Spartan US Cellular Red Glow Review
We have a hard time recommended a trail camera that only detects 30 ft. If you need a cell camera and only have US Cellular reception, this is your only option. However, the detection range is a severe limitation. - TCP Staff
Model # GC-USCI
Spartan US Cellular FAQ's
- Solid picture quality
- Only camera to use US Cellular data plans
- Improved trigger speed
- Poor detection range
- 1.5 months of battery life
Photo resolution: 8 mpxl (interpolated
Flash Type: Red Glow IR
The sample pictures you will see in this review are directly from the SD Card (full resolution). Any picture that is emailed is a compressed file, so the resolution and size are smaller. The full-size image will be saved on the sd card.
Daytime pictures are very solid. Good color and clarity are on display. If you sign up for the premium service, the picture resolution can be set to 1280 x 960. This makes a huge difference in picture quality.
Night pictures have a powerful flash that has a tendency to overexpose on anything close to the camera. However, it takes a bright, clear photo at night. Overall, day and night pictures are more than adequate and exactly what you would expect from a cell camera.
Picture & Video Resting Power (on): 0.53 mW
Picture Daytime/Nighttime Power Consumption: 126.69 Ws | 110.88 Ws
The resting current draw is very efficient but the day and night draws are rather high.
If this camera took 15-day pictures and 15-night pictures every 24 hours, it would last 1.5 months on a set of lithium batteries.
Picture Trigger & Recovery Speed: 0.53 s. / 90.2 s.
Detection Range: 30 ft.
Trigger speed is much improved and quite quick for a cellular camera. Recovery time seems to be 20 seconds slower than what the AT&T or Verizon cameras deliver.
The real stinker is the puny 30 ft. detection range. That is completely unacceptable. Overall, this is a very poor detection circuit.
Quality of Design:
Dimensions: 5" x 6.5" x 2.75" (w/o antenna)
Battery Type: 12 AA Batteries
External Battery Jack: 6-Volt
Spartan No Glow U.S. Cellular Setup Process:
Activating the Spartan US Cellular camera is a bit of work. Here is how we were able to activate the camera.
First, choose your Shared Connect Plan (you can go in their store and do this or call US Cellular)
- 300 MB of data - $5.00 / month
- 1 GB of data - $10 / month
- 2 GB of data - $20 / month
Second, add your device. The option you need to choose is "Camera," this is $5 per month. There will be a $40 activation fee (one time fee, at time of setup).
There is no contract with these plans, you can start and stop at any time. As with any cellular camera, the Spartan GoCam needs good cellular reception. We recommend taking a phone to the area you will set the camera, taking a photo with your phone and texting it to someone. If the picture goes through quickly, the camera should work in that area. One or two bars of reception will not be good enough for this camera. You need 3+ bars of reception.
During our Spartan Gocam No Glow US Cellular Review, we found this camera is only capable of sending pictures to an email address, it does not text pictures to a phone. However, you can bypass that by entering the phone number as firstname.lastname@example.org for AT&T phones or email@example.com and it will come as a text message. If you have a US Cellular cell phone, put the number in like this: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Setup is relatively simple, but we are available for consultation for our customers. Due to cellular setup taking quite a bit of time via a phone call, we do charge $30 to walk you through setup if you do not purchase from us. If you did purchase from us, we will spend any amount of time walking you through it free of charge.
Spartan has a premium service you can subscribe to for $4 per month. Benefits include:
- Enables two-way communication from user to camera (remotely)
- Option of increasing thumbnail image to 1280 x 960 (which is up from 640x480). This makes objects/people easier to identify
- Up to 10 scheduled events. I.e. Tell the camera to send a status report or take a photo.
- Change or add email address' that the camera sends to.
- Check the battery status, signal level, temperature, SD card space, and number of photos taken
Since Spartan charges for this service, we did not include these benefits in our rating of this camera. If they were to give it away for free (which we think they should do), then our ratings would reflect these added benefits.
Case design is very solid. The latch is large and sturdy. The camera has a built-in python lock bracket on the back and a threaded insert on the bottom for a Slate River Mount.
Durability has not been an issue to date.
Spartan US Cellular Review Conclusion:
The detection range is terrible and the battery life is considered below average. If US Cellular is your only option, then you don't have much of a choice. However, even with improved detection speeds and solid picture quality, this camera has limited upside with such a short detection range.
Enjoy our reviews? Please consider purchasing your next trail camera from us.
FAQ's: Spartan Red Glow US Cellular
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.
- This is a cellular camera so a compressed version of the picture is sent directly to your phone/email.
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.
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: Yes. This is a red glow trail camera, meaning it has a faint red glow when taking pictures or videos at night. Humans and animals can see this if looking at the camera. This does not "light up" the woods, though.
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 an 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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