Vigilant is offering, what I can only assume is a rebranded low cost DVR, with POE and 4 cameras for $250. That is pretty cheap even if it’s without storage (max seems to be 2 TB).
Happe contends that consumers having been “getting ripped off.” During the conference call he cited research by Security Sales & Integration, which found the cost to install an eight-camera system on average is $15,000. (See 2016 Gold Book installation statistics.) Compare that, he said, to an eight-camera system by Vigilant installed by a certified U.S. Install contractor for about for $2,000.
“The industry is going to hate us but consumers obviously will love us. I’m not going to miss lost sleep worrying about Tyco ripping off fewer consumers as we take more and more market share. We are going to change the game,” he said.
So I was wondering if I could match that with my $100 DYI kit. First of all, I can strip out storage, but I will need to add a POE and 4 cameras.
Newegg has a Netgear 8 port switch with 4 POE at $50, so we’ll grab one of those.
4 IP cameras can be had at $30, but I will be generous and go for an ONVIF capable (not really necessary), so let’s say we grab 4 of these at $40 a pop ~ $120 for the cameras.
So, all in all, “NVR box” + POE + cameras come in at $220 bucks (you’ll need to add the cables though).
While I am not intimately familiar with the Vigilant NVR I am guessing that it is similar to the embedded systems that I’ve seen on YouTube that are pretty impressive. However, the DIY solution has some advantages to the Vigilant offering; you can replace the POE if (when?) it dies, without replacing the entire NVR. You get a “real” computer that runs real Linux instead of a closed down embedded Linux of unknown origin. You can pick a different set of cameras (maybe you don’t need/want 4 terrible cameras).
Is it a race to the bottom? Trunk-slammers galore?
Even the best integrators want to get rid of needless complexity, and the low-cost NVRs surely does that, but they go a little too far in my opinion. Surely there’s a place for these boxes, but that place is not large scale installations with centralized management and monitoring etc. And at $250 I am wondering what sort of customer support you will be getting.