Have you ever thought of becoming a meteorologist on the side of your current job? Did you grow up watching tornado and weather movies, wanting to play with all of those “toys” storm chaser used? The truth is, with proper weather instruments, anything is possible. You can track the weather and practice gauging what is happening with the weather with your own personal weather station.
In the weather and environmental industry, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of different products, all claiming to be one of the best hobbyist and professional-grade pieces of equipment on the market. In efforts to weed through many of these products, we are here to highlight different products and provide insight as to what weather equipment is worth your consideration.
In today’s article, we are going to review Ambient Weather’s WS-1200-IP weather station and weather instrument. This company, with over 20 years’ experience, has risen to the top of it’s class, touting the high-quality products and the absolute best prices. With that in mind, let’s see what Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP is all about. Shall we begin?
Who is Ambient Weather?
In the weather station and weather instrument industry, there are not many companies like Ambient Weather. Ambient Weather touts being a leader in the weather station and weather instrument industry for 20 years. Ambient Weather is known to over thousands of different weather and environment related instruments and technology, all of which are designed with quality and consumers in mind. The company positions themselves based on their customer service and competes based on prices in the industry. The company mentions on their website that, when the company was originally in the development stages, which was in the early 2000s, they were announced one of the fastest growing companies by Inc. Magazine, which effectively helped boost their status and prestige.
The Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP is designed with some unique technology and innovation, which provide this weather instrument with some unique advantages against the competition. First and foremost, this weather instrument does not come built with any radio connections of WiFi capabilities; however, this product does come built with Ambient Weather technology, which is designed to hold a strong signal in both regular and extreme conditions. Furthermore, another advantage of this weather instrument is the bubble level installation. Due to this, it’ makes the entire installation process significantly easier, and more comfortable during use. The most significant advantage of the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP weather instrument is the indoor sensor array. Due to this feature, in the event that the solar power or storage fails, the sensor array will keep functioning, allowing the console to track and collect data.
When it comes to the Ambient Weather WS-1200 IP, it’s important to not only consider the advantages, but also the disadvantages. In light of this, prior to moving forward, we would like to mention that currently, the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP is considered outdated, and the predecessor to the popular Ambient Weather WS-1201-IP. In light of this, many of the disadvantages that we are about to explore have been eradicated with the innovation of the newer weather instrument.
Furthermore, the biggest downside to the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP weather instrument is the fact that this machine lacks the ability to connect to a computer or even connect and communicate through the internet. On top of this, the data that this weather instrument collects cannot even be synched through software, hardware, or even a website.
Continuing on, the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP is not build with strong enough materials to handle the harsh conditions in the marine world. Too much salt can actually erode the weather station or even prevent the weather instrument from providing accurate information. Given the lack of quality build, the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP is not designed to handle extreme temperatures, more specifically freezing cold weather.
As far as build quality is concerned, it’s imperative to purchase a weather station that is designed to handle both temperatures and climate extremes. After all, these products are intended to measure the weather, right? When it comes to the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP, it’s estimated that the product can last for a maximum of 5-years, if utilized in the perfect climate and temperature. As we highlighted above in the disadvantages section, one of the biggest downfalls of the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP is that it cannot handle extreme temperatures. This can be attributed to the flimsy materials use to build the wind gauge and other parts of the Sensor Array. In considering what weather station is best for you, it’s important to consider the environment you plan to collect data in, and how often you are planning on using the weather instrument.
In many of our other reviews, we like to hone in on the installation process, as this can be a determinant factor, especially if you are not technology savvy. When it comes to setting up the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP, it has been suggested to take the time to read the instructions thoroughly, prior to performing any set-up.
Furthermore, the WS-1200 is known to be relatively easy-to-set-up, as many of the sensors have already been preinstalled, making it incredibly easy for those who are not savvy. With the lack of connectivity features, the upside is that consumers will not need to focus on installing software.
Lastly, learning the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP is reported to be easy as well. While it may take a few hours of ‘play’, most consumers have said that, within 30 minutes, they were able to get moving and begin tracking!
The Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP comes with a list of some impressive features, all of which can be brought together by two specific features:
- Sensor Array
One of the most notable features of the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP weather station is the all-in-one outdoor and indoor sensor array. For those that are beginners, this is one aspect of the Ambient Weather product like that separates their products from the competition. With their current sensor arrays, this product can transmit at around 330 ft line of sight. In terms of transmission times, the sensor updates the weather every 14 seconds. In comparison to the competitors, this is relatively fast; however, there is much faster for the more money you spend.
