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It seems like there are an endless amount of NVR systems and kits for sale these days which makes it hard to sort the good from the bad!

In this guide, we breakdown the best standalone systems and kits available along with ones to consider from up and coming brands. Our top pick is the Reolink NVR with the Amcrest NVR our runner up. The Heimvision Wireless NVR Kit is also worth consideration for something a little different.

9.7
Top Pick
Reolink RLN8-410 4K PoE NVR 8 Channel Pre-installed 2TB Hard Drive 4K/5MP/4MP/1080P HD 24/7 Surveillance Recording Home Security Camera System Video Recorder
A flexible security system

The Reolink 8-Channel PoE NVR is built for those who need flexibility with their security system.

Top Features

  • For sharp and crisp videos, it supports up to 4K resolution cameras.

  • To reduce wire clutter, it requires only one PoE connection

  • Support for 8 channels to reduce blind spots.

The Reolink 8-Channel PoE NVR is a popular choice that comes with support for 8 channels. To record videos from all connected cameras, it has a 2TB HDD. Even if you connect all 4K resolution cameras, you will not face any issues with low storage capacity. You can view captured footage, receive other important notifications using the Free Reolink app. To eliminate false alarms, this security system features motion detection.

Available NVR Kits including Security Cameras

Weatherproof 

Thanks to IP66 certification, the Reolink 8-Channel PoE NVR can withstand downpours, snowstorms, and dust. Wiring is a big concern for all users. No one likes an ugly mess of wires. To ensure its users don’t get frustrated with complex wirework, this security camera system comes with a PoE connection. It requires only one Ethernet cable, preferably a CAT5, or CT6, for power as well as data transmission. 

Motion detection

Motion trigger has become a standard feature in all security cameras. The Reolink 8-Channel PoE NVR also has it. It can detect motion, and upon detecting it, it will notify its users about possible security breaches. You can also customize the motion detection zones to ensure solid security you’re your home. With a built-in 4TB storage, this system can save vast amounts of video footage. Along with remote access and control, the security cameras also work with a microphone.

Tech Specs

Channels8
Storage2TB HDD
Resolution4K
AppFree Reolink App
Motion DetectionYes
Weatherproof IP66 certified
Connectivity PoE
Motion Trigger Yes
Notification Instant alert
Motion Detection Zone Customizable
External HDD4TB 
AudioMic (Optional)
Remote Access & control Yes
Compatibility with Operating systems Mac OS, and Windows
Refund policy 30-day money back
What we liked
  • Built-in 2TB HDD
  • Continuous recording
  • Works with multiple IP cameras
  • Motion detection
  • Supports external hard disk
What we didn't like
  • Some users have complained about buggy motion detection

Reasons to consider

  • Offers 2TB built-in HDD storage.
  • It’s easy to access both locally and remotely. 
  • Can be controlled using the free Reolink app.
  • Highly reliable and not high maintenance.
9.6
Runner-up
An intelligent security system

The Amcrest 4K 8CH NVR is an intelligent security system for smart homes.

Top Features

  • For more video storage capacity, it comes with a 6TB HDD.

  • Full coverage for large areas using 8 channels.

  • Real-time viewing of 8MP/4K video at 30 frames per second.

The Amcrest 4K 8CH NVRis a powerful security system with support for 8 different channels. You can connect 8x1080p/4K resolution cameras with this NVR. To ensure zero data loss, it comes with a 6TB HDD. You no longer need to regularly delete older footage to make room for newer ones. Users can live view and control this security system using the free Amcrest View app. 

Available NVR Kits including Security Cameras

As far as smart technologies are concerned, the Amcrest 4K 8CH NVRcomes with standard motion detection. You can program this camera system to start recording only when it detects a moving object. This revolutionary technology made security systems use less storage. Moreover, this security connects with cameras with single PoE wires. One benefit of PoE wires is that when compared to coaxial wires, they are not susceptible to video quality degradation. 

