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The front door of a home has always been more or less the front line when it comes to home security. Why? Because this is the route most unsavory people approach your home, from solicitors, to scam artists, to burglars.
You would think that only friends and family would feel comfortable enough to stroll up your walkway to your front door, but that just isn’t the case.
If you’re a burglar, why sneak around the back when you can walk right up to the front door and half the time it isn’t even locked! The other half the time the lock is some flimsy thing that will give way to a swift kick…
A good deadbolt is needed to keep the above situation from happening to you. If someone like the guy in the above video is at your door, you better believe he’s not there to ask to borrow some baking powder. This is why the door needs to be secure first and foremost.
When you know your door is secure, the next level of defence is to either install an outdoor security camera which allows you to keep an eye on things, or you can get something a little more cost effective like a peephole (also known as a door viewer). Unlike your security camera, to make use of a good peephole, someone actually needs to be home and able to check who’s at your door. This may seem old fashioned compared to a camera that lets you view your property remotely, but let’s not forget that peepholes do serve a different purpose from a security camera overall.
Why Do I Need A Digital Peephole?
People have used peepholes for ages to identify who’s at their door before they decide to open it or not. Once doors were invented, peepholes couldn’t have been far behind. You can imagine someone putting a small hole in their door so they could “peep” through it to check who’s at your door.
Whether its a stranger, your friend, the paperboy (you owe him $5 apparently), or that neighbor you don’t want to talk to because he won’t shut up, peepholes have always given us the ability to decide whether we want to open the doors of our home or not, depending on who’s out there.
The Brinno company has come up with this upgraded digital peephole (model PHV1325 Digital PeepHole Viewer) which differs from the traditional one in several ways, with the most important one being (we think) the use of an LCD panel to give you a nice clear view as to who your guest is.
The first thing you might notice is the sleek design of this Brinno peephole door viewer that makes it much more modern-looking than the standard peephole.
In fact, this is not just a hole in your door which you press your eye against (like an old school peephole), but rather an LCD screen attached to your door, which is then mounted on to a hole in your door.
In our research, we’ve seen that some customers consider this design to be sleek, while others think its more of a clunky-looking design, although those who dislike the design are more in the minority.
Appearance-wise, this peephole is silver/black in color and the product dimensions are 1.2 x 5.8 x 3.5 inches, making the Brinno PHV1325 Digital PeepHole Viewer suitable for doors with a thickness of 1.57”~2.72”(40~69 mm).
The Brinno digital peephole viewer comes in 3 pieces: a Brinno peephole, a mounting bracket, and the digital screen. The package also includes a tightening tool, a user manual, a warranty card, and 2 AA batteries which should last up to half a year.
This is probably one of the easiest digital devices to install as it takes only about 5 minutes to complete the entire mounting process.
Of course, you do need to have a door with an existing peephole, so you can replace it with the Brinno model. If your door doesn’t have a pre-existing peephole hole, you need to drill it according to the dimensions of the peephole included in the package. That’s when you’re going to need a drill. Here’s a quick video to show that isn’t not going to be mission: impossible. (*Note: also watch the instructional video below this video from Brinno to show how they install their peephole before you drill a new one)
As the above video says, about 4’10” is a nice, average height that can accommodate all heights, from tall to short.
Now take a look at the video below to see the installation process for the Brinno peephole, which assumes you’ve already got a peephole and you’re replacing it with theirs.
Function Of This Brinno Digital Peephole
We think you’ll find that the overall operation of this peephole is really quite easy, and it requires pressing one button to show what’s going on outside your front door on the 2.5″ LCD panel.
The image, according to many customers, is above average, and certainly much better than what you see through your average peephole. You will be able to clearly see who’s at your door without seeing any shadows or silhouettes, and without alerting the person outside to your presence. Of course, what you see does depend on the light outside, so you may wish to install exterior lights if you for some reason don’t have any installed.
It is also worth noting that although the Brinno PHV1325 Digital PeepHole Viewer will display the person in front of your door on a wide and bright screen, don’t expect the quality of a standard digital camera.
The other display mode offered by Brinno PeepHole Viewer is the zoom mode. Just press the button for the second time while the regular mode is still on, and you will be able to zoom in the center of the image, for a closer look at your guest.
If you press the button repeatedly, you will you will be toggling between the two display modes: the regular and the zoom mode.
Added Security From Burglars
A great thing about this type of peephole is that it defeats reverse peepholes (yep, that’s a thing!) – the items used by burglars to see into your home through the peephole. Yes, burglars are a scary bunch (read our in depth study of them here).
So with this peephole viewer, they won’t be able to see what’s inside your home and to spot your valuables and this is obviously a reason to have this type of peephole over your standard old-fashioned type.
This electronic device works on 2 AA batteries, which are included in the package. It turns itself off automatically after ten seconds to save the battery life, so it’s an economical device. The battery light will flash red to let you know it’s running low.
With peephole viewers like this one being so affordable these days, we think that soon enough, traditional peepholes will soon become a thing of past.
Viewing what’s outside your front door on a wide LCD screen is convenient for just about everyone, but especially for older people with poor vision who are particularly vulnerable – not just to burglars but to people bothering them during the day trying to sell them cable tv subscriptions. For the short of patience, it saves you having to yell at every annoying solicitor who you just assumed was a friend dropping by.
We think that having a Brinno PHV1325 Digital PeepHole Viewer will make you feel more secure in your own home. The image quality is good, and features it provides, such as the ability to zoom in, prevention of the use of reversed peepholes, and the economical use of batteries makes it worth the asking price. – 4.5 STARS!
By the way, if you want more features like image recording, doorbell and knocking sensor, Micro SD card etc., you can also try out the Brinno PHVMAC Motion Activated Hidden Front Door Camera.