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CNET First Look
How tough is Oplink TripleShield Security?This well-designed DIY security system is impressive, if you can stomach the monthly fees.
Hey, CNET. I'm Ry Crist, and I've got the Oplink Security TripleShield package here to talk about. We looked to the package in comparison with iSmart Alarm, another do-it-yourself security kit that we reviewed. This is very similar. It's got a lot of components that do the same thing. It's got the same contact sensors, that when they separate, will trigger the alarm. It's good for doors, and windows. It's got the remote control tag, here. You can control it from your keychain. It's got a motion detector. It comes with a panic siren. And if you pay $350, instead of $199, you get two of these, this motion detecting cameras that are capable of switching into night vision mode. All that's controlled by the Oplink OPU, the Oplink Processing Unit, right here. It's just a router for all these devices, it kind a talks to them, and tells them what to do, and organizes it all. So it's a pretty simple, familiar system, and it works pretty well. I tested it out at my own home, and I was very impressed. The app is very easy to use, the cameras, in particular, worked very well. That's the problem we saw of iSmart Alarm that Oplink doesn't seem to have. The cameras set up quickly, and they do a good job at switching from day vision to night vision. So when the lights go down, it will automatically adjust and start capturing night vision footage. And that's really cool. Another nice feature is that, if the alarm is triggered, the cameras will automatically start recording for 30 seconds, and save that clip to your app. So if something happens, and someone breaks in, you're gonna have a video of that break in, and you can send that to the police, to the insurance company, or you can just check in live, and see what's going on. It's a really nice feature, it works well. Another nice perk about this system that we haven't seen with iSmart Alarm is that, you have the option of a cellular back-up. You can purchase an additional modem that for an extra $10 a month, we'll give you that cellular back-up, in case your wireless network goes down, and that's nice. That's a good option to have, I think. The thing that might scare a lot of potential customers away from Oplink is that, unlike iSmart Alarm, they charge a monthly fee. If you get the TripleShield package, with the two cameras, you're gonna spend a $19.99 a month and fees, in order to run your system. You have the option to add extra sensors at our cart style. But if you add extra cameras, it's gonna cost you another $5 per month on top of the monthly fees you are already paying. Still, the monthly fees are a lot less than you'd pay for a big security firm. And the system works pretty well. The cameras are really nice; the app works great, so I liked it. I'm not sure that I like it more than iSmart Alarm to justify those fees though. But that's really up to you. If you're not convinced that you need the cameras and you don't wanna spend $20 bucks a month, but take a look at the Oplink Alarm Shield package. It's the same thing as this without the cameras and the monthly fee is a lot less. The bottom line is that, this is a reasonable security option for the do-it-yourself mind of consumer. But the fees might be a bit of a turn off. So you'll have to decide for yourself if it's worth it. For CNET, I'm Ry Crist.