Over my time here at TweakTown, D-Link has probably sent the most cameras to the lab for testing and review. A year or so ago, they introduced the Wide Eye 180° DCS-2630L, a camera that is widely considered the boss of indoor security cameras. That camera carries a MSRP near $160. For the sake of pushing their Smart Home security solutions, D-Link has now launched a smaller version of the 2630L, dubbed the 2530L, with many of the same features, including the 180-degree lens.
The 2530L comes in at 75% of the size of the 2630L. This will certainly help with placement of the camera, especially for those using it as a nanny cam or similar. Overall the aesthetic is nearly identical with a piano black finish across the entire device and subtle branding on the base.
Specifications show a two-megapixel CMOS sensor at a F2.5 aperture and 1.7mm focal length. 16ft of Night Vision adds to the functionality along with 802.11n wireless connectivity. Onboard storage is managed by the microSD form factor which is handled with H.264 video. Peak resolution stands at 1080p at 15FPS, followed by 720p at 30FPS, and 480p at 30FPS.
The MSRP of the D-Link DCS-2530L comes in at $149.99 with a one-year warranty.
Packaging for the 2530L is the standard colorful approach we often see from D-Link. Bits of marketing is placed across the top while an image of the camera sits in the center.
The back of the box goes a bit more into detail on the features and above a viewing angle representation.
The scope of delivery includes the power adapter, screws, and reading materials.
Looking at the 2530L, top to bottom, we have a small pinhole for the microphone and right below that the light sensor. This is followed by the lens and ring of IR LEDs and finally at the bottom a small Wi-Fi Signal LED.
On the side of the unit, we have the microSD slot. There is no documented maximum capacity for these slots, but I have used 128GB cards without issue, FAT32 formatted.
The backside of the camera has a recessed reset button along with the WPS button to the left.
The application used to set up this camera is myDLink Lite, seen in the previous image for the iPhone 7.
Installation includes a few steps but is helped along with QR codes to get all the information; you just need to use WPS or manually choose the network, and you are ready to go. One thing of note: do not install a microSD card until setup is done, or the camera setup will fail over and over again.
Magically, we have finished the setup of our 2530L, and as you can see, its ready to go in our app.
So, this solution supports three resolutions over remote viewing. Each of those support audio streaming as well but for testing I muted the audio to see the best bitrate and clarity. The left side shows the 1080p stream at nearly 1.9 Mbps with a peak frame rate of 13.6FPS. The 720p stream topped 28FPS at 872 Kbps, and the 480p stream which is actually VGA resolution capped at 15FPS in the app at 485 Kbps.
Settings are simple within the application. You can control motion and sound detection along with time zone and the front Wi-Fi LED. If you want more control, you can use the legacy web GUI by typing the IP in your web browser.
Over the years, I have used a lot of cameras. Arlo was one of my favorites a few years back. I used those exclusively for a few months, but after the first battery change, I just stopped using them in favor of a full NVR system that I reviewed from Huntvision. The Huntvision has proved to be more work than I want to deal with in upkeep, and after the surveillance drive failed inside the NVR, I have admittedly gone without any sort of outdoor cameras. On the inside of my home, I have always used D-Link solutions exclusively, because they are so easy to setup and manage.
I have had a 2630L in the back room where my dogs eat for years now and with the launch of the 2530L, I have now placed this camera to cover my back door. As you seen in a few of my images, the quality of this camera is rather good, although it does have a few anomalies within the app. I'm not sure why the FPS is capped at 15 for the VGA stream, as it should be 30 going by the spec sheet. With that said, across all three resolutions, I found the image quality to be quite nice. I have settled on 720p myself, as it's the middle ground between the least amount of latency and highest quality.
In testing, the 1080p stream seemed to have about four seconds of delay between an action taking place and it coming across the camera. The 720p stream was nearly instant (maybe a second), and the VGA stream was pretty much live. Overall though, I enjoy D-Link's solutions as they have always worked great for me and the 2530L continues that tradition. I just wish they could get the price down a little more so the average consumer could see what all the hype is about.
|Quality including Design and Build||90%|
|Bundle and Packaging||90%|
|Value for Money||89%|
The Bottom Line: The DCS-2530L Wide Angle 1080p Wi-Fi IP camera is a solid mix of industry standard features with added touches of brilliance from D-Link.
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