Access

As far as remote access is concerned, the Amcrest 4K 8CH NVR comes with a dedicated app. Users can also access and control their security system from a web browser from both Windows or Mac OS devices. Unlike other security systems that have no encryption measure, this one comes with H.265 advanced encryption technology. Setting it up is also very easy. To connect it with the app, users only need to scan the QR code at the bottom of the product.

Tech Specs

Channels8
Storage6TB HDD
Resolution 1080p-4K
AppFree Amcrest View App
Motion DetectionYes
Connectivity PoE 
Motion Trigger Yes
Notification Instant alert
Motion Detection Zone Customizable 
Remote Access & control Yes
Compatibility with Operating systems Mac OS, and Windows
Frames per Second 30fps
Encryption H.265
SetupApp Connection via QR code 
Backup USB 
Credibility CE & FCC certified
What we liked
  • Advanced H.265 compression
  • Intelligent backup and playback options
  • Search option
  • Easy to use
  • Motion detection
What we didn't like
  • Some users have complained about unreliable notification alerts
  • Some users have complained about the quality of the user manual

Reasons to consider

  • This model offers 6TB local storage.
  • It can be accessed locally and remotely. 
  • Can be controlled using the Amcrest View app, or any browser from Windows and Mac OS devices. 
  • Can withstand harsh conditions and it’s not difficult to keep it working.
9.5
Top Wireless
HeimVision HM241 Surveillance System, 8CH 1080P NVR,Outdoor/ Indoor Wireless Security Camera
An innovative security system

The HeimVision 1080P Wireless NVR Surveillance System is a leader in the wireless NVR domain

Top Features

  • Support for 8 channels

  • Comes with 4x960p cameras for taking high-quality videos

  • IP66 waterproof certified to withstand adverse climate

The HeimVision 1080P Wireless NVR Surveillance System uses reliable cameras that come with support for 8 channels. Thanks to its IP66 weatherproof certification, it can be used in both indoor and outdoor areas. 

Live Viewing

Furthermore, it can connect to 8 separate security cameras and allow its users live viewing from Mac or Windows devices. As it isn’t a hard-wired model, you don’t need to worry too much about the wirework.  To ensure optimal use of storage, it comes with a motion trigger.

Available NVR Kits including Security Cameras

As far as alerts are concerned, the HeimVision Surveillance System with 1080P NVR does a good job by notifying its users about important motion detection and other important events at their place. It can cover a 50 feet range at night. The NVR applies Digital Noise reduction technology to capture footage to ensure an ultra-HD video output. Users can playback recorded footage using the app or any web browser. They can rely on this security system when it comes to operating in adverse climates too.

Motion Detection

As far as optimal use of storage is concerned, the HeimVision Surveillance System with 1080P NVR triggers video recording only when it detects motion. Users can also adjust motion zones around their apartment. Having a 110-degrees wide field of view, there are some blind spots in one camera.

Tech Specs

Channels 8
Ideal Use Indoor + Outdoor
Resolution 1080p 
WeatherproofIP66 certified
Compatibility Windows/Mac OS
ConnectivityWireless 
Motion Detection Yes
NotificationInstant alert
Night Vision 50 Feet
Video Playback Yes
Digital Noise Reduction Yes
Operating Temperature-4°F to 122°F (-20°C to 50°C)
Motion Detection ZoneCustomizable 
Viewing angle 110-degrees
Infrared Lights850nm
What we liked
  • Motion Detection
  • Night Vision
  • Wi-Fi enabled
  • Instant alert
  • Easy setup
What we didn't like
  • Hard Drive needs to be purchased separately

Reasons to consider

  • This model offers local storage.
  • Can be accessed both locally and remotely.  
  • Uses an app for control. 
  • Both indoor and outdoor use, resistant to bad weather and easy to maintain.
9.4
Top ONVIF
A reliable security system

The Hiseeu 8Channel PoE Network Video Recorder with H.265x Compression is a reliable security system with advanced encryption technology.

Top Features

  • Works with almost any ONVIF supported IP security camera.

  • For better management supports smart backup, search, and playback features.

  • Advanced H.265 compression technology ensures more efficient storage of captured security footage.

