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Ridgetec Lookout 4G LTE

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THIS IS A BACKORDERED ITEM!!!
Expected availability: 12-15-2021

Ridgetec Lookout 4G LTE Trail Camera Review

The Ridgetec Lookout takes a bit of work to get set up, however, when it is up and running this is a picture and/or video taking machine. Photos are solid (night pictures are excellent), the camera is fast, detects at long ranges and can run on lithium batteries for 4+ months. Best of all, the Lookout LTE comes with both AT&T and Verizon sim cards, meaning you can choose to run it on whichever networks gets the best reception in your area. We give this camera a big thumbs up. - TCP Staff

Lookout Owner's Manual

Lookout FAQ's

Trailcampro Comprehensive Score:

87/100

Picture Quality:88/100

Mpxl Rating | Video Resolution

Battery Life:4.2 Months

Resting Power(on) | Daytime Power Consumption | Nighttime Power Consumption

Trigger Speed & Detection:91/100

Picture Trigger & Recovery Speed | Video Trigger & Recovery Speed | Detection Range

Quality of Design:90/100

Dimensions | Battery Type | External Battery Jack


Ridgetec Lookout Cellular Trail Camera Review

 Pros

  • This Ridgetec Lookout 4G LTE trail camera comes with a modem that supports both Verizon and AT&T
  • Great night pictures for a true no glow camera
  • Good battery life (4+ months)
  • Fast detection circuit with 100' detection range
  • Will send 30-second videos (uses more battery)
  • Has been very reliable and durable

 Cons

  • Daytime photos have fairly "drab" color
  • Need to have a computer to do the initial setup

 

The Ridgetec Lookout 4G LTE trail camera is especially unique as it comes with both an AT&T and a Verizon sim card. The Quectel EC25-AF LTE module allows it to work on either network. This means you only activate the sim card (ATT or Verizon) for one of the networks (unless you want to activate both to switch back and forth, which in that case would cost an additional $6/month per camera).

Picture Quality:  88/100

Photo resolution: 12 mpxl

Video resolution:  1920 x 1080

Flash Type:  No Glow IR

Day picture display some pixelation in the photos and possess below average color (appears muted or drab) and average clarity. Overall, daytime color pictures are adequate and we consider them to be average.

As you can see from our sample images below, night pictures are excellent when this game trail camera has objects (trees, limbs, brush) to bounce off of. The pictures taken in the woods are some of the best we have seen on cellular cameras. Once the camera was moved to a more open field, graininess and a lack of significant flash range were more evident. This isn't uncommon for a true no glow camera. Overall, we rate the night pictures extremely well (especially for a no glow camera), just be aware that you will get the best results when cameras are placed in a camera trap setup that reflects the infrared light.

 

 

Day and night videos are both outstanding. The 1920x1080 video resolution shines through and the night videos are crisp with great clarity. Very impressive.

What if you purchase from us and aren't happy with the image quality?

This is a common question and we have a very simple solution. Call, email, or chat with us and we can take a look at the images and offer suggestions or immediately tell if something is wrong with the Ridgetec Lookout 4G LTE trail camera. If so, we will warranty the camera for you (with the free 2-Year warranty you receive from us) or return the camera for a full refund (within 90 days of purchase). You have control of the process, remember, we work for you.

Megapixel Ratings:

In the past, many people get confused with the megapixel rating trail camera manufacturers advertise.  Companies inflate the mpxl rating to attract eyes to their products.  They do this through interpolation, which digitally adds megapixels to a photo without actually improving the picture.

The best way to judge picture quality is to look at actual pictures.  You will notice this the most when you zoom in on a full-size image that a camera has taken.  The details of the photo will appear hazy or even digitized.  This is normal, and to be expected.

