4K POE Dome cameras


Active Member
Back in the day I had a bunch of Hickvision IP POE cameras, that worked well, but had all the usual issues with support and firmware, they were a mixture of US and international (didn't know when I bought), etc.
So when I moved I put in a few and picked Lorex as the feature set looked good and they claimed US support.  But I bought just Lorex cameras not their NVR, and their support was AWFUL in that case.  As an example, bought from an authorized source and one of 4 cameras came with different, later firmware.  Asked for a copy to upgrade the older ones (bought less than 30 days earlier) -- they refused, said they did not have it.  But they SHIPPED it.  Sigh.
The cameras have been good, but the ability to program or even setup them is really poor and poorly documented.  There is virtually no detail on using them with other NVR's. 
I need at least one, probably two more (and may want to replace some of the Lorex).  
Are there better choices now?  I'd prefer outdoor, dome, POE, not armored, I need about 90 degree field of view or optical zoom, and would like a way to script against it (e.g. a restful or other http interface) so I can pull stills and potentially change settings by time of day. 
In doing some search I'm coming up with some from Amcrest like IP8M-T2499EW-40mm, I also saw a "Backstreet" Pro90D-4K that looked reasonable.
So much stuff now is wifi, wireless junk - I just want a solid, reliable POE camera, but not much discussion about them any more.   I'm currently using Luxriot as an NVR, by the way.
Any advice? 
Seeing much these days relating to using cloud connected and wireless cameras programmable via your smart phone.
Recently here went to the doorbell wireless camera.  Initially purchased a Ring Doorbell.  Then purchased a Hikvision doorbell camera.
I have updated the firmware on the camera and removed the cloud dependencies from the camera.
Concurrently here purchased a couple of Hikvision openboard cameras which are POE utilized.  Looking at the firmware and using the HikVision Batch Configuration program I can enable these to utilize the cloud or local NVR or local SD card. 
Have noticed too that the firmware includes facial recognition pieces.
All of what I am testing works with RTSP, ONVIF and JPG which is good for me.  I am still in the Linux world of the NVR and prefer that over the Windows world of the IP camera NVR. 
Personally I would look for a camera that you can program with Windows / Linux computers and not have dependencies on your smart phone iOS or Android and not depend on the vendor's cloud connection.  This is my personal opinion.  What is nice these days is you get much more for your dollar these days.
I'm looking for example that, one that doesn't require a phone or cloud or anything but a local NVR, but I would like one I can script against.  For example, every few minutes I pull a image from each and upload to a B2 storage location so there's an off-site copy of the still at least, not the video (I don't have the bandwidth for video really). 
So with the china mess are you able to get hikvision that you can update firmware on, and that you trust not to brick if you try uploading firmware?  Would you recommend them?   I was quite happy with the hikvision I had at the prior house.  I'm actually quick happy with the Lorex, just not with the company,. but I never have figured out how to access them programmatically (I liked having a programmed change of some settings for dusk vs night vs dawn vs day, which was easy in a bash script). 
I really don't want any wireless or battery cameras.  I like something I can set and forget.
that you trust not to brick if you try uploading firmware?
Using the HikVision tools (one is called Batch Configuration) I have had no issues updating firmware.
There development tools that come with example builds of firmware.  Testing I tried:
1 - loading a design program tool
2 - updating with current firmware from camera
3 - tweak options
4 - update camera with tweaked options
I did not brick camera board.
I did similiar a few years back with Grand Stream cameras / camera boards with SIP features a few years back.
Much of the tinkering I learned from just googling the camera mods.
That said there is much info over at ipcam talk forum.
I would recommend HikVision at this time mostly because of what I have learned so far about the camera and that it does RTSP, ONVIF and JPG.
Many IP Cameras sold here are just HikVision OEM's labeled with company selling them with customized firmware. 
Here is a picture of one camera using the HikVision batch configuration program.  Run it here on W2016 server (any windows will work) and access it via RDP with my Linux Laptop.
I've been building my IP cam system. I have a Synology 418 NAS which comes with an excellent IP Cam Server and Clients that run on android or PC.  First cam is a Hikvision POE. Their setup was a bit painful and their software is dodgy and very slow.  The Synology is very fast. I have two wireless Dahua cams coming. These are wireless because of inability to run a Cat5 wire to those locations. I would have preferred POE.  Synology supports PTZ.
Currently have a Ring and and Wyze and both are slow as well as the bother of having to use 3 different apps to view everything. I will get rid of both of these when the new cams arrive. The Wyze I will play with as it can determine car speed and capture license plates.  We have some people that drive too fast on our street. I cant get the wyze to show up on the Synology and Ring you cant access either. I tried NetCam Studio and is was also very slow and limited compared to the Synology.
The Synology has Time Lapse, and can text/email on motion detect. You can set schedules for different type of recording.  The Client has an easy to use motion detected timeline viewer. You can view from anywhere in world.
OK, I ordered a Hikvision DS-2CD2385G1-I from B&H (who is actually authorized to sell Hikvision, so I paid an extra 20% or so for it).  It came, installed, worked fine.  Haven't tried to upgrade the firmware but since it's an authorized retailer should not be an issue.
Basically the same cost as the lorax, though the lorax had audio and zoom/focus (no pan/tilt), so it is quite a bit more expensive, but at least I think I can get support and program it if needed.
A bit of an update.  It took me almost a year of fighting with them, but I finally got Lorex to provide current firmware for the cameras I bought (from an authorized retailer).  They kept complaining they didn't have it (I guess meaning the support group didn't have it, since 2 of 4 cameras were shipped with it).  But Lorex is absolutely, positively oriented around use of their own NVR and are most unhelpful if you are not using one.  Their web interface is incomplete and buggy.
The Hikvision came in current and installed fine.  It was considerably more expensive than the Lorex, it had no zoom/focus control but was priced like the Lorex which did have it (I don't use zoom or focus live, but it gives  you a variable zoom so you can customize field of view for each camera).  Otherwise I can see little difference in quality or functionality.
If I have to buy more will keep buying Hikvision from an authorized site (I used B&H). Despite the chinese link/risk I feel like they are more reliable and mature.
Incidentally I switched to Blue Iris (I'm now on my 4th or so VMS); it's improved a lot over the years and I think now the motion detection customizations make it a better choice, plus it integrates better (i.e. at all) with Home Assistant.