Here’s a look at the new Imou Ranger IQ, plus a discount code for 30% off for Automated Home Readers.
What is It?
Imou is the consumer wing of Dahua, a huge Chinese manufacturer of CCTV and surveillance equipment. They describe their new Ranger IQ as “the world’s first Artificial Internet of Things (AIoT) home security camera”.
The 3.6mm lens has an 87° horizontal field of view and its eye-catching dark orb design (approx 9cms x 9cms x 10cms), allows this indoor camera to rotate 355 degrees and tilt 90 degrees for total coverage, getting rid of any blind spots that even the widest angle cameras can’t overcome.
The unit is powered by micro USB and comes with a mains adaptor with a usefully long cable. As usual these days, once plugged in setup is completed through a mobile app. The Imou Life app is available for iOS and Android.
When looking for a location for the camera, it’s worth noting that it cannot tilt below the horizontal if mounted in standard table top configuration. So if you want to be able to view much immediately below the unit then you are going to need to use the included wall / ceiling mount instead.
The Sony Starlight sensor provides a 1080p image and allows the camera to cling to colour pictures in low-light conditions, before automatically switching to black and white when things get really dark. There’s support for H.264 and the newer H.265 codec that means less space is required for recordings.
Theres a privacy mask setting, rolling the lens into the bottom of the enclosure, blocking its view completely.
The built in speaker and microphone allow the unit to be used for 2-way chat between someone in the room and the user on the app.
A built in abnormal sound detector is used to notify you of events like smoke alarms for example (check out the video below).
As well as the onboard 802.11b/g/n flavoured Wi-Fi there’s the option to use the 100Mbps Ethernet port for hardwired reliability. Power consumption is rated at <9.5W
The real smarts for this camera comes with its onboard AI human detection software which automatically recognises human targets and tracks them by moving the lens automatically to follow them around the room.
And that ability to distinguish between humans and pets or spiders for example, is designed to save you from needless false alarms and notifications.
We found it works well, provided you don’t get too close to the lens or move past it too quickly. The sound of the motors moving the lens is audible but not loud by any means, and it’s pretty cool to see it pickup people and follow them.
The Ranger IQ requires a Cloud connection to work and there’s a subscription service for storing your recordings online.
You can however choose to store your recordings locally on an SD card (256GB maximum). It’s great to see that the last 2 cameras we’ve reviewed now both have local storage options, it seems manufacturers are finally listening.
While there’s no way to view the camera in a browser you can send recordings to an Onvif compatible NAS etc (also compatible with ONVIF PTZ service controls).
This camera is compatible with home assistants like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.
Imou also tell us they are launching a range of compatible ‘Airfly’ motion detectors, sirens and door sensors later this year too. Airfly is Imou’s proprietary 433/868/915MHz protocol and the Ranger IQ has a built-in Airfly gateway to connect to these additional sensors.
The Imou Ranger IQ is an interesting indoor camera. With its AI capabilities, subscription free local recording, WiFi / Ethernet options and Pan-Tilt coverage, it seems good value at the price, especially with our time limited offer below..
- 360° COVERAGE: 1080P Full HD glass optics provide crystal-clear pictures & videos, even in darkness. Pan & tilt the Ranger IQ from the Imou app to view every corner as if you're at home. Plus, the smart tracking feature allows the camera to follow and record activities when triggered.
- HUMAN MOTION & SOUND DETECTION: Distinguish human beings from animals or moving objects to avoid false alarms. An abnormal sound like baby crying can also trigger Ranger IQ to send notifications to your phone.
- INSTANT ALERTS & PRIVACY MODE: Send instant notifications to your smartphone whenever it detects motion or sound, keeping you aware of what's going on from anywhere. When you’re home, you can just tap on the app to hide the lens for privacy.
(discount code expires 8th October 2020).
Last update on 2021-05-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API