Amcrest NV4108E-HS 4K 8Ch PoE NVR review – does it have hard drive?

Amcrest NV4108E-HS 4K 8Ch PoE NVR review
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Amcrest NV4108E-HS 4K 8Ch PoE NVR is easy to configure, setup and plug. Scan QR Code on POE NVR from “Amcrest View” app to instantly access live viewing and playback. Connects to and manages all the POE IP cameras on your network directly through their ethernet cables for ultimate ease and convenience in a home security system. Amcrest’s NV4108E-HS 8CH POE NVR supports hard drives up to 6 Terabytes, while Featuring 8CH Recording, Playback & Live View in Up to 8MP/4K Resolution @ Real-Time 30fps. Should you invest on it? Find details in Amcrest NV4108E-HS 4K 8Ch PoE NVR review.

Amcrest NV4108E-HS 4K 8Ch PoE NVR review
Amcrest NV4108E-HS 4K 8Ch PoE NVR review

Pros & Cons

Pros:
Outstanding picture clarity
Real-time preview
Easy to see past recordings
Excellent Customer Support
High quality cameras that can be adjusted to any viewing angle
Easy to preview live on PC, and Monitor connected to NVR

Cons:
Must use IE for computer access (no Chrome or Edge support)
Android App is poor – way too many options and most don’t work. Just show me 2 things: Live preview and Easy to Access Playback!
NVR UI is not user friendly – you have to call support for pretty much everything.

Specs

Model NV4108E-HS
System
Main Processor Quad-core embedded processor
Operating System Embedded LINUX
Audio/Video
IP Camera Input 8 Channels
Two-way Talk 1 Channel Input, 1 Channel Output, RCA
Display
Interface 1 HDMI, 1 VGA
Resolution 3840×2160, 1920×1080, 1280×1024, 1280×720, 1024×768
Decoding Capacity [email protected], 8ch @1080p
Multi-screen Display 1/4/8
OSD Camera title, Time, Camera lock, Motion detection, Recording.
Recording
Compression H.265/H.264
Resolution 8Mp/ 6Mp/ 5MP/ 4MP/ 3MP/ 1080P/ 1.3MP/ 720P/etc.
Playback [email protected], 30fps
Record Rate 80Mbps
Bit Rate 16Kbps ~ 20Mbps Per Channel
Record Mode Manual, Schedule (Regular (Continuous), MD, Stop
Record Interval 1~120 min (default: 60 min), Pre-record: 1~30 sec. Post record:
10~300 sec.

Amcrest NV4108E-HS 4K 8Ch PoE NVR review

Build

The actual hardware seems very nicely built with a solid case and connectors. The box is not that heavy but sturdy.

Ports

This NVR is designed to support 8 POE cameras meaning it has 8 slots to plug in your ethernet cable. It also has a VGA output (to connect to a computer monitor) and HDMI output (connect to a TV). I decided to connect it to a small computer monitor and use MIC OUT to connect the NVR to speakers. Lastly, the unit comes with a small mouse. The mouse is good if you plan on using this unit sporadically but if you think you will use it everyday (business or retail setting) I suggest you get a wireless regular sized mouse. Your palms will thank you.

Installation

Initial h/w setup was pretty straightforward. I used the mouse and attached a monitor for initial config, then switched to the easier-to-use web interface for subsequent administration. The web UI is non-intuitive, but once you get the hang of how things are arranged, it’s not too bad. The schedule programming and camera config pages could really use some redesign, but it has a lot of nice capabilities. 

Setup

Plugged it in and working with 3 different ONVIF cameras almost immediately. Glad we made the decision. POE has excellent long distance power. 250+ feet.

DNS setup

The instructions for the NVR are not the most intuitive and one item is when setting up the NVR it will ask for a Preferred DNS and Alternate DNS. I got stopped here until I found via search to enter 8.8.8.8 for Preferred DNS and 8.8.4.4 for Alternate DNS. I have the Amcrest WiFi cameras already connected to the app and they work fine

24/7 recording

The unit is doing straight 24/7 recording … so, I have no need to see how motion detection works on it. Everything else with HDD/camera setup was pretty straight forward once I got the kinks of the dhcp out of it.

The speed/performance of the NVR is much better than a Reolink RLK8-410B4 system i’m using for my parents. It is just a night and day difference clicking through the mgmt gui locally. Once I setup my cameras to have ONVIF enabled with proper security access, the NVR was able to talk to all of them. If you’re using non-amcrest cameras, make sure ONVIF is enabled and some cameras require a onvif user to be created/enabled.

4K image

This 4K recording allows me to see everything clearly without a blur. I was not accustomed to the 30 FPS with my previous NVR, and this is important to have because it makes the video very smooth and without lag. This NVR has many features that other NVR’s do not have. This unit allows me to remotely view my cameras from anywhere using the Amcrest View app. 

Amcrest app – Amcrest NV4108E-HS 4K 8Ch PoE NVR review

The Amcrest Pro app … NOT a big fan of it. It forces you to always default to a 4 or 8 camera view. And, if you don’t have other cameras plugge din, why is the view showing empty/disabled cameras? Add cameras to view is also a little non-intuitive, you have to select your NVR first then select channels/cameras. The app should be smart enough to just show you any detected cameras without all of this add nonsense. Playback for a camera also needs to be quite a bit of work. Seems to be that you also cannot manage recording retention from the app and it has to be local to the NVR … this makes a bit of sense from a security standpoint but honestly, I don’t want to plug in a monitor to do … especially if it’s an NVR that i will always be remote to.. The full local gui should be available, even if you have to put in another password.

Amcrest NV4108E-HS 4K 8Ch PoE NVR Compatibility review

 I’ve successfully connected Amcrest, Reolink, Foscam, Annke, USG, GW Security, Anran, Trendnet, and a handful of generic IP cameras (to include multiple PTZ cameras). Some cameras took some effort to figure out the connection parameters; but I was able to integrate all of them. The web interface is fully functional without plugins in Safari, Chrome, and Firefox — unlike most other NVRs. And Amcrest also offers a standalone Chrome-based application that you can use instead of a web browser. My only real complaint is that I can’t view more than four cameras simultaneously via a web interface (or the Chrome application) on my Mac or PC. But the NVR will display all eight cameras on the video output (HDMI video output will support [email protected]). And if you have an iPad/iPhone, you can display all 8 cameras at the same time using the Amcrest View Pro app. Just not on my Mac or PC. But overall, that is a minor issue considering the amount of camera compatibility this NVR provides.

Amcrest NV4108E-HS 4K 8Ch PoE NVR Performance review

The Amcrest NV4108E-HS performs very well with the new Amcrest 4K cameras. I appreciated that a complete surface scan of the newly installed disk could be performed after a disk was installed. Amcrest provides free software to view a cluster of live images from a selected group of one or more of the connected cameras. You can zoom into images from any of theses cameras. Also, you can easily select recorded videos from any date and time from among the saved images and view these over a wide range of playback speeds. The software is available for iOS, osX, Windows, and Android devices. I don’t have a 4K display but think that this unit will even provide viewing in 4K resolution. Images appear to be pixel sharp even at 4K.

Editor’s recommendations