Home » Best Trail Camera Reviews 2019: Buying Guide

Best Trail Camera Reviews 2019: Buying Guide

What is a trail camera? A trail camera, also known as ‘game camera’ is a camera constructed in tough design with motion triggered characteristics for capturing images and videos of wildlife. These cameras play a major role for hunters as they capture animal patterns and take photos which can be used by hunters in gaming.
But choosing the quality trail camera can be very challenging, especially for beginners. As well, those who want to upgrade their cameras to a new one that is more reliable and efficient; picking out from the rest is not easy. So, what is the best trail camera for the money?

Our Recommend Top 5 Best Trail Camera Comparison Table

ImagesBest Trail CameraMegapixelBatteriesPrice Alert
Editor's ChoiceCheck PriceStealth Cam G42 No-Glo Trail Game Camera STC-G42NG
Read Review
10MP8 AA batteries required.Medium
Check PriceBrowning Strike Force HD Camera, Camouflage
Read Review
10MP6 AA batteries required.High
Check PriceDay 6 Plotwatcher Game Surveillance System
Read Review
10MP8 -AA batteries (Not included).High
Check PriceStealth Cam 8MP 30IR Game Camera
Read Review
8MP8 AA batteriesMedium

Summary of Contents

This review will help you to identify the best and show you the key aspects to check out before buying a trail camera. Furthermore, we will not only help you acquire the best trail camera but at the same time, we will ensure it is great for your task.

Why you buy trail cameras?

Trail cameras do a great job for hunters as they are placed in an area where they take images or record videos from which you can assemble all the data about the animals in your field. They reduce the burden of having to climb trees, or staying up late at night and wait for the animal to take its picture or video. Thus, when it comes to purchasing a camera of your choice, ensure the features the camera has are exactly what you require. Some may expensive, but select the best trail camera for the money.


SAVE TIME: Directly Go Our Recommend Top 15 Trail Camera list


Must have features for the Best trail camera or best game camera!

To have an outstanding gaming experience, you need a great camera with you. It should have wonderful features and serve all your different demands. With lots of amazing brands in the market, selecting the best can be very tricky. That’s why we came up with the best trail camera in the market which we will expound further below after looking at different features to consider.

Batteries Life

Battery life – a game may take hours or days to be monitored. Hence, you need a camera with a powerful battery life that can sustain it for a while. Since you will mount a camera in a hidden place and just leave it there for days, having a battery that is long lasting is very important. You wouldn’t want to be in a situation where you leave the camera only to come back and find its battery dead. This is very embarrassing and a setback in game hunting. Numerous trail cameras have a lifespan ranging from 6 months to one year. Battery consumption is determined by the usage of different features of the trail cameras. The best batteries to use are rechargeable batteries, lithium batteries, and alkaline batteries.

Solar powered trail camera for the hunter?

Power – alternatively, you can have other power options especially if you live far away and can’t change the battery regularly. In this case, you will be required to own a trail camera that has a plug in option to connect to a power source in case the battery runs out. Some people connect their cameras to solar power while hunting in faraway places.

Design of cameras

Design – the design of trail cameras is different from that of the normal cameras that we are used to. Many trail cameras want to resemble in design as they serve almost the same purpose. They are created in a camouflage design that cannot be easily detected by animals. Also, they come in different sizes from which you can choose from.

Black flash or no flash?

Flash – this is another vital feature to look out for when selecting your game camera. The flash feature is mainly featured on the camera to capture images at night or when there is darkness. The camera automatically switches to this mode at night or in darkness. The flash can either be incandescent or infrared. They both have their advantages and disadvantages. So, select the one that best suits your desires. When it comes to incandescent trail cameras, they provide a clear color image displaying the type and size of the game. For the Infrared flash trail camera, it takes photos during the night without emitting a bright white flash.

