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Best Outdoor Security Camera 2023

Want to stop thieves before they can get into your house, one of our best outdoor security cameras will help you do exactly that and catch people before they get inside.

Putting a security camera on the outside of your house has two major advantages: first, thieves can see that your home is protected and may move onto the next house; second, you can get spot people up to no good before they have chance to move into your house. As a minor aside, outdoor security cameras also feel less intrusive, too, as they don’t capture you going about your daily business. Here, we’ll help you choose the best outdoor security camera.

We’ve compiled the best list based on all of the reviews that we’ve done. Each entry has a detailed description of the product, but you can also click through to the full reviews to get the full lowdown on your product of choice. There’s a full buying guide at the bottom of this article that can help you make the right choices.

Before we get into the main list of cameras, it’s worth saying that if you plan to buy multiple security cameras, you should buy them from the same manufacturer, as you’ll get a better deal on the cloud storage that way. Take into account other devices that you already have, too. For example, if you have a Ring Doorbell and Ring Alarm, it makes more sense to buy additional Ring cameras.

Best outdoor security cameras at a glance

Best overall – Arlo Pro 5 – check price

Best security light and camera – Ring Floodlight Cam Wired Pro – check price

Best value cloud storage security camera – Nest Cam (outdoor or indoor, battery) – check price

Best budget outdoor security camera – EZViz CTQ3N – check price

Best quality outdoor security camera – Annke NC800 – check price

Best subscription free outdoor security camera – Eufy S330 eufyCam – check price

How We Test

Learn more about how we test outdoor security cameras

All of our outdoor security cameras are installed properly outside of our test lab, monitoring real people. We run them for at least a week, so that we can tweak motion detection and find out how reliable or annoying each model is. We download sample footage from each camera, too, so that we can compare image quality between devices.

Arlo Pro 5

The best overall security camera
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  • Excellent night footage
  • Improved battery life
  • Powerful smart detection features


  • New app removes some features
  • Can’t move widgets around

The update to the excellent Arlo Pro 4, the Arlo Pro 5 battery-powered camera can go indoors and out. It has the same 2K resolution sensor as the old model, but Arlo has updated this to a 12-bit sensor, which captures more colours. This has two impacts: daytime footage is sharper and more detailed, and nighttime footage can be captured in full colour, with razor sharp detail (with a little help from the camera’s spotlight).

The Pro 5 looks much like other Arlo cameras, with a lozenge-shaped body. There’s a battery inside the case, which can be removed to be charged, although there is an optional solar panel kit if you want to keep the camera topped up automatically.

This camera connects to Wi-Fi or an Arlo SmartHub, depending on your preference. It integrates into the Arlo app, alongside any other cameras you may have. Arlo has updated the app for this camera. It removes some of the more advanced modes that used to be available, but the simpler interface, which uses three security-style modes (home, away and disarmed) is easier to use for most.

Modes define which cameras are active or disabled, and can be set manually, or automatically on schedules or via your location.

Arlo’s app is brilliantly simple to use, making it easy to find recorded footage saved to the cloud, for which a subscription to Arlo Smart is required. Arlo Smart also adds intelligence, such as smart notifications, where you can notified about your choice of people, animals or vehicles. It’s quite an expensive subscription, but worth it as this is the best camera system overall.

Reviewer: David Ludlow

Full review: Arlo Pro 5 review

Ring Floodlight Cam Wired Pro

The best security light and camera
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  • Easier to install than previous model
  • Excellent image detection
  • Bright lights
  • Decent image quality


  • Subscription required to access all features
  • Can’t change bulbs

Ring has had a floodlight camera for a long time but the Ring Floodlight Cam Wired Pro is the best yet. This wired model is easier to instal than the previous one, and can be wall- or ceiling-mounted. It has two bright LED lamps that you can angle where you want them, and a PIR sensor to control them.

Cleverly, Ring lets you control the detection range for the PIR sensor, so the light won’t keep turning on as people or neighbours walk near your light.

At the heart of the camera is a security camera, which has the 3D Motion Technology from the company’s Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2. This uses radar to let you set a detection range. When used in combination with activity zones, it basically means that this camera won’t record motion when you don’t want it do.

