WyzeCam Plus vs having an SD card

This question may have been asked previously, however, I wasn’t able to find it after sifting through the forum. Can someone tell me what the difference is between the Wyzecam Plus vs having the SD Card? I understand that there is a cooldown period of 5 minutes that gets negated with Wyzecam Plus, however, that will apply for notifications. If I have an SD card and I have set it to record (either continuous or via events), doesn’t this do the same thing as having the WyzeCam Plus? Please advise and thanks again!

For the most part, I don’t use any of my 19 Wyze cameras for notifications. I do have 64GB uSD cards in all of them and can review any footage that I want at any time. Never had any desire for Cam Plus.

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I think it’s a slicker experience with Person and other “AI” tags. Without the cloud engine the Wyzecams won’t have any person detection indication for local SD recordings. Also some of us have found Wyzecam SD card reliability VERY difficult. I stopped trying to use them. Lastly, if someone steals or trashes your camera / card your videos are lost, versus the safer “cloud” location for CamPlus.

The SD has the advantage of continuous recording (not just motion events like CamPlus) and unlimited retention.

Someone (maybe it was @carverofchoice) recently pointed out that if you replace your SD card every year the costs are about a wash between that and CamPlus.

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For me, it’s all about notifications. I don’t go looking at the recorded footage, unless a notification shows me something that I would then need to go to the footage for. So there aren’t any differences to me. They work hand in hand.

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Very good point regarding storage locally vs cloud and if the thief steals/trashes the camera! Thank you.

I don’t understand that. Why would you replace your card? Unless it died, of course.

And I wouldn’t say they have unlimited retention. I can get about 4 days of video on a 32gb card, and then it starts to overwrite. But I suppose if I pull the card every 4 days, I’d have unlimited retention. But then again, I don’t need that either. 4 days is plenty for my purposes.

I’ve actually had more reliability problems with the cloud events than with SD cards. Not too bad for the past 6 months though.

I don’t need nor want 100 or so notifications every hour - hence the reason I have them turned off.

If you use decent quality uSD cards, they last quite well. If you use crappy cards (and that includes the Wyze branded cards), they won’t last long in continuous recording.

I’m not sure if it was me (but it’s possible…I did post something about SD card usage between V2&V3 recently though), though I have recently put a lot of thought, consideration, and research into this out of curiosity. It seems to me that SD Cards should theoretically be a better deal (if you only care about the possibility of reviewing recorded footage)…in practice is another matter though (sometimes they die sooner than they theoretically “should.”

It can be so hard to calculate since the answer changes a lot depending on several variables:

  • SD card type (Single Level Cell/Multi Level Cell [ie:Triple-Level Cell])
  • SD card controller (wear levelling)
  • SD card size
  • File system
  • Card manufacturer/quality
  • Luck

Then you take into account your Camera use:

  • Are you running V2, Pan, or V3
  • Are you always in HD, or SD, or 360p
  • Is it always on daytime (more FPS?), or nighttime (fewer FPS?)
  • How much action there is also seems to change things a little for some reason (which doesn’t make sense to me).

Guesstimates place SD card life cycles on the order of 100,000 writes on average before wearing out.

V2’s use ROUGHLY 9-10GB/day when in HD. We’ll say if it’s always on daytime mode (instead of auto) it’s usually 10GB/day.
My first V3 showed to use 10.5GB per day in similar conditions to the V2 that was getting 10GB/day.

So, if you have a 32GB card, and have a V2 recording nonstop, you’ll use every sector of the card on average once every 3.2 days. With 100000 rewrites of each sector, that means the 32GB card could, in theory, last 3.2days * 100,000 = 320,000 days. 320,000/365 = 876.7 years to wear out every sector.

Even if you have a card that only takes 30,000 write cycles…less than one-third of what many believe is the “standard” 100,000…that’s still 263 years of recording use.

You could argue that read cycles will reduce this a little and so will other things, maybe deleting, or overwriting or whatever else, but even if you cut that in half, that is still a theoretical use of 131-438 years of constant writing to the card from a Wyze cam.

