The best outdoor cameras record HD video and are loaded with awesome features like motion-tracking technology, two-way audio communication, and smart home connectivity. There are several types of outdoor security cameras to choose from, each with their own advantages. For example, you could stop would-be package thieves in their tracks with a prominently displayed camera that blares a siren on command, or you could light up the night with a motion-activated floodlight camera that’ll catch them red-handed. The choice is yours!
After reviewing many different outdoor security cameras we have identified the best for surveilling the area around your home. While looking at these outdoor security cameras we considered factors such as recorded video quality, night vision capability, and smart device connectivity to choose our top picks. We then put together a long list of honorable mentions to provide you with many more great options to choose from.
We have chosen the Ring Spotlight Cam as our overall top pick. This outdoor camera records in high 1080p resolution and has an exceptionally wide 140-degree visible range, plus it has a boatload of features and Alexa compatibility.
In This Article
The 5 Top-Rated Outdoor Security Cameras
|Best Outdoor Security Camera Overall||Ring Spotlight Cam||4.5|
|Best Outdoor Dome Security Camera||Anpviz Dome Security Camera||4.7|
|Best Budget Outdoor Security Camera||Netvue Outdoor Camera||4.3|
|Best Wireless Outdoor Security Camera||ZUMIMALL Wireless Outdoor Security Camera||4.5|
|Best Outdoor Floodlight Security Camera||Ring Floodlight Cam||4.5|
*Ratings are current at the time of publication and can change
Best Outdoor Security Camera Overall: Ring Spotlight Cam
The Ring Spotlight Cam is easy to install, easy to operate, and has a bevy of useful features. This camera plugs into a standard wall outlet for power and uses WiFi for connectivity, combining the reliability of wired power with the convenience of a wireless Internet connection. It also has an exceptional smartphone app that you can use for live video feeds and two-way audio communication, and it is compatible with Alexa voice commands.
Video recordings are saved at a crisp 1080p resolution. The extra-wide 140-degree viewing angle provided by the camera lens gives a widescreen effect to the video because it captures an impressive amount of horizontal footage. Night vision provides clear video even in pitch darkness, but the 375 lumen LED light strips on the camera can also be made to fire up at any time. There’s also automatic lights-on functionality that can be paired with the motion-detecting software to light up anything that moves in the night.
This camera and its smartphone app enable live video and audio viewing at any time out of the box. You can opt for the Ring cloud storage if you want to record and keep videos to review later. A one-year warranty is included with purchase, and you also get lifetime theft protection that ensures if your camera gets stolen Ring will replace it for free. There are also hardwired and wireless versions of this camera available which can be found by following the provided product link.
Ring Spotlight Cam Key Features:
- 1080p HD camera with a 140-degree viewing angle
- Live view on-demand video and audio
- Alexa compatible and works with other Ring products
- Built-in LED 375 lumen light strips and siren
Best Outdoor Dome Security Camera: Anpviz Dome Security Camera
A top-tier outdoor security camera, the Anpviz Dome Security Camera impresses with its ultra high definition video output, convenient plug and play installation, and useful suite of features. This little camera records in class-leading 4k video resolution that displays clarity and detail far beyond what even 1080p can offer. You’ll be able to zoom in on your video recordings to see the details that matter in the unfortunate event of criminal mischief like the suspect’s face or a vehicle’s license plate number.
For a wired camera, the installation of the Anpviz Dome Security Camera is a breeze. The Power over Ethernet capability allows for a single Ethernet cable to provide both the Internet connectivity and electrical power required for the camera. That means you don’t need to route any additional power cables to the device. This camera can connect to a variety of NVR devices, and you can access live video from your smartphone or computer.
There are plenty of high-end features built into this camera as well such as audio recording, motion-detecting software, and infrared night vision. In order to store the large 4k video files, this camera uses an advanced form of data compression known as H.265 that is faster and consumes 50% less data storage space than its previous iteration. All of this is enclosed in an IP66 waterproof and tamper-resistant shell. You can use it as a standalone camera or integrate it into a wide range of popular home security systems.