Pictures quality

Picture quality – the main essence of acquiring the camera is to capture quality images. As a result, before you decide on picking any trail camera, you should consider the quality of its pictures. Photo quality is measured in megapixels (MP). Therefore, the higher the mp the better the quality of the photo is. Most of the trail cameras come with mp that ranges between 5 to 7 MP’s.  Game cameras with megapixels of more than 10 MPs tend to cost more when compared to those with 4mps or below.

If you intend to use your game camera for night game hunting, then a higher resolution of 8 or more megapixels is highly regarded. Also, when looking at the quality of the images, consider the degree of view. The higher the degree of view is, the larger the coverage. The standard degree is 50 but if you get a camera with a larger degree is even better.

Memory cards?

Memory and video – In most cases, the memory used to store the images that your camera captures is the external memory. Unlike the internal memory, the external memory can be removed and placed in your computer or digital camera to view the photos that the camera has taken. As well, you can adjust to a larger capacity SD card slot if you feel you have a lot to capture or when the old one is filled up. Internal memory cannot be expanded unless you acquire a new camera with a larger storage capacity.

For big storage, you will find cameras that are compatible with a 32 GB SD card or even more. All cameras come with external SD slots but they vary mostly with regard to price. Some can only allow up to 8GB and are cheap. Go for a bigger storage capacity instead of the small one as it can as well store your videos and several images at once.

Fastest trigger speed camera

Trigger Speed – the trigger speed is the time between the period when the trail camera picks up the heat and the motion required for activating the shot and when it really photographed the image. Buy a game camera that can capture the image within less than one second. This is because, if it takes longer than that, the game might be out of sight. Cameras with a quick trigger speed are a bit costly when compared to those with a lower trigger speed. The quickest trigger speed that can be found in the market is 0.14 seconds. It’s good to spend and get the best out of your game camera than be sorry.

Detection range

Detection circuit – the detection circuit of the camera means the distance within which the camera’s sensors can determine the movement and trigger the camera for taking the image of the animal. It consists of the detection range, trigger time and recovery time. When it comes to hunting, long range cameras should be used. Currently, there are trail cameras with a detection distance of around 100 feet available in the market. Most of the cameras come with a range of between 50 to 70 feet. Counter check the specifications of the trail camera to ensure that they’ve the range that is being advertised. This is because some brands say to have a certain range which they don’t. A camera with a detection range of more than 80 feet is ideal.

Best game camera for security or Trail camera security systems

Security – the initial cost of trail cameras is a bit high. Therefore, these cameras should be handled with great care when in use. Since most of them are left out in the woods, field or just outside, they should be secured properly to avoid spoiled or being stolen. There are security boxes in the market meant to protect these cameras. They are mostly made of steel and are hard to break. A good security box should have a lock system and be foolproof. In addition, most of the security boxes come in a camouflage design which is hard to notice. To give a difficult time to thieves, hence they should be placed in higher places where they cannot be easily detected. Trail cameras can be used for home security.

Trail camera types

Types – selecting the best trail camera is no joke. That’s why we have narrowed down for you the different types of cameras to consider. We’ve had cellular cameras, infrared cameras, security cameras, flash cameras, and wireless cameras. These are explained as follows:

  • Cellular camera – they capture images and send them to your phone and computer through the internet.
  • Infrared camera – they are high resolution cameras that are suitable for use at night to capture images with clarity.
  • Security camera – if you require a trail camera to survey the game that criss-crosses your compound at night or while you’re away hunting, a surveillance camera is the best.
  • Flash camera – for better night shots, the flash camera is the best to use. The flash feature functions either during the day or at night as long as there is darkness.
  • Wireless camera – these types of cameras have built-in transmitters that send photos using a wireless network.

Best budget trail cameras

Price – every person has his or her own budget set aside for acquiring a trail camera. With your price in mind, view all the cameras available at that price before deciding. Though, it’s advisable to spend some more cash to get the high quality trail camera that will serve you reliably and effectively for a long time. Don’t settle for less but go for the best. A cheaper camera has lesser features when compared to costly ones. As an option, you can check the popular Moultrie camera list here.

Do you want the trail camera for hunting?

