An Inside view of Chicagoland Village’s Video Venture

Background The Village of Schaumburg is a well-known northwestern suburb of Chicago and recognized by many in our industry as the former home of Motorola. With a population of just under 75,000 residents, Schaumburg was recently ranked as the best place to live in Illinois (2018) and the 9th best place to live in the […]

Ideal Network Tester Will Pass Any Tech’s Test

Let’s face it, most (if not all) of us who work in electronics are gadget nuts. We like to work with tools that make our daily lives easier. We also like them to have a “neat” factor, the type of tools that make a task fun to work through. Last, but certainly not least, we […]

Review: Hikvision Budget PTZ Delivers on Value Promise

The Hikvision DS-2DE4220W-AE is a p/t/z camera available in three variations; one for in-ceiling mounting, one for surface mounting and one for outdoor pendant/wall mounting. When I look around today’s CCTV market I’m always amazed and amused by the number of manufacturers with IP-based cameras in their portfolio. As I’ve said before, the IP market […]

Review: Kwikset Obsidian Touchscreen Deadbolt Enlivens Door Security

The Kwikset Obsidian is a motorized deadbolt lock with a touchscreen keypad for control and utilizes Z-Wave Plus. We have reviewed a number of electronic locks, including units with touchscreens (deadbolt and lever handle models), push-button locks of both types, and even a deadbolt-only smart lock with no means of exterior access (other than the […]

Is Panasonic Selling Its Chinese Security Camera Factory?

Panasonic is reportedly selling a security camera factory in China due to disappointing sales outside of Japan. TOKYO — Panasonic may be considering selling its security camera manufacturing business in Suzhou, a city in southeast China’s Jiangsu province, due to disappointing sales outside of Japan, according to Nikkei Asia. The news outlet is reporting that […]

Review: TRENDnet NVR PoE+ Switch Displays Its Value

To a large extent, network switches are becoming (or have become) commodity items. At a given price range there are more similarities than differences; with durability, throughput, and features marching in lock-step up the price range for different manufacturers. Low-end switches are unmanaged, and the PoE models are just fine for low power devices. Higher-end […]

Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Is a Hub Above

In December 2014, we reviewed the Qolsys IQ Panel, mentioning that it was an extremely difficult product to review. This is not a single function device but rather what I would term a partnership product. It requires the panel itself, myriad accessories, the back-end support of Alarm.com, and the involvement of a skilled and trained […]

Exploring the Unintended Consequences of Business Acquisitions

Acquisitions and consolidation have always been part of the security industry food chain, but end users are more frequently becoming collateral damage. Much has been said about the need for end users to select businesses that make a profit, and for integrators to price a job to make sure there are reasonable returns for their […]

An Inside Look at Beta Testing the IQ Panel 2

Bench Test reviewer Bob Grossman shares what it was like to beta test the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 over 18 months. Back in December of 2014 we reviewed the Qolsys IQ Panel as one of our earlier bench tests. When we review a product, it is generally done over a fixed time period ranging from […]