Outdoor security cameras are a great way to protect your loved ones and property. Their very presence helps. Whether you're adding to your existing surveillance system or are just searching for some , there are plenty of choices available to you. My picks range from the classic dome camera to high-tech options with top-notch, 1080p HD video.
Video quality among the many security camera options on the market is steadily improving. Standard features now include night vision and a motion sensor, while some models also include two-way audio, free cloud storage, IR LEDs, floodlights, spotlights, Wi-Fi and. You can get a or a that connects to your existing smart home setup, which you can monitor with your phone. You're only a few cameras away from a that maximizes safety.
But technological capabilities are only half the battle. Unlike an, the best have to tackle rain, wind, snow and all sorts of other weather changes and still record watchable footage.
Are you ready to build your own outdoor security camera system? We've tested a lot of weather-resistant models to arrive at this short list of surveillance camera favorites to help you find the best outdoor security cameras for your home and budget.
Arlo's latest Pro series camera is a fantastic device with features to spare. It boasts 2K HDR resolution, a 160-degree field of view, two-way talk, full-color night vision, a built-in siren and spotlight, compatibility with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple HomeKit -- the list goes on.
This powerhouse of a camera costs only $180 -- pricier than super-affordable options like Wyze Cam V3, but easily worth the premium. For $3 per month, you can also get smart alerts, motion zones, 30 days of event history and a few other cool features. This wireless outdoor security camera has a local storage option to secure your videos directly from your home security system to your Arlo Base Station. In short, the Arlo Pro 4 is a fantastic home security camera for most people.
Wyze makes a variety of solid, affordable smart home devices -- and the Wyze Cam is no exception.
In addition to standard features, which include HD live streaming and motion detection alerts, this affordable wired camera comes with free two-week event-based cloud video storage and a built-in micro SD card slot for local video storage. It has a customizable motion-detection zone, updated two-way audio and night vision, and an improved field of view over the last-gen Wyze Cam. The battery life of this outdoor cam can last up to 3-6 months between each charge.
The Arlo Video Doorbell performs well as a security camera, has a long list of features and competitive cloud storage fees. The optional cloud storage subscription gives you access to advanced person, animal, vehicle and package alerts.
This smart buzzer is easy to install, too, and features two-way audio, motion detection zones, arm/disarm modes and a built-in siren. Arlo Video Doorbell is battery powered and the cam battery lasts up to six months between charges.
Other products we've tested
We've tested too many outdoor security cameras to list here, but we've reviewed dozens of the most popular cameras from the biggest brands, including Amazon Blink, Amazon Ring, , , Eufy, Canary and many more. While many of these devices offer similar features, including 2-way talk, live streaming, app notifications and more, finding the right device for the right price can be a challenge. The above picks are the best options we've found so far.,
How we test home security cameras
Hands-on testing is core to our evaluations of any home security products. In short, when it comes to security cameras, we pay special attention to resolution, night vision and latency, extra features, general performance and overall value. We evaluate all of these elements in a real home environment over the course of a week. If you want to read more about our review process, check out ourhome security cameras and video doorbells.
Outdoor Home Security Cameras Compared
|Our Picks||Arlo Pro 4||Wyze Cam (2020)||Arlo Video Doorbell|
|Field of View||160-degrees||130-degrees||180-degrees|
|Setup||Wireless, indoor/outdoor||Moveable, indoor/outdoor||Wired, outdoor only|
|Extra Features||Live streaming, two-way talk, night vision, weather resistance||Live streaming, motion detection, night vision, weather resistance, integration with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant||Live streaming, arm/disarm modes, two-way talk, motion zones, night vision and an integrated siren|
Outdoor home security camera FAQs
Here are the answers to some of the most common questions about outdoor home security cameras. If you have any others, feel free to reach out on Twitter (@david_p_priest) or you can email me from my author page (just click the little orange envelope).
What type of outdoor security camera is best?
Outdoor security cameras can be used for all sorts of purposes, and your particular needs will determine which one is best. If you're looking for minimal upkeep, a camera with a power cord might be the best bet, whereas monitoring spaces far from a power outlet could make a battery-powered device a better option. In general, cameras with at least 1080p resolution, a wide field of view, night vision and deterrence features like a spotlight or alarm will serve you well.
What is the best security camera for cold weather?
Whether you're worried about extreme cold, rain or any other inclement weather, you'll want to be sure to check your camera's IP rating and lowest operating temperature. IP ratings of 65 or 66 are solid -- that means you won't get dust into the camera or water, unless it's totally submerged.
Generally, you'll also want to compare your regional winter temperatures to your camera's lowest operating temperature. Battery-operated cameras usually need warmer temperatures. Arlo's lowest temperature, for instance, is 14 degrees Fahrenheit, whereas the Wyze Cam v3 can function at -4 F.