Security cameras are one of the more popular tech tools keeping homes safe and sound. Today’s cameras are equipped with smart and proactive security features to make home surveillance stress-free and simple. We created this buyer’s guide filled with tips and our top recommendations to help you pick the perfect security camera.

Our experts have narrowed down the industry’s top three cameras. For a full list, check out the top 15 security cameras.

Best Overall Security Camera

Nest Cam Outdoor Security Camera

Rating:

4.5

Cost:

$178.00

Why we picked it:

  • Designed for motion-detected and continuous video recording to capture all camera footage
  • Automatically sends mobile Person Alerts when guests are detected at your door
  • Create Activity Zones using a mobile device to closely monitor specific areas

Best Smart Home Security Camera

Ring Spotlight Camera

Rating:

4

Cost:

$169.00

Why we picked it:

  • Custom motion detection settings to prevent false alarms
  • Equipped with a 110-decibel siren and built-in light automatically triggered by motion
  • Control the security camera using the Ring app at all times

Best Wireless Security Camera

Arlo Pro 2

Rating:

4.5

Cost:

$323.99

Why we picked it:

  • Works with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant to view camera footage using voice commands
  • Comes with seven days of free cloud storage to store camera footage
  • Multiple powering options including a rechargeable battery or plugging into a standard wall outlet

Here Are The Top 5 Security Cameras:



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Understanding Different Types of Security Cameras

There are a few essential specifications to look for when choosing a security camera. If you’re leaning towards a monitored system, start by comparing providers and offers to pick the perfect one for your home.

Wireless vs. wired security cameras

Wireless cameras are easy to install and reposition, but you’ll want to check the battery levels periodically to ensure they’re fully powered. Some battery-operated outdoor security cameras require a small hole to mount the camera outside. Other wireless surveillance cameras come with adhesive mounting tools free from drilling and easy to remove from rental properties. Wired security cameras may require professional installation and drilling to connect it to a power outlet to power the security camera recording system.

DIY vs. monitored security camera systems

Do-it-yourself (DIY) home security systems can be cost-effective and convenient with online portals and smart technology. But, keep a few facts in mind. Most DIY surveillance systems don’t automatically connect 24/7 monitoring services to always keep you alert. Some come with limited support and may be more expensive in the end. Monitored home security systems from leading providers offer automatic emergency notifications and services even when you’re away. Your home is always connected to a service to control and support your safety concerns with ease.


Compare the Best Security Cameras

Nest Cam Outdoor Security Camera
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Ring Spotlight Camera
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Arlo Pro 2
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Swann Bullet Camera
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Nest Cam IQ
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Lorex Security Camera
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Zmodo Secuirty Camera System
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ADT Outdoor Security Camera
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Netatmo Outdoor Security Camera
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Smonet Security Camera
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Price $178.00 $169.00 $315.99 $49.99 $349.99 $189.95 $289.99 $50.99/mo $299.61 $209.99
Rating 4.5 4 4.5 5 5 4.5 4 5 4 4
Video Resolution 1080p 1080p 1080p 1080p 1080p 1080p 720p 720p 1080p 720p
Two Way Audio Yes Yes Yes No Yes No No No No No
Wide Angle Lens 130 Degrees 140 Degrees 130 Degrees 102 Degrees 130 Degrees 112 Degrees 81 Degrees 100 Degrees 95 Degrees N/A
Night Vision 20 Feet 30 Feet 25 Feet 100 Feet 50 Feet 200 Feet 65 Feet 50 Feet 19 Feet 65 Feet
Continuous Video Recording Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes No No Yes
Cloud Video Storage Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes No No Yes

Full List: Our 15 Best Outdoor Security Cameras

Nest Cam Outdoor Security Camera

Best Overall Security Camera

1. Nest Cam Outdoor Security Camera

Rating:

4.5

Cost:

$178.00

Description:

The Nest outdoor surveillance camera is equipped with a 1080p HD live video and 130-degree wide angle lens for a clear view of your visitor and all surroundings. With this security camera, you’ll be able to stay up to date on your home’s outdoor activity 24/7 using the Nest app and a smartphone via automated mobile notifications. Nest Cam also sends a ‘Person Alert’ using your Nest app to instantly alert you when someone’s outside of your home.