Anpviz Dome Security Camera Key Features:
- 4k UHD camera with a 105-degree viewing angle
- Plug and play with PoE NVR
- Night vision with a 65-foot viewable range
- H.265 ultra-efficient file compression
Best Budget Outdoor Security Camera: Netvue Outdoor Camera
If there is a feature you require in your outdoor security camera, there’s a good chance that the Netvue Outdoor Camera has you covered. This budget-friendly security camera is more capable than many of its premium-priced competitors. You’ll still get high resolution 1080p video footage from this camera despite its low price, and you tack on the additional cloud storage feature for a few bucks more if you want secure video backups that are protected by bank-level encryption.
This is a wired camera that needs to be plugged into a wall outlet, but it gives you the option the choose either reliable Ethernet connectivity or the convenience of WiFi. The Ethernet cord can be plugged directly into your home router or through an NVR if you wish to store your videos on a local disk drive and connect multiple cameras to create a whole-home security system. You’ll also have access to the camera’s controls and live video via your smartphone, and it is also compatible with Amazon Alexa devices.
What more could you ask for in a budget security camera? Well, this one offers infrared night vision with a 60-foot visible range, two-way audio for remote conversations, local SD card storage capability, and motion-detection. Mounting hardware is included, and the entire device is weatherproof. You won’t find an inexpensive outdoor security camera with more features than this Netvue Outdoor Camera.
Netvue Outdoor Camera Key Features:
- 1080p HD camera with a 100-degree viewing angle
- Infrared LEDs with up to 60-foot night vision
- Ethernet or WiFi flexibility
- Alexa compatible
Best Wireless Outdoor Camera: ZUMIMALL Wireless Outdoor Security Camera
There are several reasons why you may choose a wireless camera over its wired counterparts. Wireless outdoor cameras are easier to install, there are no dangling cords for criminals to cut, and they can connect directly to your smartphone. The ZUMIMALL Wireless Outdoor Security Camera records in high definition 1080p resolution just like most wired cameras do, and it has a large 10400mAh battery that can last for up to six months before it needs to be recharged.
Though the high-capacity rechargeable battery is neat on its own, what makes it even better is that it can be charged through a USB-C port, enabling it to be connected to peripheral devices like solar panels that can keep the battery charged indefinitely. One drawback some people see in wireless cameras is that they may be unreliable because the battery could run out or the WiFi signal may falter, but the large rechargeable battery, coupled with the dual WiFi antennas, ensures that this camera will be unquestionably reliable.
This camera has been given an IP65 rating, labeling it to be completely weatherproof in temperatures ranging from -4°F to 140°F. Its construction is vandal resistant, and it features two-way audio so that you can speak with another person at your doorway or holler at a suspicious individual who is loitering on your property. Other features include advanced PIR motion-detection, infrared night vision, and multiple remote access which allows for the entire family to view and adjust the camera on their smart devices at the same time.
ZUMIMALL Wireless Outdoor Security Camera Key Features:
- 1080p HD camera with 120-degree viewing angles
- Dual WiFi antennas for a stable connection
- Large 10400mAh rechargeable battery with Micro USB port
- Two-way audio and PIR motion detection
Best Outdoor Floodlight Security Camera: Ring Floodlight Cam
Scare would-be thieves away before they cause any trouble with the Ring Floodlight Cam. Not only is this a similar camera to the one we labeled as our top overall pick, but it’s also a smart floodlight that can be synced with the camera and motion-detecting functionality. You can customize the floodlight and camera to both trigger automatically when a person wanders into the sensor’s 30-foot range, or you can manually trigger these different components through the smartphone app to catch a criminal in the act before shining the lights on them.
The LED floodlights put out a whopping 1800 lumens which blast the immediate area with bright light. Because of its power and capability, this Ring Floodlight Cam must be hardwired into weatherproof electrical boxes. Though the power must be wired, the device is connected to your home Internet via WiFi. Everything is accessible and customizable from your smartphone. You can customize the settings of the camera and the lights, and you can even manually trigger the lights or siren when you receive a motion alert.
