear to have any functionality to view the stream.
One of my initial apprehensions before actually testing the product was whether I’d be changing the batteries too often. A after using the device for just 56 minutes, the battery level was showing 33% in the app. I’m not sure if this is a glitch, or the battery power is actually depleting so quickly. It would be nice if the batteries included were rechargeable, or even better, if the camera had a self-contained lithium battery which could be charged through a Micro USB port to save keep purchasing batteries. This would be particularly preferable so that the camera could be left on mains power when portability isn’t necessary. I know the product’s USP is that it’s completely standalone, but having the option for Micro USB power would certainly be welcomed. Also, while this may not be the case elsewhere in the world, the CR123A batteries aren’t too easy to source in the UK, at least in mainstream retail stores and supermarkets. It’s still possible to acquire them from online or from electrical stores however. Perhaps you’d consider changing the product to use a different, less specialist battery? Also, I did notice an error on the ‘contents’ section of the Reolink Keen page on Reolink.com – the contents states the inclusion of five batteries, when in actual fact the Keen needs only four batteries (and only includes four). Also, it would be a welcomed improvement to make the battery level more conspicuous in the mobile app – for example showing it on the main screen, as opposed to situating it deep in the settings menu.BATTERY DOOR – A trivial gripe, but it’s really difficult to replace.
This would give the product a significant advantage to other rival cameras.
Hello Joel Cieslar,
Thanks very much for taking time to write such a detailed review for the Keen. And we are so glad to know that you like it.
As to other feathers, currently the Keen only supports Pan/tilt, zoom and auto focus is not supported, we will improve the App in the feature, if zoom is not supported, we will not show that option on the interface.
The Keen only supports Reolink App, currently Client software or web browser is not supported, the main reason why it does not support computer software is because of the battery life, but all the features of the camera can be managed by the App.
As to the battery life, camera will last 180 days in Standby mode, for constantly working, the it will last 10 hours for day session or 5 hours in night mode, if your batteries drained too quickly and did not reach the time we claimed, please kindly contact our support, they will be very glad to help.
The 5 batteries we have in the package, 4 of them is for the camera, and the other 1 is for the PIR sensor.
As a wire-free camera, currently the camera does not support to be powered by a power adapter, and we provide lithium CR123A batteries by default, you may purchase some rechargeable batteries in future use.
Thanks again for sharing your experience with the Keen, hope you will have a good time with it.
I wanted to update my post of February 2nd.
The upgraded iPhone app is working perfectly, even on T-Mobile data, which was having some issues previously. Video is clear with no artifacting, halting or interruption. I purchased some rechargeable batteries from Amazon with a charger but have not had to use them yet because the original batteries are lasting so far with several camera activations per day.
We are so grateful for your feedback and feel honored to know you are satisfied with it. Your words of encouragement and your assessment of our services and products make us deeply proud of what we are doing, we will keep working and improve our product to match our customers need.
Have nice day!
I thought that I would have the option to add a reply to my previous post but I was unable to see a way to edit or add to my previous review.
Initially when I received the camera I was unable to add the camera to the mobile app on both IOS (latest version iPhone 6s) and with Android (latest version Nexus 5x). I had uninstalled the mobile app multiple times and re-installed with no luck. I reset the camera each time I was unable to connect to make sure that I was not doing something wrong.
I worked with Carl in support for about 2 weeks and we found that there was an issue with the UID that was causing me to not be able to connect to the camera. Reolinks engineering department found that the issue was this particular camera had the incorrect UID and it was not registering on the servers. Once they found that issue out the process of getting the camera reset with the correct UID was fairly quick and easy. I had to reset the camera to the point where it asked you to scan the QR code for the wifi settings and instead of scanning my phone for those settings they sent me a QR code that would reset/correct the UID. Once the camera rebooted I was able to add it to the mobile app on the first try which was really nice to see. During our testing Carl had me connect to my other Reolink cameras as well so we knew it wasn't an issue with the mobile app or my devices.
