This guide will review a series of IP cameras whose traits make them especially useful for Synology Surveillance Station.
I’ve spent years working with both camera and videography equipment. Using that knowledge, I conducted research, referenced first-hand accounts, and analyzed a wide range of models to figure out the best picks on the market.
The Hikvision Compatible Camera is my number one choice because of how it delivers excellent quality and unmatched versatility on top of a number of impressive specs.
It’s an all-around IP camera with stunning HD image quality, great zoom, and night vision. Adding to that, it also has a wide field of view thanks to the excellent tilt and pan range. The weatherproof construction simply adds to what is already a tight package.
There are many other excellent devices on the market as well. If you want to take a look at those, or want to know more about the Hikvision, I dive further into them below.
Top IP Cameras for Synology Surveillance Station
This section analyzes the best IP cameras for Synology Surveillance Station by looking at their traits as well as their larger niches
1. Hikvision Compatible Camera
- Best for: Overall
- Key Features: 4k ultra HD image. Full waterproof protection. 18x optical zoom and 40x digital zoom. Excellent vertical and horizontal field of view. 165-foot night vision range.
- Video Capture Resolution: 4k
- Dimensions: 11.02 x 7.48 x 7.48
- Power Source: DC 12V
The Hikvision kicks off my list because it excels across so many different areas. The IP camera comes with 18x optical zoom, 30x digital zoom, high-speed pan, as well as HD day and night vision. The weatherproof design also helps when setting it up in outdoor spaces.
This also gets high marks for its inherent versatility. Where many models only give static views, this model offers great tilt and pan options that range from 0 to 360 degrees horizontally and -3 to 90 degrees vertically. That combines with the zoom to capture everything in your own way.
As great as this option is, however, the setup is not the easiest on the market. It’s going to take a bit to get going, but once you do you’ll be rewarded with what is an exceptional model. The zoom, while excellent, also lacks a bit at night or in dark environments.
2. Amcrest Ultra HD
- Best for: Mobility
- Key Features: Full motion detection as well as up-to-date alerts. Excellent HD picture and solid picture with low light capability. 90-degree viewing angle. Two-way talk.
- Video Capture Resolution: 1080p
- Dimensions: 4 x 3.9 x 4.5 inches
- Power Source: Corded Electric
Where many IP cameras only offer a stationary or limited view, the Amcrest Ultra HD delivers sharp, detailed recordings. This model excels when it comes to both tilting and panning. You also get a wide field of view, which is only enhanced by the strong zoom.
Beyond the versatility, the camera also offers dual-band WiFi, great video quality, and motion alert notifications with two-way communication through your smartphone. The app is accessible, and the low-light image sensor works well in all dim environments.
That being said, the app could be a bit better. It’s definitely serviceable, especially for more casual users, but it lacks key features like push notifications. An update or two would really help shore up what is an otherwise strong, versatile item.
3. Reolink C1 Pro
- Best for: Indoor
- Key Features: Simple setup. 4MP CMOS image sensor and 80-degree viewing angle. Built-in mic for better audio. SD card slot. Night visions with 32-foot visibility.
- Video Capture Resolution: 1440p
- Dimensions: 4.06 x 3.74 x 4.61 inches
- Power Source: Adapter
The C1 Pro is a solid pick for users who want a solid indoor IP Camera with Surveillance Station compatibility. While it’s not the most premium or high-end device on the market, there are many impressive features including an 80-degree viewing angle, built-in mic, and 4MP CMOS sensor.
This also gets high marks because it’s easy to set up, which is where many other solid IP cameras fail. There’s an SD card slot, it supports many different systems, and the quality is particularly sharp. It also sees well at night and has a useful alarm sound feature.
However, not everything is perfect. While the pros absolutely outweigh the cons, you should know that you can’t power it over Ethernet. The pan-tilt speed is not adjustable, which limits the versatility a bit too. I also wish the audio had less lag. Even so, this is a strong indoor option.
4. Reolink Outdoor Camera
- Best for: Outdoor
- Key Features: 100 feet of night vision. Excellent app compatibility and full remote access. Smart motion detect and alert. Waterproof. Excellent lens.
- Video Capture Resolution: 5 MP
- Dimensions: 5.51 x 5.51 x 5.51 inches
- Power Source: Ethernet
When it comes to blending versatility, reliability, and raw specs, no IP camera with Surveillance Station compatibility works like this model from Reolink. The device has a strong lens, comes with an excellent free app, and has full night vision with an 80-degree viewing angle.
This also makes my list because of its sturdy build and tough waterproof shell. That makes it great for both in and outdoor environments. There’s only one wire, cutting down on clutter, and the smart motion detect and alerts work well in all types of light.
The only con to the device is that, despite its simple design, it’s not the easiest IP camera to install. Some users, especially those not familiar with similar models, might have some trouble getting it all together. The night resolution, while serviceable, could also be a bit better.
5. Amcrest 5 MP Poe
- Best for: Motion Tracking
- Key Features: Strong LEDs for 98-foot night vision. 2.8mm lens with 103-degree viewing angle. Weatherproof design and motion detection alerts. Exceptional low light performance.
- Video Capture Resolution: 5 MP
- Dimensions: 6.3 x 6.18 x 5.35 inches
- Power Source: Power over Ethernet
Outfitted with a 103-degree viewing angle and full IP67 waterproof technology, the Amcrest 5 MP Poe is a strong offering that works well with Surveillance Station. It has a lot of versatility and gives you extra options through exceptional playback and recording.
This model has HD image quality as well as various security and storage options. You can both receive motion alert notifications and review footage through the Amcrest View app, which is a nice trait that furthers the functionality. In addition, there’s also secure cloud video backup.
The only drawback to this device is that the night vision, while strong up close, isn’t great when looking far away. You won’t experience that in the daytime or even in low light. As long as you don’t need a true nighttime device, this excels in every area you would ever need.
How to Choose an IP Camera for Synology Surveillance Station
When searching for an IP camera, it’s important to look for the following features.
Security or surveillance cameras need to be able to see at all times of day, but they especially need to be able to monitor areas at night. When choosing your model, ensure the one you get is able to see no matter how dark it gets outside.
Just be sure the one you choose has a long vision for such situations. Many IP cameras state that they come with night vision, but can only do so up closer or with poor contrast. You want to look out for an IR model with special sensors that enables the camera to see clearly at night.
Something else to consider is how easy an IP camera is to set up. A well-made model filled with high-end specs is great, but not if it gives you headaches when setting it up. Many IP cameras use limited wires, which cuts down on how much time you need to spend working with them.
Focal Length Flexibility
Also note that each IP camera comes with different focal length flexibility. When getting your model there are several choices in this regard, and the one you go with depends on where you plan to place your camera as well as what it monitors.
You can pick a fixed focus camera, one with variable focus, or a motorized or pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) option. Each one brings something unique to the table, and you should do your best to match your own personal needs.
I believe the Hikvision Compatible Camera is the best IP camera to get when it comes to Synology Surveillance Station. It has you covered on almost every level, including image quality, zoom, and field of view. It also comes with a long night vision range and a waterproof shell.
Though it’s not a perfect device, it’s one of the best and more well-rounded IP cameras on the market. It has the versatility needed to fit any situation and will survey for years to come.