Honeywell Lyric C1 Review

Honeywell Lyric C1 & C2 : Mid-Tier Cameras With Smart Security Features

Hardware Criteria8
Software Criteria7.9
Home Automation5
Video Storage7.4
Encryption, Encoding, and Care6.3
Hands-On/User Reviews and Pricing7.6
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Honeywell has long been in the business of creating security equipment, and they show no signs of slowing down. At CES 2017, they promised to launch two security cameras, Lyric C1 and Lyric C2, within the year… and launch they did!

Lyric C1 & C2 Basics

Lyric C1 is an indoor-only security camera, relying on AC outlets for power. The camera needs a Wi-Fi connection (2.4GHz only) to communicate with the cloud.

You can set up your Lyric C1 in one of two ways. As is increasingly common with indoor security cameras, you can attach it to its magnetic base and set it on a flat surface. The second method, wall mounting, is also common for indoor cameras. At the back of the camera is a hole for a screw/hook, similar to the ones seen on wall clocks. Yes, this means you'll have to drill into your wall. If you'd rather keep your wall hole-free, the back of the camera offers plenty of space for double-sided adhesive strips.

Lyric C2 has a different design than Lyric C1, but most of their features are the same. What's different about C2 is that it works with both 2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi bands.

Image & Video Quality

Lyric C1

On paper, Honeywell Lyric C1 is just as good as any mid-tier security camera. It has a maximum resolution of 720p at 30fps, which is not bad but also not as good as our top indoor cameras. It has a viewing angle of 135°, similar to that of Nest Cam. It also features up to 16 feet of night vision, two-way talk, and a 5x digital zoom. All of this begs the question, does Lyric C1 fall into the mid-tier security camera category? Not really, thanks to its smart security features which we'll discuss shortly.

Lyric C2

Lyric C2 features a slightly better image and video quality than C1. For starters, its video resolution has been bumped up to 1080p. But there's a tradeoff: a higher resolution means that it uses more bandwidth. Second, Lyric C2's viewing angle is 145°, slightly better than C1's 135°. Third, C2 can see twice as far as C1 in the dark. Where C1 can only see up to 16 feet at night, C2 can see up to 32 feet. Finally, instead of a 5x digital zoom, C2 has a 6x digital zoom.

Features That Enhance Home Security

Lyric C1's image and video quality is mid-tier at best, while Lyric C2's camera quality can hold its own against our top picks. However, video quality is just one part of the equation.

Lyric C1 and Lyric C2 share several security features. One example is motion detection. Both cameras can detect motion and both of them automatically start recording when motion is detected.

However, motion detection is made smart by two added features. First is motion detection zones. With Lyric C1, you can setup up to two motion detection zones. With Lyric C2, you can have as many as four detection zones. Let's say your camera is set up in your living room facing the front door. In its view is a clear window facing a busy street. You wouldn't want your camera to send false alarms everytime a car passed by, but you also don't want it to miss possible intruders. The solution is to set up a motion detection zone around important areas. Your camera will only alert you if a motion event occurs within your selected zone.

The second feature that improves motion detection is geofencing. With geofencing turned on, your Lyric C1 and C2 cameras will arm their sensors automatically when you leave home and disarm automatically when you arrive. However, there's a downside to this feature. It will work perfectly if you're living alone, but if there are other people living with you, you'll have to share your username and password as Lyric does not support multi-user access.

Another security feature shared by Lyric C1 and C2 is sound detection. If they hear a loud noise, they will notify you. As with motion detection, Honeywell added some brains to this feature to make it smarter. First, you can adjust the sensitivity of the sensor. Second, the cameras can recognize the sound made by smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors and will send you a notification of the same.

That said, we've tried this type of feature before and found that sound recognition doesn't always work as intended. To help mitigate this challenge, Honeywell recommends that users place the camera within 49 feet of the smoke alarm. The closer the camera is to the smoke alarm, the better. Unfortunately, Honeywell admits that smoke alarm detection isn't free from false alarms. Beeping sounds from other appliances such as microwave ovens can trigger the camera to notify you. If you'd rather not be panicked by false notifications, you can turn off smoke alarm detection. The only problem with doing so is that this feature is tied to the sound detection feature, so if you turn it off, you'll lose all sound detection.

Finally, there's a feature exclusive only to Lyric C2 and it is… drumroll please… Baby Cry Detection. Yes, besides listening for the sound of smoke alarms and CO detectors, Lyric C2 also listens for the sound of a baby crying. This feature makes the camera a good nanny cam option.

Lyric C1 & Lyric C2 Software Behavior

You can control Lyric C1 and Lyric C2 remotely using the Lyric App for Android and iOS devices. Using the app, you can watch live streams, receive motion and sound alerts, view motion and sound-based recordings, and adjust all the camera's settings.

Unfortunately, Lyric currently doesn't offer a web app for PC or Mac, so you'll have to stick to your smartphone.

The Lyric App is the same app used to control and monitor Honeywell's Lyric line of thermostats and sensors. The iOS version of the app has an overall rating of 3.5/5, while the Android version holds a 3.3/5 rating. Based on user reviews, the app works consistently in controlling Lyric thermostats. However, as Lyric C1 and C2 are the first two cameras in the Lyric product line, there aren't many reviews specific to the cameras yet.

Lyric C1 & C2 Video Storage

Honeywell offers two video storage options for the Lyric C1 and Lyric C2. Both options are free.

The two cameras primarily utilize cloud-based storage. Out of the box, every Lyric C1 and Lyric C2 unit comes with 24 hours of cloud storage limited to 50 motion and sound events. No more, no less. Unfortunately, if you need more storage, Honeywell can't help. They do not offer a paid cloud subscription plan at this time.

The second video storage option is an SD card. Each camera includes an 8GB encrypted SD card that works exclusively with the Lyric C1 and C2. Unlike most cameras that allow you to upload videos to your computer by removing the SD card, the encrypted SD card that comes with the camera can only be viewed via the Lyric App. From there, you can download clips onto your smartphone or tablet's onboard storage. The SD card is removable, so if you want, you can replace it with an unencrypted SD card of your own. The camera supports a card size of up to 64GB. Take note that the local SD card storage option is a backup storage option. All videos go to the cloud regardless, but if the camera loses connection and detects motion, the event clip will be temporarily saved to your SD card.

Working With Others & Pricing

Lyric C1 and Lyric C2 are both part of the Honeywell Lyric line of devices, which mostly consists of thermostats and sensors. That said, they integrate well with other Lyric devices. Unfortunately, the integrations end there. Although Lyric C1 and Lyric C2 were both originally announced to work with HomeKit, the feature is still noticeably missing from both cameras. Is it just a delayed integration or are they permanently backing out of their commitment? Only time will tell. For now, the two cameras are compatible with nothing but other Lyric products.

Lyric C1 is available for purchase on Amazon for $119.00. The package includes the camera, its magnetic base, a 6-foot power adapter, and the encrypted 8GB SD card.

Lyric C2 is also available on Amazon for $169.99. It includes the same accessories as the Lyric C1.

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