For the camera itself it is very compact and the build feels great for an indoor camera. I have 3 of the RLC-410s and those have been working great for over a year now and I have had no issues with those and I expect to have no other issues with the Keen either. The camera does take 4 CR123a batteries and the included batteries are non-recharable as well as 3 volts and not 3.7 volts like I have been seeing with some other CR123a batteries
The mobile app connects very quickly over wifi, Tmobile 4g, and Verizon 4g and with the most recent update it goes directly to the camera, which is nice due to saving a step when you want to quickly check on the camera.
The ptz controls had a slight lag to them but it is not that noticeable once the camera gets moving and there are arrows that display on the screen so you can see where the camera is going. I was not able to get the PTZ presets to work, but that may not be something that is supported with this camera or might be in a future firmware release.
I tested the IR Leds in a pitch black scenario and I was very pleased with the image quality that I was getting with the IR Leds enabled since I was able to see everything very clearly including people walking in that area. I disabled them to extend the battery life and there appears to be an IR cut filter on the camera so even without the IR LEDs you still get decent quality video in low light situations.
I did mute the audio through the settings in the mobile app since this camera is extremely loud when the external motion sensor triggers. The audio is nice, but it is loud as I can hear it all the way at the other end of my house. I could see this being very useful on a front door when you know that no one should be coming through that door at a certain time of day/night to get an audio alert through the speakers or the camera and through the mobile app.
The PIR sensor takes a single CR123a battery and I expect that battery to last a very long time since the PIR sensor should be a low power consumption device. I had to lower the sensitivity settings on the dip switches on the back to prevent false positives but overall there is not much to say about the sensor other than it works well and has a wide field of view. This would be more of a feature request but it would be nice to have presets on the camera configured for different zones of where the PIR sensor first detects movement. That way the camera would be fully automated in recording video for points of interest based on the PIR sensor readings.
As others have mentioned the battery percentage remaining is not accurate at this time. In my case I started with 33% and it gradually rose to 65% before coming back down. I have had the camera now running for a week and check the camera a few times a day to verify the battery percentage and to review some random video footage to make sure it was recording. The video playback does not have a lot of noticable lag on it when trying to review video. It would be nice to have a feature on the mobile app where you could see a screenshot of the video prior to watching through the entire clip to see if there was something of interest.
Can be placed anywhere indoors
Can be used for baby monitors, talking to pets while away, or other various non security specific tasks
Everything that is needed to get up and running quickly is there
IR LEDs (definite pro in my opinion for night time video)
PIR sensor to detect any motion (makes configuring the camera easier so that you don't have to set up motion zones and schedules)
Mobile app configuration is quick and easy
Mobile app is fast to connect to the camera
Battery powered - batteries die and I am not sure if 3.7v CR123a batteries will work or if that is to much voltage
No 5ghz band compatiblity due to the SimpleLink C33xxx TI chip that handles wifi
No PTZ Presets
No hardware zoom
Not compatible with the desktop app
Not Onvif compliant
Overall this camera is great and easy to use ad there are more pros then cons with this camera. Reolink did a great job with the app and made it very intuitive to use. There is a hidden feature in the mobile app for a Digital zoom when you are viewing the Keen and you can use "pinch to zoom" to zoom in on an area of interest. This is a digital zoom of the image that is on the screen but it actually works out pretty well if you don't zoom in to far. I would definitely use another one of these cameras and this camera has gotten me interested in the C2 series camera.
Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to share your opinion with other community members, we are sorry for the trouble caused in the first place, but very glad to know it has been resolved and now works fine.
Currently the Keen only supports Pan/tilt, Zoom or Preset is not supported, the interface will show the options, but it will not function, we will improve the App in the feature, we will not show that option if not supported.
And now the Keen only supports 2.4GHz, due to the hardware limit, 5GHz is not a supported feature.
The Keen only supports Reolink App, Client software or a third part client software such as Blue Iris is not supported, the main reason why it does not support computer software is because of the battery life, but all the features of the camera can be managed by the App.
