Recommendation on a Trail Camera

Hi there,

I’m planning to get a trail camera to put in my backyard. There has been a fox visiting for a while and the kids want to see it. We are also curious what else comes by at night. There are quite a few choices in the $100 range on Amazon. Very hard to pick… I wonder if anyone here has any experience with them and has a recommendation.

Thanks.

5 Comments
  1. Tom 3 weeks ago

    Browning makes good, inexpensive trail cameras

  2. Ian 3 weeks ago

    I have several cheapo chinese-origin trailcams (mostly apeman, though it wouldn’t surprise me if different brands were all built in the same factory). One thing i’d watch out for is the angular field of view (i’ve come across several claiming to be “wide-field”, but it usually turns out that that relates to the sensors, not the lens).

    These cheap ones are pretty much all “lo-glo” rather than “no-glo”, but that doesn’t seem to trouble the urban wildlife i get in the back garden. For that purpose, they’re perfectly adequate.

    I’d be interested to hear the experiences of anyone who’s using more expensive “named-brand” gear (like Bushnell). Other than the lo/no-glo issue, does image quality justify the factor 5 or so price difference?

  3. Miles Foster 3 weeks ago

    Hi,

    I agree with both comments so far (Tom and Ian) but I suspect anything around the $100 dollar mark may be a false economy. However, I am currently testing a Swann OutbackCam, which is at the cheaper end of the market and might be perfectly adequate for your purposes. Also, as Ian says, low glow cameras are cheaper and garden wildlife does not seem to be bothered by the visible flash, so you can probably rule out the more expensive no glow models. Browning is one of the leading brands and are popular with professionals. It’s true, as Tom says, the range does include cheaper cameras, but unfortunately I have had two Browning Recon Force Edge cameras in succession that were faulty and had to be returned, which naturally put me off the brand. However, I seem to have been unlucky and have heard better reports from others, so I would definitely consider Browning. Does it matter to you where they are made? Brownings seem to be made in Thailand, which might appeal if you want to avoid contributing to the Chinese economy…. Currently I have two Bushnells, also a good make, a Core DS No Glow and a Core DS Low Glow. They are both proving reliable and giving good image quality but they are a lot more than $100, I am afraid. Good luck!

  4. nicolas 3 weeks ago

    Hi. I use Browning SpecOps camera traps for quite so time now, after testing other brands. I used several dozens of them over the years. About 10% of the units I tested had flaws: the most common problem was that the image was not sharp (out of focus) on one side of the frame (as if the camera was not properly paralleled?); a few other had problem of wrong triggering (after an animal had trigger the camera, it would automatically trigger every minute till the card is full…). I sent back all failing unit and they were replaced.
    Aside those 10%, all the other worked perfectly well, and I am hapy with the sensitivity of trigerring and the quality of the images.
    So to sum up , I recommend to test every camera trap at home, especially for the focus. Regards.
    Nicolas

  5. Ian 3 weeks ago

    Looks like there’s a lot of love out there for Browning. In the UK, at least, their products come in at something like twice or more the price of cheapo chinese counterparts, and well north of the $100 suggested by the original poster. So, just saying, for his/her (fairly undemanding) purposes, if finance is a factor then bottom-end gear may well serve — i’ve had three apeman models (and a couple of others), without any problems. And when i broke an apeman through my own stupidity/clumsiness, their customer service was really outstanding.

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