With the world connected digitally, investing in a smart security camera is one of the smart investments these days. Not only are you able to keep a tab on your house when you are away, but you can also utilize the security camera to keep an eye on your furry friends. Unlike a few years ago, security cameras are not as expensive and are available for less than $100.
Of course, you will have to sacrifice a few premium features, but the good news is that affordable security cameras get the job done. Be it sending notifying you when it senses intruders in its line of vision, enabling two-way audio, or rotating the camera remotely, and the list is pretty impressive.
So, if you are in the market looking for some affordable security cameras, here are some of the best ones that you can buy under $100.
It won't be wrong to say that the Wyze Cam v2 security camera is one of the cheapest cameras. This small and obscure camera costs only $25.99. However, do not let the price tag deter you from trying it out. It can render videos in 1080p Full HD and can rotate 360-degree. What's more, it packs a set of infrared LED lights that aids in the night vision. Owing to its Wall-E figurine-like size, this small security camera is suitable as an indoor camera or keeping an eye on your pet.
The Cam v2 also promises you an FoV of 110-degree. If that's a bit narrow for your choice, let me tell you that the swiveling head more than makes up for it. All you need to do is open the companion app and swipe to see the surrounding areas.
The Cam v2 also packs alerts you when it detects sound and movement in its peripheral vision. And when it does, it captures a short 10-12 second video. While it renders FHD videos, don't expect razor-sharp quality in the night vision or motion tracking. And well, that's the compromise you have to pay for the crazy low price. Regardless of that, you will get a decent video quality.
Perhaps the best thing about this camera is that you do not have to deal with cloud storage hassles. The camera also lets you store the videos locally. That opens your door to store & record videos continuously.
If you are looking for an affordable outdoor camera, the Blink XT2 makes for a good buy. It has a rating of IP65 and can withstand its share of rain and dust. The crux of this camera is its portability. Unlike the Wyze Cam v2, the XT2 doesn't need an AC power source and is instead powered by two AA batteries. Cool, right? It's capable of recording and streamings videos at 1080p and offers a slightly narrow FoV of 110-degree.
Speaking of its portability, the Amazon-owned XT2 measures roughly 2.8 x 2.8 x 1.4-inches and can easily fit into your palm. However, the primary camera is not independent and needs a Sync Module to operate. The good thing is that both modules are light and compact and as long as they are within 100 feet of each other, you needn't worry about its performance.
The videos are clean and sharp for the price, and you won't find any significant fish-eye distortion. While the company promises two years' worth of battery life, it's worth noting that it runs out sooner on high resolution. If you are worried about that, you can fall back on the default Saver Mode, which records at 360p, or the Best Mode, which records at 720p.
The companion app is highly customizable. Typical of most cameras, this one kicks into action when it notices any movement in its peripheral vision. Here, you can customize the retrigger time as well as the activity zone. The latter comes into your pet's picture, usually plays in a particular corner of your living room.
When it comes to accessing the saved recordings, the XT2 works in a rather unusual way. It doesn't have any fancy subscription service, nor does it have any local storage. Instead, you get free access to its cloud services. However, you can only access only to hours worth of saved video. And when you hit the 2-hour mark, the old recordings are replaced with new ones.
Quite naturally, the Blink XT2 plays well with Amazon Alexa. For instance, if you have an Alexa enabled device like the Echo Show or Echo Spot you can watch the live view from the camera on it. Cool, right?
The Ring Indoor Cam is the cheapest and most affordable camera from Ring. It's designed purely for indoor usage and sports a compact design. It's the latter which makes it easy to blend with your home decor elements. Compared to the camera above, this one packs a wider FoV at 140-degree. However, you will still get the same 1080p video resolution. The good news is that this tiny camera also offers motion tracking, night vision, and two-way audio. The latter makes it perfect to be used to keep an eye on your pet while you are away from your home for a short duration.
As noted above, it has a pretty diminutive design and measures roughly 2.9 x1.8-inches. It can either be placed on its mount or can be mounted on a wall. Like the Wyze Cam v2, it needs a continuous supply of AC power.
The highlight of this motion detection is that you can set it to ignore every other motion (like insects, pets, etc) except human motion. Woah right? This means you won't have your security camera going off in the middle of the night when its infrared camera detects a cluster of insects in its peripheral vision.
The Ring Indoor Cam records quality videos which are both clear and sharp. The app allows you to download the videos to your smartphone or have them sent to an email ID.
When it comes to the recordings, you can access up to 24 hours of footage, and well, this is quite decent. However, if you want to go back in time, you will have to pay for a subscription. The Basic Protect plan is just for $3/month for a single camera.
The Ring Indoor Cam has seen a massive number of reviews on Amazon. It has over fourteen thousand user reviews and has an average rating of 4.6-stars out of 5, with users vouching for its motion detection and Alexa integration.
As per Fakespot's analysis, approximately 90% of the reviews are reliable and can be trusted. One of the issues with this camera is that it emits a small blue light when enabled, and it can reveal its presence to potential burglars.
Another Blink camera that you can consider is the Blink Mini. It's a small palm-sized camera that offers 1080p HD video recording and two-way audio. The 110-degree FoV (narrow compared to the 140-degree of the Ring Indoor Camera) gives you a wide view, and it's ideal for indoor usage. Apart from that, you get the usual flavors like night vision and a wall-mountable base. Like maximum indoor cameras, it needs to connect to an AC source.
The videos recorded with the Blink Mini are clear and sharp for its price. The folks at The Verge opines that the quality is sharper when compared to the Wyze Cam v2. And the same can be said of the two-way audio. The Cam v2 has a rather unsatisfactory audio output and tends to muffle the noise.
The Blink Mini records short 30-second video clips whenever it detects motion. Plus, you can also open the app and have a quick peek on the live video, though it's limited to just 30 seconds.
If you are a Blink user, the odds are that you'll get access to free cloud storage. But if you are not, accessing the videos will cost you around $3/month for a single camera. Until then, you can enjoy a free trial period until January 1st, 2021.
Thanks to the easy installation process and the value for money proposition, the Blink Mini has seen its share of favorable reviews. Out of the fourteen thousand reviews on Amazon, this one has an average user rating of 4.4-stars out of 5. As per Fakespot's estimates, over 50% of the reviews can be trusted and are reliable.
However, it's not without its flaws. Motion detection can be a bit slow at times and well, it's best if you could keep the camera in proximity with the Wi-Fi router. On the upside, you can also see the live feed on Amazon Alexa devices.
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Other than the above, you can also check out the D-Link Full HD Wi-Fi Camera. This one has an exciting feature set and also supports Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant voice commands.