Trusty Joe’s Top Picks
In a hurry? Here’s a glimpse of the two best products you can get.
If you’ve got a bit more time you can find the full reviews and buying guide below.
How to pick the best video doorbell camera for the cheapest price
Do you hate not knowing who’s at your front door before you answer it? I know I do!
Before I installed a video doorbell camera, it was always a guessing game when the doorbell rang.
No matter what, I always seemed to be in the middle of doing something important too and didn’t want to stop just to answer it. However, I couldn’t help but rattle off these questions in my mind:
- Was it someone I knew?
- Did a package arrive?
- Could someone be hurt or in trouble?
- Did a family member get locked out?
- or is it just a solicitor?
My curiosity usually got the best of me and so I’d peer out a corner window to try and see who it was, hoping not to get caught.
Perhaps you do that too?
Another thing that bothered me about my lack of front door security was that I sometimes had to travel for work and my wife and kids were left home alone. This bugged me because I didn’t want them opening the door to a stranger without me being around.
Eventually, those issues are what caused me to start looking for a solution. And the thing that caught my eye was a cheap wireless doorbell camera.
This inexpensive product seemed like a dream come true.
A top rated video doorbell gave me the sense of protection I wanted without the expense of a full-blown security system. I could monitor (and record) all of the activity going on outside through a handy smartphone app.
Plus, any one of my family members could easily screen who was at our front door without ever having to go near it.
This product seemed so brilliant that I had to give one a try!
After installing a cheap WiFi video doorbell, I discovered that it does a lot more than just screen visitors. In fact, I couldn’t believe all of the things I was missing out on by not having one sooner.
This new doorbell camera really changed my life.
Anytime the doorbell rang, regardless if I was there or not, a live video stream of the person at my door would pop up on my smartphone. I could then decide if I wanted to interact with this person or not. If did, I just talked to him or her through the doorbell using the built-in microphone.
This was a great feature to have especially when it came to getting packages. When I wasn’t home, I could instruct the deliveryman on how to hide my boxes so they were out of sight instead of just leaving them on the front stoop.
I could also intercede with visitors who stopped by when my wife or kids were home alone. Since I could communicate through the doorbell, no one ever knew if I was really there or not.
My favorite feature, however, was that the doorbell doubled as a security camera. Since it had motion detection and infrared night vision, anytime there was ever movement outside my door, the video camera would immediately turn on and record everything that was happening.
The peace of mind this thing gave me was amazing!
So, how do you find the best WiFi doorbell camera for your home when you’re on a budget?
That’s where I can help!
As your trusty companion, I’ve put more than 12 of the best video doorbell cameras to the test and discovered everything they can do and more. In the end, I put together all my findings in this simple guide to help you find the best cheap doorbell camera for your own home.
But before we jump into the reviews, let’s first take a quick look at important features you need to consider when buying one.
Features to look for in a wireless video doorbell camera
There are many top rated wireless doorbells that promise to solve all of your problems, but the truth is that each one operates a little differently and this may or may not make it the best investment for your home.
By knowing what options are available on a WiFi doorbell before you make a purchase, you’ll be able to get a device that better fits your needs for the long term.
Below are the top things to consider while you’re reading my reviews.
Having a video doorbell is great, but having one that lets you talk to the person is even better.
The truth is that there are some very cheap wireless doorbells out there with video capabilities, but not all of them include a microphone. This is fine if you just want to spy on the person outside your door, however, those types of doorbells are not much more than an overpriced peephole.
Having two-way communication is a key detail you’ll want to look for in a camera doorbell.
When a visitor pushes the button, you’ll be immediately alerted on your mobile device. After seeing who’s there, you can then decide if you want to talk to that person through the microphone and hear their response through the speaker.
PIR motion detection
Have you ever been spooked by a noise outside but when you looked through your window you couldn’t see anything?
That can be pretty frightening, to say the least.
Since doorbell makers know that this is a big concern for people, they’re not including PIR motion detection in some of their units. What this does is automatically turns on the video camera to capture the action that it senses. You’ll then get an alert sent to your phone or tablet so you don’t miss what caused it.
How’s that for peace of mind?
IR night vision
If we’re being honest here, there’s a certain level of anxiety that erupts in all of us when the door rings at night as opposed to during the day.
There’s something about the nighttime that amplifies our fears and not being able to see clearly who’s at our front door without opening it is a scary thing.
The solution to this problem is IR night vision technology.
A video doorbell with this feature lets you clearly see who’s ringing your bell no matter how dark it is outside. It’s also a great thing to have in combination with PIR motion detection. If an intruder is lurking outside and doesn’t actually push the doorbell button, their activity will still be recorded you’ll be able to make out who it is.
Video storage location
WiFi doorbells come with two different video storage options and you’ll need to pick which one you’re more comfortable with.
The first option is cloud storage. This means that every time the doorbell rings or activity is detected outside, the videos are recorded and stored online. Content can be viewed on demand. You can download the files, of course, but you may have to pay a small monthly fee for long-term cloud storage.
The second option is storing the footage on the doorbell itself. Some products come with an internal SD card and every time a recording happens it gets saved onto this card. This is a better option for some people because there are no monthly fees to pay. The only downside, however, is that most SD cards only hold 8GB of data. Therefore you’ll need to transfer files off of it when it gets full in order to free up space for more recordings.
One of my top picks below gives you 36 hours of free storage and you can download the files before they expire. And X has SD card.
In the world of wireless doorbells, you’ll find that they can be powered in one of two ways: through electrical wiring or with rechargeable batteries.