Key Features

  • Includes night vision for crystal clear camera footage in the dark
  • Two-way audio to clearly speak to guests
  • Records motion-detected activity and continuous video recording (CVR)
  • IP65-certified weatherproof outdoor security camera
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Ring Spotlight Camera

Best Smart Home Security Camera

2. Ring Spotlight Camera

Rating:

4

Cost:

$169.00

Description:

The Ring Spotlight outdoor surveillance camera uses a 1080p HD video for crystal clear live footage. It’s battery-powered and only takes 5-10 minutes to install. With the Ring mobile app, you’ll be able to use your mobile device to trigger the camera’s siren when you detect suspicious activity outside your home. You’ll also receive instant mobile alerts to your smartphone when motion is detected.

Key Features

  • Includes night vision for crystal clear camera footage in the dark
  • Pairs with Amazon Alexa for hands-free camera control
  • Two-way audio to clearly speak to guests
  • Weatherproof outdoor security camera
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Arlo Pro 2

Best Wireless Security Camera

3. Arlo Pro 2

Rating:

4.5

Cost:

$323.99

Description:

The Arlo Pro 2 is made to be IP65-certified weatherproof and is built with 1080p HD video. With the Arlo mobile app, you’ll be able to use your mobile device to trigger the camera’s siren when you detect suspicious activity outside your home. The Arlo Pro 2 also records both motion-detected activity and continuous video recording (CVR). This security camera can be used with the included rechargeable battery or plugged into a standard wall outlet.

Key Features

  • Includes night vision for crystal clear camera footage in the dark
  • Pairs with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant for hands-free camera control
  • Made with two-way audio to clearly speak to guests
  • Weatherproof outdoor security camera
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Swann Bullet Camera

4. Swann Bullet Camera

Rating:

5

Cost:

$49.99

Description:

The Swann Thermal Sensor Outdoor Security Camera is a dome-shaped camera that seamlessly with Swann security systems. The camera is equipped with a 102-degree viewing angle and 1080p camera quality to clearly catch all activity outside your door. It includes a True Detect™ PIR motion sensor to automatically detect, record and send mobile alerts of suspicious motion-triggered activity.

Key Features

  • Wired camera with a 60-inch coax power cable
  • Includes night vision for crystal clear camera footage in the dark
  • Made with True Detect™ Heat Sensing to spot warm objects including people and cars
  • Weatherproof outdoor security camera
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Nest Cam IQ – Outdoor

5. Nest Cam IQ – Outdoor

Rating:

5

Cost:

Description:

The Nest Cam IQ is Nest’s latest outdoor, IP66-certified Wi-Fi-enabled camera. The camera is equipped with a 130-degree field of view lens, 1080p HDR and a 4K sensor and digital zoom-in up to 12x for crisp, clear camera footage. It also includes night vision and close-up tracking to automatically zoom in and follow the movement of the person using your smartphone and the Nest app.

Key Features

  • Includes Nest Personal Alerts to detect a person within 50 feet
  • Made with two-way audio to clearly speak to guests
  • Uses a built-in 4K sensor to zoom in 12x for a close-up view
  • IP66-certified weatherproof outdoor security camera
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Lorex Security Camera

6. Lorex Security Camera

Rating:

4.5

Cost:

$189.95

Description:

Lorex’s heavy metal home security camera is designed with a 112-degree wide field view, 4K image sensor and 4K video recording to be four times better than 1080p HD video for clear, crisp image quality. With this outdoor security camera, you’ll be able to see crystal clear color camera footage within 200 feet at night. This Lorex security camera also connects to your network video recorder (NVR) to create up to four zones with adjustable motion sensitivity for each.

Key Features

  • Create four motion-triggered zones with adjustable sensitivity
  • Made with a 4K image sensor for leading camera footage quality
  • Includes color night vision for crystal clear camera footage in the dark
  • Weatherproof outdoor security camera
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Zmodo Security Camera System

7. Zmodo Security Camera System

Rating:

4

Cost:

$107.62

Description:

The Zmodo wireless security camera system is IP65-certified weatherproof and 720p HD night vision within 65 feet. Zmodo offers Zmodo Cloud Service to store, share and playback your security camera’s footage. You’ll also be able to see real-time camera footage using the mobile Zmodo app from a mobile device to always know who’s at your home even when you’re away.

