Piper nv Review
In order to use the Piper nv, you’ll need to download the corresponding Piper app – available for Android and iOS. There’s not a whole lot of change to its layout and operation from what we’ve seen last year, so for the most part, it’s a great hub for accessing the live stream, adjusting some of its detection parameters, and even controlling some of the various Z-Wave accessories that are compatible with it.
In particular, there’s a Z-Wave Smart Switch that allows us to turn on/off whatever is plugged in to it – like a lamp in our living room. Additionally, we’re able to set up a Z-Wave Door sensor that notifies us whenever the door is opened and closed. And best of all, we can set up the Piper nv to record video whenever any of our triggers are activated.
With the live stream, there’s great coverage thanks in part to its 180-degree wide-angle lens. What’s new, though, is the option for being able to set on/off night vision. In complete darkness, this feature comes in handy in illuminating the scenery – whereas without it, there’s just pitch black darkness.
We really dig at how comprehensive the app experience is in giving us complete control of even the smallest of parameters. If motion is detected, we’re notified and video is recorded. If the indoor temperature is too high, we can set one of the Z-Wave sensors to turn on a fan. If it gets too dark in a room, we can have a light turn on automatically – and then turn off after a period of time. Seriously, we can spend a lot of time fine tuning things.
The Piper nv is connected to the cloud via Wi-Fi, while the various Z-Wave accessories are connected using Piper’s own internal wireless system. While live streams are available at any time, there’s no way to manually record video – or even download them for archiving.
At the heart of it all, the upgraded camera and night vision are what makes this new Piper different than the old one. Indeed, there’s better quality in the way video streams look, offering more sharpness to many things captured. However, it’s not dramatically better to allow us to make out finer details – such as title of a book on a shelf. In fact, viewing the streams from this and the Piper classic, it’s really tough to distinguish the new Piper nv’s improved quality on such a tiny screen.
Comparing their prices, the Piper classic is still selling for $200 – while the new Piper nv will set you back $280. That $80 difference, by itself, is pretty substantial in our opinion, since the main differentiator at stake here is night vision. Even though there’s an upgraded 3.4-megapixel camera in the Piper nv, its quality advantage isn’t too profound when compared to the Piper classic. Generally speaking, we’re still quite content with the video quality put out by the original model.
Therefore, it simply boils down to night vision. We’re inclined to say it’s an invaluable feature, seeing that the Piper classic can’t perform when it’s completely dark – it just can’t! Well, it’s just a matter of figuring out whether or not the $80 price difference is warranted in picking the new over the old.