If you're looking to upgrade your home security system, then you should start by considering which security cameras you'll need. Security cameras form the most crucial part of a security system.
Two great security camera providers are Abode and Zmodo.
Abode was launched in 2014 by ex-ADT executives looking to bring flexible, quality, and affordable security cameras to the market. Zmodo was founded in 2009 and is headquartered in China. They specialize in smart devices and security solutions.
Abode vs Zmodo: What do they have in common?
- Warranty: Zmodo and Abode offer a one-year warranty on all security equipment, including cameras.
- Smart home compatibility: Zmodo and Abode offer similar smart security products with If This Then That (IFTTT) compatibility.
- Indoor security cameras: Abode and Zmodo offer a large variety of indoor cameras.
- Weatherproof equipment: Zmodo and Abode offer outdoor security cameras, and your security camera system can keep your home safe in all conditions.
- Local storage options: You'll have local storage options, including MicroSD options.
- Video quality: 1080p HD resolution is offered by Abode and Zmodo.
- Flexibility: You won't be forced to take out a long-term contract. You have full flexibility.
- Mobile app: You can manage your home security system via a mobile app; you can watch a live feed of your security cameras and receive notifications and motion alerts. The apps are available on Android and iOS.
- Motion detection: Motion sensors can notify you in case of a potential threat.
- Night vision: Each provider offers color night vision.
Abode vs Zmodo: What are the differences?
- Pricing: Zmodo has very cheap cameras, starting from around $30.
- Cellular backup: Abode offers cellular backup for $8 a month; Zmodo doesn't offer cellular backup.
- Professional installation: Abode offers professional installation. Zmodo is a DIY install only.
- NVR recorders: Zmodo offers NVR (Network Video Recorder) systems; Abode doesn't.
- Pre-recorded messages: Zmodo allows you to pre-record messages and greetings for visitors.
- Professional monitoring: Abode offers professional monitoring; Zmodo doesn't.
- Customer support: Abode's customer support is more responsive.
- Two-way audio: Abode offers two-way talk; Zmodo doesn't.
Zmodo: What you need to know
Zmodo is a China-based security company providing doorbell cameras, Wi-Fi extenders, and more. Zmodo's app is easy to use and available on iPhone and Android. Let's break down what Zmodo has to offer.
Regardless of your chosen camera, you'll need to install it yourself. Wireless cameras are very easy to install, but NVR and wired install units may be more complicated. If you require assistance, you'll need your own tradesperson as professional installation isn't available.
Zmodo offers an impressive array of cameras, including:
- Video doorbell cameras
- Wireless security cameras
- Wired indoor cameras
- Outdoor NVR camera setups
Thanks to these offerings, you can create a complete smart home system, Zmodo has recently expanded its range to include HD 1080p cameras, but it offers a range of 720p cameras. They're not the best, but they're reasonable for the price.
Zmodo is pretty good for smart home options, and there's a range of smart home equipment, including smart thermostats and Wi-Fi extenders. Security features can be monitored via Zmodo's app, and most Zmodo cameras offer compatibility with IFTTT equipment, including Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.
- Equipment costs: Zmodo cameras start at less than $30.
- Monthly fees: You can sign up for an optional subscription, including extra video cloud storage for $4.99 monthly or $9.99 monthly. You can earn a discount by paying annually.
- DIY installation: Thanks to DIY installation, there's no installation or activation fee.
- A la carte options: Zmodo equipment can be bought flexibly on an a la carte basis.
- Pricing: You won't find many providers offering cameras below $30.
- Night vision: Some Zmodo cameras offer color night vision.
- Pre-recorded messages: You can pre-record a message to be played for visitors when you're not home; very few security systems offer this.
- Mobile app: Some of the reviews on the mobile app aren't as good.
- Professional monitoring: Zmodo doesn't offer professional monitoring; you'll need to be comfortable with self-monitoring.
- Customer support: Some reviews report issues with Zmodo's customer support.
- Two-way audio: There's no two-way talk facility with Zmodo, which seems like a basic area to overlook.
- Wi-Fi network: You need excellent Wi-Fi for your wireless camera setup; many customers complain that their usual Wi-Fi connection complicates their setup.
Abode: What you need to know
Abode is a reliable, low-cost provider set up by an ex-ADT representative to offer cheap smart security kits; they offer flexibility and compatibility with various Z-wave technologies such as Apple Homekit, Amazon's Alexa, and Google Nest. Abode provides professional monitoring, too. You can buy environmental sensors and other extras from Abode.
While you don't necessarily require installation, since everything you need will come with your order, a professional setup is available in some areas. Setup usually takes under an hour, but a wired system may be more complicated, meaning you may want your Abode security system to be installed for you.
Abode has straightforward security equipment, including:
- Gateway control panel (or Iota control panel for an extra $30)
- Window sensors
- Door sensors
- Glassbreak sensors
- Motion detectors
- Smart locks
- Carbon monoxide detectors
- Temperature/light sensor
- Smoke detector
- Wide-angle motion camera
- Abode indoor cameras
- Water leak detectors
- Power switch
- Occupancy sensor
Abode offers plenty of smart home devices, including all-in-one environment sensors, smoke detectors, temperature sensors, entry sensors, etc. But Abode also has compatibility with Apple Homekit, Alexa, Google Nest, and other equipment.
- Equipment cost: You'll need to purchase a starter security kit; the Abode Iota is the most popular, but regardless of your choice, you can anticipate spending less than $250.
- Monthly fees: Unless you want additional extras, you won't need to pay any monthly fees. If you choose a professionally monitored alarm system, then you'll pay $20 per month; cellular backup can be purchased for $8 monthly.
- Flexibility: You'll have total flexibility; you can choose whether to have professional installation, monitoring, etc. There are no long-term contracts.
- Camera quality: 1080p HD quality is excellent, especially at a low price.
- Warranty: All equipment comes with a 12-month warranty.
- Price: This is a perfect option if you want an entire home security system without the high price tag; you won't need to buy a long-term contract.
- Person detection: Abode's advanced person detection can reduce the risk of false alarms.
- Online reviews: Some of the reviews for Abode are less than perfect.
- Variety: Abode doesn't offer much variety, with only a few home security cameras.
Abode or Zmodo?
Abode and Zmodo have plenty in common; for example, they offer color night vision, Wi-Fi cameras, and an extended warranty. The similarities stop there, though. Zmodo provides cameras for less than $30.
Abode offers reliable customer service and advanced person detection, and Zmodo offers NVR surveillance cameras, making them ideal for larger homes and businesses. But if you're looking for a smart home option with professional monitoring and professional installation, you should consider Abode.
This article has been reviewed and approved by Officer Banta.
Officer Banta is the official SecurityNerd home security and safety expert. A member of the Biloxi Police Department for over 24 years, Officer Banta reviews all articles before lending his stamp of approval. Click here for more information on Officer Banta and the rest of our team.