Best Outdoor Security Cameras

Learn more about outdoor security cameras. Includes ranking, list pricing, and frequently asked questions.

Updated on September 6th, 2019

The SMB Guide is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

Outdoor security cameras are designed to withstand the elements and are usually wireless with Wi-Fi or Bluetooth capability. These cameras are useful for monitoring the outside of your property or office building to keep it safe.

Our Pick

Netgear Arlo Pro 2

Flexible camera with good image quality.

Buy on Amazon

HD video.

Advanced motion detection.

Alexa, Google Assistant, IFTTT, and Stringify compatible.

Best Outdoor Security Camera Systems:

Our Ranking

Camera System Name

List Price


Arlo Pro 2 Indoor/Outdoor Wireless 1080p Security Camera System, 2 Camera Kit (VMS4230P)



Lorex 8MP 4K IP Bullet Security Camera LNB8921BW



Arlo Ultra Indoor/Outdoor Wire Free 4K HDR Security Camera System

Kits from $399.99


Amcrest Ultra HD 4K Dome Security Camera



Nest Cam Outdoor 1080P Wi-Fi Network Surveillance Camera



Ring Spotlight Cam Wire-Free



Swann SWPRO-1080MSB 1080P Bullet Camera



Nest Cam IQ Outdoor Security Camera

From $399.00


Zmodo 720p Indoor/Outdoor WiFi Camera



ADT Outdoor Security Camera

Offers packages


Smonet Security Camera



Vivint Outdoor Camera Pro

Offers packages


Reolink Argus 2 Outdoor Wireless Home Security Camera



Ring Floodlight Camera



Logitech Circle 2 Indoor/Outdoor Wired Home Security Camera

$179.99 - $499.99


Maximus Smart Security Light

From $223.00


TP-Link Kasa Cam Outdoor

Offers subscription plans


Is there a security camera that works without Wi-Fi?

Yes. Most security or CCTV cameras can work with remote live streaming, rather than Wi-Fi, and footage can be saved on SD cards or NVR.

Check out our list of top outdoor cameras.

Are wired or wireless security cameras better?

Wired security cameras are reliable and can support larger systems, but have complicated installation processes and are vulnerable to power outages. Wireless security cameras are easy to install but are vulnerable to interference, are mostly limited to 4 cameras, and depend on the wireless signal. Wire-free security cameras are the easiest to install and most flexible choice, although the batteries often need to be recharged and they also rely on a Wi-Fi signal.

Take a look at our list of top outdoor security cameras.

How do you install outdoor security cameras?

  • Choose the best security system option for your needs. An all-in-one system is the easiest way to get started.
  • Plan ahead to ensure you cover all angles, have good placements for your cameras, and buy enough cameras, cables, and storage.
  • Ensure your camera has a power source: some cameras must be plugged into a power outlet, others are battery powered and need to be close to routers, while other cameras that get their power from analog connections, Ethernet, or USB cables need space for wires.
  • Check your camera placement plan and ensure you have the right screws, baseplates, or mounting instruments to mount your cameras.
  • Ensure your DVR or NVR is placed appropriately to reach all cameras whether with wires or through a Wi-Fi signal.
  • Make sure you have the correct placement and that the area is safe before drilling holes to mount your cameras.

Where is the best place to put security cameras?

The best place to install your security cameras would be where burglars are more likely to enter. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the front door, back door, and first-floor windows are the most likely places for burglars to enter. Place your camera above the door or window frame, angling it slightly downward to cover the area around the entrance.

How can I hide my security cameras outside?

The Maximus Smart Security Light is designed to look like a light feature. You can purchase and install these or similar camouflaged cameras.

See our list of top outdoor security cameras.

Do security cameras record all the time?

You can set up your security system to record continuously and save the footage to an SD card, cloud storage, your computer, or the DVR/NVR. You can also set up your security system to only record when motion is detected.

Which is better: Ring or Arlo?

Both Ring and Arlo offer easy to install indoor and outdoor cameras that are 100% wireless. Ring offers full home automation, environmental sensors, and door and window sensors while Arlo offers 1000 hours of cloud storage on some of their monthly plans, pairs with Smart Things, and the cameras are mounted on magnetic brackets.

How do I choose a security camera?

  • Look at the best housing for your needs.
  • Consider which lens you should use.
  • Decide which resolution you need.
  • Determine if night vision is needed.

Consider our list of top outdoor security cameras.

Do you have to have Wi-Fi for wireless security cameras?

Yes. You can purchase a camera, such as the Reolink Go, that uses a 3G or 4G LTE network.

Are wireless security cameras good?

Wireless security cameras are flexible, easy to install, and are more portable, but they are also more expensive and at risk of being hacked or experiencing Wi-Fi interference.

How do outdoor security cameras work?

Wireless outdoor security cameras use radio frequency signals to transmit footage to a central receiver. Bluetooth and Wi-Fi enabled cameras generally transmit footage to a DVR or cloud storage.

Which is better: DVR or NVR?

NVR mostly has better image quality, easy installation, and audio support on each camera that has a microphone. NVR systems are also more expensive than DVR systems.