Swann Communications Black Knight Wireless Weather Colour Camera
- Good infrared range, full field of vision, easy to set up and use
- Not completely weatherproof, suffers from interference
Anyone needing a good night vision camera need look no further
Price$ 299.00 (AUD)
We like Swann's products. They're easy to use, simple to set up and generally offer good quality at a reasonable price. The Black Knight is no exception. We really found that there was very little to dislike about this camera, especially compared to some other night vision cameras we've tested.
The Black Knight is very simple. It consists of a digital colour CCD surrounded by 27 infrared LEDs and this enables the camera to see in the dark. Video and audio are then transmitted wirelessly from the camera to a receiver, which can be connected to any TV with AV inputs. That's it. Swann claim the system can be set up in three minutes; we think they may even be overestimating here.
The design of the Black Knight is fairly impressive and Swann seem to have thought of almost everything. Firstly, the camera is weatherproof, enabling it to be used outdoors with little problems. In theory this is a good idea, but as the camera requires mains power it still retains a non-weatherproof element. In this case, only the first 6 inches of wire protruding from the Black Knight can be exposed to the elements. Secondly, to counter the problem of glare from the sun, Swann have included a retractable shade that slides over the lens, shielding it from the sun's rays yet not obscuring its lens. We also thought the flexible mount was well implemented, enabling the camera to point in nearly any direction without overbalancing.
Of primary importance in a camera is the quality of its images. While we weren't blown away by the video quality of the Black Knight, it was more than acceptable. The image was sharp and clear, retaining focusing all the way into the far distance. One slight disappointment was the colour balance, which isn't perfect, but this matters very little for a surveillance camera. The most impressive feature was the infrared night vision. The camera automatically detects when light levels drop and switches on a powerful array of LEDs. These are able to illuminate the entire field of vision, something that other infrared cameras have failed to do. Swann claim that the Black Knight can see up to 50m at night, though we honestly have our doubts. Aside from the fact that the infrared LEDs aren't that powerful, at this distance objects would appear so small on the screen we doubt it would be of much use. Unless you plan on keeping track of a glow in the dark herd of elephants, we'd advise 20m to be a more reasonable limit - and this is more than enough for most uses.
One problem which we have suffered when using Swann's wireless camera's before is interference. Occasionally when using the camera near to other electronics the picture can become obscured with static and bars of noise. While the problem isn't as pronounced as with some other cameras, it is worth bearing in mind that if you plan on using the camera in an area with lots of other wireless equipment you may encounter this problem. This is especially pertinent if you wish to use the built in microphone as audio transmission is more adversely affected than video. Overall though, the Black Knight is a good product at a reasonable price and we would advise anyone in need of night vision surveillance to look no further.
Join the PC World newsletter!
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Google Daydream VR headset
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Huawei Mate 9
Acer Swift 7
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Lexar® Portable SSD
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
HP Pavilion x360 13”
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Surface Pro 4
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- 2 ZTE Axon 7 review: Is ZTE dumping old stock on Australia?
- 3 Oppo R9s smartphone full review
- 4 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 5 Huawei Nova Plus smartphone review
Latest News Articles
- AT&T will acquire Time Warner for US$85.4b in content play
- Facebook adds Apple TV and Chromecast support as video push ramps up
- Remocam review: This security camera can control your home appliances
- Logitech's C922 webcam is the revered C920's vastly upgraded successor
- FBI faces lawsuit because it's stayed mum on iPhone 5c hack
GGG Evaluation Team
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- Time to ditch Foxtel and the iQ3: How to replace Foxtel packages with cheaper alternatives
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- FTMicrosoft Dynamics AX Technical ArchitectNSW
- CCTechnical Support AnalystACT
- CCLevel 2 IT Service DeskQLD
- TPICT Contracts Compliance ManagerWA
- CCSenior Storage System Engineer - NetApp SpecialistNSW
- FTPython DeveloperNSW
- FTLife/400 Resource - PermanentNSW
- FTInfrastructure Architect (Adelaide Based)VIC
- FTAndroid DeveloperNSW
- FTSenior Systems AdministratorWA
- TP.Net DeveloperSA
- CCSAP/ Nakisa Implementation ConsultantQLD
- CCSenior Life 400 DeveloperNSW
- CCIT Procurement OfficerNSW
- TPe-Learning Developer (Captivate 8)VIC
- CCTechnical Business Analyst - Infrastructure - VirtualizationNSW
- TPBusiness AnalystNSW
- TPDigital Strategist - Newcastle BasedNSW
- FTSenior Technical Consultant - SQLACT
- FTDynamics AX Functional Consultant (Sales & Marketing Modules)VIC
- FTDynamics AX Functional Consultant (Sales & Marketing Modules)WA
- FTTechnology Testing Services ManagerVIC
- FTSenior .Net Developer with Silverlight proficiencyVIC
- TPSenior Business AnalystQLD
- FTSenior Project Manager - PERMANENTACT