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#1 Arlo Pro 4
The Arlo Pro 4 is our top outdoor security camera. It has crystal clear footage, night and day, fast load times for the live feed, as well as smart notification systems. It connects directly with Wi-Fi, has an expansive 160-degree field, and records at up 2K resolution. With HDR. HDR. (Your feed will not look blown out if there is a light source within the frame. There’s also a choice of color night vision or spotlight, which uses the integrated light to illuminate the scene. Two-way audio is clear and relatively lag-free, and there’s a built-in siren. It has been a reliable and consistent performer over months of testing. Arlo claims that it can last up to six months on a single charge, but that all depends on how busy the user is. Mine required a charge after three months.
It comes with an easy-to use app and can filter motion alerts by animals, people, vehicles, or packages. The notification system is quick and accurate. It offers animated previews and screenshots, with highlighted subjects, that are easy to read even on a smartwatch screen. But here’s the catch: The catch?
#2 EufyCam 2 Pro
If you don’t want monthly fees, go for this EufyCam system, which includes two cameras. It records video wirelessly to a HomeBase hub with 16 GB storage. The hub connects to your router using Ethernet cable or WiFi. It can also double up as a WiFi repeater, which may be useful if you want cameras to be placed farther from your router. The video footage is mostly crisp and clear at up to 2K resolution, and there’s a fairly wide 140-degree field of view. You also get two-way audio as well as a siren to discourage theft. Eufy claims the cameras have a long battery life, and can last for up to a year without charging. (Mine are at 88 percent and 87 percent respectively after two months.
Eufy’s mobile app is straightforward, and you get features like human detection included with the purchase price. It also features solid encryption, 2FA, fingerprint unlock, and similar features to the Arlo. The live feed is quick to load, as are recorded videos when you’re at home, but out of the house, loading times are significantly longer. I don’t like that notifications don’t tell me what you are seeing. What triggered the motion sensor. Other drawbacks include limited smart home capabilities (you can only call up the live feed), no HDR and the tendency for night vision blurring in bright areas. The activity zone—a specific area you highlight in the camera’s frame to detect motion—is limited to a single rectangle; the Arlo Pro 4 lets you draw multiple zones and tailor the shape.
#3 Wyze Cam Outdoor
Wyze Cam Outdoor offers bargains. The Wyze Cam Outdoor records video in Full HD at 110 degrees. It also comes with a base station that plugs into the router to set up, but can be connected wirelessly afterwards. For local video recording, the base station can take a MicroSD card (not supplied). I highly recommend this. If you store everything in the cloud (available for 14 days), there is a 12-second limit on video clips and a five minute cooldown between motion events. For $24 per year, unlimited video length and no cooldowns are available, as well as other perks, such person detection. The battery life is supposed to last between three and six weeks, but mine took three hours to recharge.
I like that the camera can be set up to record at a specific time and in a particular zone. And because you can also add a MicroSD card to the camera’s base, a nifty travel mode lets you take the Cam with you without needing to connect to the base station or Wi-Fi—great if you want to monitor your hotel room on a trip. The video quality is not as good as more expensive cameras. The low frame rate gives footage a choppy feel, there’s no HDR, and night vision is only passable. There are no HDR. It is two-way audio, but lags make conversations awkward. Also, the live feed and recorded video are slow to load.
#4 Logitech Circle View
This Logitech security camera comes with some major caveats. It has a 10-foot power cord permanently attached to it. Not weather-proof, so you’ll need to be careful when you route it to an indoor outlet. It also requires a HomeKit hub, such as HomePod Mini, Apple TV, or iPad, and while you can record 10 days of video events to your iCloud account, it’s only worthwhile if you cough up for an iCloud storage plan. It doesn’t work with Android and may not be useful for everyone in the household that doesn’t have an Apple gadget.
If none of this bothers you, then it’s an excellent outdoor camera for privacy-minded individuals. It doesn’t have a separate app of its own. Instead, you can add it directly in Apple Home app by scanning a QR Code. It records Full HD video and has a 180-degree field view. However, there is a little fish-eye effect. HDR is not available so areas can sometimes be too dark or blown out. The live feed loads quickly, and includes motion detection, two-way voice and decent night vision. You can also ask Siri for it to display. The camera can distinguish between people, animals, and vehicles. Rich notifications allow you to play video clips directly from your iPhone’s Lock screen.
#5 Ezviz C8C
The Ezviz C8C is a great alternative to multiple security cameras. It can pan horizontally 352 degrees and tilt 95 degrees vertically. It has an IP65 rating so it can withstand the elements. However it is wired. You will need to run a cable from the power outlet to it. It’s an imposing sphere-shaped camera with two antennas that makes it look like a Star Wars droid. You can connect it via WiFi or Ethernet. The bracket comes with an L-shaped bracket that allows you to attach it either to a wall or to the roof. The MicroSD card slot can be accessed by unscrewing a panel on the back (sold separately).
It is easy to control via an app that quickly loads the feed. The video resolution is only 1080p, but it captures lots of detail. The built-in person detection works well. There’s a microphone to record sound but no speaker; the C8C’s black-and-white night vision is crisp, though it switches to color when it detects motion. Sadly, there’s no HDR, and it unsurprisingly struggles with mixed lighting. There’s optional cloud storage, but it’s very pricey, starting at $6 per month for a single camera for just seven days of video. You also annoyingly need to remember to fix the camera view back on the main area you want to monitor when you’re done panning around.
#6 Arlo Ultra
If price is an issue, the Arlo Ultra is the best outdoor camera. It not only delivers the best video quality but also allows digital track and zoom to make it easier to identify and follow people as they move around the frame. It also has a built-in spotlight that allows color recording at night. Additionally, it has dual microphones for superior audio.
The Arlo Ultra can run on battery power, but it can also be wired if you have an outlet nearby. Arlo also offers a $80 solar panel, which will help keep the battery charged for longer.
All of this will cost you: A single camera (with the Hub) costs $399 and additional cameras cost $299. The Arlo Ultra does not come with a free cloud storage tier. You will need to spend at least $3 per monthly if you want any videos to be saved. And if you want to save 4K videos, it’s an extra $1.99 per camera per month, on top of the monthly plan, the latter of which is waived for the first year. The Arlo ultra is the best choice if you want to have the highest quality video.
#7 Wyze Cam v3
The Wyze Cam 3 is a budget-friendly home security camera. It can record video at 1080p as its name suggests. While the quality isn’t quite as good as the 4K Arlo Ultra’s, it’s still sharp enough for you to see who’s there. Its color night vision makes it stand out.
The Wyze Cam v3 comes with two weeks of free cloud storage — though clips are limited to 12 seconds — but it also has a microSD card slot which you can use to enable continuous recording and create time-lapse videos. Wyze Cam Plus ($1.25/month for each camera) gives unlimited video and no cooldown periods. This is a great deal, and it’s very affordable. Wyze is currently limiting Cam Plus subscribers to shipments, so you’ll get the camera much faster.
The Wyze Cam 3 has one problem: it must be plugged in. Wyze sells an optional $4 mounting kit that includes a 5-foot USB extension chord. This allows you to mount it up to 11ft from a power source.
#8 Arlo Pro 3 Floodlight Camera
The Arlo Pro3 Floodlight camera is a great option for outdoor security cameras with floodlights. This battery-powered camera is easy to install and features a bright 2000-lumen LED. It also has a 2K camera that digitally zooms and pans, so you can see who’s outside.
A solar recharging system is also an option. The battery drains fast, especially when the floodlights are being used. You will need to subscribe Arlo ($2.99/month) to access all of the camera’s features.