Best answer: If your house is already equipped with low-voltage doorbell wiring, the Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 is the best consumer-grade video doorbell in Ring’s product line. Otherwise, the Ring Video Doorbell (Gen 2) can use a rechargeable battery and provide a solid experience for customers who want a Ring doorbell.
What is a Ring Doorbell?
Ring’s line of Wi-Fi connected video doorbells are a great way to protect your home and give you peace of mind while waiting for a package or going on vacation. They detect motion before someone approaches your door, alert your smartphone and start recording video. On top of that, most Ring Doorbells are regularly discounted, so keep an eye out for the upcoming holidays — that’s usually when deals happen.
Recorded footage is stored in the cloud (subscription fee of course), so you don’t have to watch a live broadcast to catch would-be thieves. There’s also two-way audio, which means you can talk to the person on the other end of the doorbell from your phone. With so many options in Ring’s lineup, it can be overwhelming to decide which smart doorbell best suits your needs—and that’s where we come in.
Which one is right for my home?
Ring has a wide selection of video doorbells, each with a different price point and feature set. The Ring Video Doorbell Wired is just $60 for homes that already have wires for their existing doorbell. It’s a sleek design that’s small and unobtrusive, offering great 1080p video quality and most of Ring’s best motion detection features for a fraction of the price. If you don’t have a cord to use, the Ring Video Doorbell (2nd Gen) can be battery powered for an extra $40.
If you’re looking for more features, the Ring Video Doorbell 4 is an upgrade from the Ring Video Doorbell 3 in two ways: automatic quick reply and color preroll footage. Running out of battery for a few months is a daunting task, but the Ring Video Doorbell 4 performed admirably. Color preroll is the biggest new feature, as it provides a color snapshot of anything that happened four seconds before a motion event. In the past, many battery-powered video doorbells took at least a second to wake from low-power mode, meaning you wouldn’t get a recording for the first few seconds after motion was detected.
Plus, the Ring Video Doorbell 4 can act as an answering machine at your front door, providing automatic quick replies. Just use the app to set the time your doorbell should ring, and it will automatically reply. The people at your front door can then choose to leave you a message, bringing back the good old days of the answering machine – just without those unbelievably annoying hangups!
The Ring Video Doorbell 4 maintains the same major improvements as its predecessor, including 5GHz dual-band Wi-Fi and improved motion zone settings. A new Motion Zone setting lets you adjust notifications only for close objects within a few feet of the camera. It also features a more easily removable panel design introduced with the Ring Video Doorbell 3, allowing for a spare battery to be put in effortlessly.
These improved motion zones are very useful, especially if your camera is facing a busy street that would otherwise constantly set off motion alerts (I’m writing this from experience!). Since the doorbell supports 5GHz and 2.4GHz networks, it’s now easier to set up and connect to your Wi-Fi network, so you no longer need a 2.4GHz network dedicated to your video doorbell. You can also easily swap out the panels to a color that better suits your home!
Ring Video Doorbell – latest generation
- Amazon $99
- Best Buy $99
- Home Depot $99
No cable, no problem
The Ring Video Doorbell (Gen 2) is a replacement for the original Ring Video Doorbell. It uses the same form factor as the built-in rechargeable battery, but bumps up all the specs to match the best specs of 2020. This is a great budget option when you don’t have an existing doorbell cord to work with.
more money, more features
Ring Video Doorbell 4 (2021)
- Amazon $200
- Best Buy $200
- Home Depot $200
See what happened before the motion alert
The Video Doorbell 4 is the only camera in Ring’s lineup with a color Pre-Roll lens that lets you see events for four more seconds before motion alerts. It also acts as an answering machine at your front door, providing automatic quick replies.
if your house Do However, if the doorbell is wired correctly, you might want to check out the Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2. It’s probably more expensive than the Ring Video Doorbell 4, but you’ll get the beaucoup feature in exchange for extra cash. This includes 3D motion detection, significantly improved video quality, better aspect ratios (more of the front porch can be seen), and a sleeker design.
Keep in mind that even with your existing doorbell wiring, you may still need more power; the Video Doorbell Pro 2 requires a proper transformer, while a regular doorbell chime can run down to 8 volts. Ring’s box includes a Pro power kit, which you’ll need to install during setup, but you can also run the Doorbell Pro directly from the plug-in adapter Ring sells separately at its store.
Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 (2021)
- Dell $227
- $250 on Amazon
- $250 at Best Buy
The best consumer-facing camera in the Ring lineup.
