T3's Yale Floodlight Camera review in a sentence: This is an ideal gadget if you’re looking for a full-service security solution that won’t break the bank.
This is the Yale Floodlight Camera, which is a little bit of everything all wrapped up in a chunky home security package from a name that’s synonymous with domestic protection. Yale used to be all about locks, but nowadays it has moved into the wider home security market and cover all bases if you’ve got things to protect.
I initially fancied the look of the Yale Floodlight Camera, mainly because I wanted a way of shedding light onto the side of my house automatically. There are loads of options when it comes to doing that, but what I liked about this unit is, it not only packs in two floodlights but also comes with a camera and siren/alert system to top it all off.
Of course, it’s easy to find the best security camera and, if you’re prepared to skimp, even the best cheap security camera might do the trick instead. However, in the time I’ve had it installed, I’ve found the Yale Floodlight Camera to be just the ticket. It does a little bit of everything and covers all my needs. Job done! Read on to find out why…
Yale Floodlight Camera review: Price and availability
The Yale Floodlight Camera is available now and can be purchased via Amazon and other online retailers. It costs £169.99 in the UK and comes with everything needed to get up and running. There is the light and camera unit, instructions and all of the screws and other fixings needed to mount it on a wall. A microSD memory needs to be purchased though. You will need some basic tools to get it up and a reasonable knowledge of electrical wiring. If in doubt, call in a professional.
Yale Floodlight Camera review: What is it?
The Yale Floodlight Camera is exactly that – a home security solution that has a design which includes a floodlight – or rather a pair of floodlights along with a camera underneath and an audio alert system built-in. It’s got dimensions of 34 x 32.2 x 27 cm, which means that it is fairly chunky. In other words, you’ll need to be sure you’ve got sufficient space to fit it to a wall, while also keeping in mind the unit needs hard wiring into the mains.
It's ideally suited for outdoor use if you’re looking to cover areas around your home, your garden or, perhaps, another outside space that might not always be visible from the house. The Yale Floodlight Camera packs a potent specification and is, in fact, Yale’s brightest current model with a 2,000-lumens worth of floodlighting appeal. It boasts an IP65 weatherproof rating, packs a reassuringly loud 110 decibel siren and features a range of light settings.
You’ve also got access to the features and functions of the Yale Floodlight Camera via the Yale View App. This offers quick and easy control of light setting options, such as Manual and Dawn-to-Dusk while there’s also the capacity for setting it up to be triggered by motion. Thanks to the app, these settings can be easily tweaked, so you can adjust things like sensitivity on the fly if you find that pets and other things are triggering your new purchase to often or at the wrong time. You’ll need to have and insert a microSD memory card prior to fitment too.
Yale Floodlight Camera review: Is it any good?
When I first pulled the Yale Floodlight Camera out of its sizeable box, I was a little bit worried about its bulk. Make no mistake, this is quite a sizeable bit of kit, which as a result requires very secure fitment to a wall or other surface due to weighing in at 2.91kg. You definitely don’t want to try and fix it to something flimsy as it may very well fall off pretty quickly. However, Yale does include all of the fitting accessories aside from a memory card for the camera data, although the other issue for some will be the way it also needs to be wired into the mains.
I found my route to doing this easily was to mount the unit in place of an existing static light fitting, which meant all the wiring was in place and there was also the reassurance of a secure location point. I needed to drill some new holes for the fixing screws, but other than that the wiring part of the process was pretty straightforward. The main thing to remember during this is to switch off at the mains before you do anything! Similarly, don’t overlook the fact that you’ll need to put in the microSD card before you get too far into the installation process.
Yale Floodlight Camera review: Performance
There’s no doubt that the Yale Floodlight Camera does have everything you need to see what’s going on in the darkened recesses of your garden, drive or yard. Once you’ve plumbed in the electrics and ensured that you’ve got it fixed securely, the performance from this security device is largely excellent. As with any security light that has a sensor, there is a degree of tweaking and fine-tuning to be done.
One thing that was slightly disappointing was the lack of flexibility for positioning the floodlights just as I wanted them. I think this is probably down to the constraints of the design and having a unit which incorporates a camera. That meant I had to spend some time on my step ladder working with the components to get everything as I wanted it. Be prepared to do some of this yourself, unless you’re happy enough with the default way the light is set up.
I do like the way you can set up the lights to work on designated areas and the notification of movement alerts work to great effect. There’s always the chance for triggering to occur by things other than burglars, with the wind also able to set things off if you’ve got the unit in an area affected by gusts of wind. The side of my house tends to get affected by that scenario, so again, some fettling was required to sort this issue out. As for the video – this is 1080p footage, so it’s good but not great. I think as a deterrent the camera is mighty useful though.
Yale Floodlight Camera review: Verdict
Anyone thinking about an all-in-one fix for their security needs will warm to the Yale Floodlight Camera. It comes with a decent specification and everything required for around-the-clock property monitoring. I’m not so keen on the bulkiness of it, but that’s the compromise you have to put up with for all of the built-in features, including those dazzling twin floodlights.
Performance is good though, with respectable footage being provided by the 1080p camera. Better still is the audio alert, which as alarms go is beefy enough for home use and works well if you need to quickly scare the pants of someone hanging around. Yale completes the package with a very usable app, so all is good for the price this comes in at.
Yale Floodlight Camera review: Alternatives to consider
When it comes to home security then Yale might be a well-known name, but another option is Arlo. It's range of security cameras is growing and all of their products have quality stamped all over them. Take a look at the nifty Arlo Pro 4 if you need something that's got a beefy specification and will last the test of time. A more affordable option from the same brand is the Arlo Essential Spotlight Camera.
Elsewhere, try browsing the likes of the Ring Stick Up Cam, which requires much less work to get up and running. It's versatile too. Meanwhile, if you need more than one camera due to a complicated garden or yard layout, try the Swann Smart Security Camera, which comes with two of them in the pack.