The Hiseeu 8CH PoE NVR has a versatile range of compatibility with security cameras. It can work with any security camera that has a resolution ranging from 2MP-5MP. Unlike other popular security systems that do not support other third-party security cameras, this one is compatible with all ONVIF cameras. To accommodate all the capture footage from all the different cameras, it comes with hard drive storage. 

Available NVR Kits including Security Cameras

Interoperable

Some people are daunted at the idea of adding multiple cameras to their security system, and for obvious reasons. Older models of security systems required each of the cameras to be connected to the NVR separately. However, newer models such as this one don’t require heavy wire-work. They are good to go with only one PoE wire for each connected camera. Moreover, users get both VGA and HDMI output support for their recorded footage. They can also benefit from the USB backup feature.

To ensure optimal use of storage, this security system comes with smart motion detection. Users can also adjust the motion detection zones. As soon as this security system detects motion, it notifies its users via email or the App.

Tech Specs

Channels 8
EncryptionH.265
Connectivity PoE 
Resolution 3MP-5MP
CompatibilityONVIF IP cameras
Backup USB 
Output VGA and HDMI
Motion DetectionYes
Intelligent Search Yes
Motion Detection ZoneCustomizable 
Motion TriggerYes
Motion AlarmYes
NotificationInstant alerts via email/App
App Free Hiseeu App
What we liked
  • Supports 8 separate channels
  • Works with 2MP-5MP cameras
  • Compatible with external Hard Drive
  • Requires PoE connection
  • Motion detection
What we didn't like
  • Some users have complained about the NVR getting hot after continuous use

Reasons to consider

  • This model offers local storage.
  • Can be easily accessed both from far away and locally. 
  • Can be controlled using the Hiseeu app.
  • It’s a reliable security system that doesn’t require any special care.
9.3
An accurate security system

The Lorex 4K 8CH NVR is an accurate security camera system that ensures smart monitoring.

Top Features

  • Supports 8 channels with 8MP video resolution cameras.

  • Can be used for taking snapshots, live viewing, and instant playback.

  • The built-in 2TB HDD storage can be upgraded to up to 12TB.

The Lorex 4K 8CH NVR is built for high performance. It comes with a built-in 2 TB storage. However, you can upgrade this capacity to up to 12TB anytime you want. This security system supports 8 separate channels. Multiple viewing is also available using the free Lorex app.

Available NVR Kits including Security Cameras

Motion Trigger

As far as recording is concerned, the Lorex 4K 8CH NVR understands the needs of its user. For example, some of you might need a continuous recording, and some might prefer a motion trigger. This security system understands your needs and comes with both options. You can schedule a recording session, or you can solely set this security system to motion trigger.

Power over Ethernet

Just like other popular security systems, this security camera system comes with PoE connection, so say goodbye to wire-clutters. Using the FLIR secure app, you can live view your footage. Moreover, support for 4K cameras and the ability to capture videos at 30fps makes this security system a top pick.

Tech Specs

Channels8
HDD Storage 2TB
ConnectivityPoE 
Resolution 8MP
AppFLIR secure app
HDD extension 12TB
Video output 4K
Continuous recording Yes
Motion Detection Yes
Frames per second 30fps
Zoom Yes
What we liked
  • 4K video output
  • Multiple viewing
  • Continuous recording
  • Scheduled recording
  • Motion detection
What we didn't like
  • Some users have complained about the app’s usability

Reasons to consider

  • This model comes with 2TB HDD local storage.
  • You can anytime access it remotely and locally. 
  • Can be controlled from the app.
  • Easy to maintain and sure to last in time.
9.1
Budget Pick
A robust security system

The Foscam 960p 4CH NVR is a moderately priced yet feature-packed security system.

Top Features

  • Simultaneous recording and viewing of 960p videos at 30fps.

  • Also compatible with VGA and 720p video cameras.

  • For robust security, it can be integrated with external I/O systems.

The Foscam 960p 4CH NVR can work with multiple cameras that record at a 960p resolution and 30 frames per second. This security system also offers simultaneous viewing and recording from all the available channels.