In practice, SD cards can’t last that long though…the point of the above is simply that using them in a Wyze cam to constantly record won’t use up the Read/Write limitations of any card’s lifespan. Like most semiconductor cards storing information in Flash Memory, the SD cards will likely go bad for other reasons first. The current technology with normal usage says a card should expect a lifespan of roughly 10 years (per the SD association). Some will go bad before that, and some can last longer than that. Again it depends on many of the factors in the first bulleted-list. Some really cheap cards don’t do wear levelling well (spread out which sector is written to how often, and so they will actually wear out and die faster), and a few other factors. There are things you can do to extend their life a little too, but usually if you have any sectors going bad, you might as well just get a new card.

So:

  • $10 for a 32GB card that should theoretically last upward of 10 years recording everything 24/7, but limited to 12 second cloud recordings & motion notifications once every 5 minutes (though you can get more with sound events, and automation events, and you can improve the experience using detection zones), You may miss many events you care about unless you watch all the video yourself.
    VS
  • CamPlus which will cost more than that EVERY year ($15/yr or $150 for 10 years), won’t record everything 24/7 but should record most things you would actually care to see and will give a ton of extra benefits from the AI analysis. It is also WAY more convenient to save stored footage elsewhere (I save a bunch of my indoor footage to Google Photos for example, and with CamPlus I can just share it to Google Photos directly with the original quality without having to sit there and babysit the entire recording with manually clicking start/stop and sometimes miss recorded frames from lag while it replays, etc).

I have and use both, even in the same camera (some cams have both CamPlus and an SD card too). Partially this is because I like having redundancy and failsafes (sometimes CamPlus fails to upload, or if internet goes out, or motion detection wasn’t significant enough, or many other things).

Anyway, whether one is better than the other depends on a lot of factors, including what your own personal use-case priorities are.

Found it, it was actually @jaketheone46 at

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Ah yes, an interesting point, but based on very flawed assumptions. I’ve never heard any industry expert ever say that you should need to replace the cards every year. On the contrary, most reasonable cards should last way longer than that (for Wyze cam use…granted in a computer with lots constant use, it could wear out faster…but in a Wyze cam, it’s really only 10GB a day, maybe 11 at the most).

I think that is all a case of “Confirmation Bias”…wanting to believe one made the best choice to get CamPlus, and so looking for anything that could possibly support the decision, rather than purely unbiased understanding of both sides. For me, Cam Plus has wonderful benefits, as do SD cards, but they aren’t exactly totally comparable. Both have positives and negatives, but if you want to ignore all that and just compare them purely on a basis of cost, then SD cards will slaughter CamPlus in the long run. Yes, you could have a card go bad earlier than it should, or buy really crappy cards, but for the typical card and long term average, small SD cards will be orders of magnitude cheaper (even if you do replace a few outliers sometimes). Even getting a 128GB card that stores 14 days worth of recordings like Cam Plus, will be cheaper. In fact, if you have the card act just like Cam Plus and only save motion events, then you can get a much, much smaller card and still have 14 days or more with way fewer write cycles and last even longer.

As much as I’d love to believe Cam Plus is a good deal because of SD cards going bad frequently, this is just not the reality. Cam Plus is a good deal because of all the benefits it provides, and compared to the competition (for only a few cams…though it becomes a less good deal compared to the competition if you have a lot of cams).

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I have had good luck with Silicon Power cards, from Amazon, in my Wyze cams, phones and computers. My dash cam complaints that the cards are too slow but they still work.
They are relatively cheap no-name cards but I haven’t had one die yet.

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For me the one advantage of Cam Plus is the safety and accessibility of the recorded files. If camera is stolen or, let say, burned (very unlikely, but still possible) all recordings are lost. If you’re away from your place and want to check videos, but your camera has no power, your records are inaccessible.

And second is the option to specify what events (person, car, package, pet, etc.) should be announced or muted. As well as the option to sort out videos of only one kind of event (person, car, package ) for review.

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@carverofchoice Thank you for this very detailed analysis!

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Oh, I remembered another reason I use BOTH an SD card AND Cam Plus simultaneously.

Example: I have a Wyze Cam watching my front porch and front yard. I only want notifications about events of people coming up to my front porch. I don’t want notifications of people walking past my house on the sidewalk or across the street, or about vehicles driving by on the road. BUT, I still want all of that recorded 24/7 incase I need it (examples in a minute).

