SimpliSafe 9 piece wireless home security system w/hd camera review

SimpliSafe 9 piece wireless home security system w/hd camera review
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SimpliSafe is for homes of all sizes and is built with unprecedented safeguards to keep your home protected against power outages, downed Wi-Fi, cut landlines, and physical attacks from hammers, bats, and more. . includes Base Station with built-in 95dB siren, 4 Entry sensors, 2 Motion sensors, SimpliCam, Yard sign, Window security stickers and a Free month of monitoring. The SimpliCam security camera lets you see what’s happening at home anytime from your phone, tablet or computer and comes with a built-in stainless steel shutter for complete control over privacy. Reveal more in SimpliSafe 9 piece wireless home security system w/hd camera review.

SimpliSafe is not for you if…

You run a large commercial property such as a shopping mall—you would probably benefit from a system that has CCTV or security guards, in which case you should probably go to one of the traditional contract security companies—and keep in mind the things we’ve warned you about.

You have a HUGE home: If your home is larger than 20,000 square feet (about the size of a football field)—or if it has more than 50 windows on the first floor—you would probably benefit from a system that can handle a huge number of sensors. Our advice would be to go to a traditional contract security company —and keep in mind the things we’ve warned you about.

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Is any Subscription plan – SimpliSafe 9 piece wireless home security system w/hd camera

If you opt for the $14.99 plan, you can use the online dashboard to see your timeline of system events, but you can’t control the system remotely. For $10 more per month, the Interactive plan adds SMS and email alerts, the ability to use the Online Dashboard for finer control of the system (more on that in a minute), and the app to arm and disarm the system. For professional monitoring, there’s a basic $14.99 per month Standard plan that includes 24/7 coverage. If a sensor is triggered, SimpliSafe will contact you, and if you don’t provide a safe word that you designate during setup, police will be dispatched.

SimpliSafe 9 piece wireless home security system w/hd camera review

Design

The biggest upgrade that comes with the new SimpliSafe is the design of the system hardware. Every component has been redesigned. And the new components are not backward-compatible with the original SimpliSafe system. Where the old system looked and felt cheap and plasticky, the new hardware is sleek and modern.

Base

It’s much sleeker and smaller than the original base, which looked like it was designed in the 1970s. And now the base station comes in black (Obsidian) or white (Cloud) to fit in more seamlessly with your home décor. The new pear-shaped base station, which powers the system, is 8.5 inches tall and 4 inches in diameter at its widest spot, with a blue light at its base—it glows steadily to tell you that the alarm is on, and pulses to tell you there’s an error with one of your sensors.

SimpliSafe 9 piece wireless home security system w/hd camera review
SimpliSafe 9 piece wireless home security system w/hd camera review

How to setup SimpliSafe 9 piece wireless home security system w/hd camera?

Setup requires placing the base station in a central location within 400 feet of your sensors and 100 feet of your keypad(s), and plugging in the included power cord. The new base station integrates a 802.11n 2.4GHz Wi-Fi radio, adding another layer of connectivity with SimpliSafe’s monitoring service. If you’re concerned about IoT threats, you don’t have to connect SimpliSafe to your Wi-Fi network, the monitoring works just fine without it, though you won’t receive firmware updates. Inside the base, there’s a siren, a backup battery the company claims will last up to 24 hours, and a SIM card for cellular communication.

Keyboard

The keypad, also available in black or white (and powered by four standard AA batteries), sees the biggest design improvement, with a 2.5-inch LCD replacing a tiny monochrome screen. Nicely sized, round backlit rubber buttons replace the tiny oval ones on the old keypad.

Sensors

A proximity sensor is a nice touch, illuminating the keypad for nighttime use. The larger screen also makes the system setup process much easier, since you just pair all the components using easy step-through menus on the display. Each component has a small button you press to pair it with the system. Once you do, the keypad will walk you through the naming process. You no longer need to consult the user manual for setup instructions.

Battery replacement

The entry sensors are also redesigned, and are much smaller (about half the length they were before), squarer, and modern looking. They’re powered by inexpensive, user-replaceable CR2032 coin cells that should last an average of five years, and the system will warn you when they need to be replaced. Installation requires no wiring or drilling; I simply pulled off the battery-activation strips, peeled the backing on the 3M Command-like strips, and adhered each component after naming and pairing it with the system (more on that below). Components are easy to move around without damaging your walls, and you can take the system with you to your next home, which is a welcome feature.

Camera

When analyzing footage captured with an adjacent 1080p Logi Circle, which supports the 5GHz band, the SimpliCam’s video quality was comparable. Video is captured in 720p, but looks surprisingly good. It’s also quite smooth, and never suffered choppiness in my testing—despite the fact that the camera only operates on the 2.4GHz band.

Audio

Sound captured is a bit muffled, but certainly audible, though the camera does not currently support two-way audio. Night vision footage is clear and motion detection sensitivity can be adjusted in the app. Motion detection is based on heat signature so the camera can discern the difference between, say, a spinning fan, a small dog, and an actual moving person who’s breaking in to your home.

Adding SimpliCams

Up to four SimpliCams will work with the system (though the company promises support for an unlimited number of cameras in the near future). Setup is easy and consists of entering your wireless network details and scanning a QR code in the app. (Unlike with the system itself, Wi-Fi is required for the cameras to work.) The camera is a plain-looking black plastic rectangle—which contains a round lens, privacy shutter, microphone, and LED indicator—that slides onto a black metal stand. At 4.56 by 2.55 by 2.08 inches (HWD) and 5.3 ounces, it’s pretty standard in size as far as home surveillance cameras go.

Mobile App

With the monthly Interactive Plan, you can use SimpliSafe’s Online Dashboard or mobile app to control the system, including arming and disarming it. The Dashboard also lets you view your System Event Log, change your PIN, assign up to four guest PINs, and choose an optional Duress PIN, to use when an intruder is coercing you to disable the alarm. Enter it, and the alarm will stop sounding, but SimpliSafe will immediately send the police. You can also tweak settings like siren volume, entry and exit delay time, and manage and rename sensors in the Dashboard. But now, with the new system, most of these controls are accessible on the keypad too, which is nice.

DIY Home security upgrade – SimpliSafe 9 piece wireless home security system w/hd camera review

One of the best things about SimpliSafe is that it’s a completely configurable system, with five packages available. On the high end there’s the Haven package ($489), which comes with 14 hardware components including the base station, a wireless keypad, a keychain remote, two motion sensors, four door/window entry sensors, a panic button, a 105-decibel siren, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, water and freeze sensors, and a SimpliSafe yard sign and window decals. The least expensive Foundation pack ($229), which is designed for small homes and focuses solely on basic home security, includes the base station, a wireless keypad, one motion sensor, one entry sensor, and the yard sign and decals.

If you want a one-stop home monitoring solution that encompasses more than just security, adding environmental sensors makes sense. Smoke detectors are $29.99 each and you can hook them into your monitoring plan, which will alert you via email or text message when an alarm is triggered and send first responders to your door in the event of a fire. Freeze sensors ($29.99 each) alert you when the temperature falls below a certain point to prevent burst pipes, and water sensors ($19.99 each) detect and alert you of leaks and floods.

If you want to add one or more SimpliCam security cameras (the system supports up to four), they’re $99 each. The Video Doorbell Pro is an integrated 1080p smart doorbell with camera that you can add for $169, while the $99 Smart Lock allows keyless entry. SimpliSafe doesn’t typically offer any packages that include cameras, the lock, or the doorbell; they’re add-ons, though we have seen the company throw in a SimpliCam as part of a limited-time special-price promotion.

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