In 2011 I reviewed the IZON Remote Room Monitor, a relatively easy way to remotely view your home, office, pets or children. Recently Stem, the makers of the IZON updated it to the 2.0 version. This newer model features a faster setup using an IZON app created QR code, real time video and free video uploads via the Stem Cloud.

One of my main issues with the first product was the iOS app was quite buggy. Thankfully there have been several upgrades follow by a totally new revision of the app which now provides a much better user experience. The original IZON required the user to set up a private YouTube account to record video. Izon has since set up their own private server for videos to remove YouTube from the equation.

The IZON 2.0 Remote Room Monitor is almost identical to the original model. It arrives in familiar white and green packaging with a clear plastic box displaying the video device is used. The back and sides of the box lists the features of the IZON.

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Inside the package we find the IZON monitor, a long white mini USB cable, a USB enabled AC adapter, mounting screws, QuickStart guide and two iZon stickers.

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The IZON 2.0 Remote Room Monitor is cylinder in shape and colored white, which still makes hiding it out of plain sight a bit of a problem.

Comparing it to its predecessor, it is hard to tell the two units apart other than the IZON name having a lower case “i” on the older version.

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The camera provides up to 300 kbps (kilobits per second) bitstream with QVGA video at 10 frames per second for video playback. For recording the IZON app uses VGA recording that uploads to the Stem Cloud service. Motion or noise detection alerts can record clips that begin 5 seconds prior to the triggering event and end at least 5 seconds following the event, up to maximum of 30 seconds.

The front of the device has the IZON logo on the bottom, a microphone and LED indicator above it, with the camera on the upper portion.

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The back of the device has a micro-USB input and a recessed reset button.

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A concave bottom hides a magnetic that attached to the included base. Stem provides mounting screws for placing the IZON in any position including upside down.

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Specifications:

IZON 2.0 Remote Room Monitor

Watch & listen from anywhere. Automatically record noise & motion.

Use our free app to setup in minutes on your Wi-Fi network. Securely view live video, receive alerts for noise & motion, and automatically record video clips to the Cloud. Be there, even when you’re not.

Fast and easy setup.

Use the app to create a unique QR Code with information about your Wi-Fi network. With firmware v2.0, the IZON camera can scan the code, and get connected in just a few minutes. It’s that simple.

App Controlled.

IZON 2.0 requires no computer, no wires to install. All you need is a Wi-Fi network with an Internet connection. Download the free IZON App and use your iPad, iPhone or iPod touch to pair IZON with your home network. Total control, in the palm of your hand.

Secure real-time video.

IZON 2.0 lets you watch & listen from anywhere, with secure access to the IZON video stream. There’s no time to lose; you’ll see everything as it happens, in real-time.

Free Video Uploads.

Introducing the Stem Cloud video management service. Set your IZON 2.0 to monitor noise & motion, and automatically record video to Stem Cloud when an event occurs. Get an alert or notification and view the video right away, or at a later time. Free video uploads — smart, simple and secure.

Noise & Motion Alerts.

Tell IZON 2.0 what to watch & listen for when you adjust sensitivity for Noise & Motion Detection. Easily choose an area within the camera’s view for active motion monitoring. Everything outside the chosen area is ignored, so you’ll only capture the events that matter most.

Box Contents.

IZON 2.0 video monitor & base • Mounting hardware 9′ power cable • AC power supply (100/240v) Power adapters (varies by region) • Quick start guide



For this model Stem has streamlined the installation process. Initial setup involves plugging the mini-USB connector into the back of the IZON and the standard USB plug into the AC adapter. Next download the Stem IZON app onto your Wi-Fi connected iOS device.

The rest of the setup is done through the IZON app. If this is your first time using an IZON device then you will need to setup a Stem account. Since I already have a Stem camera on my network, I chose the + icon to add a new IZON to the system.

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Setup is as simple as selecting one’s wireless network and inputting its password. Once this is done, a QR code is created which is used to finish the setup.

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Aim this QR code at the IZON camera, which should read it and capture the user’s wireless settings enabling the camera to work.

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Control of the IZON is done remotely on an iOS device such as an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch using the IZON app.

This app features four control settings – Account, Cameras, Alerts and Guide. From these controls you can make adjustments to the system. From the camera tab the user can change settings including alerts and Push notifications as well as recordings 30-second videos.

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In the past there was a delay when viewing the system. Now the Izon app provides real-time streaming video over your local Wi-Fi network depending on your bandwidth. While remote video playback may be impacted by the network’s strength and data download capabilities.

If you need to start a manual recording from the app, simply hit the "Record" button in the Live Camera View and automatically record 30 second clips upload to the Stem Cloud. These videos can be reviewed Touch the Alerts tab at any time to see videos, identified by IZON camera, date and time, and type of alert. Stem allows 25 video uploads a day and 100 events can be marked for saving in the Stem Cloud.

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The video performance of the IZON is dependent on the lighting and bandwidth. Viewing video on my own network was crisp and sharp on the smaller screen of the iPhone 5 while on the larger iPad screen; the video was more standard definition than high def.

In darker settings the video was a little grainy but viewable even with low room lighting.

When viewing in portrait mode half of the screen is occupied by menu options while rotating to landscape will make the video full screen. The original version of the IZON did not have the landscape feature, so that is a definite improvement.

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Once again the IZON 2.0 Remote Room Monitor is locked into the iOS ecosystem, so Windows and Android users need to look elsewhere.

The alert sensitivity can be controlled via sliders within the app to keep your iOS device from constantly going off with alerts. Besides motion, IZON can also detect sounds at levels from 35 dB to 95 dB.


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Conclusion:

The IZON 2.0 Remote Room Monitor is a welcome improvement to the original version. Numerous issues have been addressed by Stem including fixing the originally buggy iOS app, streamlining the setup process and removing the need for a YouTube account to record videos.

There are still some things that may bother folks regarding this remote video solution such as a daily limit for capturing videos, the stark white color of the unit making it hard to keep out of sight and the lack of Android or Windows Mobile apps.

Stem provided a firmware upgrade for the original IZON making it function similar to the IZON 2.0 Remote Room Monitor, so if you are looking to replace the original with this newer model you may just want to upgrade the firmware and use the new iOS app. Adding the new system to an active IZON system is quite simple and both version work together seamlessly.

Many of the issues I have had with the original IZON Remote Room Monitor have been addressed by Stem helping make the IZON 2.0 Remote Room Monitor a worthy successor. If you are looking for a simple to set up and use video monitoring solution then this is good way to go.

 

8


Pros:
+Easier Setup
+Sharp video with proper lighting
+iOS app is much improved
+Free video capture to Stem cloud

Cons:
-Only works with iOS devices
-White color limits device’s stealthiness
-Limited to 30 second recorded clips
-Still does not record directly to Apple device

Grades:  
Overall score-8-10
Design score-8-10
Performance score-8-10

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