If you’re replacing a standard doorbell that already has two small wires running to it, then you can buy a wired video doorbell without any problems. Just swap the wires out of the old unit and into the new one and you’ll be good to go.
If you’re looking to add a WiFi camera doorbell to a location that isn’t already wired (or you don’t want to mess with anything electrical) then you’ll be better off getting a product that uses rechargeable batteries.
A doorbell with rechargeable batteries can be mounted anywhere you want without having to do any electrical work. Just keep in mind that you’ll need to recharge them every 2 to 3 months.
Here’s something that’s often overlooked by people when they’re buying a wireless doorbell camera. Without question, they expect it to come with a built-in chime of some sorts.
Unfortunately, not all doorbell cameras come with a chime feature.
Since WiFi doorbells alert you on your smartphone or tablet every time the button is pushed, there isn’t always a need for it to chime out loud.
Therefore, if you want to have this feature in your home then you’ll need to buy this part separately or look for a doorbell that includes it.
This is another feature that you may expect to be commonplace when buying a video doorbell, however, not all products are fully waterproof.
Some manufacturers cut costs by not including weather protection on their units because not all consumers need it.
If you’re placing the doorbell in a location that’s covered from rain exposure then it shouldn’t matter if it’s waterproof or not. If that’s not the case, then getting a waterproof doorbell camera is the safest thing you can do.
For your convenience, I’ve marked which products have waterproof protection or not in my reviews below.
The Top 5 Products
When I was researching and testing WiFi doorbells, I uncovered a lot of good (and bad) products when putting together this list of reviews.
After sifting through the junk, I was finally able to narrow down the top five winners for you. I hope you find the best wireless doorbell camera for your home among this list.
If you’re looking for a top rated video doorbell that can keep you safe and secure, this is a great investment.
Not only does it have two-way communication, PIR motion detection, IR night vision, and waterproof protection, but it also has something no other product on this list gives you – the ability to create a pre-recorded message.
That handy feature allows you to record a personalized voice message for your visitors to hear when you can’t (or don’t want to) answer the door. Just imagine all of the possibilities you can have with that function!
Another stand out feature is that this doorbell comes with a WiFi extender which extends the range of the wireless signal up to 656 feet. This means your home router doesn’t have to be as close to the doorbell for you to get a signal on your mobile device.
Something else worth noting is that you get 36 hours of free cloud storage for your captured videos and you can download any of them during that time. If you’d like, you can pay a monthly fee for permanent access.
This is a great doorbell camera to own and is the same one I have in my home. Maybe you’d like to give it a try?
The second best rated WiFi doorbell camera is this product right here.
It comes with all of the standard important features including two-way audio, motion detection, night vision, and waterproof protection. It also includes a chime!
The way it differs from my #1 pick is that it stores videos on the device itself instead of in the cloud. This is great for anyone who doesn’t want to pay for cloud storage or just wants instant access all of their videos.
This doorbell can also store 4x as many files than any other product in its class. It accepts a 32GB media card as opposed to the standard 8GB that other doorbells use.
Keep in mind, however, that this doorbell must be hardwired into your home and doesn’t run off batteries. If you’re replacing an existing doorbell, this won’t matter much, but if you want to place it in an area that doesn’t have an electrical connection you may want to consider my #3 or #4 picks.
Are you looking for the best wireless video doorbell that gives you the option of using rechargeable batteries or being hardwired into your home?
If so, this may be exactly what you need!
Switching out your old wired doorbell with this new one is easy to do. All it takes is swapping two wires. Or you can choose to use the rechargeable batteries feature and not worry about anything electrical. That option allows you to install this doorbell anywhere you want.
With that in mind, it’s important for you to know that this product is not waterproof. So it shouldn’t be installed in areas that are exposed to rain.
It also stores videos locally on an 8GB card and a chime is sold separately. Other than that this camera doorbell has everything you need to communicate and record your visitors
Perhaps you’re looking for the best wireless video doorbell that can be installed anywhere and gives plenty of video storage options.
If that’s the case, then this could be just what you’re looking for.
The features of this device are practically identical to my #3 pick except for a few slight differences.
It only runs on batteries and can’t be hardwired into your home. However, it is waterproof so you can install it just about anywhere.
With this product, you have the option of storing your videos just on the internal 8GB card or taking advantage of the free cloud service. Through the cloud, you can store up to 100 videos at one time and they’ll be retained for 7 days.
That’s a pretty good deal if you ask me!
If my reviews were based on what other people say or buy, then this would have been the top wireless doorbell camera on this list.
Because it’s one of the highest rated, best-selling cheap WiFi doorbells out there.
However, the reason I didn’t rank it as #1 is because it doesn’t offer much more than the other products on this page. Plus, it has the highest price. But for some people, it may be the best investment for their needs.
It has all of the important features including two-way communication, motion detection, night vision, and waterproof protection. It can also be powered through wires or by using rechargeable batteries.
One extra feature it has that no other product here does is that it can be controlled with your voice through Alexa devices. That makes it a great choice for anyone who’s setting up a smart home.
A chime is sold separately and one other thing to keep in mind is that you have to pay a $3 monthly fee for cloud storage to access your videos.
Other than that, it’s a high-quality doorbell that has lifetime purchase protection. If it ever gets stolen you’ll get a new one for free!
These are just a few articles I found that relate to WiFi video doorbell cameras.
- How PIRs Work (Learn.Adafruit.com)
- How do Night Vision Cameras Work? (Howtogeek.com)
- The Card Versus the Cloud (Blog.westerndigital.com)