The Video Doorbell Pro 2 packs ultra-sharp 1536p video, several interchangeable panels, 3D motion detection, night vision, two-way audio, and customizable motion alert zones into a small, beautiful design. It can even answer and talk to guests on its own using a custom Amazon Alexa built for doorbells. You’ll need low voltage wiring to power it, but it’s worth the money.
The Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 is the most advanced video doorbell Ring has ever released. Higher-resolution 1536p HDR video is displayed in an aspect ratio that Ring calls “head-to-toe video.” That puts it alongside the Arlo as the most useful aspect ratio of any video doorbell.
But these are just fairly basic upgrades, if you believe it. Ring sets the Video Doorbell Pro 2 apart by including a new set of motion sensors, including a 3D motion detection system that estimates motion from an aerial perspective using radar and some fascinating software tricks.
All in all, when the Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 detects motion, it uses Mapbox and OpenStreetMap to automatically generate a map of your property and draw a nice little motion line on that map. It’s a clever feature that Ring hopes customers will find real security value in, as it helps the camera detect motion beyond the camera’s visible range.
The built-in Alexa Greetings feature uses Alexa’s familiar voice to answer your door, and even lets visitors leave messages like an old-fashioned answering machine. If you want more control, you can tap Quick Reply directly from the doorbell live view within the app, which will respond to any inquiries your visitors may have.
If you’re feeling luxurious, there’s also the Ring Video Doorbell Elite, which retails for a surprisingly high price. It has a wider, flatter design, is mostly flush with your home, and uses Power over Ethernet and connectivity. It communicates with your phone faster and more consistently than Ring’s other cameras. However, unless you already have a powered Ethernet cable and a supported PoE switch, you’re unlikely to be wiring it yourself.
Its image quality is excellent, but since it’s about 50% more expensive than the Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 (not to mention the extra cost of hiring a professional to do the wiring), you probably won’t need Unless you have special home security needs, pay for the elite.
Ring Video Doorbell Elite HD
- Amazon $350
- $350 at Best Buy
Security camera for advanced users
if you real Taking security seriously – or if you’re dealing with new construction – the Doorbell Elite is the best. It’s a high-end solution that gives you a more flush look and requires professional installation. It also uses Power over Ethernet for the best, most consistent experience.
Finally, the Ring Peephole Cam is a great, affordable option for condos and homes with peepholes at the door. The camera can still detect motion, but the peephole camera also has a built-in shock sensor that can detect a knock on the door, notifying you the same way. You still have a traditional peephole and a privacy shade so the person on the other side can’t see you.
Affordable and easy to install
Ring Peephole Cam with Ring Clock
- $150 on Amazon
- $130 at Lowes
Video doorbell built into the peephole.
A peephole camera is a two-part battery powered camera that replaces any compatible peephole. It features the same motion alerts and customizable zones as Ring’s other cameras, plus a unique shock sensor that lets you know when someone’s knocking on your door.
accessories for your camera
No matter which camera you buy, you can make it even better by adding a few accessories. Corner kits and wedge kits may be essential accessories for some homes, allowing you to adjust the resting angle of the Video Doorbell 4 camera.
Ring Video Doorbell Corner Kit
$20 on Amazon
Ring sells a corner kit for each of its video doorbells, helping them fit better in some homes.
Ring Chime plugs into any wall outlet and works exactly like your old doorbell chime, only for better portability because it connects wirelessly to your video doorbell.
If you live in a multi-story home and don’t always hear your video doorbell from upstairs, you might also want to consider the Chime Pro. It can be used both as a room ringtone and as a Wi-Fi extender for Ring products. Unfortunately, this cannot be used as a range extender for your other gadgets, only Ring products.
Bell (Second Generation)
$29 at Dell $30 at Amazon $30 at Best Buy
Make sure you never miss a doorbell notification again with Ring Chime.
Ring Chime Pro (2nd Gen)
Not only does the Ring Chime Pro look and sound great, it also helps extend the Wi-Fi range of Ring products.
Another thing: Ring’s cameras are all equipped with night vision goggles, but that doesn’t mean you still can’t improve their visibility. Ring’s Smart Lighting Spotlight Kit lets you place two battery-powered lights anywhere in your yard that sync with your video doorbell to instantly light up your entire field of view when motion is detected.
$100 at Amazon $100 at Home Depot
This two-piece spotlight kit syncs with Ring products to light up when motion is detected and automatically record video from your video doorbell.