How Well Does Sony’s 4K IP Surveillance Camera Perform?

SSI put the Sony SNC-VM772R fixed dome camera under the microscope.

Setup

Sony, like other manufacturers, requires the use of a setup software program to find and assign IP addresses to its network cameras. Since I had dealt with other Sony cameras in the past I had the Sony SNCToolbox application already installed on my computer, which is required to find and assign a static IP to the cameras. While it wasn’t hard to use, I still prefer to be able to fire up a Web browser and login via a known IP address – just a personal preference.

After I found the camera and assigned it an IP address, I opened up the Web browser to view and work with the camera’s settings. I went to the box to find a quick start-up guide or a CD containing the manual, however, there wasn’t any setup/operational literature in the camera’s shipping box.

I subsequently went online to find a manual for the camera where I soon found out the U.S. Web site for Sony security cameras didn’t have any information available yet. I called Sony’s tech support. The gentleman I spoke with was helpful but he too was puzzled when even he couldn’t find any setup/operation literature in his database.

As he was searching he decided to go to the Sony Canadian Web site where, lo and behold, he found the user manual for the camera. He directed me to the Sony CA site where I was able to download the only manual either of us could find. I opened the manual and gave it a cursory examination for details on the camera (c’mon, you don’t think I read the whole thing now do you?) and read how to make changes to the camera for recording and viewing. Once into the camera’s menu it was very easy to navigate through the various tabs and camera settings.

The camera provided a detailed image when set up in an outdoor test environment with vibrant colors and clarity throughout the image field.

Testing

I set up the SNC-VM772R in an outdoor environment for testing the video streams and the camera functions. Since it was a pleasant day I can’t attest to the camera’s ability in cold or hot weather, but given the unit’s design I have to believe it will perform as presented.

I worked through the camera menu and tried setting up the target zones for the quad views as was shown in the camera’s datasheet. I had a bit of confusion in the setup of the camera due to some wording in the manual. Part of this was because of the translation into English – some of the phrasing was a bit confusing, however I was able to work through it and try the various settings.

Verdict

Features: 4
Construction: 4
Setup: 3
Performance: 5
Overall: 4

* Scores based on a 1-5 scale

The camera is feature loaded and has built-in analytics for the intelligent video feature sets. While this i
s good for using the camera with Sony’s VMS systems I’m not sure how the camera will work with other manufacturers’ systems.

I was unable to incorporate the camera into my test VMS system since the camera was so new. The camera was also supposed to have a 20-megapixel “Evidence Shot” setting, however the camera I received didn’t have this option available in its menu. I looked on the Sony Web site to see if I could find any firmware updates for the camera but like the manual I didn’t have any luck. I’m sure the production cameras will have all the advertised feature sets so I will wait to check this out the next time I have a chance to work with the SNC-VM772R.

Conclusions

The Sony SNC-VM772R is a solid camera and will provide the end user with many varied video options. The unit’s MSRP might give some pause when considering the camera, however I expect this to moderate as things tend to over time.

*****

Products are tested and reviewed by R. Grossman and Associates Inc., an independent consulting firm specializing in electronic security products and projects.

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