Battery Life:    80/100

Picture & Video Resting Power (on):   0.96 mW

Picture Daytime/Nighttime Power Consumption:   40.94 Ws |  42.34 Ws

If this Ridgetec Lookout 4G LTE trail camera took 15-day pictures and 15-night pictures every 24 hours, it would last 4.2 months on a set of lithium batteries. This is very good for a cellular trail camera.

Detection Circuit:     91/100

Picture Trigger & Recovery Speed: 0.47 s.  |  28.0 s.

Video Trigger Speed:  0.92 s.

Detection Range & Angle: 100 ft. @ 40.7° Detection Angle (42.1° Field of View)

The trigger speed is fast and plenty quick enough to catch fast-moving animals. The recovery speed is exceptional for a cellular trail camera.

The detection range is fantastic and even better when matched with a closely aligned field of view and detection angle. Overall, this is an outstanding detection circuit.

Quality of Design:     90/100

Dimensions: 6" x 4.75" x 3"

Battery Type:  12 AA batteries

External Battery Jack:  12-Volt (4.75mm OD, 1.7mm ID)

Case Design

The Ridgetec Lookout's case design seems to have taken a play out of the Covert/Spartan playbook. They are all roughly the same size and have the same or similar features. The latch is easy to open and manipulate, even with cold fingers. The outside case is a hard plastic and appears to be durable. The setup menu is easy to navigate and you shouldn't have to use the owner's manual very often, if ever.

* When attaching a booster antenna to the Ridgetec Lookout, the antenna should only go on the antenna port closest to the hinges. So, if you are facing the front of the camera, it would be the antenna port on the left-had side. For reception below 3 bars, you will need either the Omni Antenna or the Wilson Antenna.

Camera Setup

Cellular Setup

Install 12 AA Lithium batteries, sd card, sim card (ATT or Verizon, depending on the service you want), and antennas.

  1. On a browser (mobile or computer), visit portal.ridgetec.com and create an account.
  2. Add a camera by typing in the ICCID number from your sim card. The portal will indicate that a free month was awarded (5,000 points). At this point, the server will send an activation signal to your sim card (this can take several minutes).
  3. Power up the camera by turn the switch to SET, wait for a cellular connection. You may have to do this several times (by turning off and back to SET).
  4. Once connection is established, hit MENU and do a NETWORK TEST and then a REPORT TEST (you will see these in the menu). Your camera should show PASS, which means the camera is ready to send photos. 
  5. Turn the camera to ON to fully activate the camera.
  6. Download the Ridgetec app to your smartphone and login. You can use either the app or the portal to change settings or view settings.

Data Plans

Monthly Tier* Data Price Add a Camera**
1,250 Photos 62.5 MB $6.95 $6.00
2,500 Photos 125 MB $8.95 $6.00
5,000 Photos 250 MB $11.95 $6.00
10,000 Photos 500 MB $14.95 $6.00
20,000 Photos 1 GB $24.95 $6.00
30,000 Photos 1.5 GB $29.95 $6.00
40,000 Photos 2 GB $34.95 $6.00
50,000 Photos 2.5 GB $39.95 $6.00
75,000 Photos 3.75 GB $59.95 $6.00
100,000 Photos 5 GB $77.95 $6.00

*1 Photo = 1 Point (Low Resolution)

** Monthly cost per additional camera 

Data plan costs appear to be very affordable and offer you the ability to share data over multiple cameras. However, data plan costs aren't super intuitive and are a little complicated. It helps to think in the above chart as pictures being the same thing as points. This then relates directly to the upload resolution that you choose from the below chart.

Point Cost per Upload

Upload Resolution Photo Mode Video Mode
Low 1 1
Medium 2.5 2
High 4 3
HD 720p
7 6
High Res Max/HD 1080p 13 11

We like the ability to choose upload resolution and give that power to the user. It does come at a cost, however, you get to choose whether it is worth it or not.

Overall, setting the camera up is relatively easy. We would like the ability to do the set up via the smartphone app, but for now, you will need to use a browser. We LOVE that Ridgetec included a modem in this camera that allows the user to choose between Verizon or AT&T. This makes the camera much more flexible for you both now and in the future.