In addition, 3.7V CR123a batteries will work with the Keen.
I have many Reolink devices and so far have not had one that has not meet my expectations. Keen is no exception to that. It is a great camera that allows you to quickly place the camera anywhere in your home without haveing to worry about wires or electrical plugs. The camera was super easy to setup. You simply insert the batteries and it uses voice prompts to guide you through the setup process. At first, I was uncertain about the external motion sensor and pairing it with the camera. There were no steps necessary to pair it. It came paired from the factory. I had my camera up and running in about 10 minutes. That was with unboxing and, putting the batteries in, etc.
The first night I was testing the camera my wife and I were babysitting for a colleague. I used the camera as a baby monitor. It was so nice to be able to monitor him from my phone. The night vision worked like a charm. The picture was clear, and you could easily see what was happening in a pitch black room. This first night I watched the camera for around 2 hours straight. Using the camera non-stop for that length of time put a significant dent in the battery life. While this is a nice application for the camera, I would not recommend this as a permanent solution as a baby monitor.
I have contacted Reolink support multiple times throughout my testing experience. They have been very helpful and always responded promptly. One of the questions I had was that the batteries seem to show as over half dead within 12 hours of putting in new batteries. They said this is a bug that they are working on and should be resolved in the firmware update they are working on.
I also asked them about rechargeable batteries for the camera. They said as of this time they have not tested rechargeable batteries in the camera and could not recommend any. I hope to see them either provide a recommendation for rechargeable batteries or offer some of their own. Since I have had the camera around 13 days, I have had to change the batteries twice now. So I am on my third set of batteries. They tend to last me around 5-6 days. I rarely connect to the camera more than 1-2 times per day. The time I am connected is usually less than 5 minutes. The camera is in a high traffic room, so it does record often throughout the day and evening. The cost of keeping batteries in the camera is rather prohibitive to its use in a high traffic area without rechargeable batteries or setting the camera to only record during certain times of the day. Limiting the recording time does not work well for my household as my wife does not work regular hours and I would have to keep updating the schedule every day.
The camera does have an alarm which can be turned on or off. The alarm is a nice feature, especially if you don't have any other security features in your home.
Overall this is an excellent camera with many great features. I the ability to us the PTZ. It allows me to use one camera to easily view multiple rooms in my home.
- Completely wireless
- Easy setup
- External Motion Sensor
- Works over 3G/LTE
- High-quality image 1080P at 15fps
- Low battery indicator so your camera doesn't die unexpectantly
- Battery life is a bit short
- A bug related to battery life. However, it is expected to be resolved soon.
We are thrilled that Keen has lived up to your expectations again.
After reading your review, we found it very helpful to other users of ours. Also, you wrote a lot about the battery life. It is not hard to understand how much our dear customers pay attention to this issue as Keen is a battery-based IP cam. And you are right that when placed somewhere there are lot of crowds/traffic may frequently activate the camera and make it record constantly. So it may consume energy more fast. In your case, we would recommend you to take good use of the Micro-USB port. To connect an adapter to it you will have no worry of battery running out any more. But for usual cases, Keen is kind of a camera that you put at your home. And when you are not home, it guards your house reliably. And you can check battery level on Reolink App so yo have a grasp of what is the status now.
So far we are working on improving it to make it a better camera for your favor. And we would so much like to see more feedback so we can do better.
Thank you again for sharing.
