Tactacam Reveal X Gen 2 Review

Tactacam Reveal X 2.0 Cellular Trail Camera mounted on tree

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Trail cameras have come a long way since I first started using them. At the risk of dating myself, my first camera was loaded with film. The wait for just 24 photos after dropping it off at the one-hour photo lab at the pharmacy was agonizing. I’ve been running digital trail cameras for years, but admittedly, I’ve been a bit of a laggard for cellular options.  

Last season, I finally got my first cellular trail camera, the Tactacam Reveal X Gen 2. Now, I finally understand all the hype behind this technology—and I wish I had jumped on the bandwagon sooner. I ran this camera from September until late February, and it nearly helped me harvest a nice buck. After an entire season of use, these are my honest thoughts on the popular 2.0 model. 

Quick Overview


  • Photo Definition: 16 megapixels
  • Flash: Low glow IR
  • Flash Range: 96 feet
  • Power: 12 AA batteries or lithium cartridge
  • Cellular Networks: Verizon or AT&T


  • Extremely reliable 
  • Excellent battery life
  • Good photo quality


  • Costly subscription packages
  • Included buckle was a little short
Tactacam Reveal X 2.0 trail camera sitting on wood table
I’m a fan of the rugged exterior of Tactacam’s trail cams, including the Reveal X 2.0. (Photo/Travis Smola)

Testing Results and Analysis

Set Up

The Reveal X 2.0 was incredibly easy to set up. Even hunters who don’t consider themselves technically savvy should have an easy time. The instruction manual was a breath of fresh air. I’ve dealt with a lot of bad ones lately but the Tactacam guide walked me through all the steps rather quickly. I think even tech-adverse hunters will have an easy time.

Obviously, this camera requires a smartphone to sync and receive photos on the Tactacam app. But it’s nice that your chosen provider doesn’t need to be the same one you already use for your phone. These cameras use an independent plan that can either be annual or monthly with no contracts.

I also like that you can run the Reveal X as a standard trail camera. This is a great alternative for anyone in an area without good cell tower infrastructure in place.

One thing about the physical setup, though. I attached this camera to a much larger tree than I think most people will use. Subsequently, the included strap wasn’t quite long enough to fit all the way around. I had to cannibalize a strap off another camera to get it to fit. Obviously, there are alternative mounting methods, but it’s worth remembering if you plan to use a big tree. 

Real-Time Notifications

I’ve heard many other hunters say cellular trail cameras are addictive, and I understand the appeal now. There was a little tinge of excitement every time I got a notification of a new photo. After all, I never knew if it would be a coyote, a doe, a turkey, or my target buck. It’s the gratification of a card check, except it’s instantaneous and ongoing throughout the season. Trail cameras have had time stamps for years now. However, I felt like I got a better feel for deer movement while getting images on my phone in real-time. 

Tactacam allows you to receive individual photos as they are taken or as a batch at select times of day. Initially, I wanted to get a batch all at once. However, after getting pictures in real time for a day, I found it too addicting to change the settings. 

Image Quality

This camera is like many standard digital trail cameras today. It takes color photos during the day and black-and-white images via IR at night. The image quality is good. There was some occasional motion blur for a fast-moving animal, but nothing egregious. I could quickly identify almost every buck instantly via the standard definition images.

Image of deer on Tactacam Reveal X 2.0 trail camera
Proof of how good the Tactacam is at capturing motion photos. (Photo/Travis Smola)

However, I don’t like that the high-definition photos are locked behind an additional $5 paywall. The plan also limits users to only 50 HD photos, which one must request individually. It’s an extra $5 charge for HD video requests that’s separate from the image charge. So, if you want fine details of every little sticker point and drop tine, prepare to pay a little extra.

Features and Settings

In the Tactacam app, you can tag and filter photos. Combine that with data about the outside temperature, wind direction, and air pressure, and it’s an excellent way to spot patterns. The app can compile charts and statistics on these tagged photos for patterning deer. 

I love being able to tweak the camera settings remotely. Tactacam allows you to adjust the sensitivity, the flash range, and more. I set this camera up on a food plot scrape that got a decent amount of deer traffic. After the first dozen photos, I tweaked the sensitivity, delay, and detection range. Some of the deer on the far edge of the range had no detail, so I shortened that distance. 

