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LiftMaster Secure View smart garage door opener review: A one-stop shop for garage smarts

Garage door openers are stepping into the smart home in a big way.

7.8

LiftMaster Secure View (87504) Smart Garage Door Opener

You're receiving price alerts for LiftMaster Secure View (87504) Smart Garage Door Opener

Like

  • Built-in camera
  • Helpful MyQ app
  • Quiet belt drive system
  • 360-degree LED lighting
  • Camera can be closed

Don't Like

  • Limited smart home integration
  • Some camera feed lag
  • Expensive

Garages aren't just the shed out back anymore. From in-garage delivery to smart locks and openers, your car's home is just as smart as yours. The LiftMaster Secure View (87504) combines Wi-Fi garage door connectivity with a built-in camera for a do-it-all system that gives you remote access and surveillance. 

At $468, this garage door opener is pricier than many models you'll find at your local home improvement store. However, a quiet belt drive, useful app and feature-loaded design make it worthy of consideration. 

If you are interested in add-on smarts, we've rounded up the best accessories to smarten your existing garage door opener. 

Design

The LiftMaster Secure View's most distinct feature is the built-in camera. The camera hangs from the underside of the opener and can be retracted or manually rotated 360 degrees to point exactly where you'd like to monitor activity and stream 1080p live video.

Our double door setup required two openers, which means two cameras. We could easily point each camera 180 degrees apart and view nearly the entire garage in the MyQ app. The camera includes two-way audio from a speaker at its base and has black-and-white night vision. 

The other feature that sets the design of this opener apart from many others is the 360-degree LED ring. You'll get 2,000 lumens of light to brighten your space and the 360-degree design leaves no corner in the shadows. 

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The 2,000-lumen LED ring light sheds plenty of light on a dark garage.

Molly Price/CNET

In addition to lights and cameras, the LiftMaster Secure View runs on a belt drive system that's very quiet. Belt drives are an excellent option for homes with an attached garage space. They are significantly quieter upon opening and closing than a chain drive system. Our unit also came with a wall button and keypad.  

We had our LiftMaster unit installed by a local authorized dealer. You could install the opener yourself, if you prefer. We had to swap out a chain drive system for the new unit's belt drive and opted to have that work done professionally. Once the unit was installed, we programmed the included wall button and the keypad. 

Read more: The MyQ Pet Portal is a smart doggie door

MyQ Smarts

The LiftMaster Secure View connects to your smart home via your 2.4GHz Wi-Fi network. The wall button is also where you'll go to set up the smart features of this opener. You'll start by opening the MyQ app and adding a device.

From there, the MyQ app guides you to the wall button's menu and walks you through setup pretty swiftly. My unit was connected to my Wi-Fi and MyQ app in under 10 minutes. I did have to perform a firmware update for the camera, but that was as simple as leaving my phone within Bluetooth range of the opener for a few minutes.

img-0191

The camera beneath the opener can be lowered or tucked away.

Molly Price/CNET

The MyQ app is well built and easy to navigate. We've recommended other MyQ-enabled products before (Chamberlain and LiftMaster are sister companies of sorts, both using the MyQ platform). Things like viewing your cameras, opening and closing doors, setting schedules and sharing user access are all simple and fuss-free experiences.

Integration

What MyQ lacks is true integration with other smart home platforms. Yes, you can connect your MyQ app to Google Assistant, but not with the Google Home app. Amazon Key integration for Prime members enables in-garage delivery, but there is no direct way to connect your MyQ opener to the Alexa app. HomeKit compatibility isn't there, either, unless you purchase the MyQ HomeKit Bridge accessory (another $70). 

IFTTT provides a handful of workarounds for Alexa, but compared to the hundreds of lesser-known and presumably lesser-funded apps out there that do work with these platforms, MyQ feels far behind. The app itself is great, but it could be even greater if it harnessed the full potential of Google Home and Alexa integration.

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Screenshots by Molly Price/CNET

Admittedly, I have a MyQ product in my garage and still find myself using the physical wall button or the remote in my car more than app control. The nicest part of voice assistant integration to me was being able to ask Google Assistant if the garage door was closed. If it wasn't, I could ask Google Assistant to close it. 

I should note that you can also connect your MyQ-enabled opener with Vivint, Ring, Alarm.com for integration into your preferred security system. I tested the Ring integration, which let me view the garage door status and launch the MyQ app from my Ring app's dashboard. 

Performance

The MyQ app is where you'll do most of your interacting with the garage doors regarding remote control. I did notice that for each of my built-in cameras, there was quite a bit of start-up lag upon opening the app and some intermittence in the feed while operating garage doors. Besides a few hiccups in the feed, the video was almost always clear and two-way audio worked well. 

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A wall button serves as the physical control center for the opener. 

Molly Price/CNET

As I've mentioned before, the belt drive was quiet and operated smoothly. Unlike some add-on opener cameras we've tested, this one didn't have a shaky video feed. Day and night vision both looked crisp and I appreciated the option to take a photo of the feed from the app.

Setting up notifications for door activity and alerts was simple, as well. You can set individual notifications for the camera and the door so you can choose to monitor only camera-detected motion or only garage door action or both. 

Battery backup is onboard in case there's a power outage to your garage. The physical wall buttons and the keypad offer backup in case your Wi-Fi isn't working. 

Conclusion

The LiftMaster Secure View worked well in my testing. The belt drive was delightfully quiet. The setup was simple and the advertised features worked well. I did experience some lag in the app when viewing camera feeds, but I didn't get the shaky feed of some aftermarket garage cameras. 

The MyQ app is still a bit limited, but it gets the basics right for remote operation, sharing access and creating schedules. At $468 and as a dealer-only product, the LiftMaster Secure View isn't as accessible as similar models from Chamberlain. However, if you're purchasing through a dealer, perhaps during a remodel or garage construction, I can confidently recommend this LiftMaster option.