Ring Security Camera Reviews
Looking to add video security to your home? Ring cameras are a smart choice. You may know Ring as the Amazon-owned home security company with a snazzy doorbell camera, but Ring also has several security camera options for those who want surveillance in other areas of their home or property.
Ring’s cameras are versatile and high quality, offering night vision, two-way talk, motion detection and 1080p HD picture. There are several different cameras to choose from, including those with wired and battery powered options, ones that come with solar panels, outdoor cameras with LED lights, as well as ones that are mounted to floodlights, which are perfect for replacing existing outdoor floodlights.
A Ring security camera might be for you if you want to keep an eye on things when you’re away or in another area of your home. A Ring camera can be used to keep an eye on your pets or older kids when you’re not home. It can be secured in the backyard, so you can be alerted when motion is detected on your property. Use the Ring app to get alerts when motion detection is set off and to talk with someone in your home or on your property. One of our favorite things about the Ring cameras — you don’t even need to have a Ring Alarm to use them.
Because they’re so versatile, Ring cameras can be an excellent choice for a customer who just wants to use the camera, who wants an entire home security system (when paired with Ring Alarm) or who wants a range of security and smart home products and wants to control it all using the Ring app and even have voice control with Amazon Alexa.
Our Security Nerd loves that, with Ring, you have the option to have just a standalone camera, an entire home security system, or to also add on other smart home features, like Ring smart lights and smart plugs. You can also add smart plugs, switches and a garage door sensor from other companies that are compatible with Ring.
The beauty is you don’t need any other equipment to use a Ring security camera, so this could be the only equipment purchase you need to get up and running. This could save you a lot of cash if you’re not interested in extras.
You can return your Amazon Ring camera within 30 days if you’re not happy with it. There will be a $5 charge for ground shipping if you purchased it through Ring.com, however.
If you want to not spend a ton of cash just to protect your home, DIY installation is ideal.
Ring cameras are made to be used with a Ring security system and/or other Amazon items. So if you’ve got a different smart home or security system, you may not be able to integrate them.
Ring provides videos with a slight fish-eye quality, which really doesn’t interfere with how well you can see, but some people might not like the minor distortion.
If you want to be able to record and share video from your Ring security camera, you’ll need to have the Ring Protect Plan, which costs $3 per month. Have more than one camera? Consider the Ring Protect Plus Plan, which includes professional monitoring (if you have the Ring Alarm) and costs $10 a month. Frankly, that’s way less than many other security system monthly rates, so for some people, this is actually a pro.
If you’re not into the idea of DIY, this could be a con. Some of the camera models do require hardwiring, which isn’t something everyone’s comfortable doing. Calling an electrician is a wise move. Luckily, there are professionals available on Amazon Home Services who can install your camera for a fee.
Ring Camera Specs
Ring offers a variety of security cameras with tech features and options for different needs. This includes both indoor and outdoor cameras, wired and battery-powered models, even cameras powered using a solar panel.
Video: All the Ring cameras offer 1080p HD video, which means they offer good picture quality that’s comparable to other security cameras on the market, including models offered by Nest, Blink and Arlo.
Motion sensor and notifications: Ring cameras have built-in motion sensors. When they sense motion, they send an alert to your phone, so you can log into the camera and see what’s going on. They can also start recording footage, if you’ve got the Ring Protect Plan.
Two-way talk: Perhaps the coolest feature is the two-way talk. You can easily hear and also speak to whomever’s on camera from wherever you are, through your phone.
Installation: Ring touts its cameras as being easy to install. The battery-powered ones, especially, are. But the wired ones do take some hardwiring into your existing electrical system, which isn’t exactly easy for everyone. You may feel more comfortable having a pro do the honors, which will cost you. You can get an estimate on Amazon.com or hire your own handyperson.
Pricing: Ring security cameras range in price from $179.99 to $249.99. If you purchase them through Amazon, you can pay in five monthly installments. That’s not exactly cheap but it’s comparable to the prices of other security system cameras.
