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The AliExpress siren sang her sorry song...

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I purchased by first four Hikvision DS-2CD2032-I cameras from Costco (rebranded Swann units) for $350.00 a pair. But it wasn't long 'till the AliExpress siren sang her sorry song sorry song to me and it went like this: at $90.00 each, the AliExpress units were essentially 2-for-one when compared to the Costco units.


So I was seduced and I ordered one DS-2CD2032-I unit from AliExpress as a test. It worked fine! So I ordered another two units from the same AliExpress seller; again no problema! So I ordered four units from the same seller and, once again, they functioned like champs!


Thusly -- having NO FEAR -- I ventured forth unto the hinterlands and ordered three Hikvision DS-2CD2332-I cameras from the same AliExpress seller; opps! Big problems this time. After initial configuration each of these 3 cameras seemed to be caught in an endless reboot loop, where each camera would be fine for 4 or 5 minutes and then there would be unreachable...then each camera would come back online and seem to function perfectly..for 4 or 5 minutes.


Each of these cameras arrived out of the box with firmware 5.2.8 (build 141201) installed and (although the serial numbers indicated that these were Chinese market cams) each camera allowed selection of English (along with many other languages) at the login screen.


Yikes! Perhaps I was the victim of an ugly hack job?


Henceforth consigned to a seemingly Sisyphean task by the Camera Gods I spent A LOT OF TIME trying to resolve these random reboots, yet despite many hours of labor I failed to make any progress. I GAVE UP. I had had it. Done, finuto, kaput. Dejected and forlorn I ultimately chose to pay CBX to install 5.2.5 firmware on each camera. I could have done it myself but I was sick of looking at those f#$%kin' cameras and I didn't want to take a chance that I might screw up one of the units...I didn't want to hassle with the seller...I just WANTED IT TO BE OVER. CBX logged on with Teamviewer and used PUTTY and TFTP utilities to install 5.2.5 over 5.2.8.


As a result, installing 5.25 over 5.28 did the trick and I now have 3 fully functional DS-2CD2332-I cameras. But I learned a lesson: despite purchasing and receiving 7 fully functioning cameras from the same seller on AliExpress the last 3 were probably rendered defective by a bad firmware hack. But two-for-one? Hmmmmm. Errrrrrrrrrr. Urgh. I believe hear her singing that song again.

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Is the moral of the story to avoid AliExpress? The prices are often tempting.

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