This Ring camera is Alexa compatible and can launch live video-on-demand at the sound of your voice to your Fire TV. The monthly Ring Protection Plan is required if you wish to store recorded videos on Amazon’s cloud with the ability to access and download those files, however, live video feeds do not require this added subscription. The installation kit comes with everything you need including mounting hardware and a base.
Ring Floodlight Cam Key Features:
- 1080p HD camera with a 140-degree viewing angle
- 1800 lumen floodlights
- Advanced motion detection with alerts and custom light functionality
- Two-way audio and Alexa compatibility
Who Should Buy an Outdoor Security Camera
Outdoor security cameras can help you prevent and identify trespassers, vandals, and thieves who step foot onto your property with malicious intentions. You should buy an outdoor security camera if you have had problems with package thieves or any other type of criminal who causes harm to you or your property.
The best outdoor security cameras can send instantaneous alerts to your smartphone when a suspicious individual is in its sights. Some offer two-way audio communication so that you can speak with people at your front door, and most have motion-tracking and alarm capabilities. We’ve compiled a list of many great wired, wireless, dome, and floodlight cameras for you to explore.
If you’re specifically in the market for a wireless camera, take a look at our article on the best wireless security cameras to get a more comprehensive look at wireless security systems.
Important Features to Consider
There are a few important considerations to think through before purchasing an outdoor security camera.
- Wired or wireless. Do you want the reliability of a wired security camera or the convenience of a wireless camera? We’ve described the benefits of each style below in our FAQ.
- File storage. Most outdoor security cameras give you the option to store data locally on an SD card, on a video recorder hub, on your computer, or on a pay-per-month cloud server. The advantage of cloud storage is that it is virtually limitless, but the downside is that it costs a monthly fee. These camera brands all have different local and cloud storage options at various storage capacities and prices. Some will only allow you to store data on the cloud and require a monthly fee. Be sure to choose a camera that allows for the storage option you prefer.
- Visible range. Many wireless security cameras are fixed in place and do not move. These cameras are limited in their visible range, but some are still able to see more than others thanks to their lens angle. Wide-angle lenses can see more, and cameras with more infrared LEDs can typically see further in the dark. Some outdoor security cameras can rotate vertically and/or horizontally, and they can pan, tilt, and zoom in on objects using motion-detecting programming. The advantage of a rotating security camera is that it provides a sweeping view of an area, and some can be controlled remotely by your smartphone.
- Smartphone control. Most modern outdoor security cameras are operated, customized, and viewed through smartphone apps. Some brands have created easy to use apps that allow you to customize and control the functionality of your camera, but some cameras are paired with poorly designed apps that do little more than try to sell you on the cloud storage services. You can always download the app before you purchase a camera to see if it is going to meet your needs.
- Smart home compatibility. Many, but not all, of the outdoor security cameras on our list are Alexa compatible. A few are compatible with Google Assistant as well. Those that are compatible with smart home systems will feature two-way audio, allowing you to speak to Alexa or Google. This feature also allows you to speak through your camera to anyone at your doorstep. The smart home compatibility can be a great boon for anyone who has a smart home featuring Amazon Alexa or any other compatible program.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is an outdoor security camera and how does it work?
Outdoor security cameras are home surveillance tools that are weatherproof and can operate in a wide range of temperatures. Modern outdoor security cameras transmit digital data to a local SD card, to your smartphone, a computer, or a cloud server where the videos are stored and can be viewed. This data is transmitted through a plugged-in ethernet cord or over WiFi. Power is supplied to these cameras by a corded connection, by batteries, or even by a solar panel.
Is a wired or wireless outdoor security camera better?
Both wired and wireless outdoor security cameras have their advantages.
Wireless cameras are easy to install and don’t require you to route long cables to the camera. They are the more user-friendly option, however, they will run out of power eventually and need a battery replacement or recharge. You will have to keep an eye on the battery levels and take care to maintain them throughout the life of the camera.
Wired cameras are more difficult to install and will require you to route long cables around the exterior of your home or through the walls. These wired cameras have much more reliable power and Internet connections because of their wired connections. Determined thieves may be able to cut the wires and disable the cameras, but those same thieves would be able to disable a wireless camera as well.