Lastly, know what you intend to do with the trail camera. Is it for hunting game in the field or just for surveillance in your compound? Do you have intentions of hunting at night or only during the day? Is the area you want to cover large or just a small fraction?

Think about the most significant role that you want the trail camera to perform for you before acquiring one. By doing so, you will attain a quality camera for your needs.

Our Recommend Top 15 Best Trail Camera Reviews 2019

When picking out your trail camera, you can begin by figuring out whether it has the ideal features for your hunting needs. Make a wise decision as a good camera will ensure that you capture quality images and record quality videos.

For a better game hunting experience, take a look at the top trail cameras that we selected for you after thorough research.

  1. Best no glow trail camera – Stealth cam g42 reviews (Our top pick)

The stealth Can N0-Glo trail cam G42 has a triad 3 in 1 technology that photographs still images with high definition videos and time lapse shots. It has a quick set up which makes it easy for use by experts or beginners. The 4 resolution changes from 2mp to 10 mp allow you to select the quality that you prefer for your image.
The fast reflexes trigger system enables the cam to snap a picture within half a second. In addition, this camera can record a video with audio between 5 to 180 seconds. If you want to use it at night for your game hunting activities, the matrix advanced blur reduction technology ensures that you get clear images. Other amazing features of this camera are; secure locking system, uses 8 AA batteries, durable weather proof housing, and can accommodate an external SD card of up to 32GB.
Best Trail CameraCheck Price

Pros:

  • Quick and easy set up.
  • Secure lock protection.
  • The very fast trigger speed of fewer than 1.5 seconds.

Cons:

  • Uses a lot of power.
  1. Browning strike force trail camera reviews – long battery life game camera

Browning camera is regarded as one of the best trail camera producers in the market. On our list, we consider it in the same regard. It has the capability to detect a moving image or game within a flash range of 100 feet.
The quality of its pictures is one of the best with a high 10mp. If you want a camera that will capture quick shots, this is the camera to buy. It has a trigger speed of 0.67 seconds. Furthermore, it has the ability to record videos with sound up to a duration of 5 seconds to 2 minutes. As well, it has an outstanding battery life as it uses 6 AA batteries. Despite being one of the smallest game cameras in the industry, it performs very well.
Browning strike force trail cameraCheck Price

Pros:

  • Simple to set up.
  • Favorable price.

Cons:

  • Hard to remove the SD card from the camera.
  1. Outdoor game camera reviews – plotwatcher pro reviews

Are you looking for a trail camera for hunting? The Day 6 Plotwatcher Pro HD is the best for you. This camera has the capability of capturing up to 1 million images, which is very fascinating. It has a high video resolution and takes images every 5 to 10 seconds the whole day.
It is easy to set up for use with its one-single button design and has a camouflage design that cannot be easily detected by animals or humans. The game finder software enables you to check files forward or backward or scroll frame by frame. With this camera, you can be assured to track the game patterns in your field.
Outdoor game cameraCheck Price

Pros:

  • Can take a picture every 5 seconds.
  • It’s easy to install.
  • It can capture multiple images of up to 1 million.

Cons:

  • It lacks night mode.
  1. Stealth cam g30 review – Best stealth camera

Stealth cam G3O is one of the best trail cameras in the market. When you purchase this cam, be guaranteed to capture games within a range of 80 feet. This awesome trail camera comes with 3 different megapixels which are; 2mp/4mp and 8mp. These allow you to capture high to low quality images. It has a quick flash shot that is triggered within 5 seconds. In addition to the amazing features that the Stealth Cam G30 has, it comprises of a secure locking system and can enable up to 32GB SD card slot. Lastly, the camera is able to record an HD video between 5 to 180 seconds with audio.
Stealth cam g30Check Price

Pros:

  • It has an amazing trigger speed.
  • It’s easy to set up.
  • Produces high quality videos with sound.