Video quality is decent, with the floodlight meaning that the camera can record in colour at night, although it also has IR lights for black and white shooting as a backup.

As with other Ring cameras, you need to pay for a cloud subscription plan to store videos in the cloud. This is well priced, particularly if you have multiple Ring cameras and a Ring Alarm.

Reviewer: David Ludlow

Full review: Ring Floodlight Cam Wired Pro review

Nest Cam (outdoor or indoor, battery)

The best value cloud security camera
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  • Offline recording
  • On-board object detection
  • Very flexible


  • New Google Home app not as good as the Nest app
  • No IFTTT

Nest has revamped its range entirely, with the Nest Cam (outdoor or indoor, battery) the new wireless model, which can be permanently powered if you prefer. This model has onboard storage, allowing up to three hours of recording without a cloud subscription, along with people, animal and vehicle recognition.

If you want to record more footage or scroll back more than three hours, you can upgrade to a Nest Aware subscription that (at minimum) adds 30 days of video history. It also lets you turn on facial recognition so that the camera can tell you who it’s spotted.

The new Google Home app is a little clunky compared to the old Nest app, but it gets the basics right and there’s a useful view of recordings that shows you thumbnails for each event. A little more control over when the camera can and can’t record would be useful, too.

That said, video quality is good, the camera’s well priced and Nest Aware is arguably the best value cloud storage system available.

Reviewer: David Ludlow

Full review: Nest Cam Outdoor review


The best budget outdoor security camera
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  • Great video quality
  • Good value
  • microSD card storage


  • Expensive cloud storage
  • Fiddly power connection

Comparatively cheap, the EZViz CTQ3N focuses on quality and getting the basics right. It may not have quite as smooth an app as the main competition, but this model has all of the main features that you need.

Installation requires you to screw the mounting plate to a surface: a wall or ceiling will do the job. You then need to run power to it using the provided power adaptor that must be plugged in inside; connection to your home network is via Wi-Fi.

This camera has a microSD card slot on it, so you can store video locally and don’t have to pay for cloud storage. That’s good news if you don’t want to have to shell out monthly.

Motion detection is good on this model, and you can set activity zones to only monitor a set portion of the video feed to cut down on the number of alerts that you get.

Shooting at 1080p, this camera produces very sharp and detailed footage during the day. At night, IR lights give good range but the camera also has a spotlight that can turn on, giving you full-colour night footage.

If you’re after a well-priced outdoor camera that gets the basics right, this subscription-free model is a great choice.

Reviewer: David Ludlow

Full review: EZViz CTQ3N

Annke NC800

The best quality outdoor security camera
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  • Incredible footage
  • Shoots in near dark
  • Great value


  • Out-of-the-box experience not great
  • Needs a network recorder to get the most out of it

The well-priced Annke NC800 is a 4K video camera and part of the company’s night chroma range. That essentially means that it can ‘see’ in the dark, shooting some of the best quality video that we’ve ever seen, preserving details when it’s dark outside. Image quality during the day is even more impressive, and this camera beats the big-name competition hands down.

It’s a little fiddly to get this camera working. While it has an SD card slot, the basic Annke app isn’t very good. Instead, you’re better off using the NC800 with a network video recorder. You can use any ONVIF compliant recorder, such as the Synology Surveillance Station, which is a free add-on to Synology NAS devices.

Still, once connected to a suitable recorder, it means that you don’t have any ongoing costs. While the other cameras on this list are easier to get working and easier to use, if you put the time in and just want the best quality footage, then this is a great choice.

Reviewer: David Ludlow

Full review: Annke NC800 review

Eufy S330 eufyCam

The best subscription free outdoor security camera
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  • No ongoing fees
  • High quality 4K video
  • Facial recognition and AI feature


  • Only 16GB of storage onboard
  • Night footage gets motion blur

Not everyone wants to pay for cloud subscription. Those that don’t shouldn’t be punished with fewer features. Luckily, there’s the Eufy S330 eufyCam. Shipping as a set with two cameras, although additional add-on models are available, this system consists of wireless cameras and a HomeBase that they communicate through.