Home automation options: You can easily incorporate Ring cameras into a smart home system that also includes a security system, CO and smoke detectors, video doorbell, smart lighting and Ring-compatible features, like some other brands’ smart door locks, light switches, outlets, garage door sensor and sirens.
Security plan offerings: You have three different options when it comes to security (or lack thereof) with Ring security cameras:
- Use it for free: Without monitoring or video recording, you can just monitor the system yourself using the app to get notifications and checking in now and then to look at live footage.
- Ring Protect Plan: For $3 per month, you can record and share video from your Ring security camera.
- Ring Protect Plus Plan: This plan costs $10 per month and includes professional monitoring, which means a monitoring team is available 24/7 to respond to alerts, call you to see if everything is okay, and call emergency services if necessary. You’ll probably want the entire Ring Alarm system if you go this route, which means more equipment to purchase but also more security features, including door and window sensors, smoke and CO detectors and flood and freeze sensors) and costs $10 a month. One cool perk Protect Plus customers have is a 10% discount off Ring.com purchases. You can also cancel at any time.
Here’s a rundown of the Ring security cameras and what each offers:
Ring Stick Up Cam
- Design: The Ring Stick Up Cam is an indoor/outdoor camera that can be placed on a flat surface or mounted to a wall.
- Size: 3.82 in x 2.36 in x 2.36 in (without stand)
- Available colors: black or white.
- Power options: There are three different Stick Up Cam options: battery powered, wired (by micro-USB or ethernet), or solar.
- Features: All options feature 1080p HD picture, night vision, two-way talk and a motion sensor.
- Prices: $179 for wired or battery versions; $229 for solar version.
Ring Spotlight Cam
- Design: The Ring Stick Up Cam is an outdoor camera meant to be mounted on an exterior wall and also has LED lights and a siren.
- Size: 4.96 in. x 2.72 in. x 2.99 in.
- Available colors: black or white.
- Power options: There are four different Spotlight Cam Options: hardwired, plug-in, battery powered, or solar.
- Features: All options feature 1080p HD picture, night vision, two-way talk, LED lights, a siren and a motion sensor.
- Prices: $199 for plug-in or battery versions; $229 for solar version; $249 for hardwired version.
Ring Floodlight Cam
- Design: The Ring Floodlight Cam was created to replace existing exterior security lights. It’s hardwired into an exterior wall and detects motion and instantly shines light and begins recording video.
- Size: 11 in. x 8.25 in. x 7 in.
- Available colors: black or white.
- Power: Ring Floodlight Cams can only be hardwired into a home’s electrical system.
- Features: The Floodlight Came features 1080 HD picture, night vision, two-way talk, bright LED floodlights, a siren and a motion sensor.
- Price: $249
The Bottom Line
If you already own a Ring Alarm system, adding a Ring security choice is a smart upgrade that won’t cost an arm and a leg. It’s also a good choice for someone who doesn’t yet have an alarm system and wants simplicity and/or flexibility, since the camera can be used on its own or in conjunction with a variety of smart home and security products by Ring, Amazon and compatible brands.
The Ring security cameras don’t offer anything special or unique that other security companies’ cameras don’t—their picture and functionality is quite on par with the competition. You likely won’t be disappointed by the picture or the ability to use two-way talk from your phone. The app is also very easy to use. Plus, security monitoring for just $10 per month is a pretty great price.
In the end, your decision whether or not to purchase Ring will likely hinge on whether or not to go with Amazon products in general for your security and smart home needs.
About the Author
Elena Donovan Mauer
Elena Donovan Mauer has written for Real Simple, Self, Good Housekeeping, Parents, The Knot, The Bump, and other publications. Elena is also a soccer mom, adjunct professor and taco enthusiast, who can be found antique shopping and singing in her kitchen. She lives in the Hudson Valley of New York with her husband and two sons.