Cons:

  • It consumes a lot of power.
  1. Best game camera reviews – Crenova Hunting Camera

It might be the cheapest on our list but comes with various great features that lift it among the best. If you’re a hunter with a low budget, this is the most suitable trail camera for you. It can detect images for a maximum of 120 degrees. With this cam, you can be assured of a high quality photo as it has up to 12mp color resolution. After placing it in the woods or in your field to monitor the game pattern, you don’t have to worry about the power as it uses long life 8 AA batteries. Other features include; password protection system, USB output and supports up to 32GB SD card slot.

Pros:

  • High quality images with 12MP.
  • Very easy to install.
  • Captures outstanding photos.

Cons:

  • Uses a lot of power.
  1. Browning Strike Force HD Camera

The Browning strike force HD camera features a fast 0.67 trigger time with a 100-foot flash range. The camouflage designed camera records HD videos with sound up to 2 minutes in length and can take comparable quality HD photos using less power from its 6 AA batteries. Note that the batteries are not included and you will have to buy them separately.

The 10 MP infrared LED illumination with 1280 x 720 HD video option makes this cam to be ideal for both professionals as well as enthusiast hunters. The zero blur technology helps to get rid of motion blur from moving animals. Other excellent features of this game camera include browning buck watch time-lapse viewer software and time-lapse plus camera mode with IR triggered images.

  1. Bushnell 8MP Trophy Camera HD

The Bushnell 8MP trophy camera is suitable for intermediate to expert users, and it can be applied for security or game hunting. Thanks to its sturdy construction and versatility. It features a 720p video with audio up to 1 minute in length. Furthermore, it has a hybrid mode that can take both HD videos and pictures at the same time. The images taken are detailed and crispy with date, time, moon phase, and temperature information.

Powered by 4-8 AA batteries, Bushnell is a truly reliable camera. These batteries can last up to one year. In addition, it has GPS Geotag that automatically embeds GPS coordinates and a large SD card storage capacity of 32GB. The day or night auto sensor makes it perfect for both day and night recording. Since it is weatherproof, you don’t have to worry about rain falling at night or leaving it in extreme cold. Despite its high initial price, this is a high-quality and efficient trail camera to have.

  1. Moultrie Game Spy M-990i Game Camera

Moultrie is one of the top game camera brands on the market. The Moultrie game spy M-990i trail camera features 10-megapixel resolution with a 70 ft flash range. Moreover, it has less than 1-second trigger speed, which ensures that the game is recorded before it passes the view of the camera. The crystal clear widescreen allows you to easily set the camera. Also, it has an intuitive design that even a beginner will have an easy time using.

The 50-foot detection range that the camera features allow the hunter to capture crisp daytime images, while the invisible flash with a 70-foot range eliminates the danger of spooking the game. With its rugged design and extended battery life, this is another perfect camera for hunters.

  1. Day 6 Outdoors Plotwatcher Pro Game Surveillance System

The Day 6 plotwatcher pro HD game surveillance system comes with the best timer systems. This mid-range camera has the ability to capture pictures every 5 to 10 seconds from morning to evening. In addition, it can capture up to 1 million video images. This camera allows the hunters to analyze a potential hunting area without having to manually scout the place. It produces crisp images as it has a 1280 x 720 video resolution. On top of that, it has up to 32 GB SD card storage capacity.

The clear 2.5-inch screen allows the hunter to view what the wild has to offer and adjusting settings is easy, too. Simply use the one-button setting. The camera also comes with GameFinder video player software that makes it easy to check your daily video files. If you want to make an informed decision about a game in a certain area, this is the perfect camera for the job.

  1. Stealth Cam G30 8MP Camera

The Stealth cam G30 trail camera is one of the best entry-level trail cameras on the market. The camera features sturdy construction, amazing video quality, extended battery life, and outstanding performance. Additionally, 3 resolutions to choose from which are 8MP, 4MP, and 2MP with HD video recording of 5 to 180 seconds.