Another reason I turned down the sensitivity slightly was because I got a few false triggers. This happened right after I set the camera up in September. I think we had a few warmer days that fooled the sensor. Once I honed it in, there were no more empty photos. 

It might take some playing with the settings to perfect it for each spot, but I love the versatility. I wish every trail camera had these kinds of settings. Once I had this camera dialed in, I didn’t touch the settings again for the next five months. 

Photo of deer at night taken by Tactacam Reveal X 2.0 trail camera
The Reveal X takes some surprisingly clear night vision shots. (Photo/Travis Smola)

Battery Life

On September 30, I first set the camera out with 12 AA lithium batteries. I’m not one to keep cameras running all year. When I pulled the camera from the woods on February 2, it still had 50 percent battery life. Consider me impressed, especially since the camera was in negative temperatures more than once. I’m looking forward to seeing what it does this year with the lithium cartridge battery and optional solar panel. 

Close-up of Tactacam Reveal X 2.0 Trail Camera mounted on tree
The long battery life and performance is one of the highlights of this trail camera. (Photo/Travis Smola)


November 30 is the last day of Michigan’s regular firearms season, and I made all my plans around an evening hunt. I was in the middle of writing an article when my phone pinged me at 9:23 a.m. with another trail camera photo. I was expecting a doe, and my jaw hit the floor when I saw my target buck instead. 

The last time I had a shooter appear in this food plot in the morning, he returned in the evening. So, I finished up my workday and headed for my stand. Sure enough, the buck appeared with about 30 minutes of daylight remaining. Unfortunately, this story doesn’t have a happy ending. I pulled the shot slightly, causing a clean miss and the buck running away to live another day. It was just one of those things that sometimes happens in the woods. 

I’m not sharing any other details or the photo of this buck because he’s still alive. However, the Tactacam put me in a position to harvest him. I credit this camera with helping me select my stand that evening. 

Plans and Cost

The Tactacam Reveal X 2.0 is one of the more affordable cellular trail camera options available right now. The regular camera package—which includes a 16-megapixel camera, antenna, and tree strap—starts at $120. It also comes with two SIM cards, one for Verizon and the other for AT&T, depending on your preference and cell coverage.

My only real complaint is the costs of the data plans. They ride the fine line between affordable and expensive for me. I started with the $5 per month starter plan, which limits users to 250 monthly photos. I quickly upgraded to the $8 intermediate plan after the camera took over 90 photos the first week and a half. I think the intermediate plan is best for most hunters. Their unlimited plan is $13 a month. I think the intermediate will be the sweet spot for most hunters.

You would likely only need the unlimited plan—which is $13 a month—if you’re putting your camera on a deer feeder or other source that’s hit heavily.

Tactacam makes these plans cheaper if you pay for an entire year in advance. You can add cameras to any of the plans for an additional fee. It all adds up quickly if you’re running three to five cameras.


To sum it up, the Tactacam Reveal X Gen 2 is a little of everything one could want with any trail camera. All season long, I had a ball using it. Had my shooting been more precise, I could have shared a big buck photo at the end of this story. However, that did not soil my experience using the camera.

It takes excellent, clear photos and compiles significant data on them through the Tactacam app. This camera made me a more strategic, better hunter at the end of the day. I cannot often say that about the equipment I take into the field. I’m already looking forward to deploying the 2.0 camera back into the field this summer.

Tactacam Reveal X 2.0 Cellular Trail Camera mounted on tree
I’ll be using this camera for many seasons to come. (Photo/Tactacam)


Q: Does Tactacam have a free plan?

Tactacam does not offer a free plan to send photos via cellular network. However, if you don’t insert the SIM card or activate the network, you can use the camera as a traditional trail camera. You would just have to walk out to swap out the SD card to view your photos.

Q: What cell provider does Tactacam use?

Tactacam puts two SIM cards in the box with each camera, one for AT&T and the other for Verizon. The cost is the same for either provider, and you don’t need to use the same carrier you use for your cell phone. Tactacam includes links to coverage maps on their data plans page so you can choose the network with the best service in your area.

Q: Can you track Tactacam if stolen?

It depends on the model. The Tactacam Reveal X 2.0 has no internal GPS unit, so you can’t track it if it’s stolen. However, the slightly more expensive Tactacam Reveal X-Pro has tracking capabilities.

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