Best security camera 2021: monitor your home and stay safe with smart wireless cameras

The best security cameras detect motion and sound, capture footage instantly to the cloud for viewing remotely, and help keep your property safe wherever you are

Included in this guide:

Best security cameras 2021, ring camera mounted on exterior wall, with rain droplets on the case

Add one of the best security cameras to your home setup and right away you and your family will feel safer. This upgrade in protection doesn't have to cost much either, and you can start with one device and build up from there – you no longer need to have Bond villain level wealth to be able to keep an eye on your property.

When it comes to the best smart security camera setup, it can be really simple too – especially if you go for a wireless option, which is unlikely to require any drilling and can be configured in just minutes. What's more, with cloud storage now the norm on most units, you don't need round-the-clock access to a bank of screens.

Online access to your cameras means live or recorded footage can be viewed whenever and wherever on a phone or a laptop. To save you the hassle of checking every five minutes, these cameras can ping when when motion is detected and something is happening (and when you need to change the battery).

Wired options are also available: it means initial installation that's a little more difficult to begin with, but on the plus side you do get a rock-solid internet connection for your camera. Most wired cams will give you the option of Ethernet connectivity (perhaps with a single cable for power and internet).

The cameras in this list are also able to fit into bigger smart home systems. You get get video up on the best smart speakers with screens, and some setups include the best video doorbells as well. What's more, many cameras can talk to the best smart bulbs and best smart plugs to flash your home lights when motion is detected!

We've selected options across a multitude of price points for this guide, but if you're after the most affordable options possible, you can also visit our guide to the best cheap security cameras for some more inspiration.

And don't forget to keep your eyes firmly fixed on the best Black Friday deals. If you're in the market for a security camera, this is definitely the time to buy one with prices slashed across many of the big name brands making it more affordable than ever to keep your home protected. Our live prices below will be kept updated, meaning you can grab those bargains the minute they drop.

What is the best security camera?

The best smart security camera for most people is the Arlo Essential Spotlight Camera, which offers all the most advanced options of Arlo's excellent camera system, but in an affordable single-camera package. You get night vision, motion and sound warnings, two-way talk, the ability to ignore pets, and other really useful feature. And if you decide you want to get serious about security, you can then add a high-end Arlo setup complete with base station, and the Essential will work with it.

Best security cameras 2021: the list

Arlo Essential Spotlight camera on white backgroundT3 Awards 2021 winner badge

(Image credit: Arlo)

1. Arlo Essential Spotlight Camera

A less expensive Arlo option, but still with all the smarts

Specifications
Max resolution: 1080p
Wired/wireless: Wireless
Viewing angle: 130 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Outdoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud
Subscription: from £2.99 a month
Reasons to buy
+The full range of Arlo smarts+No need for base station+Great and flexible app

Whereas the Arlo 3 requires a base station and is built around expensive multi-camera setups, this cheaper model is made to be standalone, connecting straight to your Wi-Fi network. But it still has all access to the full range of Arlo smarts, including person, package and animal detection, two-way communication, an alarm, colour night vision, and a built-in spotlight. The balance of features and price means that this won the Best Smart Security award at the T3 Awards 2021.

The downside compared to the Arlo 3 is that it's lower resolution and doesn't offer the same great HDR recording to balance out views that have both light and dark. The Full HD resolution is easily good enough, but it's noticeable that the Arlo 3 offers more detail.

Important things like battery life are still strong too, and you still use it as part of an Arlo Pro system, so you could start with just this camera and then jump in with both feet later. The price is notably higher than the Ring above, but it also offers even more flexibility if you pay for its subscription. You see exactly what we thought of it in our Arlo Essential Spotlight Camera review, and we've got an Arlo Essential vs Arlo Pro 4 head-to-head, to show off how it compares to the upcoming Pro model.