The camera has the ability to capture images or record videos in any lighting conditions, thanks to its 30-IRs emitters with a reach of 80 ft and its reflex trigger of half a second together with its advanced blur reduction technology. The new intuitive backlit menu programming is easy to use and the camera is housed in a sturdy shell. With these features, this is a quality camera at a wonderful price.

  1. Campark Trail Game Camera

If you’re looking for the best hunting and trail camera, then the Campark trail game camera is the best choice for you. Not only is this camera greatly priced, but it also provides hunters with exceptional features. The camouflage designed camera provides high-quality images as it features 14 MP and full HD 1080P videos. As a result, you will capture crisp images during the day and outstanding black and white images at night. In addition, it has an excellent trigger speed of 0.3 seconds and a trigger distance of up to 20m.

The waterproof camera features 120 degrees detecting range, which allows the user to get a wide view. It is also very easy to operate and comes with multiple applications. With excellent sensitivity and night vision, this is an amazing camera for any hunter.

  1. Moultrie Game Camera

Powered by 8 AA batteries, the Moultrie game camera is another top game camera that comes with two resolution settings; low (1920×1080) and high (4608×2592) and high definition 15-second videos. It also features a sturdy case with a weatherproof plastic exterior that makes it withstand tough outdoor conditions. The camera is easy to mount and use as it comes with a standard ¼-inch – 20 threaded inserts on the bottom and a 72-inch mounting strap.

The camera produces an excellent flash as it has 24 LEDs and 850nm nighttime infrared technology that illuminates up to 70 ft away in complete darkness for maximum coverage. The camera captures approximately 16, 000 images and has a storage capacity of up to 32GB.  With a trigger speed of 0.7 seconds, you will be able to capture the animal in real-time.

  1. Apeman Trail Camera

APEMAN trail camera comes with 12 MP for crisp images and 1080P HD video with a clear sound. Furthermore, it has a 10degree wide-angle view and 0.2 seconds trigger speed that ensures you don’t miss on any deer that passes in front of your camera. Another great feature is the trigger distance of up to 20m with IR flash, which makes this camera to have an amazing trigger scope.

Apart from having the usual trail camera features, this camera as well as features time-lapse, password protection, interval recording, timer, and low battery alarm. The camera is also waterproof and easy to mount. With its camouflage design, thieves will have a difficult time locating this cam.

  1. Cuddeback 20MP Trail Game Hunting Camera

If you’re looking for a unique and professional level trail camera, then the Cuddeback 20MP is the best camera for you. This camera is equipped with an excellent trigger speed of 0.25 seconds. This is the best trigger speed or any trail camera on the market. Apart from having an outstanding trigger speed, the camera as well as produces crisp images with its 20MP. No matter the light condition, the advanced low-light CMOS image sensor provides enhanced color and clarity.

Cuddeback also has a quick recovery speed of less than 1 second. This means that you will not miss any game as they pass along the trail. With a 100-foot flash range, this is a wonderful camera for experienced hunters.

  1. TOGUARD Trail Camera

The Toguard trail camera is the cheapest camera on our list. Despite the price, the camera comes with 14MP which provides clear images and 1080P videos. The 0.5 trigger speed allows the user to capture all the games detected within range and it uses less power. In addition, the game camera is equipped with a 120-degree detecting range, which enables the hunter to get a broader view.

The 2.4-inch LCD is large enough and ensures that the user has an easy time setting the camera. It has an IP56 waterproof rating and thus, you can be guaranteed that it will be protected from elements like dust or rain. With multiple settings for easy use and a one-year warranty, this is a reliable camera for detecting the movements of deer or any other game of your choice.

Conclusion
With the information about the best trail camera or best game camera in the market, definitely you can make a better decision by selecting one that meets all your demands. Choose wisely in accordance with the intended use of the trail camera and the features that it has to help you facilitate your major purpose.

If you’ve clicked on my site, it is pretty obvious that you’re looking for the best trail camera or game camera as some people refer to it. All I can say is that you have landed in the right place. In this review, we will provide you with tips and tricks that will help you select a camera of your choice and needs. Also, we’ll discuss the best trail cameras in the market.

