Blue Iris Alternatives

I am considering purchasing Blue Iris to manage and view my cameras from multiple brands in one place. I want motion alerts and other functionality to be as tightly integrated to HE. The seemingly strong integration with Hubitat is great. Before I commit the $$, what other software is out there that is as good or better?

All I can tell you is that BI is awesome. Used it for 8yrs +. Since hubitat, it's been integrated for 2 yrs ish. Not sure if you'll find anything in the same league. Aslo, search for discounts - there's generally a code floating about for BI.

:slight_smile:

BI is the bomb :+1:

Have to agree been using it for a year and it's awesome.

Anything that folks would recommend for Mac users?

It's hard to find anything close to BI for the price, if you are purchasing a new PC to run it I would suggest getting a newer Intel processor with integrated graphics, even some of the Celeron processors work well. This allows you to us the GPU for decoding and encoding which greatly reduces CPU use.

BI Alternatives:
If you have a dedicated rpi/linux device: Shinobi, ZoneMinder, MotionEye
If you have a dedicated android device: TinyCam Pro
if you have a shared Synology NAS: Surveillance Station

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MotionEye as well?

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I have yet to purchase a video camera (other than the one built into my Ring doorbell), but I have been doing a lot of research to decide how to proceed when I am ready to make my purchases.

It seems that cameras that support RTSP (real time streaming protocol) are the best for monitoring in real time. Although web browsers do not typically support that protocol directly, there are browser extensions that will work. Software like Blue Iris (PC) and TinyCam (Android) also support the protocol. VLC Player which is available for many different operating systems also supports RTSP.

There are dozens of video cameras that support RTSP, but many popular video cameras like Arlo, Ring, Nest, Blink and Wyze do not support the protocol. There is a beta firmware for Wyze that will allow RTSP, but Wyze does not support it; so it does not get updates like the main firmware.

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I feel qualified to answer this - I have probably 15-20 products I've collected over the years - it's like everyone who's already posted says... No need to look elsewhere.
It can't be the price - at $60 kens software is insane. Triggers, virtual cameras, Alexa AND HE, two way audio, mobile app, multiple compression options including h265, detection of cameras people have never heard about... it just goes on and on! There was a swedish company that tried to break into the field and I'm not even going to go look it's name up.
Too many buy cameras first then go looking for software - too many are not informed when deciding on cameras... BI is the no brainer part of the equation. (and get BI Tools as well)

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Well, it's the answer UNLESS you don't want a Windows machine to support. But if that's the case, what's the best solution?

We decided a year or two ago to just go with Apple/Mac, to simplify our lives. It's been a good decision, but I would like to have an on-premise DVR to manage and record up to perhaps six-eight cameras. Suggestions for Mac users would be welcome. I have an old Windows machine or two still sitting around, but I really don't want to have to manage them.

You may not want to discount getting a packaged system with a built in NVR. Any other option will likely mean you meed some kind of hardware infrastructure to maintain long term.

BI is no doubt a great powerful option if you already have some hardware to run it on.

I run Motioneye in a VM on my home unraid server. I use it with a app in Hubitat for motion tracking into hubitat. But being 100% open source it isn't without it's drawbacks or limits. It does what i need it to do an does it well though.

The question you may need to figure out is what do you want it to do. If all it is for is to record video and trigger alerta then pretty much any of them will likely work. It is the advanced features that may be what makes one or the other pull ahead for you.

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2nded ! If cost is no factor (implied by the apple/mac direction) a standalone NVR becomes the solution. Problem is NVR takes you back away from options on integration on HE - I believe that was the OP desire... heck- I've got 3 -4 NVR's gathering dust in the garage I'd give away if I wasn't so lazy...

I use my DVR for POE and camera bandwidth. I then have a direct Ethernet cable from my DVR to my second Ethernet card on my BI computer.
BI AI detection is also really good.
I also tried at least 10 other softwares but go back to BI at the end. It's just so good.

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I haven't tried it myself, but I keep hearing good things about Frigate.

I have Frigate running on an older Mac Mini using Mint 20.3 . Compared to Shinobi, it is much easier to install. Not as easy as MotionEye. Be aware that Google Coral hardware is required, If you can find Coral devices for sale it will be at a premium.

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I have been using Milestone Xprotect Essential+ for a number of years. If you have 8 cameras or less, it's free, and while they support ONVIF, they also support certain more commercial camera brands (like Hikvision, Axis) with dedicated drivers so you can use the in-camera motion detection and keep CPU utilization down. I have it running in a VM.

Interesting - when I took Milestone training they specifically were NOT supporting ONVIF - only specific cameras ... I think that was about 6 yrs back. A good server for sure.

They must have changed their minds at some point in the last 4-5 years. Here is the current device brand list:


I run all Hikvision, so it's great for me, but I guess people running Amcrest, Foscam, Reolink, Dahua, and other common Chinese cameras would have to use the ONVIF driver and perhaps lose some model-specific functionality.

I didn't really know what the hell I was doing (still don't really), but knew enough to get thing's up and running.

My CPU was hovering around the 90% mark with 10 cams, various qualities. I recently added an 11th and it crippled the system, so I finally decided after reading this thread that it may be time to seek a bit of advice and get things optimised.

Here's the thread I created over at IPCamtalk:

Long story short, went from a clogged system to about 45% by following some advice. Ace.

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Download the Hubitat app