Posted on October 25 2018
Options, options, options. We all ask for them. But doesn't it get so confusing when there are just too many? Fear not, we understand the struggle. You want to secure your home and everything that you hold dear, but it can be quite a daunting task deciding which security cameras are best suited to do that.
There are several good options on the market for Wi-Fi IP security cameras that gives you the option of keeping an eye on your castle from wherever in the world you are. We have taken a look at 5 of the best rated security cameras of the year from this group, and have put together a breakdown of their features based on video quality, ease of use and overall performance.
THE 3 MOST POPULAR CHOICES
Arlo Pro 2
Highlights The Arlo Pro 2 is an all around highest rated indoor/outdoor IP security camera. It is a versatile and smart system that is compatible with IFTTT, Amazon Alexa and other smart home devices.
Placement options - Great for outdoor and indoor coverage. The Arlo Pro 2’s battery charges in an average time of 2 hours with its QC 3.0 quick charge plug and lasts up to 6 months under normal use. It can be easily mounted anywhere inside or outside of your home, and is IP65-certified for water and dust resistance.
- Brilliant video - The camera’s 1080p video capabilities offer impeccable details on everything that falls within its 130 degree field of view, and also offers a digital zoom up to 8x and live streaming capabilities. In the dark or low lighting, it automatically switches to night vision utilizing its six infrared LEDs to improve video quality, viewing up to 25 feet.
- Detection and siren capable - The Arlo Pro 2 sends instant notifications directly to your smartphone or email when motion or sound is detected, and gives you the option of using the embedded 100+ decibel smart security siren to drive away possible intruders.
- Great storage - It has free cloud storage that holds up to 7 days of recordings, or you can pay an additional subscription for 30 or 60 day storage. The base comes with a port that gives you the alternative option of using a USB drive to store captured footage.
- Bonus feature - When plugged into an AC power source, the Arlo Pro 2 offers a 3-second look back allowing you to see what occurred immediately prior to the alarm being triggered.
Drawbacks The Arlo Pro 2 is an expensive option, starting at $430 for a two-camera kit.
- Intermittent recording - The cameras only record videos when motion and sound sensors are triggered, and is slow to wake up, taking 7-8 seconds when on battery power. For continuous video recording (CVR) a subscription plan is required that ranges from $199 - $299 per year for each camera.
- On power only - The 3-second look back features is only available when the Arlo Pro 2 is being operated on AC power.
- Low night time detail - in spite of its night vision feature, video captured at night can be a little dark and low on details, if more than a few feet away.
The Breakdown The Arlo Pro 2 is a bit expensive and is far from perfect, but it is rated top of the line with its feature set, great wireless capabilities and ease to use. It’s incredibly long battery life and weather proofing makes it a great option for outdoor and all around use
Ring Floodlight Cam
Highlights Ring is a popular name among DIY home security systems. The Ring Floodlight Cam comes with the same quality that is expected from Ring products, and comes ready with a host of features that you would want in a security camera. The camera works with Amazon Alexa, IFTTT and other smart home devices.
Two LED Floodlights - The two ultra-bright 3k lumen LED floodlights have 270-degree motion-activated sensors, with a wide light projection area, perfect for putting potential burglars on high alert that they are being watched.
- Great Video - The Ring Floodlight Cam also offers detailed and crystal clear 1080P HD video, with night vision that allows you to see up to 30 feet, and has live video viewing (streaming).
2-way audio - Available two way audio on the unit allows you to hear and speak to anyone from your smartphone, with noise cancellation capabilities.
- Detection and siren capable - The Floodlight Cam dual motion sensors are highly advanced offering object, person and facial detection. Its ultra wide-angle motion sensors promises to cover all blind spots within its 140 degree field of view, including detecting motion around corners. The unit also has an app controlled 110-decibel siren alarm that can be used to scare intruders and animals away.
Drawbacks The Ring Floodlight Cam comes in a little more affordable with a starting price of $249, for a single cam system, but is also has its drawbacks.
Storage - cloud storage will cost you $3 per month (of $30 per year) for up to 60 days of video. It has no option for local storage.
- Buggy app - The app for Ring Floodlight Cam was found to be a bit buggy, with connection issues experienced during live stream launch. Proper displaying of the live stream was also an issue.
The Breakdown The Ring Floodlight Cam has a little more affordable of a starting price, and with its host of features, it is well worth the consideration. $249 is a relatively reasonable price for what you get with the Floodlight cam. However, cloud storage is a concern. The inability to view recorded videos without a subscription is a slight turn off.
D-Link Full HD Wi-Fi Camera DCS-8300LH
Highlights D-link is well known in the home security arena. The new D-Link Full HD Wi-Fi Camera DCS-8300LH ultra portable smart unit is feature packed and highly rated. The system is one of the more affordable on the list, and is compatible with Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa and IFTTT.
- Easy installation - The DCS-8300’s sleek design, which includes a horseshoe-shaped stand on a circular base, allows you to easily place the camera on any flat surface or install to other locations indoors, using the available anchors and screws.