Should my outdoor security camera be visible?
In general, it is probably better to have a visible camera than a well-hidden camera, but it depends upon your intentions. A highly visible camera will act as a deterrent for opportunistic criminals, but you will be less likely to actually catch a criminal in the act because of this.
Can I install outdoor security cameras myself?
Absolutely! Modern outdoor cameras are easy to install. Wireless cameras need only a couple of screws and a smartphone app in order to work properly. Wired cameras require a bit more work to connect the power cord and ethernet cables, but by following the step-by-step guides that come with these cameras you should be able to complete the installation on your own.
Other Outdoor Security Cameras We Reviewed
We looked at 20 other outdoor security cameras. Even though they didn’t make our five best outdoor security camera list, they’re the best of the rest and each is still a great option for surveilling the grounds around your home. The information you’ll need to compare each one is included with the listing.
- Dome Outdoor Security Cameras
- Floodlight Outdoor Security Cameras
- Wireless Outdoor Security Cameras
- Wired Outdoor Security Cameras
- Budget Outdoor Security Cameras
Dome Outdoor Security Cameras
Always online, the Amcrest UltraHD Outdoor Security Turret is powered through a 12v DC port and is connected to your home internet via an ethernet port. This camera takes stunningly clear 5mp pictures and records video at a clear 1080p resolution.
- 5-megapixel camera with 103-degree lens
- Starlight nighttime image sensor
- One way audio
View a live feed from your high definition Jidetech Security Dome Camera from your smartphone or desktop computer. This security camera has 4x optical zoom capability, as well as pan and tilt functions that are all controllable from your smart device.
- 5-megapixel rotating camera
- Pan, tilt, and zoom functionality
- One-year warranty
For keeping an eye on your home throughout the night, there are few options that match the capabilities of the Lorex Color Night Vision Dome Camera. With advanced Color Night Vision technology and up to 20x zoom, this camera won’t miss a detail day or night.
- 4-megapixel rotating camera
- 4x optical zoom and 16x digital zoom
- Is capable of color night vision
The Swann Ultra Dome Camera puts out 4k resolution video and can see up to 200 feet in low light conditions (150 feet in pitch dark). There’s no more powerful dome camera on our list. The viewing angle is a bit restrictive, but when this camera focuses on a specific target the image will be as crystal clear.
- 4k camera resolution with 93-degree lens
- Color night vision in ambient light
- Alexa and Google Assistant compatible
Floodlight Outdoor Security Cameras
The Arlo Pro Floodlight Camera is a powerful camera and nighttime floodlight on its own, but it can also be a part of the Arlo Pro home security suite. You can add this camera to an existing Arlo security system, or use it as a starting point to build up a whole-home security system.
- Wireless camera records in 2k resolution
- LED floodlight emits up to 3000 lumens
- Alexa compatible and smartphone controllable
Light up the night and record whatever happens with the EZVIZ Outdoor Floodlight Camera. A built-in motion sensor can be set to observe a 270-degree range, firing up the floodlight and recording video the moment anyone wanders within its 82-foot visible range.
- 1080p camera that can be manually rotated
- Floodlights put out up to 2000 lumens
- 270-degree motion sensor
Like something out of a science fiction movie, the Geeni Sentry Camera is the type of face a hooligan does not want to be surprised by in the middle of the night. This camera has an impressive 140-degree viewing angle and its motion sensor will fire up the high beams when anything walks into its vicinity.
- 1080p camera resolution with 140-degree viewing angle
- LED floodlight puts out up to 2100 lumens
- Compatible with Amazon Alexa
A brilliant floodlight, a high-quality camera, and convenient functionality make the Victure Floodlight Camera a solid buy for anyone in need of some additional at home security. The two-way audio lets you speak with guests and delivery drivers at your door, and the adjustable siren alarm can scare away would-be thieves.
- 1080p camera resolution with 127-degree viewing angle
- LED floodlight puts out up to 2000 lumens
- Two-way audio and an adjustable siren alarm
Wireless Outdoor Security Cameras
The HeimVision Wireless Security Camera features a 6000mAh rechargeable battery that can last for 3 months before needing a recharge. The recharge port is USB, which means you could potentially attach a USB solar panel to the device so that you never have to worry about the battery again.
