The best outdoor smart cameras right now
Smart outdoor cameras let you secure the house. This is only possible with a smart outdoor camera, but you can also link it to other smart products such as an alarm, your door lock or motion sensors. This way, any intruders will not have a chance to enter your home and your valuables are safe even when you are not at home. There are many different smart cameras for sale. In this article, we provide an overview of the best outdoor smart cameras at the moment.
What should you pay attention to when considering best outdoor smart cameras?
You already have a smart outdoor camera for a few bucks, but you can also go all out with outdoor cameras for hundreds of euros. What exactly should you pay attention to? Basically, outdoor cameras are all the same, but specific functions may differ. An outdoor camera records images and offers you some form of storage via a micro SD card or, for example, via a cloud. It must also respond reliably to movement and / or sound, so that you don’t miss anything about what is happening around your house. However, there is a lot of difference between outdoor cameras when it comes to image quality and resolution, night vision, sound quality, compatibility with other smart home products and platforms and of course the price. And don’t forget the app, it must be user-friendly and well-organized.
One of the most important points before purchasing an outdoor camera is your network. These outdoor cameras connect directly to your WiFi network or a hub. You can hang an outdoor camera in the back of your garden, but if there is no connection, it makes little sense. As with other smart home products, the basis must be good and that is your infrastructure (your network). Whatever you want to buy, you will have to know in advance what exactly you are looking for and whether the camera you have selected meets your expectations. In any case, we will help you with this list of the best outdoor cameras of the moment. There is undoubtedly a good smart outdoor camera for you.
LSC Smart Connect Smart Outdoor IP Camera
The new products from LSC Smart Connect in the Action are a nice addition to the existing collection of smart products. They are of reasonably good quality and very affordable. In this price category you cannot escape the negatives. The weather resistance could be better, you only have basic functions and it is sometimes difficult to find the right video in the LSC Smart Connect app. However, if you take the downsides into account, these are good products for a very affordable price. We are most enthusiastic about the outdoor camera, followed by the video doorbell. The indoor camera performs just below par in terms of sound and the outdoor lamp has smart functions that you actually do not really need. In conclusion, we can say that Action is once again on the right track in bringing affordable smart home products to a large group of consumers. And we can only praise that.
At the bottom of the line, we are positive about the EZVIZ C3X. The fact that we can now buy an accessible (and relatively) affordable camera security camera that has color night vision, is enough reason for many people to buy it. Basically, the C3X is similar to the Husky Air, but in many ways is a souped-up version of it. The image quality is better, the aforementioned night vision is better and there is now support for the Google Assistant – although the latter does not work properly yet, is our experience.
But the C3X also has a number of drawbacks. For example, the plug is very short, no micro-SD card is included and there is only support for networks at 2.4 GHz. Add to that the fact that the support for IFTTT has disappeared and you are left with a pretty meager device when it comes to smarthome integrations. This does not alter the fact that it works very well as a stand-alone product, that the app is clear and that the settings do not cause a headache. And as a stand-alone camera, the EZVIZ C3X is well worth the money.
The Arlo Ultra is one of the most extensive, flexible and fully equipped camera systems on the market, and that (optionally) wirelessly. The cameras offer excellent image quality, but above all a lot of setting options to adjust the operation to your own liking and almost perfect reports. Of course, all of that comes with a nice price tag. After all, the suggested retail price of our system (a camera with hub) is 599 euros. If you want to secure the entire house, you will soon reach 1,000 euros. Yes, you will receive a free annual subscription with that, but keep in mind that after that you will have to spend at least 89 euros per year. And, if you want 4K recordings, it will cost you a few euros extra. There are also points for improvement for the Arlo Ultra, including the moderate zooming and tracking function, the fact that recordings on microSD cannot be viewed via the app and the fact that the distance between the hub and the cameras is limited.
If we look at the competition, and Nest in particular, there are small differences between Nest Aware and Arlo in terms of subscription. Nest is more expensive with a 30-day look back, but it does offer you the option to purchase a subscription for a 5 or 10-day look back. Nest also offers facial recognition, which Arlo doesn’t have. On the other hand, with the Arlo subscription of 89 euros, you can add 10 cameras to your subscription for free, while with Nest you pay extra for extra cameras. In addition, Nest without a subscription, unlike Arlo, offers person detection and you can look back 4 hours by means of screenshots. So it pays to compare the subscriptions according to your own wishes. In terms of hardware, both systems are well matched. Nest offers face recognition with the Cam IQ (Outdoor), does not need a hub and is a lot cheaper to purchase. The Arlo, on the other hand, offers the 4K resolution (Nest IQ Indoor does), can be used wirelessly, comes with local storage and offers various additional personalization options. While neither system is a bad choice, the ideal choice for you depends mainly on what you ask of the cameras and how you use them. Is wireless a requirement? Then you will be done quickly with the Arlo Ultra. Don’t want to use a subscription? Then Nest might be a better option. Do you want local storage and / or a spotlight? Then the Arlo is the better option. And there are more features that you can compare to compare both premium camera systems and come to the right decision.
Reolink Argus PT with solar panel
The Reolink Argus PT is, just like the other cameras from the company we have tested, a solid camera. The Argus PT has a user-friendly app, sufficient setting options, good image quality and, above all, good motion detection. However, we do not call the camera really smart as possible, partly due to the lack of smart notifications, recognizing animals or people, fencing, the cloud subscription, the automatic rotation of the camera during movements and the integration options with smart home systems. On the other hand, this model can be used flexibly and, thanks to the pan and tilt function, can keep an eye on a garden. If you are looking for an affordable pan and tilt camera that you can set up to your own liking and that you can store your video material locally, then the Argus PT is a great option. Are you looking for more ingenuity and smart functions, and a cloud solution for video recordings, then there are cameras that offer more for the same money. Then look at models from EVZIZ, Foscam or Arlo. We can always recommend the solar panel. Simple, simple and absolutely handy for places where you don’t have a power connection.
On paper, the Eufycam 2 is a great product. But it is not exactly a product that can bear the number 2; because such a thing implies that we are dealing with a successor that improves many things. Compared to the previous model, the only real addition is support for HomeKit and within that ecosystem there are all kinds of possibilities that are of no use to people outside. So are you still looking for a great HomeKit camera? Then you can consider the Eufycam 2, because there are plenty of options available.
We have slightly less good news for other interested parties. Although the Eufycam 2 scores well on paper, delivers neat images, has a well-functioning motion detection and supports local storage, unfortunately there are few (well-functioning) smart home integrations. There is also no audio detection and we still have the small disadvantage that there is no free cloud storage. The advantage is that cloud storage is not necessary at all and that your images are processed and stored securely, locally. The great asset of this system.