In this blog post, we will explore the night vision capabilities of the Tapo C100 Wi-Fi security camera. We’ll look at the advertised night vision features and real-world functionality based on user reviews and determine if the Tapo C100 can actually see in the dark.
- Tapo C100 has a 30ft advertised night vision range from 850nm infrared LEDs
- Real-world functionality varies – some users report issues with night vision.
- When working correctly, C100 can see in the dark through IR illumination
- Quality control and firmware updates may resolve night vision problems
Related Post: TP-Link Tapo C100 Camera Review.
Does the Tapo C100 Have Night Vision According to the Specifications?
Yes, the Tapo C100 technical specifications clearly state that this home security camera has night vision.
The key night vision features, as per the Tapo product descriptions, are:
- Advanced Night Vision – Provides a visual distance of up to 30 feet at night. This allows the camera to see fairly far, even in pitch-dark conditions when infrared lights kick in.
- 850nm Infrared LEDs – The C100 camera has 25 infrared LEDs that emit light at the 850 nanometer wavelength. This infrared illumination enables black-and-white visuals in low light and complete darkness. The 850nm wavelength is typical and effective for security camera night vision requirements.
- Low Light Sensitivity – In addition to active IR lighting, the image sensor and lens system in the Tapo C100 are sensitive enough to provide visibility even in low ambient light conditions like dawn or dusk.
So on paper, the Tapo C100 checks all the boxes in terms of specifications required for night vision capability in home security cameras. A 30-foot visibility range from built-in infrared emitters is pretty standard and sufficient for most indoor and outdoor areas around a typical home.
Does the Tapo C100 Night Vision Actually Work Properly?
While the Tapo C100 is advertised to have excellent night vision, real-world user reports paint a different picture when it comes to actual functionality.
There are quite a few complaints from Tapo C100 owners about issues with the camera’s night vision not working correctly:
- One user reported that the infrared LEDs turn on when switching to night mode, but there is still no actual night vision visible in the camera feed. Only a fully black screen even though the IR lights come on.
- In another case, the infrared lights simply refused to turn on when night vision mode was enabled. So, the camera produced totally dark footage without any visibility enhancement.
- Firmware updates and factory resets did not resolve the night vision problems as per multiple users. The issues likely seem to be caused by hardware faults rather than just buggy software.
So even though the Tapo C100 checks all the boxes on paper, real-world night vision issues indicate there are some quality control problems with a fairly high number of units.
This results in cameras not being able to provide any sort of nighttime visibility – making them essentially useless for security purposes after dark.
When Functioning Correctly, Can the Tapo C100 See in Total Darkness?
When purchased from a seller with a good return policy and replaced if needed, most Tapo C100 units can provide usable night vision if the infrared lights activate properly.
Users who received properly functioning C100 cameras generally found the night vision to work adequately for home security requirements.
The 25 infrared LEDs onboard the camera are able to illuminate subjects at distances of 20 to 30 feet when they switch on correctly.
So, the night vision visibility range lives up to official specs when operational. The camera can make out people, objects, and movement at reasonable distances in pitch-dark conditions.
The black-and-white night vision footage is decent enough to serve security and surveillance needs in most typical home installation scenarios.
However, the mediocre light sensitivity does mean very dark rooms or outdoor locations far from the camera see deteriorated video quality at night – though still visible.
In summary – the Tapo C100 WiFi security camera is designed and spec’d to provide approximately 30 feet of night vision capability. This is possible through 25 onboard infrared LEDs paired with reasonably light-sensitive optics.
However, quality control issues mean a fairly high percentage of Tapo C100 units run into problems with night vision not functioning correctly or at all.
So, while night vision is hit-and-miss, functional C100 cameras can deliver usable visibility in dark conditions through infrared illumination. Adequate for home use when working properly.
Those looking to purchase the Tapo C100 should buy from retailers with simple return/exchange policies in case they lose the night vision lottery.
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