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keep an eye on your house with these smart camera
Leaving home can be stressful if you’re worried about what might happen when you’re not there. Fortunately, a home security camera system can help address that issue by allowing you to keep an eye on your property and pets.
What are the best security cameras? Do you need features like person detection, which can differentiate people from animals, and two-way talk, which allows you to talk to the person on camera? Where should security cameras be mounted? And what about reports of people hacking into them?
Of the many security cameras, the cheapest one might be my favorite one. On this page, you can read about the Best Home Security Cameras of 2021 to help narrow down your search. We’ll also explain how to decide if you need security cameras, how they work, and what features to look for .
To help protect your home, here are the Best Home Security Cameras of 2021
Top 3 Home security cameras in 2021
1. Wyze Cam v2 1080p HD Indoor WiFi Smart Home Camera with Night Vision
If this $20 indoor security camera by Seattle-based smart home company Wyze looks familiar, you’d be right. This cheap cam, called the Wyze Cam, is very similar to iSmartAlarm’s Spot.
Cute, compact and versatile
The cube-shaped camera is light, but molded around four sides, so it feels quite robust. Soft touch plastics and rounded corners ensure that no fingers will be sliced in-use. Lift the device from its base and WyzeCam reveals an integrated, posable stand that raises the camera’s height and supports angled views. Twist the camera body, and you’ll find it rotates almost 360 degrees on a desktop. Or, you can mount the camera on the wall with an included magnetic wall-plate. There’s no battery support, but the included 1.8m mini-USB power cable helps with high mounting – if you need longer, simply purchase a longer cable from your favorite electronics retailer and you’re good to go.
Quick setup, friendly app with limited features
Setup was another area where we were looking for compromises. But again, we were thwarted. Other than a couple of minor language issues, we couldn’t find fault, as it was a quick and simple installation experience. Download the Wyze app, power on, enter Wi-Fi details, scan a QR code, and you’re done. There was even a succinct guided tour of the app, which is friendly and super simple to use – in part because there are few bells and whistles on offer.
|Incredible value for money V||Image resolution drops when motion tracking X|
|Pocket camera design is cute and versatile V||Push notifications fail to trigger X|
|Clear and sharp 1080p day/night imaging V||Patchy cloud recording performance X|
|Accurate motion detection V|
|Local micro SD storage support V|
Amazon’s new Blink Mini is a compact indoor camera that combines solid baseline features, easy operation, and a wallet-friendly $35 price tag. That naturally pits it against a growing group of budget-priced compact cams, including the EZVIZ Mini Plus, the Xiaomi Mi Home Security Camera, and the Wyze Cam V2.
The Mini is the first Blink camera to break from the blueprint of previous models since Amazon purchased the camera’s parent company in 2018. The palm-size square form factor has been ditched for something more akin to, well, the Wyze Cam. Like that camera, the Mini is a compact cube—it measures just 1.97 x 1.93 x 1.41 inches (WxHxD)—that can sit freely on any flat surface or on a stand.
Also, like the Wyze Cam—and unlike previous Blink cameras—the Mini requires AC power via a USB cable and adapter. Indeed, the two cameras are akin right down to their 110-degree viewing angles.
The Mini captures 1080p video and includes infrared night vision, two-way audio, motion detection, and customizable motion-detection zones to help minimize false alerts. Naturally, it works with Alexa; you can display the video stream or play back video clips on an Echo Show smart display, as well as arm or disarm the camera using voice commands with any Amazon smart speaker.
Setup and performance
As I already had the Blink app from reviewing past Blink cameras, I had only to add the Mini to my account, scan the QR code on the back of the camera, and connect it to my Wi-Fi to set it up.
Live and captured video was sharp with vibrant color. But brightly lit areas, like those around lamps and other fixtures, as well as reflective surfaces, like some white cardboard boxes I had laying around, tended to look washed out.
Motion detection worked well in my tests and delivered notifications of activity promptly. The camera can’t distinguish between people and pets or a rustling curtain, but there are ways to minimize the number of alerts you receive. You can increase or decrease detection sensitivity on a scale of 1 to 9.
you can set motion zones by selecting only those parts of the camera’s view you want to monitor for movement.
3. Ring Stick Up Cam Battery HD security camera
Stay with us as we unbox, install, set up, and run through our tests of our new Stick Up Cam. Let’s see if this versatile device makes sense for you and your home.
Ring, the Amazon-owned1 security powerhouse largely credited with redefining home security
In a nutshell, the Stick Up Cam Battery uses a quick-release battery pack. The Stick Up Cam Plug-In needs to be — you guessed it — plugged into a standard power outlet. The Stick Up Cam Solar comes with a solar panel, so no battery or wires are needed. And we like that Ring also offers an Elite version, which comes with a Power over Ethernet2 (PoE) adapter that plugs right into your router.
Ring also makes a Spotlight Cam and Floodlight Cam for outdoor use that use the same technology and deliver the same reliable performance as the Stick Up Cam.
But if you’re looking to add on more indoor cameras, we also recommend checking out Ring’s Indoor Cam. This model is smaller than the Stick Up – just under 3 inches, not including the stand – but contains many of the same features, including a wide field of view and night vision. But, unlike Stick Up Cam, Indoor is only available in white, and it’s plug-in only, which means you’re somewhat restricted in where you can position it.
Smart Home Integration
We already knew Amazon owns Ring, so it only makes sense that Ring cameras are compatible with Amazon Alexa devices for smart home automation.
if you do have an Alexa device then you can make all of this smart home technology5 work for you hands-free.
you can get voice notifications using Echo Dot. As far as home security products that work with Alexa, we think Ring is up there with the best of them.
|Versatile stick-up mounting V||Battery takes a long time to fully charge X|
|Easy DIY installation V||Doesn’t have facial recognition X|
|Low upfront cost V||Brief delays on live audio and video X|
|No wires (for battery model) V||No pan or tilt feature X|
|1080p HD video V||Doesn’t work with Google Assistant X|
|Motion-activated notifications V|
|Infrared night vision V|
|Works with Amazon Alexa V|