7 Best Outdoor Security Cameras
These are the best outdoor security cameras on the market. Check out their features and decide which is the best one for you.
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Choosing an Outdoor Security Camera
When choosing an outdoor security camera, there are a few things to take into consideration. First, make sure the camera is rated for weather. Home security cameras meant for the outdoors will have a label that says IP-66, IP-67 or IP-65.
Next, look for cameras with HD video and night vision, so your videos will be clear and people in the videos will be easy to identify. Finally, decide how you want to power the camera.
Wireless cameras are easy to install, but you must remember to charge the batteries or — in the rare case the camera doesn’t have rechargeable batteries — replace them, which can be a pain.
Wired cameras are great because the batteries never need charging. But you’ll need professional installation because it has to be hard-wired into your home’s electrical system. That’s not a safe DIY project for those unfamiliar with electrical work.
Solar power eliminates the battery issue because it recharges automatically, and you don’t need to hire a professional installer. But if your location doesn’t get much sun, you may not get a full charge.
Best Video on an Outdoor Security Camera
The Arlo Ultra ($331) offers the best video quality available, with super-clear 4K Ultra HD video, 180 degree field of view (most cameras have around 140 to 160), and color night vision. This Arlo security camera also comes with a siren, two-way talk, noise canceling technology and a spotlight.
Best Tiny Outdoor Security Camera
If you want a camera that’s easy to hide but still has a lot of features, there’s none better than the Blink XT2 ($100). At just 2.8 x 2.8 x 1.4 inches, the XT2 is one of the smallest cameras on the market, and its flat design makes it less obvious than other cameras. Plus it is one of the best-rated tiny cameras, earning 4.3 stars on Amazon with more than 34,000 reviews. Unlike most wireless cameras on the market, the XT2 uses AA lithium batteries that can’t be charged.
Best Budget Outdoor Security Camera
You may already be familiar with the Ring doorbell. Ring has other camera options, too. The Ring Stick Up Cam Battery costs $100 but it packs a lot of great features into one small camera, making it the best buy for the price. It features night vision, 1080p HD video, speaker and microphone noise cancellation, two-way talk, advanced motion detection and the fantastic Ring app.
Best Floodlight Outdoor Security Camera Combo
The Arlo Pro 3 Floodlight Camera ($236) is the floodlight camera with the best features and brightest light. The floodlight practically blinds you with 2,000 lumens of brightness and up to 3,000 lumens if you use the charging cable. It also has a blaring siren, two-way talk, color night vision and 12x digital zoom.
Best Solar Outdoor Security Camera
The best solar outdoor camera is the Ring Solar Floodlight ($90). This camera tops the category because unlike other solar floodlight security cameras, it’s easy to install and use. It also comes with lots of features: Two-way talk, a siren, a 1,200 lumen motion-sensing floodlight, solar panel and brightness options. The light automatically shuts off during the day. And Ring makes solar pathlights to match.
You will need a Ring Bridge to use all the smart functions on the app. This adds about $20 to the price.
Best High-Tech Outdoor Security Camera
The Nest Cam IQ ($399) comes with a high-tech feature that no other camera has: facial recognition. It can tell strangers from regular visitors and detect a person up to 50 feet away. It also includes 12x digital zoom, tracking (the camera follows a person as they move) and night vision.
This is one of the rare cameras that isn’t battery powered, solar powered or hard-wired. It comes with a power cable that needs to be routed through a window or hole in your exterior wall and plugged into an outlet. It also works with an outdoor outlet.
Best Dome Outdoor Security Camera
The best dome-style outdoor security camera on the market is the Amcrest POE IP Camera ($110) because it comes with features such as 4K Ultra HD video and multiple storage options. You can store video on your computer using the Amcrest Surveillance Pro software, in the cloud or on a MicroSd card.
This camera is a power-over-Ethernet (PoE) camera, which means it needs an Ethernet cable to connect it to a box that stores the recordings. You’ll need to bring in a professional to install the cable to the video storage box. Because Ethernet has better bandwidth, it can provide a better image than a camera using WiFi.
All prices and links were current as of publication.