  • Durability

    Durability has been outstanding so far, we have been extremely impressed in this category. If anything arises, we will update this review immediately.

    One reason we think the durability has been so good is that Ridgetec pulls each camera and does a complete quality check on it when before shipping to us. Here are the items checks (manually) before shipping cameras to us:

    • Power switch for flaky or failure
    • Module using Verizon
    • Both antenna ports individually checking for backwards wiring (matters if you buy the omni booster)
    • SD Card slot
    • Sim Card slot
    • LCD Screen
    • Day + Color photo
    • Night + B&W photo + LED array
    • Stuck IR filter (pink photos)
    • Read/write to SD card
    • Upload 2 photos to the web portal
    • Bottom battery tray
    • Top battery tray
    • External power port


    Keep in mind, our 2-year warranty program is your free insurance program in case something goes wrong with a camera you purchase from us. This warranty protects you from any manufacturing defect the camera might experience for two years.

    The Ridgetec game trail camera Lookout takes a bit of work to get set up, however, when it is up and running this is a picture taking machine. Photos are solid (night pictures are excellent), the camera is fast, detects at long ranges and can run on lithium batteries for 4+ months. Best of all, the Lookout LTE comes with both AT&T and Verizon sim cards, meaning you can choose to run it on whichever networks gets the best reception in your area. We give this camera a big thumbs up.

    Since 2005, our mission has to been to provide consumers with unbeatable value, advice you can trust, and customer service that exceeds expectations. There are plenty of places you can choose to do business with, if we are lucky enough to earn your support, we promise to give you our undivided attention. Trailcampro has grown each year not only by relying on your happiness but on the assumption that if we blow you away with customer service, you will brag about us to your friends (have you seen our referral/reward program?).

    As always, if you have additional questions, feel free to call, email or chat with us. We look forward to helping you find your next trail camera!

    Enjoy our reviews?  Please consider purchasing your next trail camera from us.


    FAQ's: Trail Camera

    Q: How do I view the pictures?

    A: There are a number of ways to do this. Pictures/videos are stored on the SD card you place in the camera. Here are some other methods for viewing images:

    • View pictures on your computer. Plug the SD card in a desktop computer or laptop via the built-in SD card reader or use a USB reader if your computer doesn't have one. This method works for most tablets as well. With this method, we recommend having two SD cards per camera so you can swap them in the field.
    • Trail Camera Viewers. While more expensive, handheld viewers are useful if you don't have a smartphone or run multiple trail cameras. 

    Q: Will this trail camera trigger on small animals (birds, rodents, etc.)?

    A: Trail cameras detect on a combination of heat and movement, so, yes, small mammals will trigger the camera. However, if you are going after smaller warm-blooded mammals, we recommend getting the camera closer to your target. For best performance, place the camera in an area that would enable picture detection from 3 - 20 ft.

    Q: Can animals see the infrared flash on this camera?

    A: This is somewhat controversial. Humans can't see the flash as the nanometer spectrum is above what the human eye can detect. It's also much harder for an animal to see, but that could depend on the species of animal as different species see in different light spectrums.

    Q: Where can I purchase this camera?

    A: From us! We hope to woo you with our incredible charm, two-year warranty, 90-day returns, free continental U.S. shipping, and technical expertise. If that isn't enough, we give you a 16 Gig SD card with this camera and you can call and talk our ear off anytime. 

    Seriously, though, we know you have plenty of options of where to spend your hard-earned money. The internet can be the wild, wild, west of too-good-to-be-true deals. If you choose to do business with us, we will go out of our way to make sure you are happy with the camera you select and the service we provide you.

    We are passionate about testing and reviewing trail cameras, but most importantly, we are passionate about treating our customers the right way. We do things differently from what you have come to expect from other internet retailers and we hope you give us the opportunity to prove that to you.

     

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