Whether you’re looking for a trail camera for hunting, security, or for professional use, you need to know what features are important for your activity. Some trail cameras are great for scouting game, while others are excellent when used for security reasons. Most of the cameras on this list can be applied for various reasons as they’re sturdily constructed, waterproof, have a high resolution, excellent trigger time, and a great detection circuit.

These are as follows:

Trail Camera Tips

To become a successful hunter in all the four hunting seasons, you will definitely need the best trail camera. Trail cameras help hunters who use them rightly to catch big bucks all season. Taking timely photos of the game will provide you with useful information that will make hunting to be easy. After speaking to several professional hunters and conducting research on how to properly utilize trail cameras, we’ve come up with the following 10 trail camera tips.

10 Trail camera tips and tricks

  • Make the right trail camera setup

This is the first thing to take note of. Ensure that you install the camera in the right place. It should be away from the sun and no weeds or tall grass should be in the way. The movement of such things will make the sensor take a shot and you will end up with blank photos.

  • The Location of the trail camera

The place where you place your camera should be in line with what you want to take pictures of. It can be to scout a buck, doe or fawn. Also, it can be meant to learn the behavior of a particular buck or to watch a food plot. Place it in a place that you think will give you the results that you want.

  • Trail camera settings

When you’re done finding a desirable location and setting up the trail camera, you need to set the camera to capture what you want. Ensure the memory card is of the right size and put on a mode that you want. It can be to take images, video, time-lapse or hybrid.

  • Baiting with a trail camera

In the spring and summer seasons, salt and mineral licks are extremely attractive to deer. This is because of the high deficiency of sodium forcing them to start craving for this kind of diet. Attract the does, fawns, and bucks around the trail camera by scattering minerals and salts around it. You will end up knowing how many deer are in that particular surrounding.

  • Maintain and organize your trail camera

Ensure that you check your trail camera from time-to-time. Low batteries should be changed and the full memory card should be formatted to free up space. Also, organize the photos and videos of the game taken.

  • Scent control

This is one of the common mistakes made by many people. If you leave a human scent behind, this will chase away the deer. Ensure that during the deer season, you keep human scent by spraying it after setting up the camera or using tactical gloves when installing the camera. But, if using a good deer attractant then no need to use human scent.

  • Trail camera density

Another thing that deer hunters forget is the number of cameras needed on the property. If your land is flat with less obstruction, this will be easy as you need many cameras. But if the terrain is not flat, you will need different trail cameras for different sections.

  • Be totally discreet

If you want to have a better chance of knowing where the bucks or fawns feed and spend most of the time, you should be very discreet so that they don’t discover you out. Place a camera in a place where whitetails won’t detect you. If they do, they will become smart and you will never have a chance of catching them.

  • Changes in season

One of the things that people forget about is changing the camera to the right place or direction as the season changes. Every deer season differs from each other. This is because the deer change their sleeping, moving and feeding patterns too. Ensure that you place the camera according to the season.

  • Security of your trail camera

People have reported many theft cases in the past. To protect your camera from thieves, you can acquire camouflage trail cameras or lock them up.  Also, put warning signs on your property so that trespassers cannot just move aimlessly on your land.

Beginners, as well as experts, can use the above trail camera tips to know where the does and fawns reside or how to lay traps and hunt down the big bucks. Even with these tips and tricks, one needs a quality best trail camera for better results.

How to Use a Trail Camera for Security?

On the mention of the word “trail camera”, the minds of many people just think about hunting cameras that are hidden in the woods to scout deer and other game.

Did you know that trail cameras can be great for home security? Now you know. Trail cameras are excellent for using as security cameras. This is because of their features like no glow, motion sensors, video, and toughness. These features allow trail or hunting cameras to be unnoticeable by trespassers or thieves as they capture what is taking place. Read trail camera reviews to know more about it.

If you love to travel a lot and want to see the person who has been breaking into your house while away, then, you should install one of these trail cameras.