The outdoor feature comes built with specific technology and innovation to handle outdoor temperatures, rainfall, windspeeds, solar radiations, and even windspeed. For indoors, this product can help measure indoor temperatures, humidity, and even the barometric pressure. The sensor array is powered by 5V DC, and can be charged with a charger and capacity of 120v. All of this comes with a standard purchase.
- Included Weather Instruments
- Indoor and Outdoor thermometer and hygrometer.
- Rain Collector
- Solar Radiation Detector
Our favorite aspect about the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP weather station is their impressive and interesting console. To start off, this weather station comes built with a great and beautiful display screen, which is 6.25” x 3.5”. What’s most interesting about this feature is the amount of built-in variables and features that come with the console. For example, consumers can change weather variables, depending on what they are seeking. Whether it’s temperature, humidity, or even wind speed, all of this can be tracked and viewed from the console. Consumers can even use their console to set alarms. Out of the many functionalities of the console, our favorite is, without question, the unique graphical representations that the WS-1200-IP can create. In efforts to track information and data, given the lack of connectivity, users can plug in an SD card to download information, which can be uploaded to a computer in the form of a Microsoft Excel document. The Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP also comes with standard console settings, including easy-to-read settings, adjustable brightness settings, and the ability to mount on walls.
Accuracy and Performance
The Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP has a unique build whereas the sensors are automatically installed, and the anemometer cannot be adjusted. With that being said, typically, this weather station can provide consumers with great, accurate information. Furthermore, we like to say that this weather station is optimal for individuals who are at the beginner stages of their weather equipment journey. The reason for this is, if you are seeking the most precise information, it’s crucial to purchase a weather instrument that allows the consumer to adjust the anemometer according to the industry standard. If you don’t know, typically, professionals like to have their sensors around 5 feet, or eye level, and the anemometer around 33 feet. Aside from this detail, the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP can outperform much of the competition in the perfect conditions.
As we discussed above, the biggest concern and complaint that many consumers have of the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP is the lack of internet access or connectivity. Please do keep in mind, this trait is typically normal and common amongst competitors in this tier. With that in mind, if you are looking for a product that has internet access you may either need to upgrade to the newer version, or seek a different weather station. To record and collect the data trakced by the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP, users will need to purchase and SD card and export the information from the console to the SD card, which can then be seen in a Microsoft Excel file on a computer.
Costs and Affordability
One of the most important consideration when purchasing a weather instrument and station is to measure and gauge the costs and affordability. When it comes to the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP, the company is currently charging around $154.99. This weather station and price comes with everything mentioned above in the feature section. As far as comparisons go, the current and upgrade version, the Ambient Weather WS-1201-IP Observer is currently being sold for $294.95. In light of this, the costs of these weather stations from Ambient Weather are considerably more affordable than what other companies are changing for this class in the industry.
The last part of our review is focused on looking at what previous consumers have said about their experience with the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP. Today, the reviews regarding this weather station are quite split. There are many consumers who have claimed that this product is the best “bang for your buck”, given the market and competition. On top of this, many people boast the unique color graphs and accurate data collection. However, there are many consumers that have complained about the short-life expectancy and poor build-quality. Moreover, many people have said that some features of the product do not work as good as they should, due to the lack of connectivity issues. With this, many people have suggested purchasing the next version of the Ambient Weather WS-1200, which would be the Ambient Weather WS-1201-IP. The newer version comes with the same features; however, they have been enhanced, improved, and newer features have been added.
At the end of day, all consumers ask the magical question: Is the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP worth the cost and price? The truth is, while this product does boast some great features and opportunities, it is outdated. Today, Ambient Weather has released a newer version of this product, all of which corrects the many different ailments that come with this weather instrument.
With this in mind, we would like to say that the Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP is still most certainly a great product, and worth the money for the consumer that is not seeking anything more than the simple art and science behind a quality weather instrument and station. This WS-1200-IP is incredibly easy to set-up and requires minimal technology skills or knowledge. While the product may struggle in specific climates, overall, Ambient Weather’s product does not disappoint.
If you are looking for an upgrade version of this product, check out the Ambient Weather WS-1201-IP. Perhaps the new features and build may be the convincing factor to join this family of great weather and environmental instruments.