So, a detection zone ensures I only have cam plus videos and notifications about people and things that enter my yard area. Unfortunately, the detection zone also makes it so Cam Plus never records things that happen outside of my porch/yard area.

So, my neighbors across the street got burglarized, and Cam Plus had no footage, but their front door (technically their side door…but it’s their main door) is in my camera view, so I could review footage on the SD card that recorded 24/7 even in the areas that weren’t within the limited detection zone I normally care about. I’ve also been able to go look up stuff like suspicious cars scoping out houses, and keep track of how people treat my black cat on both sides of the street (he loves to run up to people for attention and pets).

Using an SD card with Cam plus is like having 2 cameras in one. Cam Plus records and alerts me to everything that happens on my property. Then instead of buying a second camera with cam plus to make sure to record everything that happens on both sides of the road, I just put in an SD card and it covers that duty too. Detection Zone is for Cam Plus, and SD card is to cover everything 24/7, including as a failsafe for when I lose internet (like I did today from 11am-1pm, and had a package delivered but was never alerted and Cam Plus didn’t work because there was no internet…the SD card still caught it all.

That’s how I use them working together.

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It was me who said the sd card recomended to be replaced once a year vs cam plus. I read that either in the wyze fax or one of my cams manuals, can’t remember where but the had recommended when using a micro sd card that you replace it once a year. I do agree however this is not necessary. Well perhaps it may be with the wyze sd cards. Lol I myself go with a combination of both, a couple with SD cards and a couple with cloud service. Then quiet a few more with just the 12 sec free feature.

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I’m interested to know if any of you have verified that if someone unplugs/breaks/steals your cam with cam plus you still get the video?? I had also assumed this but am now second guessing. Reason is the other day I went out in my shop and unplugged my eufy 2k pan cam with the full eufy cloud subscription which is comparable to cam plus. Anyway later when I went to view the footage there was none. This blew my mind!!! Eufys version of cam plus is twice the price of the wyze cam plus. I then emailed eufy and they confirmed that if someone breaks in and breaks/unplugs my cam I’ll have nothing!! Unless they have wandered around long enough for a event to have ended and uploaded and another event has started recording which does happen if they go out of sight long enough. Anyway this has me concerned. Does the wyze do this too?? I’ve not tested mine yet but am definitely concerned. If cam plus is also like this you would be more likely to get footage of a criminal with the free 12 second clips being they end and upload fairly quickly. Again this is only if wyze cam plus is anything like eufys cloud service.
So with my eufy indoor 2k pan I’m going back to the SD card which is what I originally used but wanted that extra security in case someone unplugged/smashed/stolen or whatever my cam. Knowing this has me concerned perhaps the sd card is the way to go?
Can anyone confirm if this is the case with cam plus?? I’m referring to My exact scenario, walk in and unplug your cam with cam plus to see if you get that video. I’m hoping with wyze this isn’t the case.

It’s an interesting test. If this is a big concern, you can overcome it by using some form of RTSP to record somewhere other than the Eufy/Wyze Cloud and local SD card. RTSP will let you record live on the fly, so it would save anything up to the point of power/network loss.

Another option is using TinyCam Pro to save the live feed elsewhere. You can even set up TinyCam Pro as a server and then it works just like it has RTSP. The problem is that both and Wyze don’t have super reliable streaming feeds so your connection goes out fairly regularly which can be frustrating.

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I think I read that Wyzecams upload in one minute chunks throughout the duration of an event. Don’t know what happens if the last chunk doesn’t close out cleanly.

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Here is my question that might already been answer. If so sorry for repost…

I have local continuous recording on SD card for my v2, v3 and Pan camera. I also have Cam plus on both V and have RTSP on my Pan.

By using the CAM Plus, does it only save event by detection set in my app? Is that only save in the cloud for 14 days or is it also save to my SD card? Does continuous recorder only save to my SD card even thought I have Cam Plus active on same camera?

If I do use CAM Plus, does Wyze Cam save anything to the cloud without me knowing? Everything should be on my SD card only right.

Why do Wyze app need to have access to Location on my phone for certain function?

Sorry for all the questions, but I am trying to better understand how Wyze works. They should have a FAQ to let customer understand all this better. If they do, can someone point me to the right place.

Thanks,
Y