Alternative ways to utilize Imou Ranger 2 IP Camera


Appreciate some insights how I can use my existing camera in Home Assistant for basic Live View on the Dashboard.

I have an IMOU Ranger 2 IP cam (Model: IPC-A22E-C) that I would like to view its live stream in a Lovelace dashboard. At the moment, I don’t need it to do anything fancy, just basic live view. At most, if it has accessibile PTZ (Pan-Tilt-Zoom) controls then that’s a bonus. I also want to keep this local and not use the “IMOU Life - Cloud Integration”

My current setup:

  • Home Assistant 2023.8.4 as a Virtual Machine on unraid
  • The IP cam and Home Assistant are on the same subnet

In June 2021, I had this working by manually adding the Generic Camera via configuration.yaml. I then added it to the dashboard using the Picture Glance Card. I don’t recall what version of Home Assistant this would have been. This is the code I used at the time, which I commented out since I was not using it.

  - platform: generic
    still_image_url: http://192.168.XX.XX/jpg/image.jpg
    stream_source: rtsp://admin:<SafteyCode>@192.168.XX.XX:554/cam/realmonitor?channel=1&subtype=1&unicast=true&proto=Onvif
    name: tabby cam

Recently, I uncommented the config thinking it would just start working again but was greeted with a notice from HASS that the manual configuration for Generic Camera was deprecated. It converted the manual config to the Generic Camera UI integration. I never got the live view to work on either Profile 0 or 1 (presumably, this refers to Channel 0 and 1 of the RTSP stream) but some of the sensors and controls were present.

I also tried using the ONVIF integration without success. Some of the RTSP URLs I tried are below using info found at [1]. I also trial-and-error by changing the channel number between 0 and 1 and the subtype between 0 and 1 to no avail.





Understanding that Imou cameras are rebranded Dahua, I gave the Dahua integration (installed via HACS) a try and was also unsuccessful. I found a Github issue [2] describing why this integration will not work with Imou cameras or at least with the IPC-A22E.

I had another thought to add the camera to Frigate and then pipe Frigate into Home Assistant but I’m getting the same results (no video).

Some resources I used to get me here:

  1. Connect to Imou cameras
  2. Support for iMou devices (DAHUA based) · Issue #6 · rroller/dahua · GitHub

I would be interessed in a working solution as well and do wonder why you couldnt connect to the stream with all the listet urls.
These chinese ip cams are quite bitchy to jump onto the stream. Maybe try the same url`s with vlc again.

Another question I do have and you @junknstufff maybe can tell me.
Do these cams have a simple gui for configs (exp. http://192.168.1.xx:port) or will I need a app from Dahua/Imou?

To create a new user or rename admin if no other users are supported could help sometimes as well to connect to the stream.

my understanding is that they do not have built-in web server. i followed the guide in my original post and used the Dahua Config Tool but none of the settings seemed to make a difference.

please let me know if you have had success with this approach.

Sorry, but I do not have one of these cams, I searched for informations befor getting one.
But probably never will buy one because of its need of strange chinese software, if there is no simple gui access through the browser.

personal thoughts

Specially with IP cams I`m careful and everybody else should be. Chinese coverment has total control about theirs market. Other countrys do as well, but the chinese goverment is totaly unscrupulous.
If its not possible to have the IP cam running on the local network only, forget about it.

What you could try is to check out iSpy in a quick docker container. When I tested it, I was surprised how easy it could find all the available stream urls.

I do think, that your problem could be a network-problem with having the necessary ports closed.

thanks for the recommendation, i can give ispy a try. nothing to lose considering i can’t access it without it’s app at the moment.

after more research, i learned of the Dahua SD2A500HB that seem to meet a lot of my basic requirements for indoor-only use, on-board web server, and the appropriate audio & video codecs for both Home Assistant and Frigate, so I will give one of them a try. It comes in both wired-only and wired+wireless models.

This is the specific wireless models, for anyone searching:


Have you tried already SD2A500HB-GN-AW-PV-S2?
If yes then is rtsp stream good for Frigate?

Yes, I purchased that camera and have it piped through to a Home Assistant via a picture-entity card. I have not yet setup Frigate to use the camera.

So rtsp streams works fine? No lag or anything?

Yes seems to be working fine. My use case only has me loading the stream for a few minutes at a time, though I did stream it for about an hour straight during my testing.