Reolink Keen Review
Let me start by saying that I am a user of Reolink products and have had nothing but great results with them. They are the best bang for the buck in my opinion. I currenlty have both external cameras for my home as well as an internal camera remotely to keep an eye on my parents. I don’t use the Reolink NVR, but my own NAS for recording video from my exterior cameras. Needless to say, I was very happy to be selected to beta test the new Reolink Keen security camera. I received the Keen about 12 days ago and have been testing it out ever since. The camera was securely packaged to prevent damage. The device is similar to the C1 camera, but is only wireless and runs off of lithium batteries or external power via a USB Micro-B cable. The camera came with the standard mount that the C1 or C2 provide for mounting to a wall. In addition to the camera and mount, there is also an IR motion detector that allows motion to trigger the camera into recording once motion is detected. It comes with a self-adhesive sticker to mount it to your wall. Setting up the camera was very easy, and also different from my other Reolink devices. Once you download the mobile app, which I already had, you just need to scan the barcode of the camera to start the process. Voice prompts will walk you through the setup. After that you need to show the camera the barcode from your phone by holding it in front of the lens. After that, the camera was setup and ready to use on the mobile app. I inserted the motion sensor batteries and it immediately synced up and started to record events based on motion (more of this later). I positioned the camera in my living room and began programming the settings via the mobile application. Recordings are saved to a 16GB Micro SD card that comes with it. Setting the options is easy via the interface in the mobile app. I can view all my original cameras, my parent’s camera, and this one as well within the mobile app.
The camera has great video quality, very crisp. Frame rates are fine, initially set to 5 and going up to 15 FPS. I did have some issues with bright light from my front window that made it hard to see things. I am using the batteries alone for testing purposes, the battery life seems to be holding well under some major testing. As of now I am at 59% after testing and moderate use during the week. PTZ movement is smooth and does not make a lot of noise compared to my C1 camera. The two way audio also is great. I use this to talk to my son in the morning before school making sure he is ready. There is a slight delay at times but I believe that is inherent in all types of two way audio devices. As with all Reolink devices with on-board storage, you can set the device to email you a picture or short video clip if it detects motion, which worked well but could not get it to keep a 5 minute window between detection emails. This caused numerous emails to me when motion triggered an event. I had no issues viewing this over a cellular 4G/LTE connection. I am a T-Mobile user and there was some talk about issues with this carrier, but I did not experience any.
Recording of images and video is stored on the SD card, which is in the camera, which could be taken if an intruder saw the camera. Emails of activity was instant for me, but still would make me nervous. FTP or NVR support would be a great addition when triggered by motion. As for external power, the USB power port is inside of the battery compartment door, so if I wanted to power this directly, I would lose the battery functionality. I did not test with USB power, this is just an observation as I would not be able to close the battery door. Zooming in on an image is done pinching the screen, not the PTZ control which I am accustomed to. No Ethernet port available. You may not need Ethernet but it is always good to wire it up if you have a port available. PTZ presets are not an option with this camera. I use them with my C1 and would be great if they had that ability also.
These are really my wishes as the product works as it is intended to, but as a consumer of their products, I am accustomed to a certain setup. Biggest one for me is that it only works with the mobile app. I like to use the desktop app at home and in work instead of my phone when monitoring my house or parents’ home. At this time, it is only viewable via the mobile app per technical support. It would be great to allow the UID to be entered into their desktop app. In addition to that, I could not connect to my NAS recorder and am assuming that it is due to the camera only being able to be viewed from the app itself. It does make sense for this as it would chew through batteries if not plugged into an external power source since it would be transmitting video all the time. I wish the MAC address was listed on the product so I could pre stage an IP address for it, I use all reserved DHCP for all my network devices so I can keep the same IP.
If you use this camera as it is intended, then it is a great security product in general and the physical motion sensor only adds to its functionality. The quality is top notch in my opinion as all Reolink products. The setup and interface is very easy to become familiar with, even for a non–technical person. For my use, I tested it just as it is intended, a battery operated indoor security camera, but would like to see the features of the C1 and C2 available on this to make it more multi-functional and knowing Reolink, they will take this review seriously. I would buy this camera for a security device if not in the market for doing NVR recording.
Thank you for your explicit comment on Keen. We really appreciate your efforts and generosity.
We are glad that you also find it easy to setup and use. The slight delay in two-way audio may have something to do with connection. Make sure your connection is good and it will help eliminate the delay. We will keep working on this as real-time audio is always what we pursue and work for.
As you mentioned, the MAC address is actually there for your reference. It is under “Device Settings” >> “Information” so will still be able to reserve IP for Keen on your router.
