2016 Moultrie M-999i Review
- The M999i is a now glow IR trail camera with a 2" viewing screen that has 7+ month battery life, fast recovery, and a good trigger speed. Video detection is slow and picture quality has been inconsistent. - TCP Staff
Model # MCG-13035 | M-999i Owner's Manual
- 2" Internal viewing screen
- Good battery life
- Picture trigger & recovery times are outstanding
- Slow video detection
- Inconsistent picture quality
The new 2016 Moultrie M-999i game cameras come with a large internal viewer, no glow infrared flash and fast picture detection. Let's dive in further and see how the M999i performs.
Evaluating the picture quality of the M-999i has given us a few headaches. Image quality has fluctuated from really good on some models, to downright disappointing on others. If our following analysis confuses you, we have posted a ton of sample photos for you to view and make up your own mind.
We ended up having quite a few test cameras. Two different cameras came back with fuzzy, out of focus pictures on the left and right sides of the image. Another three cameras have come back with normal pictures. When the pictures are at their best, the color is outstanding and they seem to stop motion very well. We do feel the daytime images lack depth and clarity, though.
Night images have inconsistent flash range and seem to vary quite a bit by the terrain in front of the camera. Some images are quite dark, grainy and blurry. Others seem very good for a no glow IR game camera.
Overall, the results have been mixed and very inconsistent. We aren't comfortable telling you that the pictures are good or poor. Look through the samples we have taken and base your opinion from your own eyes.
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.
Daytime videos (1280 x 720 w/ audio) display bright, vivid color. Clarity isn't as good as we see on higher resolution videos, but overall, these are good videos.
Night videos have been pretty good and display a good amount of flash. You can find samples below.
Resting Power (on): 1.11 mW | Daytime Power Consumption: 1.9 Ws | Nighttime Power Consumption: 9.42 Ws
Battery life is very good for a no glow game camera. The low resting power and daytime power are most impressive. We are still disappointed that Moultrie game cameras do not work with rechargeable batteries because the cutoff voltage is too high.
If this camera were to take 35-day pictures and 35-night pictures every 24 hour period, this camera would last 7.3 months in the field on a set of lithium batteries.
Picture Trigger & Recovery Speed: 0.41 s. / 1.0 s. | Video Trigger & Recovery Speed: 2.31 s. / 11.5 s. | Detection Range: 60 ft.
Picture detection is outstanding. 0.41-second trigger and 1-second recovery bring the 2016 M999i to the top of the class. Video trigger and recovery are both subpar. 11.5-second video recovery is horrible.
Detection range is 60 ft., which is average by today's standards.
Overall, this is a very nice detection circuit if you are taking pictures, but why do video take so long to detect? This eliminates this camera from consideration for anyone who plans on using the camera in video mode.
Dimensions: 5.75" x 4.75" x 3.25" | Battery Type: 8 AA Batteries | External Battery Jack: 12 Volt
The case design is a touch larger than other cameras but feels very sturdy. The latch is huge, which has made opening and closing with cold fingers quite easy.
The python lock bracket is an extremely poor design. The loops are angled which makes the camera sit poorly on a tree if you are only using the python lock and not the security case. It would also be pretty easy to torque the camera in a way to easily snap the brackets. We don't like this design at all, the only way to truly correct this is to use the camera with a security case.
"2-inch viewing screen helps with programming"
The programming definitely takes some getting used to but after playing with it for several minutes we got the hang of it. The 2" viewing screen helps with that but don't be surprised if you have a few head-scratching moments when you first try to learn it.
The good news, is there are quite a few programming options such as overwrite, password protection, PIR sensitivity and Flash settings.
The higher end Moultrie game cameras, like the M990i and this M999i, have not experienced any durability problems the last year. No major complaints or warranties.
Moultrie M-999i Conclusion
At this point, based on the inconsistent picture quality, we are unlikely to recommend this Moultrie game camera. We like the internal viewer, fast picture detection, and good battery life. However, we aren't comfortable recommending a trail camera when we can't decide whether the pictures are good or bad. We will continue to evaluate the M-999i with the hope of having more consistent results.Back to Top of Page
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Moultrie M-999i Accessories
Here are a few of the accessories we like to use with the M-999i.
- There is no downside to using lithium batteries. Long battery life, extreme durability and better night pictures. You will be happy you did.
- Use this to protect your new camera from bears and thieves. It provides much-needed peace of mind when leaving your camera out in nature.
- Use this with the security case, not just the camera itself. The M-999i has brackets on the back specifically for this lock.
Start at $5.95
- SD cards store your pictures and videos for easy removal. We give you a free SD card with the Moultrie M-999i, but most people use a second card. If you have two cards, you can swap them out when you retrieve the pictures.
- If you aren't using a security case, this is a must-have. Screws into the tree and rotates to any angle. You no longer need to find the perfect tree to mount the camera.
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