View & Recording Options
I tried the LiveShow - ActiveX option, and the video images viewed in the window looked fairly good. Even at higher resolutions which uses more bandwidth, the motion was fluid.
The LiveShow window (Figure 12) gives you the option of either taking a snapshot or recording the video directly to a networked share. While this might seem more convenient than running an application on a PC, you still need a PC running an ActiveX capable browser. So a PC is still in the picture, since the recording smarts aren't entirely built into the camera itself.
To test this, I set up the TV-IP301W for 320 x 240 (resolution), high quality, and audio enabled. I ran multiple tests using both wired and wireless connections, and I also made recordings to a network drive and to a local disk.
Figure 12: IP301W ActiveX LiveShow
You can see from Figure 12 that the controls for digital zoom are located above the video image, and that the options for saving a snapshot or recording a video are located in the lower left corner. From the LiveShow window, you also have the option to save the file to a local drive or a network share.
I'm sorry to report that the saved video pixilated (blurred) badly with even a little motion and that the audio recorded in the file was not at all synchronized with the video. I had expected the .AVI file to look as good as the video on the screen. Whereas the live video looked fluid with little pixilation, the quality of the video in the recorded file was a real disappointment. You can download this test file (3MB zipped AVI) and see for yourself.
In addition to the Web browser interface, the TV-IP301W ships with IPView Pro, a Windows application that lets you monitor up to 16 cameras. From within the program, you can also launch the Web interface in a window that gives you complete access to the browser-based configuration.
IP View does enable a few additional features such as scheduled recording and recording based on motion detection, and it does allow for email notification. However, it lacks FTP capabilities.
Considering the price of the camera, I felt that the IPView Pro was underpowered compared to other applications I've used.