Home / Reviews / Maximus Answer DualCam Video Doorbell review: That second camera is for keeping an eye on parcels

Maximus Answer DualCam Video Doorbell review: That second camera is for keeping an eye on parcels

Most video doorbells have a wide-angle fisheye lens that permits you to see nearly from side-to-side in entrance of your own home, however they usually don’t cowl up and down so nicely. Which means a bundle left close to your door could be out of view of the digicam. The Maximus Reply DualCam Video Doorbell will get round this by having two cameras: one identified to cowl guests on the entrance of your own home, and one other pointing down to present you a transparent view of something in your porch.

The twin cameras labored surprisingly nicely throughout my evaluate interval. The pictures from each are lined as much as give a more-or-less full view of the realm in entrance of your door and your porch. When a bundle was dropped off to my home, I used to be in a position to watch the deliveryman strategy, put it down and stroll away. After which on a regular basis it was sitting there, I may see it. You may digitally zoom every digicam, however not sufficient to see the tackle label on a field sitting at your door.

This evaluate is a part of TechHive’s protection of the very best video doorbells, the place you’ll discover critiques of competing merchandise, plus a purchaser’s information to the options you need to contemplate when procuring.

maximus doorbell 09 Martyn Williams / IDG

Views from the Maximus Reply DualCam’s twin cameras (proper) and the Kuna app’s gadget settings.

One surprisingly helpful addition on the digicam is a pair of LED lights that may downwards illuminate your porch. That is helpful to get a greater digicam view throughout at evening, however they will also be programmed to come back on at nightfall and off at daybreak to supply steady, low-level illumination.

I used to be shocked at how good this seemed when approaching my entrance door at evening and ended up holding them on. When you stay in an space with excessive charges of parcel theft, nevertheless, the lights may probably make a ready parcel extra seen than it in any other case could be. Having the ability to see a parcel in your porch does nothing to forestall somebody from stealing it, though it provides you with forensic proof you can present to the police.

[ Further reading: The best home security cameras ]

Putting in the Reply DualCam

As I unpacked the digicam, I used to be confused by a number of totally different firm and model names on the packaging, and it’s value understanding these. Maximus is a model identify utilized by Jiawei Expertise, which is predicated in Shenzhen, China. The detection system is obtainable by a unique firm: Kuna Programs. Kuna is predicated in California, and its detection engine is utilized in sensible house merchandise marketed beneath its personal model and people of Maximus and VuPoint Options, beneath the model identify Toucan. Talking of Toucan, VuPoint has a battery-powered doorbell with a vertically wide-angle lens designed to maintain packages in your level in its subject of view. We noticed the Toucan doorbell at CES and are within the strategy of reviewing it.

maximus doorbell 08 cr Martyn Williams / IDG

An LED nightlight makes the doorbell straightforward to seek out at the hours of darkness.

The Reply DualCam is determined by a 12-24 AC energy provide—typical for doorbells within the U.S.—so most individuals might be changing an current doorbell. If your private home doesn’t have a doorbell, and also you don’t wish to take care of pulling wires, you need to get a battery-powered mannequin such because the Ring Video Doorbell 2.

In any occasion, changing my doorbell with the DualCam was easy. You should first set up a chime connector to your current doorbell, after which it’s as straightforward as eradicating the outdated doorbell, putting in a plate to carry the brand new one, and connecting the 2 wires to a few screw terminals on the again of the brand new gadget. Maximus additionally provides a mounting wedge, in order that the doorbell may be higher angled in the direction of the porch within the occasion that gives a greater view.

The doorbell connects to Wi-Fi (both 2.4- or 5GHz), and the connection between the doorbell and your private home community is encrypted with 256-bit AES encryption.

maximus doorbell 01 Martyn Williams / IDG

The blue space on this screenshot from the Kuna app that Maximus offers with its safety cameras signifies the realm of the digicam’s view during which movement ought to be detected..

The doorbell gives two methods to detect movement: user-set movement zones and a subscription-based “AI” system that makes an attempt to detect individuals and autos. I began off utilizing the “areas of curiosity” movement zones and it was hopeless. My entrance door faces a residential avenue and vehicles move each minute or so. The detection was being triggered on a regular basis. Even after I deselected the complete avenue space (see the picture beneath, the blue space is the one chosen for movement detection), the digicam nonetheless triggered a lot that it was ineffective.

I contacted Maximus they usually suggested that I ought to strive the “Kuna AI” system and, positive sufficient, that cleared up all the issues. The system has totally different detection settings for individuals and autos, and every can cowl totally different detection zones. There’s additionally a setting for “fewer, default or extra” occasion alerts.

In brief, the Kuna AI detection cleared up the one greatest downside I used to be having with the digicam: too many ineffective alerts.

maximus doorbell 07 Martyn Williams / IDG

Daytime and nighttime photos from the Maximus Reply DualCam video doorbell.

However there’s an vital catch that potential patrons want to pay attention to: Kuna AI isn’t included within the value of the Reply DulaCam. The subscription-based service prices $5 per 30 days for one suitable safety digicam, $10 per 30 days for as much as 4 cameras, or $20 per 30 days for as much as eight cameras. The service is billed for a full yr at a time, however you may get a pro-rated refund should you cancel earlier than the yr is up.

Backside line

So, should you’re hoping to make use of this and not using a subscription and your doorbell might be put in anyplace close to your avenue, Maximus’s video doorbell won’t give you the results you want. As with all subscriptions, keep in mind the long-term value of the system if you make this choice. The doorbell prices $200, however the whole value of shopping for and operating it for five years might be $500.

When you’re superb with paying a subscription, the Kuna AI system works nice and Maximus’s Reply DualCam video doorbell ought to fulfill you.

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