If you have some older security cameras that you are not yet ready to dispose of, you can connect them with it. It is compatible with VGA and 720p resolution video cameras. Moreover, it can also be integrated with external I/O systems.

Available NVR Kits including Security Cameras

Foscam 8 Channels xPoE 720P Security CCTV Surveillance System NVR KIT
USFN3108XE-B4-1T

Wireless

As far as configuration is concerned, the Foscam 960p 4CH NVR is free of any wire-work. After you successfully configure and set it up, you can go ahead and access live footage from the app or Internet Explorer.  It also comes with a motion trigger feature, meaning it will only start working after it detects moving objects. Unlike other security camera systems, this one also supports motion alarms. Thanks to this feature, along with sending you push notifications, this security system can trigger the security alarm as soon as it detects something suspicious.

Storage

As far as storage is concerned, the Foscam 960p 4CH NVR supports 4 separate channels. To accommodate all the cameras, it comes with 4TB of SATA Hard drive. Unlike many popular models that are limited to only work with their security cameras, this security system works with any ONVIF camera.

Tech Specs

Channels4
HDD Storage 4TB SATA
Resolution 960p
Frames per second 30fps
Remote Access Yes
Web Browser support Yes
Motion Trigger Yes
Motion alarm Yes
Compliance ONVIF
Backup USB
AlarmI/O
What we liked
  • Compatible with SATA hard drives
  • Easy to configure
  • Wireless connection
  • Remote access
  • Works with standard PC web browsers
What we didn't like
  • Some users have complained about the app having limited features

Reasons to consider

  • This model offers 4TB local storage.
  • Can be accessed from anywhere, both remotely and locally. 
  • It’s easy to control using the App, or from the browser.
  • Highly reliable and doesn’t require to be specially maintained.

Other NVR IP Security Camera Systems

8.9
A reliable security system

The Swann 16CH 4K NVR gives users serious security coverage by working with PoE cameras.

Top Features

  • Works with 4K/8MP resolution cameras that are four times greater than the normal 1080p resolution.

  • Supports 16 different channels for eliminating every blind spot.

  • For increased storage comes with a 2TB HDD and the feature to directly save screenshots to your Dropbox account.

The Swann 16CH 4K NVR is a powerful security system for those who need to cover large areas. Unlike other models, this one can support 16 different channels. However, having support for 16 channels doesn’t mean it compromises video quality. This system works with 4K/8MP security cameras. In comparison, these are 4 times greater than any 1080p resolution camera. 

Available NVR Kits including Security Cameras

Storage

This security system comes with a 2TB hard drive. Another great feature of the Swann 16CH 4K NVR is that it allows its users to save footage from the cameras directly to their Dropbox account. It also supports digital zoom. Users can zoom in to confirm car number plates. They can also detect possible intruders by zooming into their physical characteristics such as tattoos. 

As far as remote viewing is concerned, the Swann 16CH 4K NVR can be accessed via the free HomeSafe View App. Users can check stored footage from any Windows or Mac OS system. This security system stands out from the crowd as it comes with the True Detect technology. Along with the motion, this feature enables it to detect heat signatures.

Tech Specs

Channels 16
HDD Storage2TB 
Resolution 4K Ultra HD 
App Yes
Remote viewingFree HomeSafe View App
Computer OS Windows, Mac OS
Dropbox complianceYes
Digital zoomYes
Night Vision Yes
Audio CaptureYes
Alert Push notification
Preferred UseIndoor + Outdoor
Heat sensingTrue Detect Thermal motion detection
Face Detection Yes
What we liked
  • Crisp videos
  • Digital Zoom
  • Local storage for up to 300 days
  • Free HomeSafe view app
  • Supports both Windows and Mac OS
What we didn't like
  • Higher price than competitors

Reasons to consider

  • This model offers only local storage.
  • You can access this security system both remotely and locally. 
  • Can be controlled using the app.
  • Easy to set up and doesn’t need special maintenance

Top Features

  • For 360-degrees viewing, it comes with support for 8 separate channels.