Detect the problem

Know what or who has been making you have sleepless nights by installing a trail camera. This problem will be solved completely by detecting the individual. Get a quality no flash infrared trail camera. Usually, these don’t have a glow and the LEDs in the infrared are totally invisible. Thieves, burglars or stray animals will be unaware of the camera’s existence.

Ensure that you mount the camera in a place that it won’t be detected very easily by rascals. Set it up high on a tree or camouflage it in such a way that they can never think of. If you live in an urban area, you can install the camera on top of the telephone pole or near the roof top where they can view or reach it.

Buy the right security camera

There are so many types of trail cameras to choose from. Mostly, the two most common categories include cellular trail cameras and no glow cameras. The camera type that you use will depend on the type you’re okay working with. No glow cameras will require you to reach and check the SD card after taking several photos. From another point of view, cellular cameras usually send you videos and photos to your phone after capturing them. No glow trail cameras use Wi-Fi networks available and cellular cameras function on Verizon and AT&T cellular networks.

In case you want a camera that can capture license plates at night, get the Reconyx SM750. Besides this camera, all the other cameras just white out and can only take nice images during the day or where there is sufficient light.

Some of the features to look for in the best trail camera include video capability, no glow cameras, wireless or cellular and motion sensors. Never assume that all trail cameras have these features as you might be just surprised. Check these features and the durability of the camera. Some also have camouflage features which you should consider if you want to properly conceal the camera.

Setup the camera correctly

With all things setup, you are almost done. All you need to do is to setup the camera in the right place to capture all the activities. If you have a clue where the burglar or stray animal likes to be in your compound, you can easily place your camera to cover that area. Strategically place it to capture everything all the events as you can use the evidence acquired in a court of law.

Stop thieves, burglars or trespassers by acquiring the less expensive but best trail camera for security. Although trail cameras are meant for hunting, they can prove to be great for security, too. They have outstanding features like motion sensors, no glow, wireless network, camouflage design and video that will help you capture your enemy without their knowledge.

Buyer’s Guide to the best trail camera

Since there are so many trail cameras on offer, it is important to know which features are important and which ones are not. In this guide, we’re going to highlight some of the most vital features that you should look at in order to land the best camera for your needs.

Image quality

This is one of the most vital features of any trail camera. Different cameras have different clarity as they vary in the number of resolutions. Just like normal cameras, the higher the resolution, the crisper the image will be. Thus, it is recommended that you get a camera that has a resolution of at least 8 megapixels. During the day, trail cameras provide a full-color picture and video, but those captured at night are black and white. Images are taken at night using infrared flash technology.

Battery life

The batteries that power on your camera are very important. You don’t want a battery that has a short life. Imagine leaving the camera on the whole night, only to come out in the morning and discover that it died in the middle of the night. This is very frustrating and that’s why you need a reliable battery. Most trail camera batteries come with a lifespan of 6 to 12 months. Note that incandescent flash uses up more power than the infrared. If you want a more reliable battery, you will have to spend more.

Video or picture

Whether it is taking videos or capturing photos, you need a high-resolution camera. Traditional cameras usually have an average resolution of around 6, while trail cameras require more. Actually, a good trail camera should have at least 8 megapixels. Also, almost all trail cameras support videos ranging from 3 to 300 seconds. Some provide colored videos with HD quality, while others record videos in just black and white. Always check to ensure that the camera has the video quality that you want.

Detection circuit

The detection circuit features 3 important features which are the detection zone, trigger time, and recovery time. The detection zone specifies the width and distance between the animal and the camera. The trigger time is the time between the moment when the hunting camera picked up the heat and motion required for triggering the shot and when it actually took the photo. While the recovery time is the amount of time the camera requires before taking the next image.

Memory

When it comes to the storage of photos or videos, you have the option of choosing an SD card or internal memory. The SD card is more beneficial than the internal memory. The only advantage that the internal memory has over the SD card is that you won’t be required to purchase an extra SD card. But the SD card simplifies things for you as you don’t have to carry the entire camera to view what’s stored on it. You simply remove the memory and insert another one.

