Mobotix Q24M-SEC-D11 review
Not only is Mobotix’ latest Q24M one of the first 3-megapixel IP cameras to market but it can do something no other product can: it offers a 360-degree all-round view and can monitor four separate areas simultaneously.
The Q24M uses a hemispherical lens and a large 1/2in CMOS sensor. Mounted in the ceiling, it gives a full view all round while a wall mount provides a 180-degree vista.
The Q24M supports PoE, has integral microphone and loudspeaker, incorporates an SD memory card slot with a 4GB MicroSD card included in the price, and the Secure version on review is IP65-rated for outdoor use. This means it’s fully protected against dust and can withstand low pressure jets of water from all directions.
Along with the standard mounting plate and sealing ring, Mobotix offers optional vandal-proof covers and special low-profile ceiling mounts. The network cable has a rubber sealing grommet and clip to hold it firmly in place, and the MicroSD card can only be removed by taking the camera apart.
Installation is simple. The camera’s web interface offers a quick-start wizard which goes through securing access, choosing the video mode and setting up network parameters. Press a tiny, well hidden button on the camera’s faceplate and it will announce its IP address, subnet mask and MAC address using its loudspeaker.
The camera supports M-JPEG and Mobotix’s own MxPEG video codec, which offers reduced network bandwidth usage when streaming high-resolution images. This also offers a top frame rate of 30fps in VGA mode, which drops to 20fps if you choose the full 2,048 x 1,536 setting.
We were stunned when we first saw the live view. It’s not just that the image quality is good, it’s what the camera can do with it that’s so impressive.
All controls are laid out along the top and side of the image so you can pick from a myriad functions, such as image size, display mode, quality, brightness, zoom and frame rate. In full image mode you get the typical globular fish-eye view but move to normal mode and the camera straightens it out.
You have panorama plus double panorama views and, finally, the surround mode, which splits the view into four equal segments. Highlight one of these views and you can use the 8x digital zoom and virtual pan and tilt functions in it without affecting the other three.
For movement detection you can create multiple windows in the main view. It’s not as intuitive as the system used by Axis’ cameras but after a few practice runs we did get the hang of it. Events can have multiple actions linked to them such as sending images to internal storage, an FTP server or email address, calling a SIP phone or sending a message to an IP address.
The Q24M is one of the most versatile IP cameras we’ve yet seen. Its field of view is quite remarkable and it backs this up with a quality range of surveillance and recording features. And, at £748 exc VAT from Network Webcams, it’s also good value.
|Warranty RTB years||3|
|Warranty C&R years||0|
|Warranty On-site years||0|
|Warranty extra information|
|Sensor type||1/2in progressive scan RGB CMOS|
|Video frame rate||30fps|
|Wired adapter speed||100Mbits/sec|
|Power over Ethernet||yes|
|Compression scheme||MJPEG, MxPEG|