  • Works perfectly with up to 6MP video cameras.

  • Compatible with any ONVIF security camera.

The Hikvision 8CH PoE NVRsupports live viewing from any iOS/Android device as well as web browsers. It can be connected to any third party camera brand other than Hikvision. But make sure the camera is ONVIF compliant. 

It also supports HDMI and VGA output options. The package does not come with a hard drive included, however, you will find 8 independent PoE network interfaces inside. You can connect this security system with a 4TB hard drive. The purple WD 4TB hard drive is recommended.

Top Features

  • For robust security, it comes with support for 16 separate channels.

  • Works perfectly with up to 12 IP cameras.

  • Comes with H.265 video compression technology for maximum encryption.

The Dahua 16CH IP NVR supports 16 separate channels. Users can connect up to 12MP IP cameras with this product. 

Data encryption is a major concern for many. However, this system comes with both H.265/H.264 dual codec decoding. Thanks to these advanced technologies, your data will be secure from any breach. Due to its high bandwidth, you can view footage from 8 different channels at 1080p, at the same time. Moreover, you can also use the VGA and HDMI output options. This system can work with any ONVIF security camera. Users can also benefit from monitoring using multiple networks.

Top Features

  • Comes with support for up to 8 separate channels.

  • 1TB built-in Hard Drive.

  • Advanced H.265+ compression for storage optimization and encryption.

The ZOSI PoE NVR System comes with 8 separate channels. Users can connect 8 separate 5MP security cameras with it. 

It comes paired with 4 weatherproof 1080p bullet IP cameras. For robust security, it covers 120 feet during the night. Moreover, it also has a 110-degrees viewing angle. Thanks to its PoE connection over hard wires, this security camera provides reliability and stability. Users get both remote and local access from anywhere and anytime. They can also set separate motion detection zones.

Top Features

  • To ensure you don’t miss any details, it comes with support for HD recording.

  • For more storage capacity, it has a 2TB hard drive.

  • Popular pick by DIY-lovers, as it is easy to set up and configure.

The Ubiquiti 2TB NVR can support security cameras that record full HD videos. If you are not a tech-savvy individual, you can still easily set up this security system as it is a hard-wired model. 

Along with SSD storage, it also comes with 4GB standard memory. Just like any other NVR, this security system has a motion detection feature. It will start recording videos only after it detects motion. Moreover, you will also receive notifications about motion detection.

Top Features

  • For better night vision coverage, it comes with a 65 Feet night vision range.

  • For crisp and detailed footage, it features 4x1080p HD bullet cameras.

  • To ensure easy installation, it only needs to be plugged and connected.

The Firstrend Wireless NVR 8CH comes with a built-in 2TB hard drive that can be further extended to 4TB. If you are not happy with this security system after purchase, you can avail of their 60-day free return and 1-year warranty. 

After you get this NVR, unpack it, connect the cameras, connect it with the mouse, and finally connect the NVR to a TV. You will get a VGA/HDMI port with the package, so setting it up with the TV will not be a problem.

NVR IP Security Camera Systems Features to Consider

Power – To PoE or Not

No matter which NVR you pick, you are going to need to power it. You also need to connect it with a network for remote viewing and control. Back in the days, people used to use separate wires for each camera connected to their security system. Just imagine how much wirework that must have required. However, in recent times, almost all NVRs support cameras with PoE. 

PoE (Power over Ethernet) can supply power to security cameras. At the same time, they also transmit video data to the NVR. A great benefit of PoE wires compared to their Coaxial wires predecessors is that PoE wires are not susceptible to video quality degradation.

Resolution, Quality, and Field of View

The resolution will be the first item on the checklist for some of you. If it is so, the good news is that almost all security cameras nowadays support a resolution of 1080p or above. On the lower end, you are all set with a 1080p camera. You can also get 5MP to up to 12MP cameras. But as you climb the spectrum, the price will also increase proportionately.  

The field of view is another important factor. Some cameras will give you a complete 360-degrees field of view. However, on average, almost all popular security cameras come with at least a 110-degrees field of view.