Security

Reports of trail camera theft are normal and that’s why you need to keep the camera protected. The best way to protect your camera is by purchasing a security box. These are durable and will protect the camera from scratches and blows. A good security box should have a lock system and it should be foolproof. Some people assume that the cameras are in camouflage designs so no one will detect them. Don’t take such chances.

Types of trail cameras

Acquiring the best trail camera is not an easy thing as there are different types of cameras to select from with varying features. The most common types of cameras include:

  • Cellular camera
  • Wireless Wi-Fi camera
  • Flash cameras
  • Security cameras
  • Infrared cameras

All of these cameras have their own advantages and disadvantages. Therefore, choose a camera that meets your needs and demands.

Budget

Before you choose any trail camera, you should know how much you are willing to part with in order to get the best trail camera for your needs. The costlier the trail camera the higher the resolution and performance. If you’re a pro, then you need a high-quality trail camera. But if you’re a beginner, a simple trail camera is great for you.

FAQ

Question: How far do trail cameras work?
Answer: In most cases, trail or game cameras have an effective range of around 50 feet. But if the camera is of higher quality, it can cover 100 feet or more. To determine the effective range suitable conditions are assumed. Nevertheless, in the real world that effective range for game cameras is reliant on most of the factors including some that will be out of your own control such as the thickness of the underbrush and the existence of smoke or fog.

Question: What’s the best way to mount my trail camera?
Answer: Most of the manufacturers include a mounting strap with the trail camera. You can utilize the strap to mount the camera on a tree. Mounting brackets meant for every purpose are present in hunting outfitters and online. When mounting the camera, ensure that it is as secure as possible so that it doesn’t move around and make you lose your view. In addition, you may have to mount the camera in a lock box built for trail cameras to prevent damage or theft.

Question: What is affecting the battery life of my trail camera?
Answer: Various things can shorten the life of your trail camera battery. If the area that you are hunting in has a lot of activity, this will lead to a shorter battery lifespan because the camera is frequently recording videos and taking pictures. Also, nighttime detection utilizes a lot of battery due to the LED activation. Videos use up more battery power than photos, as they utilize settings like rapid fire mode and time-lapse mode.
Many of the trail camera manufacturers install battery-saver technology to preserve the life of your batteries when there is no movement discovered for an extended amount of time. Normally, batteries last for between 2 and 6 months.

Question: How can I view videos and pictures while in the field?
Answer: If you possess a digital camera that has an SD card reader, this can be an option for you. Nevertheless, a good number of hunters purchase trail camera viewers that plug right into the camera itself. This is very convenient. You can then save the images onto the device and place the newly-cleaned SD card into the game camera. Alternatively, you can purchase a trail camera with a built-in viewer.

Question: What type of batteries should I use in my trail camera?
Answer: The best batteries to use are lithium, non-rechargeable AA batteries that will give you the best lifespan. But these are quite expensive. Also, alkaline batteries are outstanding, but when used in the cold, they run out quickly. Last but not least, NiMH rechargeable batteries are cheaper, but they may not last you for a long while.

Question: How should I mount my camera?
Answer: Most cameras come with mounting straps that are purchased together with the camera. This is the best way to mount a camera and it will make the camera easy to relocate should you require it. All you’ve to do is to mount the camera in a way that it won’t move or shift.

Question: How do I keep my camera from being stolen?
Answer: This is a good question as many hunters have complained about their cameras being stolen in the woods. The best way to protect your camera from being vandalized is by acquiring a lockable box to keep the camera in. Apart from that, you should as well conceal your cameras with a brush or in difficult to access areas.

Question: Is there any difference between day and night picture qualities?
Answer: A good number of pictures captured with IR will appear to be somehow grainy. This is a limitation of the IR technology and not the camera resolution. A camera with a higher resolution will usually perform better with less grainy pictures but all pictures maybe a little less crisp at night.

Still, have a question after reading this best trail camera reviews? Comment below.

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