Installing security cameras is one of the best ways to make your home more secure, but not all cameras are created equal, and some can get very expensive. These 8 security cameras are pretty affordable and can help you keep an eye on your home, garage, or business even when you’re not there to protect it. They range from standard HD cameras that can record with night vision to wireless devices that connect via smartphone app so you can monitor what’s going on while you’re away on vacation or at work.
Nest Cam IQ Indoor
Nest Cam IQ Indoor is one of our favorite indoor security cameras right now. It has a 4K sensor, 8x zoom and 1080p HD video that streams wirelessly for both local and cloud recordings. It also comes with Google Assistant built-in so you can issue voice commands to it. The Nest app lets you set activity zones, which allows it to ignore motion from non-threatening areas (like a ceiling fan). It works with most smart home devices—including Amazon Alexa and Google Home.
The Netatmo Welcome is a security camera with built-in WiFi and artificial intelligence (AI) that’s completely standalone—it doesn’t require a separate hub to connect to your home’s wireless network. With motion detection, night vision, and facial recognition, it can distinguish between people walking by and pets or wildlife moving through your yard.
Ring Video Doorbell Pro
This highly rated smart doorbell connects to your home WiFi, allowing you to see who’s at your door from wherever you are. In addition to WiFi connectivity, it offers two-way audio and motion detection with night vision. The Ring Video Doorbell Pro is also compatible with Amazon Alexa and IFTTT; like all of Ring’s products, it’s backed by a limited lifetime warranty. See at Amazon
The August Doorbell Cam Pro ($250) gives you all of August’s home security bells and whistles for a pretty reasonable price—and it offers two-way talk capabilities that let you speak with whomever may be at your door, without having to get out of bed. And if you want even more perks, like 24/7 recording and motion detection, check out its big brother, August Doorbell Cam Elite.
Nest Cam Outdoor
Google-owned Nest’s outdoor security camera is a $200 device that requires hard-wiring to power and connect to your Wi-Fi network. While it looks plain, it offers a crisp 1080p image with 110-degree field of view. It also doesn’t require much in terms of setup; just install it, scan a QR code on its back, and you can see what’s going on at home from anywhere.
For $179, Canary Flex includes both a security camera and an air-quality monitor in one package. It’s not quite as powerful as our top pick—the Flex has trouble with smaller rooms like bathrooms or kitchens—but it might be a good option for someone who wants to cover two rooms without spending too much money on multiple cameras. The device itself is easy to use: just plug it into a power outlet, download an app onto your phone (Android and iOS), connect to your home Wi-Fi network, and you’re up and running within minutes.
Arlo Pro 2
The Arlo Pro 2 is a newer version of our favorite security camera. It builds on an already impressive feature set by adding two-way audio, better sound, and free cloud storage. Priced at $299 for one camera or $449 for two cameras, it’s still expensive—but it’s less than half of what you’d pay for Nest’s Cam IQ. The camera has all of the same smart home integrations as its predecessor, with support for Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit, IFTTT and others.
Samsung is one of our favorite camera makers, and its SmartCam HD Plus is a great way to beef up your security system. For $199 you get a 1080p camera with night vision and a two-way speaker for live two-way communication. The free Samsung app lets you watch live video from anywhere, anytime (even when you’re out of town). It also features instant push notifications on compatible devices—handy if you want to keep an eye on your home while on vacation or share custody of your pet. Samsung’s cameras tend to be among our top picks because they’re easy to set up and use; they have simple interfaces that are ideal for users who aren’t always technology savvy.