Wired vs Wireless

A decade ago, all security systems were hard-wired. They needed a separate wire for each separate task. For instance, you needed a separate wire for power, and another wire to connect the camera with the video recorder. 

However, in present times no one uses wired security systems anymore. However, if you have a large area to cover, you are better off with a wired security system rather than a wireless one. Wired security systems can cover up to 300 Feet area easily. On the other hand, wireless security systems can barely cover 100 Feet of area.

Number of Channels

The number of channels refers to the number of cameras you can use with the NVR under discussion. The higher the number, the better. If you have a moderately small area to cover, you are better off with 1-2 security channels. In case you have a big area to cover, for instance, a large mansion, you need a multi-channel security system. To reduce the hassle of management, all the channels can be accessed and controlled using the NVR.

Storage Space

Storage is a big concern for many. There are usually 2 major types of storage options available. You can have local storage or cloud storage. 

Many users who use a handful of cameras are better off with SD Card storage. However, if you have to store videos from 8-16 cameras, you need something larger. This is where SDD storage comes into play.  Most security cameras come with an average of 1TB SDD hard drive storage. Some also give the option of extendable HDD.

Smart Integration & Local and Remote Access

With advancements in technology, the security camera industry has gone through major breakthroughs. Those days when you had to use bulky processing units and wait for videos to render before you could see them are long gone. Now, you can jump right into your camera’s feed using apps.

Moreover, some security systems also let users remotely control and access their security systems to form a web browser. And as far as smart integrations are concerned, many security systems come with integrations with other Smart IoT home devices such as smart alarm systems, smart lights, and so on.

Motion Detection & Alarm connectivity

Motion detection is an industry average feature. Almost every security system has this. The basic concept behind motion detection is that only after your security system detects motion, it starts to record videos. This reduces storage wastage that gets done by capturing continuously. 

Moreover, similar to motion detection, many security cameras also come with heat detection technology and face recognition. The latest security systems only trigger after they detect warm moving objects. After they detect motion, they can trigger the recording as well as the alarm system.

Common Questions Relating to NVR IP Security Camera Systems

What is an NVR?

An NVR, short for Network Video Recorder, is a video recorder. In comparison to DVRs, NVRs encode and process video data within the camera. Most NVRs are built to be used with IP security cameras. Unlike DVRs, NVRs rely on PoE wires for connectivity. Moreover, they also ensure better video quality than their DVR counterparts.

Difference between an NVR and DVR?

The major difference between NVR and DVR is how they process and encode videos. DVRs do it at the recorder, whereas the NVRs do it within the cameras. Another major difference between these two is that DVRs are primarily used with analog/CCV security cameras. On the flip side, NVRs are primarily used with IP and other advanced security cameras.

What type of cabling do I need for a wired NVR?

NVRs can be wireless and wired. You can connect the wired NVRs using PoE cables. The most popular PoE cables used with NVRs are Cat5 and Cat6. PoE or Power over Ethernet cables provide both power and data transmission from the security cameras to the NVR.

The Verdict

So there you go. Now you know about the ins and outs of NVRs. We have looked at some of the most popular NVRs on the market. Staring from their channel capacity, storage, night vision, remote access, and control, we have looked at all their features. We hope this guide helps you pick the ideal NVR solution that meets your requirements. 

Our top pick is the Reolink NVR with the Amcrest NVR our runner up. The Heimvision Wireless NVR Kit is also worth consideration for something a little different.

9.7
Top Pick
Reolink RLN8-410 4K PoE NVR 8 Channel Pre-installed 2TB Hard Drive 4K/5MP/4MP/1080P HD 24/7 Surveillance Recording Home Security Camera System Video Recorder
A flexible security system

The Reolink 8-Channel PoE NVR is built for those who need flexibility with their security system.

Top Features

  • For sharp and crisp videos, it supports up to 4K resolution cameras.

  • To reduce wire clutter, it requires only one PoE connection

  • Support for 8 channels to reduce blind spots.

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