Foscam FI8906W IP Camera Outdoor High Gain Aerial Heavy Duty Bracket Wireless
Problems with the device and the UK supplier
During this time I have had no end of problems, culminating with what seems to be a design fault. The camera is running what appears to be the latest firmware (18.104.22.168) as no upgrades are available for this model.
Initially I had problems setting this up with a Mac as the installation cd is windows only (most Macs don't have a CD or DVD reader anyway. Eventually I managed to set it up by hard-wiring with an RJ45 cable. You cannot set this unit up by wireless alone using commonly supplied wireless routers; eg: BT Home Hub 3. Wireless has never worked properly as the camera seems to be very insensitive, failing to work from no more than a couple of rooms away when mounted outside on the wall. I've tried various wireless routers with no better luck.
It works when cabled, although the mains adaptor has a ridiculously short lead and it is so feeble that if you extend the DC cable, the voltage drop is so bad that the camera will not initialise.
However the worst problem with this device, seems to me to be a design fault. After being on for more than 24 hours, the streamed video shown on a browser (Google Chrome) stops and just displays a small icon that probably represents no video. Alarm email use the same communication method so outgoing email contain 5 pictures with the no video icon. Resetting the camera by software has no effect, the only way to resolve this fault is to power-cycle it. (The reset button affixed to the camera might fix this, but as it needs to be done daily and the camera is mounted 30 feet up on an outside wall, this is not practical.)
When this fault is apparent, you can still get an image by using the VLC video player and commanding the camera thus:
The way I've found to fix this is to power the camera by a time-switch which is set to switch on and off every 24 hours. Totally unsatisfactory as I've now had to buy network cables, another router and a time switch just to use a product that should work out of the box!
Technical support from Foscam.co.uk is non-existent. No one has ever replied to support requests left via their website contact form (http://foscamuk.co.uk/contacts/) or by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and the published telephone number has a recorded message saying that this number is no longer available.
I cannot return the item because I've had to remove and re-attach the DC connector to mount the device so I'm not able to return a complete unit, as is. I would dearly love to get his piece of rubbish replaced, so Foscam, if you ever read this, please reply to my many support requests. --JerryP (talk)