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How To Adjust Brightness & Turn On/Off Night Vision For Arlo Cameras

Arlo camera presser from Arlo
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Arlo makes some of the best cameras around at an affordable price. And some of the best features on Arlo cameras are Night Vision and the ability to adjust brightness. Both of which are available on effectively every Arlo camera.

The features are, of course, incredibly useful. Not least of all because a room or other space doesn’t always have optimal lighting. Adjusting brightness allows a scene to be brightened or darkened to account for that. For instance, if there’s a bright light that’s washing out details in part of a monitored scene.

Conversely, Night Vision allows the camera to see in infrared. That means that it uses wavelengths of light invisible to the human eye to create an image. That image will be in black and white or grayscale. But even if there’s no light at all, you will still be able to get a fairly good idea of what’s going on in the frame.

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None of that is to say that activating or accessing either feature is as easy as might be hoped. As with many cameras discussed in our guides, the features are hidden in specific menus. Specifically, within the Arlo app. To that end, this guide aims to explain how to adjust brightness or turn on or off Night Vision for Arlo cameras.

Here’s how to adjust the brightness of your Arlo camera or cameras and access Night Vision features

Now, prior to getting started, there may be some minor differences in the UI you see in your own app. That’s as compared to the images in this guide, in particular. Those will, of course, come down to differences in features and hardware found among Arlo cameras. For our guide and sample images, we’re using an Arlo Essential Indoor Security Camera with a privacy shutter.

Regardless, this guide does showcase exactly the menu items and options needed to adjust brightness or turn on and off Night Vision for Arlo cameras. The features themselves and their location in menus won’t change depending on the camera you have. But, for example, if your Arlo camera doesn’t come with a privacy shutter, you won’t see a message about that being closed. As you will in some of our sample images below.

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Of course, the first step is to open up Arlo. Then you’ll need to log in, via your chosen log-in method. We’ve opted for fingerprint login, as shown in the images below.

Once logged in, the Arlo app will take you to the “Devices” tab by default. That’s the tab we’ll need for this guide so the next step is to scroll, if needed, to find the camera you’d like to adjust. Then select the three-dot overflow menu icon at the bottom right-hand side of its card.

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Arlo displays a menu at the bottom of the screen once that icon is tapped. Select “Device Settings” from that menu to continue.

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Now, in “Device Settings,” the option we’re looking for is near the bottom, under the “Video” sub-header. Scroll down and select “Video Settings” from the list of options.

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In Video Settings, you’ll have an array of options at your disposal. The first we’ll look at is “Brightness,” which Arlo represents as a slider bar. Your options may be somewhat different, depending on the camera you’re using. But for the purposes of this guide, our sample image shows five levels of brightness, represented as small dots with the numbers “-2, -1, 0, 1, 2” labeling those. The default setting is zero.

Tap the desired brightness to test it out using the camera sample feed located above the slider. You can also touch and hold, then drag, the slider from left to right. Regardless, at each level — or at whatever level you release the slider for — the software will show a “Please wait” message. That’s displayed for the duration of the change being made.

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Depending on your camera hardware, placement of the camera, and other related factors, the brightness changes shown will be more or less dramatic. As shown in the sample images below, the change is significant for a reasonably well-lit room, however.

If your camera shows bright spots without detail, it would be a good idea to adjust the slider down until the detail is more consistent across the board. The same goes for a camera showing too many undetailed shadows. In those cases, the brightness adjusting upward will reveal more detail about what’s in those shadows.

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The brightness you ultimately settle on will be unique to your own circumstances. For example, it will differ depending on the positioning of the camera as well as any light sources that happen to exist in the monitored space. So you’ll want to select a brightness that best fits your own needs. The sample images below only show the extreme ends for brightness with the camera and positioning we’re using. Rather than the position you should set yours to.

The next step, particularly for rooms that are dark, as often as not, is to turn on Night Vision. Night Vision utilizes built-in infrared sensors to show a grayscale image instead of a color one. So it isn’t the most desirable feature to have during the day. But, fortunately, unlike the above-mentioned brightness setting, Night Vision turns on automatically with Arlo cameras. So it only comes on when the room or space is too dark.

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To activate it, simply turn on the on-screen toggle, as shown in the images below. Then the mode will come on automatically, as needed.

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