Reconyx 3G SC950C Review
- Super fast with infinite programming options, the3G SC950C is top of the line in many areas. Just make sure to keep your budget open... you'll be buying lots of batteries." - TCP Staff
Model # SC950catt & SC950cvz | Reconyx SC950c Owner's Manual
Trailcampro Comprehensive Score:
Resting Power(on) | Daytime Power Consumption | Nighttime Power ConsumptionSee Breakdown ▼
Trigger Speed & Detection:73/100
Picture Trigger & Recovery Speed | Video Trigger & Recovery Speed | Detection RangeSee Breakdown ▼
- Fast trigger speed
- Burst shot works in cellular mode
- Made in the USA
- Poor battery life
- Does not have two-way communication
- AT&T data plan is way too expensive - $25-30 a month
A cellular trail camera is designed to take a picture and then transmit the photo (in a smaller resolution) to either your cell phone or email address. This generally happens within 60 seconds of the photo being taken. Although most people use trail cameras to monitor game animals, cellular trail cameras are also used for a variety of security applications. The ability to place a cellular game camera anywhere without running wires makes it ideal for monitoring remote cabins, lake houses, boat docks & construction projects. Several of our customers even use cellular trail cameras in time-lapse mode to send daily (sometimes hourly) pictures of their home construction projects.
The obvious elephant in the room is the price tag; $1,200. We were just as shocked as you are. Is it worth it? Let's dive in...
Picture Quality: 95/100
Photo resolution: 3.1 mpxl | Video Resolution: None | Flash Type: No Glow Infrared
Since this is a cellular game camera there are two types of pictures, those stored internally on the sd memory card and those sent to your phone/email. Pictures stored to the SD card are full resolution. You can expect clear, sharp, properly colored daytime photos and clear night photos with good contrast.
Pictures sent to your phone/email are compressed. They are 512 x 384. These are substantially different from the full resolution image. We tell folks to use these images to see what is in front of the camera and act accordingly. These are not pictures that can be enlarged or blown up. Larger pictures must be retrieved from the sd card.
Here are examples of what the pictures look like when they are transmitted through the cellular network. You can click on the picture to the see the actual size the camera transmits the photos.
Battery Life: 50/100
Resting Power (on): 1.98 mW | Daytime Power Consumption: 118.6 Ws| Nighttime Power Consumption: 127.6 Ws
The resting current draw stays consistent (and is low on this camera) but the day and night consumptions vary based on how quickly the camera connects to the cellular network when sending a photo.
The day and night consumptions are very high on the SC950C. If this camera were to take 15-day and 15-night pictures every 24 hours, it would last 1.4 months in the field on a set of lithium batteries.
The camera operates on 12 AA batteries. For most folks, we would highly recommendLithium Batteries. For camera trap stations that don't have to be discreet, you should really consider theReconyx Solar Panel. Without the solar panel, the camera won't last very long on a set of batteries.
Detection Circuit: 73/100
Picture Trigger & Recovery Speed: 0.25 s. / 60+ s. | Detection Range: 60 ft.
The SC950c has a super fast trigger speed and a solid detection zone. In fact, the detection zone is perfectly matched to the field of view. False triggers are non-existent.
This detection circuit is pretty good for a cellular trail camera.
Quality of Design: 89/100
Dimensions: 5.5" x 4.5" x 3" | Battery Type: 12 AA Batteries | External Battery Jack: 12 volt
When you receive the camera, Reconyx has included very detailed instructions on sim card setup. The instructions have setup information, plans that you can use and so on.
You must use the Go Phone Plan for $30 a month ($25 if you use autopay). You will need to enroll the camera and activate it through AT&T's website. You can't call AT&T or activate through a store. Must be done on their website.
$30 a month is insanely expensive for a cell camera. Most data plans for cellular trail cameras range from $5-15 a month. Big thumbs down on price.
To activate the cellular setup, simply call Verizon and provide the camera's model number. While conducting the Reconyx SC950c Verizon review, we found current Verizon customers can add the 950c to their existing plan and share data for just $5 per month. A $20/month is available for customers that do not have an existing Verizon account. This process is really simple and quick.
The camera also comes with a CD you must install on your computer for cellular setup.
Next, you will need to set the camera to send the pictures to the proper email or phone number (s). You can use up to two email address' and four phone numbers. From the image on the left, you can see how simple the programming is.
Enter the recipient (s) and hit ok. From this window, you can have the camera send a photo every day (from 12:00 to 12:30 pm). This will simply let you know that the camera is still operational.
Most cell cameras allow you to only have the camera operational during a certain time period. For example, if you have the camera at your business, but don't want needless photos of you at work, you can set it to only take pictures in your off hours, let's say 5 pm to 9 am. The downside to most cell cameras is they use these time periods regardless of the day of the week. Saturdays and Sundays are forced to use the same programming options as the rest of the week.
The Reconyx SC950 cellular trail camera does this better. You can set operational times in 15-minute increments with two schedules.
Users can set specific hours for two (2) time periods. For instance, Mon-Fri on from 5 pm to 9 am. and weekends on 24 hours/day when no one should be there.
The next thing which separates the SC950 from other cameras is the burst mode. Most cell cameras are capable of taking one photo and then transmitting. This process takes 60 seconds and during that time the camera isn't able to transmit another image.
The SC950c set in "burst mode" can take up to 10 images (spaced by a time interval that you set) and then transmit all 10 photos. This is invaluable for security situations. Instead of one transmitted picture of an intruder, you get five.
Some things we don't like... This camera has had the same technology for the last 3-4 years. Plus, it is a 3G camera and not a 4G camera. For a camera in this price range, we would expect a nice smartphone app to check and receive photos, check the camera's status, and change settings. This camera does not have that.
Reconyx SC950C Cellular Review: 77/100
To sum up the Reconyx SC950 Cell camera, the camera works as advertised and has a few features the competitors don't.
Is it worth $1,200? Ouch, that's a tough one. We have clients protecting multi-million dollar remote facilities. In this circumstance, the SC950c is could be justified. Just wanting to check on bucks visiting your feeder.... We can't tell you whether to spend the money or not, but the camera certainly does everything it is supposed to. However, for the steep price point, we would have expected better technology (an app on your phone for two-way communication) and much better battery life.
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Most manufacturer warranties are only one year. In our opinion, that isn't good enough. Our customers get a two year warranty, directly from us.
Trailcampro's 2 Year Warranty
If the trail camera you purchase from us goes defective within two years of your purchase, we will quickly replace it.
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Trailcampro's 90 Day Return Policy
We believe you have the right to return any game camera that does not meet your expectations within 90 days.
Our return policy lets you field test products, at no risk to you!
Buyer's remorse? Return the camera to us for a full refund (minus shipping).
Purchased the wrong camera? We will ship you the right camera.
Something wrong with the camera you received? We will replace it at no cost to you.
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Reconyx SC950C Accessories
Here are a few of the accessories we like to use in the SC950c.
Energizer Ultimate Lithiums | 12 Pack
- There is no downside to using lithium batteries. Long battery life, extreme durability and better night pictures. You will be happy you did.
Reconyx Solar Panel
- This solar panel is large and heavy, but it is capable of capturing light and turning it into power to keep the SC950c running smoothly.
Reconyx Hyperfire Security Case
- 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.
6 Foot Python Cable Lock
- Use this with the security case, or just the camera itself. The SC950 has brackets on the back specifically for this lock.
Extra SD Cards
Start at $5.95
- SD cards store your pictures and videos for easy removal. We give you a free SD card with the SC950, but most people use a second card. If you have two cards, you can swap them out when you retrieve the pictures.