Key Features

  • Pairs with Amazon Alexa for hands-free camera control
  • Includes night vision for crystal clear camera footage in the dark
  • Store, share and playback camera footage using cloud storage
  • IP65-certified weatherproof outdoor security camera
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ADT Outdoor Camera

8. ADT Outdoor Camera

Rating:

5

Cost:

Description:

ADT’s Pulse captures sharp 720p images and videos, even in limited lighting, to give you the best view of your home from your smartphone. The Pulse even allows your phone to control your outdoor security camera to see real-time activity from different angles to stay aware of your home and loved one’s safety.

Key Features

  • Automatically receive alerts and HD video when suspicious activity and alarms are detected outside of your home
  • Stay aware of your home’s security activity with a detailed log of all past events
  • Pair with Alexa for voice commands to manage your home, doors, alarms, and outdoor cameras anywhere using
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Netatmo Outdoor Security Camera

9. Netatmo Outdoor Security Camera

Rating:

4

Cost:

$291.82

Description:

The Netatmo Presence smart surveillance camera gives homeowners 24/7 home security with automatic mobile alerts and a built-in smart LED floodlight. Always know who’s within 65 feet of your home using your smartphone to see real-time security camera footage.

Key Features

  • Includes a built-in smart LED floodlight
  • Store and playback camera footage using Dropbox, microSD card or your FTP server
  • Includes night vision for crystal clear camera footage in the dark
  • HZO protected weatherproof outdoor security camera
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Smonet Security Camera

10. Smonet Security Camera

Rating:

4

Cost:

$209.99

Description:

The Smonet outdoor security camera is equipped with night vision, wide-angle lens and 720p HD video quality. Smonet’s security camera system allows you to connect up to eight cameras to one system to help monitor your home. When motion is detected, you’ll automatically receive email alerts and instant notifications. You’ll also be able to see real-time footage at all times from your mobile device.

Key Features

  • Store, share and playback camera footage using a 4TB hard drive
  • Includes night vision for crystal clear camera footage in the dark
  • 1-year warranty
  • IP66-certified weatherproof outdoor security camera
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EZVIZ Outdoor Security Camera

13. EZVIZ Outdoor Security Camera

Rating:

4

Cost:

$59.99

Description:

The EZVIZ outdoor security camera uses a 360-degree swivel mounted from the ceiling to show all angles of your home. The smart camera also uses HiFi speakers for the camera’s two-way audio feature. It’s equipped with a strobe light and 100-decibel siren, both triggered when motion is detected. And, with EZVIZ cloud storage, you’ll be able to store, share and playback your security camera’s footage at all times using secure cloud storage.

Key Features

  • Includes night vision for crystal clear camera footage in the dark
  • Pairs with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant for hands-free camera control
  • Made with two-way audio to clearly speak to guests
  • IP66-certified weatherproof outdoor security camera
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Sequro Video Surveillance System

14. Sequro Video Surveillance System

Rating:

4.0

Cost:

$199.99

Description:

Sequro’s GuardPro security camera provides two real-time viewing options that show footage using the 7-inch color LCD touch screen or Sequro GuardOne mobile app. The two cameras show 720p HD color viewing and night vision while storing all footage on a 256GB microSD card. The Seguro security camera system can connect up to four cameras to help monitor your home.

Key Features

  • Store and playback camera footage using a microSD card
  • Includes night vision for crystal clear camera footage in the dark
  • Made to encrypt security camera footage to reduce the risks of hacking
  • IP66-certified weatherproof outdoor security camera
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Foscam Security Camera

15. Foscam Security Camera

Rating:

4.0

Cost:

Description:

Foscam’s Wi-Fi enabled outdoor security camera is built with 1080p HD video quality and advanced wide dynamic range (WDR) for a clear, crisp view of visitors with correcting lighting for darker areas. Foscam’s smart surveillance camera includes a web server to access live activity and Foscam Cloud stored videos from anywhere using a mobile device. Using Foscam’s mobile app, you’ll be able to receive instant motion-triggered alerts and watch real-time footage with your mobile device at all times.

