Review - TOP-201 Super Mini 720P HD IP-Cam (The Cheapest IP Cam So Far !!)

Discussion in 'IP Cameras' started by lojix, Dec 13, 2014.

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  1. lojix

    lojix Getting the hang of it

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    That is a pretty bad image. I wouldn't advise camera's of this quality to be used for any serious application where the image may be relied on. Although in my experience with two different versions of this camera, they well exceeded my expectations and perform very well.

    I have tested them in a range of lighting situations but have not experienced image quality as poor as what you have shown, even using the default camera parameters. Did you try changing the settings from the default at all to work with the lighting conditions?

    [​IMG]
     

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  2. lojix

    lojix Getting the hang of it

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    @msantic Looks great! ...pretty well contrasted image for night time :)
     
  3. niofar

    niofar n3wb

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    I would buy an hidden camera (in PIR Sensor), 720p or 1080p, with IR Led for night vision, and with IR Cut for better day vision.
    Could you suggest a model?
    Thank You.
     
  4. lojix

    lojix Getting the hang of it

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    Range of different versions - This should get you started

    HD 1080P PIR IP Camera - Full Spec

    [​IMG]
     
  5. truxntrax

    truxntrax n3wb

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    I have a camera with this board... Therefore do the pins "reserved for POE" deal with a 48v poe injector? My gut feel tell me not and I will fry the board... However why else are there some extra pins on the P3 connector?

    Many thanks for the good detailed information.
     
  6. lojix

    lojix Getting the hang of it

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    Yes you are correct, the power needs to be processed. there are add-on boards which are priced fairly reasonably like the one below.
    On my version of this board, I have connected a microphone for audio-input and it works great! I can post pictures if anybody is interested in seeing how I did it.

    [​IMG]
    Product Source Link
     
  7. hkim

    hkim n3wb

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    Hi!

    My top-201 camera broke down, it probably got overvoltage due to faulty power supply. I attach a picrure, you can see the damage left to the sensor, below the hole. The ic left to that whole has white powder on it. Do you think there is any chance repairing it?
    [​IMG][​IMG]
     

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  8. ex250

    ex250 n3wb

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    Hello, my first post here! I was reading this thread in the search for a cheap camera, much ifo for a noob like me, but I can't find info about if they save the files on a storage directly, like a NAS without use other software. In the captures of the camera firmware posted some pages ago, I not saw that there was such option to select a directory over the lan, I'm wrong?
     
  9. ex250

    ex250 n3wb

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    Thanks for answer, I think the query is much simple, sorry, maybe I did not explain well. Is this camera itself capable of write the footage directly to a shared folder in filles each minute or 5 minutes, without the need of a computer?, for example in a folder created in a NAS device that is permanently powered on, like a dashcam does in a sd card...
     
  10. ex250

    ex250 n3wb

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    Thanks for answer. Well, just purchased one of this small cameras, with the 9-22mm lens, maybe enought to cover a car with some near detail parked from 30-40 meters away. When it arrive will experiment with the capabilities.
     
  11. alastairstevenson

    alastairstevenson Known around here

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    Just in case you may puzzle a bit as I did - if its night-time cover you are looking for:
    I also bought a varifocal lens variant, and there's no doubt it's a bargain for the price, I'm happy with it, works just fine with my Hikvision NVR.
    I didn't really have a use for it until recently when I wanted to set up a temporary zoomed low-level view through a window towards our front door. There have been a couple of wannabe milk stealers overnight recently, but no usable face shots from existing cameras.
    A perfectly good image during the day - but the varifocal lens has an IR block filter coating, so not actually usable at night when the only outside illumination is from IR lamps.
    I should have wondered why the daytime colour rendition was good when there was no IR-cut shutter built in.
     
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  12. lojix

    lojix Getting the hang of it

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    Good info... I purchased the varifocal lens separate, which should arrive any day now.

    [​IMG]
    - Product Page -

    I'm looking forward to checking out its capability [​IMG]
     
  13. alastairstevenson

    alastairstevenson Known around here

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    So what do you think the 'IR' written on the side means? IR blocked, or IR passed?
    I suppose you'll find out soon enough ....

    *Edit* That picture looks the same as mine.
     