- Sharp video - It comes ready with clear 1080P HD video, with quality up to 30fps (frames per second), and allows for easy pinch and zoom. The field of view is 130 degrees, similar to the Arlo Pro 2, but only offers 16 feet of black and white night vision range, with its pair of infrared LEDs.
- Detection Alerts - The camera is capable of both motion and sound detection, and keeps you up-to-date on every movement in its vicinity via smart alerts sent directly to your phone. The unit has 2-way audio available for you to listen in or speak if activity is detected.
- Storage options - The DCS-8300 offers both cloud and local storage. See up to 24 hours of the most recent videos captured on an included free storage plan, for up to 3 cameras. The available microSD card slot has a 128GB storage capacity that allows you to locally save videos. If you still need more space, you can find storage plans ranging in price from $24.99 - $99.99 per year, with up to 30 days of videos.
Drawbacks Although it is primarily geared towards indoor monitoring, the lack of a siren or alert noise feature was still a little disappointing. There is also signs of barrelling that is noticeable around the edges.
The Breakdown Coming in with a newly updated mobile app, a relatively affordable price below $100, and its basket of features, the D-Link Full HD Wi-Fi Camera DCS-8300LH is one of our favorites on the list for indoor monitoring. There still is room for improvement on the unit. But with its crystal clear videos, options to automate, and everything else it offers; the DCS-8300 is a good and very affordable home IP security camera.
2 new contender options
Wyze Cam V2
Highlights Wyze is quite new compared to the top 3 brands on this list, but the quality it has delivered so far has been noticeable. The Wyze Cam V2 is a next generation IP security camera that has a number of improvements from its Editors' Choice award winning predecessor.
- Affordability - With a price tag under $50, the Wyze Cam V2 is a good starter or any stage camera to add to your home security system.
- Sharp colorful video - The V2 camera has an upgraded CMOS sensor that gives you the same 1080p HD video quality that you get from the more popular brands. It delivers video at 15fps, covering a 110-degree field of view and an 8X digital zoom. The Wyze Cam V2 doesn’t miss a step at nightfall using its four infrared LEDs to deliver detailed black and white night vision videos with a range of up to 30 feet.
- Motion tracking - Its motion tagging feature proficiently detects activity and sends real time alerts to your cell phone. It tracks down and highlights the source of the alert, and allows you to see it live or during replay.
- Sound recognition - The units smart sound recognition software can differentiate between CO monitors and smoke alarms, and will send you specific alerts if either are triggered.
- Options for storage - At its very affordable price point, the Wyze Cam V2 also gives you convenient storage options. Included is a 14 day cloud storage plan that allows you to watch up to 14 days of motion and sound triggered recordings. You can utilize the CVR and time-lapse features and save all recordings to a microSD card, that you’ll need to purchase separately.
Drawbacks Although carefully constructed into a very attractive and sleek cube shaped design, its light plastic build is somewhat of a limiting factor on its durability.
The Breakdown The Wyze Cam V2 is a budget friendly home security camera that comes packed with features, including integration with Amazon Alexa and IFTTT support. With other features such as motion tracking, 2-way audio, the ability to share camera view with other users and a list of others; the Wyze Cam V2 is the most affordable on our list and a good choice to start or expand your IP security camera system.
Tend Secure Lynx Indoor
Highlights Tend Insights is another less known brand among IP home security camera manufacturers. However, the Tend Secure Lynx makes a powerful display with its tiny feature packed design.
- HD Video - The camera comes with a 125 degree field of view and captures crystal clear 1080p videos at 30fps on everything in its view. Built in is a single infrared LED that captures images up to 20 feet in night vision mode.
- Motion Triggered notification - Tend Secure Lynx’s motion sensor detects and sends automatic notifications on any activity in its range, directly to your cell phone. The Unit also comes with facial recognition technology, and an accompanying library that allows you to save familiar faces to easily tell who’s coming and going while you’re gone.
- Cloud Storage - The unit gives you the option of saving your recorded motion triggered videos to your included free 7 day cloud storage.
Drawbacks The Tend Secure Lynx comes chock full of feature but is limited in some areas. It’s facial recognition software has not yet been perfected, to effectively work subjects need to be within close range of the camera. Additionally, the audio playback is not very clear, the base of the unit can be a wobbly, and there is no support for IFTTT.
The Breakdown Like the Wyze Cam V2, the Tend Secure Lynx is a good budget friendly option to set up your IP security camera system, for under $60. It also comes with a basket of features that are similar to those you get with more expensive cameras, such as 2-way audio and facial recognition. Although it does not offer IFTTT support, it still is a very good inexpensive option to set up your home security.
The Sum Up
Among the top rated Wi-Fi IP security cameras, you can expect to find selections across the board that offer features that allow you to effectively monitor your home wirelessly when you are out and about in the world. Whether you spring for one of the more popular models such as the Arlo Pro, or you go with one of the less known brands that offer function and affordability, like you find with the Wyze Cam V2, you really can’t go wrong.