Set up an affordable, effective home monitoring system

A home monitoring system need not be expensive or difficult to set up. A few hundred dollars and some of your time is a small price to pay for safety and peace of mind. With the right products, setup requires only a few pieces of equipment and few or no tools: Just place a few cameras on a shelf or bookcase (or attach them to a wall or ceiling) and plug them in to wall power. Connect them to a home network and step through the setup wizard, and you’re ready to go.

DCS-930L
D-Link’s DCS-930L and DCS-932L fit the bill: They’re unobtrusive and easy to place on a shelf or hang from a wall or ceiling. They communicate via Wi-Fi, so they connect to a home computer network automatically without the need to run cables throughout the house, and plug-and-play setup ensures fast, foolproof configuration. Finally, they’re affordable, so you can cover a wide area without breaking the bank.

Networked cameras are different from webcams because they operate independently of a computer. They’re always shooting, but you don’t download individual pictures from an onboard memory card. Instead, you can access a live stream of video and audio from each camera via the Internet or 3G, using a computer or smartphone.

With your cameras mounted and positioned, it’s time to figure out how to send video streams from the cameras to the Internet. That’s where your existing computer network comes in. A home network based on the latest Wireless N standard is the best option, since live video requires a good deal of bandwidth, and the newest routers offer enhanced performance and range. If you need a new router to support your camera network, the D-Link DIR-655 is a solid choice, offering exceptional performance and range affordably.

DIR-655

Finally, you’ll want to check out the live streams. There’s no need to install software. The DCS-930L and DCS-932L support the mydlink Web portal, which lets you access your video feed from any browser, and the mydlink app, which lets you view it from an iPhone, iPad, or Android device. If you need more advanced features, such as the ability to record video on a schedule, archive it to a storage device, or set up motion detection triggers, the included DViewCam software offers those capabilities and more.

With the D-Link’s wireless network cameras, it doesn’t take a lot of effort or money to set up a home video monitoring system. The reward — enhanced security and peace of mind — is priceless.

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