  14. alastairstevenson

    alastairstevenson Known around here

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    But my Top-201 using it is blind to normal IR illumination.
    So I'm speculating there is an IR cut lens coating. Presumably to give good colour rendition during daylight when there isn't a mechanical IR cut filter in the camera module.

    *Edit* Unless the Top-201 has a fixed, built-in IR cut filter.
    Maybe I need to get my small screwdriver out.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 10, 2015
  15. lojix

    lojix Getting the hang of it

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    The IR film on the lens is required on this camera (in its stock form), but I am hoping the varifocal lens does come with the film attached!! ...I was only going on the assumption that it does as it looks like the the same one as other models that are sold with the lens.

    [​IMG]

    Without the IR-Cut module on board or any IR LEDs, the camera is not suited to any of my low-lux/night-vision applications.

    I tried using some of my other lenses on the Hi3518E (TOP-201) camera that do not have the IR film on them, which produced the usual washed out colors and pink/purple rendering of green in tree leaves and grass :rolleyes:

    So I guess it could also be worth noting to others, if you want to buy separate lenses for the "stock" configuration of this camera check that the lens has the IR film attached.
     

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  16. madmas

    madmas n3wb

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    TheUberOverLord,
    Is there any news from the manufacturer about the snapshot function?
     
  17. dui

    dui n3wb

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    Great thread with plenty of useful information !
    Does anyone know what the media port 34567 is used for please?
    Do we use this port instead of the rtsp 554 port?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 13, 2015
  18. lojix

    lojix Getting the hang of it

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    @alastairstevenson - My varifocal lens arrived!! ...It looks like I received an updated version from what was in the description as well :victorious:

    [​IMG]

    I haven't had a chance to play with it yet, but I'm very impressed with the build quality. The actual lenses are proper optical glass (not acrylic polymer). The aluminum body feels tough and when adjusting the focus, the movement is very tight and smooth. The large front lens element is good to control optical and barrel distortion.

    First impressions of this lens, it seems excellent. It's sturdy and engineered well. The lens was also packaged well, with a protective cap on the screw thread as well as the outer lens element, and the adjustment screws were separate to protect them during transit.

    Lens Quick Specs

    [TABLE="class: table quick-detail"]

    [TD="class: name J-name"]Resolution:
    [/TD]
    [TD="class: value J-value"] 3MP[/TD]
    [TD="class: name J-name"] Sensor Area:
    [/TD]
    [TD="class: value J-value"] 1/2.7"[/TD]
    [TD="class: name J-name"] Focal Length:
    [/TD]
    [TD="class: value J-value"] 2.8-12mm[/TD]

    [TD="class: name J-name"] Mount Type:[/TD]
    [TD="class: value J-value"] M12*P0.5[/TD]
    [TD="class: name J-name"] Iris Operation:[/TD]
    [TD="class: value J-value"] Fixed Iris[/TD]
    [TD="class: name J-name"] Focus Operation:[/TD]
    [TD="class: value J-value"] Manual[/TD]

    [TD="class: name J-name"] Relative Aperture:
    [/TD]
    [TD="class: value J-value"] 1.4±0.15mm[/TD]
    [TD="class: name J-name"]Back Focal Length:[/TD]
    [TD="class: value J-value"] 6.55-11.55±0.15mm[/TD]
    [TD="class: name J-name"] Lens Structure:[/TD]
    [TD="class: value J-value"] 8Groups, 9Elements (All Glass)[/TD]

    [/TABLE]

    As soon as I get a chance I will be testing it on a couple of cameras to have a play with it.
     

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  19. truxntrax

    truxntrax n3wb

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    Think I may have bricked my camera :-( Firmware upgrade never completed and now the camera doesn't show up on my network.

    I read in the ealrier posts that shorting 2 pins on the board may reset?

    Any other thoughts of bringing my cam back to life?

    Thanks
     
  20. truxntrax

    truxntrax n3wb

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    Hi Don. I have tried the reset utility with no luck. The cam doesn't appear on the network. The reset utility says camera cannot be found (or something similar).

    Fyi I was uploading the firmware via ie using the active x presented interface. The upload got to 3 blocks progress then just stopped. Eventually I power cycled the cam.

    Thanks.
     
  21. truxntrax

    truxntrax n3wb

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    Hi,

    I checked the firmware and know it's correct as used it on same cam, number 2, but via the device manager software.

