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distinguished member(1445)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
01/08/2021 04:58AM  
Please educate me. I know nothing about trail cameras or photography. I do know that there is a huge range of capabilities and price out there.

I am interested in something for my back yard. I am curious about my night time visitors, but not curious enough to throw buckets of cash around.

Some info that might be relevant:
My yard is about 80' x 120' with woods on three sides and the house on the other.
After the last wind storms, I only have three widely spaced trees in the yard itself.
An Acer Chromebook is what I have for computer capabilities.

Thanks in advance for the help.
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Savage Voyageur
distinguished member(14164)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
01/08/2021 09:30AM  
There are plenty of reasonable priced trail cameras on the market. Look at Cabellas or bass pro or outdoors type stores. They simply work by installing batteries, installing a memory card and strapping it to a tree. After a week or two go get the memory card and put it in your desktop, laptop, iPad or even iPhone. On most computers and iPads all you do is plug in the chip and it takes you to the pictures. You might need a low cost adapter to view your video card. Some take batteries some are solar power. Some you remove the video card to view the pictures, some are cellular LTE that can be viewed remotely. Just like anything else, it depends on your needs and wants in service. You can buy a nice two pack of camo trail cams for $150.00 at Cabellas.

I put up a Arlo home camera system on my house doors last summer. It was cool to see the various animals walking around. Cats, dogs, fox, squirrels, possum, raccoon, deer, rabbits, birds. The usual suspects.
01/08/2021 12:43PM  
I just picked up a second one this fall, and in my limited research on the topic I concluded that you can spend a lot more and get a little better one, or spend not that much and get a pretty good one. More knowledgeable folks may disagree. I was surprised how many higher dollar ones still had pretty poor ratings and reviews. Part of that is the more you spend, the more you expect, so the more likely you may be critical, but some pretty inexpensive ones seems popular and delivered quite a bit.

One piece of advice I'll offer is spend some time practicing with it - set it up, walk back and forth in front, then check out the images. They do vary on how fast they trigger (faster is better, or the animal/thief may walk past before the photo). Also getting the right frame - I've had photos of deer ears or deer feet when not careful enough. Also watch for swaying leaves, pine needles or weeds as they can trigger the images. Think like a trapper when you are setting it up.
01/08/2021 12:50PM  
Lots of good info here:
Trail Cam Pro
distinguished member (144)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
01/08/2021 03:39PM  
A few tips:

Pointing the camera east or west can cause some photo issues caused by the sun. The ideal direction is anywhere from ENE to WNW (to the north)

If possible, you get much better photos if you can set it up where a trail is funneled through a narrow spot(for deer at least).

Set the camera up about 3’ above ground. I have never set a camera too low, but have set them up too high.

Always set the camera on video mode. It’s much more interesting. You should decide if you want 10 second or 30 second videos. (Those are the two choices my cameras offer).

I agree that you don’t need to spend much money to get excellent photos. My most expensive camera was $64.

distinguished member(1445)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
01/09/2021 07:23AM  
sns, thank you. That is a lot of pertinent info. It points out stuff I would never have thought of on my own.

Fritty, what was the brand of the $64 camera? How long ago did you purchase it? How much did you use it? Would you buy another if you wanted one more camera for a newly found trail?
distinguished member (144)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
01/10/2021 01:46PM  
The brand of my $64 camera and 2 other $50 ones is Wildgame Innovations. I’m very happy with all of them. I also have 3 other lower quality cameras.

I bought that one about 3 years ago and the others a year or more before. The $64 one is set in the same spot all year. I originally set it up in May and get up there to check it in mid October. The batteries typically last that long. But it takes less than 100 videos.

One area for you to consider, is that all of my cameras have a motion sensing range of 40’ or less(and realistically around 25’). They also have a 1 second reaction time that does miss some deer. I assume more expensive cameras are better. Those factors aren’t that important to me.

Another models seem to come out all the time and I don’t generally see the exact same camera for sale year after year.

Good luck in your search.


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