Also you can use the micro-USB port for power if you are in real need, for example you have run out of batteries and are in need of its keeping monitoring for you.
Keen may not be perfect (zoom/Ethernet port/preset function, etc.) but we are glad that you like it. We will always treasure your review and suggestions as they help us improve.
Hope you can keep testing and keep us posted when you have new findings.
I received my Keen camera on January 27th. This is my first (and probably not last) Reolink product. I couldn’t wait to set the camera up. The setup process is really easy and Reolink did a great job with that. The camera was ready in a few minutes and I just popped it in the place I wanted – really cool. I decided to test it in the front hall in my house. I put the motion sensor on the wall, pulled the activation tab and it just worked! Nothing to worry about.
I have the alarm schedule enabled and I have set up periods of time for each day when the family is not at home.
The alarm timetable settings are a bit challenging. I would add numbers of hours on every little square in the grid.
Viewing over LTE/4G on T-Mobile (CZ) works like a charm.
Some people say that is easy to blind a camera with a strong flashlight in the dark. I tried to blind it with a very strong flashlight - no luck. 2MP resolution is good enough to get a clear image of a face or a person indoors. The scene metering does a really decent job. The audio is great, but I was able to hear a little hum when I turned the volume a little bit louder (but lots of other cameras do the same thing)(EDIT: Looks like something fixed the issue).
Night vision video is super clear and the camera is automatically adjusting the intensity when objects get closer to it.
1)Superb night vision capabilities and great video quality overall
2)The PTZ motor is totally silent
3)It takes very short time to turn the camera on and start recording after the PIR detects motion
4)The antennas have a good reception and I was able to move the camera around my house without any issues
5)The speaker is very loud.
6)I was able to view over 4G/LTE
7)16GB of memory built-in
8)Ultimate setup process
1)The battery compartment door is quite challenging to close, although it looks durable enough not to get broken easily.
2)When I tilt the lens all the way down, I can see that the camera base is blocking the field of view.
3)The alarm timetable setting is quite difficult to set up because you need to count the „squares“ in order to set the correct time range.
4)No way to supply power to the camera from the wall. I understand that Reolink wants the camera to be 100% Wire-Free, but I think this would be a nice option for the user.
5)The battery indicator is acting a bit weird. After the setup, it was showing 99%. A few days later it showed something around 30%. Now it displays 55%.
1)I would add a button to the app to override the existing alarm settings. I mean, when you press „ARM THE CAMERA“ (or something like this), the device will be listening for the motion alerts from the sensor all the time, until you click something like „DISARM THE CAMERA“ in order to turn it off again.
2)IFTTT integration would be awesome!
Few ideas about the possible applets:
IF motion detected, then flash the HUE lights rapidly.
IF the batteries go low, set a reminder to buy new ones...
3)FTP cloud backup would be a great feature (but it consumes battery)
4)It would be a great idea to add an image of what is happening into the push notifications.
5)I would add an option to take a full-res snapshot with no need to switch the stream quality.
6) When the camera is running out of juice, send a notification to the app
The camera has a really huge potential. Except for little things that could be smoothed on the software side, this is an ultimate device for people who don’t want to worry about ‚any kind of technical stuff‘. At first, I was a bit skeptical about the battery life, because these batteries are really expensive in my country, but it looks like these batteries have enough capacity. And I hope the preset feature will be ready soon.
I will edit this review when I find something to share with you.
So you already tested for almost two weeks! Think you must have a comprehensive opinion over Keen. Thank you a lot for sharing with all of us here.
For some issues mentioned in your post:
We will pay close attention to the battery compartment door;
After we release an update that fix the bug of wrong battery metering, you’ll have accurate battery info;
IFTTT integration is not yet on the project;
FTP uploading (think you should want it to be done as scheduled) can consume more energy. But an easier way would be that you take out the SD and insert into a SD reader to have it backup.
For other suggestions you raised, we will value and evaluate them carefully and try our best to make it better product for our dear customers.