    Attached is a pic of my specific board removed from camera. Are these the right pins to a TTY connection?[​IMG]

    Also can I use this to attach to it (no serial port on my laptop...) Its a USB to RS232 converter?[​IMG]

    Many thanks for your assistance in trying to get it going again!
     

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  22. truxntrax

    truxntrax n3wb

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    Hi,

    Cable ordered.

    Here is my firmware pre the attempted flash.

    Hopefully we can write a guide for others at the end of this.

    Likely a couple of days before the delivery gets to me- I will message as soon as it comes. (May be able to borrow one from work sooner, hopefully)[​IMG]

    Thanks
     

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  23. dui

    dui n3wb

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    exploring the General_HZXM_IPC_HI3518E_50H10L_S38_V4.02.R12.20150116_ALL.bin file we can see the file structure as follows:
    [​IMG]

    the contents of the Install file are as follow:
    Code:
    // 本升级包适合的硬件列表,以及升级命令序列。
    
    
    // 升级包的可信任性应该得到保证,否则设备有被hack的可能。
    
    
    // 升级包的可信任性应该得到保证,否则设备有被hack的可能。
    
    
    {// 升级命令序列,必须按顺序执行。升级命令包含标准的shell命令和特殊的用于烧写
    
    
    // flash分区的burn命令。
    
    
       "Commands" : [
          "burn u-boot.bin.img boot",
          "burn custom-x.cramfs.img custom",
          "burn romfs-x.cramfs.img romfs",
          "burn user-x.cramfs.img user",
          "burn web-x.cramfs.img web"
       ], // 设备列表成员的格式为[设备类型,硬件版本]
       "Devices" : [
          [ "HI3518E_50H10L_S39", "1.00" ]
       ]
    }
    
    
    
    and the contents of InstallDesc file as follows:
    Code:
    {
       "UpgradeCommand" : [
          {
             "Command" : "Burn",
             "FileName" : "u-boot.bin.img"
          },
          {
             "Command" : "Burn",
             "FileName" : "u-boot.env.img"
          },
          {
             "Command" : "Burn",
             "FileName" : "custom-x.cramfs.img"
          },
          {
             "Command" : "Burn",
             "FileName" : "romfs-x.cramfs.img"
          },
          {
             "Command" : "Burn",
             "FileName" : "user-x.cramfs.img"
          },
          {
             "Command" : "Burn",
             "FileName" : "web-x.cramfs.img"
          }
       ],
       "Hardware" : "HI3518E_50H10L_S39",
       "CompatibleVersion" : 1,
       "Vendor" : "General"
    }
    
    when we have serial port connected then a 'cat /proc/mtd' command will show the partition table
     

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  24. truxntrax

    truxntrax n3wb

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    My TTY to usb converter is now here. Will be ready to move to the next step tonight. Will be connecting from a Ubuntu 14.04 laptop. Do you guys know what connection settings I need to connect?

    Many thanks
     
  25. dui

    dui n3wb

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    Try the following (found on another site):
    camera board's RX to TTL adapter's TX and so on.
    Plug adapter to a computer and set speed to 115200 bauds (115200 8N1) without hardware flow control.
     
  26. truxntrax

    truxntrax n3wb

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    I now have tty access to the cam. 20150317_212338.jpg 20150317_212858.jpg
     
  27. lojix

    lojix Getting the hang of it

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    I've been following along here. I'm glad to know there is some support being developed if the need for recovery arises.
     
  28. raceboy

    raceboy n3wb

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    Hello.
    Im new in this forum. My English is not so good:) And i have one question about those cheap ip cameras. I owned cheat ip camera (Kavass IP 720p). Product model of board is Ipc_hi3518c_50h10l_s38 as i see on 雄迈百科. System is V4.02.R11.00002510.10010. The problem is that when i put it on the latest firmware...the ONVIF is gone. (On old firmware was onvif on 8899 port). There's no more 8899 port if i look up with putty (netstat -la). Is it posible to enable onvif?

    thanks

    peter
     
  29. raceboy

    raceboy n3wb

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    here's capture:
    [​IMG]

    and caputure of netstat:
    [​IMG]
     

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    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 18, 2015
  30. raceboy

    raceboy n3wb

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    yes this is the version of firmware that i upgrade. older one was from 2013. and has open 8899 port. is it posible to get older firmware or edit new one? or if i can upgrade firmware from similar camera?