Wyze has quickly become a household name in affordable home monitoring systems, and last year the company updated one of its popular cameras with the Wyze Cam Pan v2. Much like the Wyze Cam v3 we reviewed, the Cam Pan v2 takes a similar design from its previous version and upgrades it with a new sensor that can see colors almost in the dark and the ability to pan 360 degrees. Like many Wyze products, it’s packed with features for $39.99 ($50 on Amazon). Be sure to check out the video below to see all the details.
If you’ve seen the first generation Cam Pan, the new version 2 will look very familiar. It features the same tall rectangular design with a round base that allows the camera to rotate 360 degrees. On the back, the Wyze Cam Pan v2 has a micro-USB port in the base to power the camera. At the bottom of the camera is a micro SD card slot as well as a setup button and microphone.
On the front there is a small sensor and a status light, and the lens can tilt up and down 93 degrees.
Wyze Cam Pan v2: Setup
As with the company’s other cameras, Wyze keeps setup easy. The first thing to do is download the Wyze app and set up an account. If you already have the app, make sure you have the latest version to have all the newer cameras available.
Then turn on the camera, open the app, and tap the plus icon on the top left. Wyze will take you through a few quick steps that include scanning a QR code on your phone with the camera to connect it to the network. Next, give the camera a name, and you’re good to go.
Wyze Cam Pan v2: Night Vision
One of the version 2’s biggest upgrades is the inclusion of the Starlight CMOS sensor. Just like on the Cam v3, this sensor can display full color in dark environments up to 0.1 lux. If there is little light in the room or street light outside, there is a good chance that the Cam Pan v2 will be able to show full color.
In most other cameras, even the v3, when the camera does not need a night vision mode, there are visible infrared red lights on the front of the camera. This is something my kids get stuck on even when I have one of the cameras in their rooms for a screen. But with the Cam Pan v2, the infrared lights are invisible making it more stealthy so as not to bother children or pets – a welcome feature since the camera can rotate and tilt on its own.
Wyze Cam Pan v2: Video
speed + response
Once you open the app, Cam Pan v2 is very quick to respond to the controls. The delay between pressing a direction on the app and the camera response may be half a second. The camera can rotate 180 degrees in about two seconds at the fastest speed setting, and is adjustable in the app. Motion notifications take about 15 seconds to appear on my iPhone in my experience.
Walking around my office, the Cam Pan v2 did a pretty good job of tracking my movement. With the faster movements, there can be little trouble keeping up. I had my kids run across the living room and then tried them myself. The camera will move to one side when it detects motion, but by then my kids were already out of the frame and lost track. So for really fast motion at a medium distance from the camera, you might have trouble keeping the frame locked to motion.
Walk through the Wyze app
Selecting Cam Pan v2 in the Wyze app opens some quick settings. You can mute and enable the talk feature to talk through the camera, record video, take a picture, and control camera pan and tilt. At the bottom there is a button to view playback of locally recorded footage from an optional SD card.
Clicking the More button on the right opens more controls. Motion markers will mark the motion detected by the camera in the green squares. This helps give a better idea of what’s causing the notifications, but it can be turned off.
Then, motion tracking will enable the camera to pan and tilt to follow movement across the image. Without this turned on, the camera will be stationary, but when enabled, the camera moves around the room to track and trace any movement that is detected.
Pan Scan will rotate the camera between waypoints that can be set within the app. The Pan Scan type works with motion tracking turned on, but the tracking will be bypassed by sweep times, so it’s unreliable in my experience.
The More button also allows viewing an album with saved videos and photos, setting a time lapse, turning on the siren, and turning off the camera. For a more in-depth view of the application, be sure to watch the video.
Wyze Cam Pan v2: Video Quality
For the price, I’ve always been impressed with the video quality that Wyze pulls out of its cameras. The camera is 1080p, with an f1.6 lens that offers a 120-degree field of view, but the zoom in the app makes it easy to pick out details. In a well-lit room, resolution looks sharp even when fully zoomed in. At night things can start to get a little lower resolution, but just like the Cam v3, the Starlight sensor does an amazing job in very low light.
In addition to what’s available on the camera’s home page, clicking the Settings button at the top right opens up a world of options for you.
Motion detection sensitivity and sound sensitivity can be contacted by diving into the detection settings menu as well as creating a detection area. If your camera is capturing motion from something like waving a tree in a corner, adding a detection area that excludes that area can help make notifications more useful.
In event recording, a recording schedule can be set as well as enabling or disabling motion and sound events that will trigger the recording. With Cam Plus, this tab also allows playing and stopping recordings from detected people, pets, packages and vehicles.
Notifications can also be customized to any needs by toggling on and off AI events, all motion events, and audio events.
Free registration vs subscription
Out of the box, the Cam Pan v2 comes with a two-week trial of Cam Plus. Once that runs out, Wyze cameras are limited to 12-second footage recordings with a five-minute cool-down period between recorded events. The Basic plan also features motion alerts and voice-activated alerts, but not the Cam Plus’ advanced AI alerts. This will change in February, and we’ll talk more about that in the Wyze Cam Plus Lite section below.
One of the essential updates in my opinion is the addition of an SD card. With the card, the cameras will record video 24/7 in the internal storage, which can still be viewed through the Wyze app. While this adds to the cost, Wyze sells a 32GB card for $13, and we often feature deals on micro SD cards at 9to5Toys.com.
Wise Cam Plus
To unlock the most powerful features, Cam Pan v2 requires a subscription to Wyze Plus which costs $2 per month per camera. Therefore, for a single camera, this is a very reasonable price, but if you have several cameras it can start to increase.
With Cam Plus, advanced notifications for people detection, parcel detection, vehicle detection and pet detection are unlocked.
Cam plus also opens up the possibility of recording full-length video without lag between clips. So if you’re not using an SD card, this is a great way to get longer recordings and make sure you don’t miss any events.
Wise Cam Lite
Wyze recently announced Wyze Plus Lite, which will be the new bottom tier for Wyze Plus and is a pick-your-own subscription price, which can be $0. If you don’t want to pay any money for the added features, then there’s no need.
With Cam Plus Lite, Wyze cameras will now be able to use people detection to get clearer notifications. In a forum post announcing this new plan, Wyze stated that on average users receive 250 notifications per week, and that 70% of users have not watched recorded videos at all for 30 days or more.
With people detection available to everyone at any cost, Wyze hopes to provide a more meaningful notification for everyone. People detection is a great feature considering the amount of movement the cameras can capture, so I see this as a win.
One note here, starting February 15th, all users will need to subscribe to Wyze Cam Lite or Cam Plus to continue using cloud storage for recordings. Users who do not subscribe to these new plans will lose the cloud-based registration feature.
Wyze Cam Pan v2: Smart Home Integration
While Wyze products do not support HomeKit, they will integrate with Google Assistant, Alexa, and IFTTT.
9to5 Take game
With the Cam Pan v2, the Wyze has another great camera in its arsenal. This new version’s upgrades make it more powerful and capable. If you want to save some money or want a separate camera, the Cam v3 is also a great choice. But, if you need something that can go around a large room, the Cam Pan v2 is a great choice.
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