I recently setup my Amcrest ProHD Home Security Camera and not surprisingly was greeted with a notice that the firmware was out of date. Makes sense. It’s been sitting in a sealed box for awhile. Amcrest must have upgraded since sealing the box. That’s how I learned how to upgrade the firmware on an Amcrest ProHD camera. It’s the same procedure when upgrading an Amcrest HDSeries Home Security Camera so owners of that model can follow along.
Related Article: Amcrest ProHD Home Security Camera Review
So when I first saw the note that I needed to upgrade the firmware, I figured it would work like all the other home security cameras I have. A firmware upgrade on almost any other camera is detected by the smartphone app and you start the upgrade by confirming you want to do that. Click “ok” and you’re done. The upgrade occurs in the background. Restart the connection and it’s all done. It’s all done from your smartphone or tablet.
The Amcrest ProHD or HDSeries home security cameras are much different from other manufacturer models. As mentioned in our prior review of the Amcrest ProHD, these cameras aren’t for the technically challenged. It involves installing software to your desktop computer, downloading the firmware to your computer, then manually performing the upgrade. New owners of these cameras may not expect that. However after working with this camera for a few days, I’m not at all surprised. These aren’t the most user friendly cameras on the market.
So here’s how you upgrade the firmware on an Amcrest ProHD or HDSeries camera.
First thing you need to do is select a home computer that will be used to control your Amcrest camera and install the firmware upgrade.
Now, point your browser to the Amcrest Firmware Upgrade Page. Scroll down to view the firmware upgrades that are available. Today, I found the Amcrest ProHD firmware listed first. Not sure if it will always be that way so be sure to search for the model number which will be either IP2M-841B or IP2M-841W (the B is for the black model and the W is for the white model). Click the download symbol to the right of the camera line. This will download a roughly 12MB file to your computer. This file will be uploaded to your Amcrest ProHD camera.
If you have the Amcrest HDSeries camera, it’s the same upgrade page but you will select a different file. This is model IPM-721. Today, I found that as the second line right below the Amcrest ProHD. So if you have the Amcrest HDSeries, download this file.
Now remember that CD that was included in the box? Bet you thought that everything would be done from the smartphone app so you tossed the CD in the box and stored it in the closet. Go get the box and take out the CD. Pop it your CD drive. Open the software folder that’s on the CD. Open the Amcrest IP Configuration Folder and click on Windows and now double click on Amcrest IP Config Tool Setup exe file. That will install the software to your computer needed to upgrade the firmware on an Amcrest ProHD or HDSeries camera.
When you open the app, it will list the camera. The Amcrest ProHD is model IP2M-841B. It lists the MAC address and serial number. If you have the HDSeries, it’s called an IPM-721.
Highlight the line with your camera and click the Login button at the top of the page. Hopefully you remembered the admin ID and password because that’s what you need to logon to your camera.
Logon to the camera. Now you will see the image that your camera is producing along with a load of options to change the video qualities. Don’t mess with those options, we’re here to upgrade the firmware.
At the top of the page is an Upgrade button. Click it. You will be prompted to enter the upgrade file path. That’s the folder where the firmware file resides. This is likely your default download folder. It’s the file we downloaded a few paragraphs ago.
Once you get that all setup, simply click on the Upgrade button that is found next to the line that says “Upgrade Progress”. Your screen will begin to display a situation similar tot he photo that accompanies this article. Be patient as the upgrade process takes around five minutes. It can vary depending upon the wireless speed and your home computer throughput. When the upgrade is done, you will be prompted to reboot the camera. Reboot by unplugging the power, waiting ten seconds and plugging it back in. Once it’s done starting up, you have completed the upgrade.
Hopefully, we made it a little easier to upgrade the firmware on an Amcrest ProHD or HDSeries camera. The included instructions aren’t very helpful and I didn’t find all this information in one place on the Amcrest web site. You can alternatively do this from their web application. Believe it or not, this is a lot easier. As of today, their web interface requires a plugin and does not run on Google Chrome.
All of these articles are written by someone (me) that figured out how to do this stuff the hard way. I have owned and tested dozens of cameras. Manufacturer support varies. There are a few good companies that provide timely answers when you have questions. There are several that sell you the camera and seem to have little interest in post sales support (which leads me to finding out stuff the hard way).