- 1080p camera resolution with 130-degree viewing angle
- 6000mAh rechargeable battery
- PIR sensor activated recording
Simple and effective, the UOKIER Wireless Security Camera is a sleek and compact camera that has all of the functionality you could ever need. Two-way audio, motion-detecting, and infrared night vision are all controllable and adjustable via the CloudEdge smartphone app.
- 1080p camera resolution with 130-degree viewing angle
- 6400mAh rechargeable battery
- Infrared night vision and two-way audio
Through the Zeeporte Outdoor Security Camera’s smartphone app you are able to adjust the recording times and motion-detecting functionality. Record images and videos however you like. Local storage is placed on a removable SD card and unlimited cloud storage is optional.
- 1080p camera resolution with 122-degree viewing angle
- 6400mAh rechargeable battery
- Adjustable recording times and storage options
Wired Outdoor Security Cameras
The Amcrest UltraHD Outdoor POE Camera is a stealthy and reliable camera that is plugged in through 12v DC and ethernet ports. High-resolution 5mp image and video files can be stored and viewed on your computer and backups can be held in Amcrest’s optional cloud system.
- 5-megapixel camera with 104-degree viewing angle
- Playback and organize videos on Mac or PC
- One-year warranty
The EZVIZ Surveillance Camera is a hybrid wired and wireless security camera. It requires a DC power connection but uses dual antennas to maintain a reliable WiFi connection. It’s also compatible with Amazon and Google smart home systems.
- 1080p camera with a wide viewing angle
- DC power source, WiFi connection
- Alexa and Google Assistant compatible
The Google Nest Cam is an easy-to-install and interesting outdoor camera. It uses WiFi but requires a direct power connection. You can sign up for different levels of the Nest Aware program which add unique features like familiar face technology that recognizes your frequent friendly visitors.
- 1080p camera with a 130-degree viewing angle
- Emergency response calling from the smartphone app
- Nest Aware monthly service required
The Lorex Analog Security Camera is a laser-focused camera that produces exquisite 4k video with a tight 87-degree viewing angle. It sees very well in the night and has two intruder deterrent systems.
- 4k camera with an 87-degree viewing angle
- IR night vision sees up to 150 feet
- Motion triggered LED light and remotely triggered alarm
Going a step beyond motion-detecting, the Nooie Security Camera also features an adjustable sound detection technology. You can control how sensitive these technologies are. The device is compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Assitant.
- 1080p camera with a 101-degree viewing angle
- Features two-way audio communication
- Adjustable motion and sound detection
Budget Outdoor Security Cameras
The AMICCOM Outdoor Security Camera is a great camera for the price. It pumps out high-resolution video, though its viewing angle is underwhelming. It requires a wired power source and uses WiFi for smartphone connectivity.
- 1080p camera with a 70-degree viewing angle
- DC power cord with wall outlet adapter, WiFi
- Two-way audio and motion-detecting software
More capable than many of the more premium outdoor cameras we’ve seen, the Goowles Home Surveillance Camera is among the best budget-friendly alternatives on the market. This camera can rotate and pan with motion-tracking or when manually controlled by your smartphone.
- 1080p camera with 360-degree rotation capability
- Required plug-in power source, optional WiFi or ethernet cable
- Compatible with Amazon Alexa
Alone or as an add-on to an existing home security system, the TIGERSECU Super Wired Security Camera records clear video both day and night. It requires a power supply and coaxial video cables for installation.
- 1080p camera with 65-foot night vision
- Compatible with many video recorders and home security systems
- One-year warranty
The Wansview Outdoor Security Camera is the least expensive option our list, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it is the least capable. It’s fully compatible with Amazon Alexa and can be viewed using your smartphone. It also features motion detection, night vision, and customizable alerts.
- 1080p camera with a 105-degree viewing range
- Power supply and ethernet cable included, optional WiFi
- Alexa and smartphone compatible