Key Features

  • Connects to Foscam’s mobile app for instant motion-triggered alerts
  • Store and playback camera footage using a microSD card, hard drive or cloud storage
  • Includes night vision for crystal clear camera footage in the dark
  • IP66-certified weatherproof outdoor security camera
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Top Security Camera Features to Consider Before Buying


Working at Kitchen table

Security Camera FAQs

How does video surveillance security work?

A surveillance security system will typically consist of several cameras connected—either hardwired or wireless— to a digital video recorder (DVR), which records the images and displays them on a monitor.

How much home security camera coverage is needed?

The camera’s viewing angle determines how much space the camera will cover. Wide-angle lenses reduce the number of cameras required to monitor your home. Some outdoor security cameras have a wide-angle lens that may show a 360-degree view, but the best security cameras have a view of at least 100 degrees or better.

How does a video surveillance camera system work?

A surveillance camera security system connects several security cameras to a digital video recorder (DVR), which records the images and displays them on a monitor. The monitor may be a closed circuit television (CCTV) to easily be monitored from the home. Or, the DVR can send the images to a mobile device, where they can be seen live or played back on demand.

What’s the best outdoor security camera shape?

There are two outdoor security camera designs – dome or bullet-shaped. The dome-shaped outdoor security camera is known to be less obvious to unwelcome visitors because they offer a 360 swivel that makes it difficult to determine their direction. On the other hand, bullet-shaped cameras are more common. They have a cylinder shape that clearly stands out to alert thieves that your home is under surveillance.

How does home security camera video storage work?

If you want to playback your home’s outdoor activity, you’ll need a camera with onboard video storage or cloud recording capabilities. Most cameras with recording capabilities have a built-in secure digital (SD) or microSD slot that allows for sufficient recording space. Once the memory card is full, you’ll need to delete footage or store it elsewhere. Some popular cameras automatically override expired videos, which may not be most ideal if you need to keep a video. On the contrary, some security camera providers offer cloud storage monthly plans to securely store videos on the cloud. You can easily access them anytime, anywhere by signing into your account on your mobile device or using a mobile app. Some systems also record to DVD or mini-disc, but most are now transitioning to DVR (digital video recorder) technology. A computer-based camera system records your video to the PC’s hard disc, making it fast and easy to review your video history.

What energy saving features are available?

Surveillance cameras can eat up a lot of energy. It’s important to find an outdoor security camera that only records when motion is detected to cut electricity costs or battery usage. Some security cameras are also powered by solar panels to reduce energy costs but include a rechargeable battery and adapter to use as needed.


Benefits of Outdoor Security Cameras

Outdoor security cameras hold a number of home safety and security advantages. Regardless of the lens, video recorder, or other features, any outdoor security camera is guaranteed to deliver these benefits.

Convenient control

Today’s surveillance cameras pair with mobile apps to control your security camera using your mobile device. You’ll automatically receive notifications when the camera’s power is disrupted or motion is detected. You’ll even be able to view real-time video, record, and review directly from your smartphone.

24/7, 365 home surveillance

Whether day or night, your security camera system is designed to watch other your home even when you’re away. It’s powered to automatically detect and alert you of any activity.

Improved safety

Security cameras are the extra set of eyes to watch over your home at all times. If any motion is detected, you’ll automatically receive mobile alerts and the camera automatically records the activity for you to review. The best security cameras offer a real-time view and are equipped with two-way audio to scare off intruders using your mobile device. Some cameras can trigger the siren or speak to visitors using the mobile app for your protection against potential danger outside your door. If you have a fully-monitored home security system the security camera automatically connects to alert your security provider’s monitoring center of motion-triggered activity at all times.

There’s no one-size-fits-all system for home surveillance. Choose a security camera that best fits your budget, home security needs and special monitoring features. Our experts shared their top picks to help narrow your search. To see the industry’s leading options browse Amazon’s Best Selling Security Cameras.