Blink XT Home Security System Review

Sometimes, even the simple act of displaying a good security camera can save your entire home from being infiltrated and ransacked. There is something about the sight of a camera that drives away potential burglars and home invaders, and it is always a good idea to make sure that your property is well-protected, don’t you think?

But now, the question you’re probably asking is, “Which security camera and system should I get?”

Well, there are many different kinds out there, each with its own unique features. But there is this one particular model that has caught our eye. It’s the XT Camera System by a now Amazon-owned brand called, Blink.

Every now and again, I’m going to compare it to popular home security camera system brands like Arlo and Nest, okay? This should give you a better perspective on how good or not-so-good the XT is compared to the rest of the popular security camera models on the market.

How Does the XT actually work?

The XT Camera System relies on motion detection. This means that it will only start recording once it detects movement. This way, you won’t have to deal with all that unnecessary footage where nothing notable happens. The downside, however, is that a cat or squirrel passing by, or even a swaying tree branch, might trigger it. I’ll get to this later.

What’s in the package?

A full package of the XT Camera System includes the camera itself, a storage hub (cloud Sync Module), power cable for the sync module, 2 AA Lithium batteries, a security sticker, user guide, mount, adhesive strips and screws. As for the warranty, it has a 30-day refund guarantee and a 12-month limited guarantee.

Blink XT Camera

The camera is pretty sturdy, especially if you plan to set it up in harsh weather. It’s waterproof and can withstand extreme temperatures from -4° F to 113° F. I’m afraid the same cannot be said for its mount. It’s a bit flimsy, and Blink doesn’t have spare mounts for sale.

The camera itself is wireless only, and it does not have options for a cable connection. One thing I really like about it is that it uses standard size batteries. It’s easy to replace them when you run out of power. It’s a pretty big advantage over Arlo and other major brands whose cameras run on expensive battery packs that only the manufacturers make. Not to mention that batteries last for two years with these XT cameras.

The camera’s fisheye lens spans 110°, and you get a video resolution of 720p, running at 30 frames per second. I know, that’s not exactly the best resolution you can get from a security cam, but it’s good enough for the price.

At night, you can choose to illuminate its surroundings with the built-in LED ligh, or, instead, you can choose to turn on its infrared light night vision. While the resolution for night vision and low light conditions are even less clear, it’s good enough to see the actual faces of the people the camera is detecting.

The Blink App and Sync Module

The Blink app is controls and customizes the camera. Sadly, it’s available only on mobile and not on computers.

NOTE: You need to connect your camera to the app before mounting, and you will need the serial number (on the camera) to register it.

The sync module has some pretty sweet capacities. You can connect a maximum of ten cameras on one sync module at the same time. The app can also accommodate multiple users. If you want to share access with your roommates or family, they can register accounts through the app as well.

One room for improvement, as far as the Sync Module is concerned, is its range of connection. Even though it is advertised as 100 ft, in reality it is much much lower. In our experience, it is only about 15 ft, and you will definitely need an extender over 30 ft.  This could pose many problems if you have a large house or property you need covering.

Getting Alerts

With the Blink app installed on your phone, you will get notifications whenever the camera detects movement and starts recording. You can watch a live feed of what’s going on. What I don’t like about this feature, though, is that any footage you view live won’t be saved.

How to View Recordings

Through the Sync Module, the footage from the camera is stored online. One thing I really like about Blink is that they have FREE cloud storage. Other brands require you to pay regularly (and for a heavy fee!) to use and expand your cloud storage, but not Blink. You can use a maximum of 7200 seconds of footage (or 1440 five-second clips) saved in the cloud. If you exceed this amount, the oldest recordings get overwritten, so be careful.

How to Customize Camera and Settings

Through the Blink App, you can customize your camera and settings. You can name the camera, arm/disarm it, change the length of the clips to be recorded, and adjust its motion sensitivity.

I find this function to be very handy. Since you will likely install the camera outside, it will detect swaying tree branches and animals passing by. Fortunately, you can adjust it to the sensitivity that suits you and your environment best. You will need to be precise about it, though. Make it too sensitive, and you will end up receiving notifications every few seconds. You won’t believe how annoying that can be! Set its sensitivity too low, however, and you might defeat the very purpose of having a security camera. Getting it right might take some testing on your part.

But just to be clear, this feature won’t completely remove uneventful clips. I’ve heard of cases where birds and squirrels stand in front of the camera and stare at it for a long time. They always cause alerts, and the live feed will show those little critters. It’s kind of cute, actually:).

Another thing you can adjust through the app is the duration of the clips recorded by the camera. If you have preferences as to how long the video clips should be, you can conveniently adjust this.

Thing I’m looking forward to in the future are improved versions with some kind of indicator or display for the battery’s status. Sure, Blink is pretty accurate when they say that the batteries will last for two years. But I would appreciate it if there was some way to tell how much battery life is left.

Right now, the app either displays that the battery is  “OK” or warns you it is running low.

Another thing I don’t like about this model is the lack of pan, tilt, and zoom features. It would be good if it had something like Arlo Pro 2’s zoom feature, while viewing a live feed that only makes a pinching movement on the screen.

Integration With Alexa

Amazon acquired Blink in 2017, which means we can expect more integration with Alexa. In the case of the XT Home Security System, you can access it on different Amazon devices such as Echo Show, Echo Spot, Echo Dot, Amazon Tap, etc. with the help of the automated assistant, Alexa. With further developments, I can only bet that Alexa will be much more involved in operating Blink devices in the near future.


Generally, the Blink XT Home Security System is recommended if you want an affordable, no-frills, battery-powered home security camera with free online storage.

To summarize the things I like about this camera system:

  • It uses standard (and long-life) batteries that are easy to replace
  • It has free cloud storage and no annoying subscription offers
  • It’s waterproof, “any-weather-proof,” and sturdy
  • It’s wireless
  • It’s easy to mount
  • At low light conditions, you can choose between LED light or night vision
  • The user-friendly app gives you much freedom to adjust the settings to your own preferences
  • You can connect up to 10 cameras in a single sync module and register multiple accounts in the app

As for the things I don’t quite like:

  • The wall mount can be easily damaged
  • There are no spare mounts for sale
  • The video resolution is poor in low light
  • The app is not available for computers
  • The Sync Module has a short range compared to other brands
  • You can’t pan, tilt, or zoom the camera
  • You can’t view the footage live and record it at the same time

If you’re asking which alternatives would be good to consider, it would be on a case-to-case basis. It heavily depends on the setup you have in your home and what you are trying to achieve.

If you set a high priority on high definition videos, you might want to take a look at Ring Spotlight Cam, Arlo Pro 2, or Nest Cam Outdoor.  the Arlo Pro 2 also has the zoom function that XT doesn’t have.

If you’re revamping your home into a smart home,  the XT Home Security System can be a good start. However, hands-free and voice-activated access to the camera and footage will be limited to select Amazon devices. Nonetheless, more developments in that regard are expected in the near future.

If all you need is an affordable, yet heavy-duty and quality home security camera and system to watch over your home, I recommend getting the XT Home Security System.