Ezviz BC1 Battery Powered Security Camera Kit Review: Colour night vision, human detection and 365-day battery make this an appealing choice

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Ezviz BC1-B2 2-Cam Kit Security Camera Review Rating

Summary

Minor issues aside, the Ezviz BC1 is an excellent system that quite likely has the best colour nighttime quality on the market* (for battery-powered cameras)

*I’ve not used them all

Overall
85%
85%
  • Overall - 85%
    85%

Pros

  • Colour night vision is one of the best on the market
  • Human detection significantly reduces recorded events
  • Excellent battery life

Cons

  • No motion zones (so will trigger at all human detection)
  • Some connectivity issues the first few days

The Ezviz BC1 system is the latest wire-free solution aimed at consumers for a user-friendly way to add security cameras to your home. The system comes with some very impressive specs that can compete with the leading brands in the market.

Similar to the likes of Eufy and Arlo, the new Ezviz cameras use a base station which the cameras then connect to directly.

On paper, this looks like one of the best systems on the market, 365-day battery life, colour night vision, and smart human detection. For real-life usage, it performs well and is well worth considering, but there are a few small issues.

Specification

Sale
EZVIZ BC1 2-Cam Kit Security Camera Outdoor Wireless, 365...
  • Up to 365 Days Security from 1 Charge & Non Stop...
  • Colour Night Vision - With built-in spotlights and...
  • PIR Movement Detection - Incorporating a PIR...
  • IP66 Waterproof - With a full metal housing and...
  • 12,900 mAh battery with up to 365 days of use
  • Base station supports microSD up to 246GB, so no need for a cloud recording subscription
  • Up to 4 cameras can be added to the system
  • Colour night vision (which appears to use two built-in spotlights to facilitate this function, unlike some other wired low light cameras)
  • Smart human detection
  • Active defence with two-way talk & built-in 125dB siren
  • Solar panel compatibility
  • IP66
  • Magnet and screw mounts
  • 2.4Ghz WiFi

Set-Up

Set up is straightforward, much like many other cameras or smart home devices. I already had the Ezviz app, with this installed, you need to go to add a new device, then cameras. You need to scan the QR code of the base station first, then you can follow the pairing process for the cameras, which involves press the sync button on the camera and base station. I had everything up and running within a few minutes.

The system comes with two mounting options, either magnetic or screw and the physical installation of these cameras is easier than some options I have used but comparable to most.

Ezviz vs Eufy 2 & Eufy 2C

Just because I have the cameras to hand, this is a comparison shot of the two Eufy cameras I already use. Ezviz on the far right.

The Ezviz does have bright spotlight-like LEDs which come on, but I don't think it is a requirement for the colour night vision, unlike the Eufy 2C on the left.

Recording Options & Cloud Recording Pricing

One of the appealing aspects of the Ezviz system is the option for either cloud storage or microSD. The base station will accept a card of up to 256GB, and you can also run both recording options concurrently.

For the cloud recording service, you can get a 4-camera plan for £7.49 per month or £74.99 per year, which offers 7 days of history.

That’s quite expensive when you compare against Ring or Arlo, who charge around £8pcm for 30-days recording with unlimited devices. However, both companies require a cloud plan to work to their full potential.

Eufy charges $9.99 for 10 cameras and 30 days of storage.

Performance

Connectivity

With the Ezviz BC1 using a base station, the cameras connect directly to this rather than your WiFi. I have found this works quite well with competing brands such as Eufy, and it is one of the reasons cameras such as this offer significantly better battery life compared to cameras such as Reolink.

With this system, I found that the range was not as good as I would have expected, at first. With the base unit in my office and one camera two rooms away (mounted outdoors near the window), I struggled to get a connection to it quite a few times.

Connectivity did improve considerably over time. The first few days was the worst, with less than a 50% success rate in connecting, and it took quite a while to connect. At the time of writing, it seems to connect reliably 100% of the time, and the connection speed is probably faster than my Eufy.  

Day Time Footage

Most cameras nowadays offer good to excellent daytime footage. As does this.

The footage is shot at 1920x1080px, and my sample video is 1162kb/s HEVC with a 15fps frame rate.

Like most battery-powered cameras, the clips are quite short, there is no fancy pre-roll and recording ends when the movement ends. So in my sample, it is just 22 seconds as I leave the house for a run, with the file being 3MB. The placement next to the first-floor window, so a bit high to catch facial features, but there is plenty of detail to make out identifying features of someone.

Night Time Footage

It is the nighttime footage where this excels, as do most Ezviz cameras. I have well lit streets so I can easily shoot in colour, if you live somewhere rural you may need to switch to the black and white mode.

With the colour night recording enabled, the camera records colour footage without the addition of a spotlight. Similar to how Hikvision natively records in colour for their Darkfighter equipped cameras. This, therefore, captures much more detail than my Eufy.

I had to manually take a recording for this one to make sure it was dark.

Motion Detection

Motion detection is a bit of a mixed bag. There does not appear to be motion zones, so with my camera placement, the camera covers both the street and my garden.

On one of the cameras, which points towards the road quite a bit, it triggers when most cars pull down the street. I assume it is somehow detecting the human shape of the driver. This does mean I get quite a lot of events recorded, however, it is orders of magnitude less than what would get recorded from traditional motion-based recording.

For the other camera, which is pointed more downwards into my garden, it has been much more reliable, picking up people entering or leaving through the gate.

Battery

I have not had the cameras long enough to come up with an accurate forecast for the battery. Like all battery-powered cameras, the performance is dependant on the number of events your record and the settings you use.

On the camera, which triggers frequently, it looks like ti drops about 2% per day. This is pretty good considering how often it has triggered, I don’t mind charging a camera every 6 weeks or so.

The second camera has dropped by about 0.5% per day, so 200-days usage in theory.

I’d say this performance puts the cameras about the same as the Eufy 2 cameras I have used. So excellent overall.

Price and Alternative Options

The EZVIZ BC1 2-Cam is listed as having a £329.99 RRP but is currently at £299 with an additional £50 off voucher. So £250.

Eufy has either the 2C, 2C Pro or Eufy 2. None of them are quite like for like in spec, the Eufy 2 is just £229 has a 365 battery life but lacks the colour night vision.

The Eufy 2C Pro is £299 with £40 voucher available, so £260. This has 180-day battery life, colour night vision with the aid of a spotlight, and 2K resolution.

Arlo has the Arlo Essential Spotlight with no base station required, which is £113 sold individually and has a 6-months battery, colour night vision via spotlight. Or they have the Arlo Pro3, which is £349 for the two camera pack with 6 months battery, colour night vision via spotlight and 2K HDR resolution.

Overall

The Ezviz BC1 is an exceptionally well-specced wireless camera system that is priced competitively against more established names in the UK.

Performance is good, but I feel like it doesn’t quite live up to the spec sheet. I think the motion detection needs tweaking a little bit, and there are potentially some range/connectivity issues, though this did improve a lot.  

The colour night vision is arguably the stand out feature, something competing brands haven’t quite mastered as successfully, and I found the battery life to be excellent too.

Overall, I think the Ezviz BC1 is a well worthy consideration over some of the more established wireless camera brands in the UK.  

Last update on 2021-09-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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