The HomeBase is the brains of the system, and it’s the central storage. There’s a laughably small 16GB of storage onboard, which will get eaten up in no time thanks to the 4K resolution of the cameras. However, it can take a 2.5-inch HDD or SSD, so it’s easy to bulk up storage to the level you want.

Although the cameras are wireless, they have built-in solar panels. Provided they get at least two hours of sunlight a day, you shouldn’t have to charge them. This can make positioning the cameras a little more difficult, as you have to think which way the sun will go. Get it right, and you can sit back and not worry about power.

Image quality is exceptional. During the day, we found the video super sharp, thanks to that 4K resolution. At night, the camera does struggle a little to keep up with fast-moving objects, which can result in some blurry visuals; however, it’s still clear what is going on.

Built into the system are human, vehicle and pet detection, so you can reduce notifications by only getting warnings about events you’re interested in. There’s also facial recognition, powered locally by the HomeBase. It works pretty well, once trained, and it’s cool getting a notification about who was spotted.

If you don’t want to pay for a cloud subscription but don’t want to sacrifice quality, this is the best outdoor security camera system to buy.

Reviewer: David Ludlow

Full review: Eufy S330 eufyCam review


Should I get a battery-powered model or mains powered? 

Battery-powered outdoor security cameras are the most flexible, as you can place them pretty much where you want them without having to drill any holes in your walls.

The downsides are that these models tend to use PIR motion sensors, so you may get more notifications and, if you point them somewhere busy, you can run the battery down quickly. Mains-powered security cameras tend to have activity zones to cut down how many notifications that you get and don’t need to be charged, but installation tends to be a little more complex.

Do I need cloud storage? 

Pretty much every outdoor camera that we’ve tested requires a subscription to a cloud storage service. These make a lot of sense, as you get secure online storage for your footage, so even if your camera is stolen, you can still get the footage.

How important is the viewing angle? 

Viewing angles are described in degrees, with higher numbers taking in a wider field of view. In other words, if you’ve got bigger viewing angles, then your camera will capture more. This is quite important outside, as a camera with a wide viewing angle will see more of what’s going on.

Typically speaking, look for a camera with 150-degree or wider field of view, although doorbells tend to be slightly narrower and more focusses to make it easier to talk to someone at your front door.

Can an outdoor security camera be stolen? 

As cameras are placed outside, then they can more easily be stolen. There are cameras that have magnetic mounts that are relatively easy to knock out of alignment or to the floor.

However, there are ways around the problem. Careful positioning of a camera so that anyone fiddling with it will be spotted is a good idea, and you can often buy or upgrade to a more secure outdoor mount that makes theft harder.

What else should I look for?

Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant support is handy if you want to stream footage to your TV or screen-enabled smart speaker.

IFTTT can be useful, too, letting you control other devices when motion is detected, such as turning on a light automatically.

Nest cameras have Works With Nest automatic rules, so they can be turned on automatically when a smoke alarm goes off, for instance, or they can turn on your Hue lights automatically if suspicious activity is detected.

Should I turn an outdoor security camera on and off? 

For the most part, outdoor security cameras should be left on recording all of the time. The exception is that if you have a camera in your back garden, you may want to use the app to disable it when you’re outside.

How important is resolution? 

The higher the resolution, the more detailed the video, in general. That said, 1080p footage is generally good enough to find a frame in a video where it’s easy to spot a person’s facial details; go higher, if you want more detailed footage.

Are there any other features I should look out for? 

Some outdoor cameras have spotlights on them, which can be a useful way of advertising their presence to scare of thieves, and to improve the quality of the footage at night. All cameras have IR night vision, but you get a softer image when using this.

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Spec Comparison

Size (Dimensions)
Release Date
First Reviewed Date
Model Number
Voice Assistant
Battery Length
Battery Length
Smart assistants
App Control
Camera Type
Mounting option
View Field
Recording option
Two-way audio
Night vision
Motion detection
Activity zones
Object detection
Audio detection
Power source

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