Arlo Pro 3, three cameras and base station, on white backgroundT3 Award


(Image credit: Arlo)

2. Arlo Pro 3

The best smart security camera overall: perfect picture, and serious smarts in a brilliantly engineered package

Specifications
Max resolution: QHD
Wired/wireless: Wireless
Viewing angle: 160 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Outdoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud/local
Subscription: From £2.99 a month
Reasons to buy
+QHD HDR picture+Colour night vision+160-degree view+Spotlight and siren
Reasons to avoid
-Hub placement can be an problem-Expensive

Though the Arlo Ultra (see below) technically has all the same smarts and more detailed 4K resolution, the Arlo Pro 3 still won our T3 Awards 2020 award for Best Smart Security, because its image quality is still excellent, and it's slightly better value – though its price is still its achilles' heel. Still, what you get for the money is all the usual Arlo traits in terms of the solid build quality, superb camera footage, tons of clever features and a polished app.

Building on what the Arlo Pro 2 offers, the Arlo Pro 3 offers QHD HDR video, full weatherproofing (so you can stick it outside), an impressive 160-degree viewing angle, and even colour night vision – so your low light shots will be in colour rather than grainy black and white.

One neat feature is the integrated spotlight, which can be turned on manually, or activated automatically when motion is detected. There's an integrated smart siren too: if would-be burglars need a little extra encouragement to get off your property, then the spotlight and siren should be able to provide it.

The motion detection is top notch, and the app is a pleasure to use as well (a lot better than the apps you get with some budget security cameras), though if you want to get into its cleverest customisations, there is a bit of a learning curve. For all the more basic smarts, it's great, though. If you don't already have an Arlo camera or two in place, you're going to need to install a hub that's wired to your router, so bear that in mind – the cameras all connect to the hub (not to your Wi-Fi), and this can mean there are range issues.

With the help of the app guiding you through the process, setup is really easy, and you'll soon be viewing your back garden or conservatory in high-definition quality. Two-way audio is included so you can chat to delivery people or maybe just the birds in your garden – it's up to you.

As always with Arlo, the full cloud video recording history (as well as the ability to distinguish whether motion is humna, animal or vehicle) will cost you extra, but you do get a 3-month trial so you can see if you like it first.

Its biggest issue is that smart cameras are coming down in price a lot, and the Arlo system remains very premium. If you're not going to get into its more advanced features, it may be overkill – read our full Arlo Pro 3 review to see if it's what you need. If you're wondering about the Arlo ecosystem as compared to the Ring ecosystem of our number two entry below, here's our Arlo vs Ring guide.

Ring Stick Up Cam on white backgroundT3 Award


3. Ring Stick Up Cam

An affordable security camera with plenty of polish and reliability

Specifications
Max resolution: 1080p
Wired/wireless: Wireless
Viewing angle: 115 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Outdoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud
Subscription: from £2.50 a month
Reasons to buy
+Plenty of features and versatility+Goes just about anywhere+App has plenty of features and options

Not only does Ring (now owned by Amazon) make video doorbells, it makes security cameras too: here we're picked the wireless, battery powered model, but there is a wired version as well if you don't want to worry about ever having to recharge the batteries.

Pretty much all the features you could ask for are included here, such as night vision, and motion detection alerts, and two-way audio, and 1080p HD video. The 115-degree field of view isn't the best in the business but definitely good enough.

This being Ring, the app is polished and professional too, and if you want to see what your camera is filming then you can get the footage up on an Echo Show or a Fire TV device with a simple Alexa voice command.

While the Ring Stick Up Cam isn't the cheapest of our best security cameras, it definitely earns its higher price. If you want to keep recordings in the cloud rather than just get live alerts, it'll cost you £2.50 a month (you get a free trial of the service with the camera). You can read our full Ring Stick-Up Cam review for more details on the camera overall. We've also a Ring vs Blink guide, if you want to compare of the most popular mid-price security systems.

EufyCam 2C two cameras and base station on white backgroundT3 Award

(Image credit: Eufy/Anker)

4. EufyCam 2C

A subscription-free contender to the throne of pricier cams

Specifications
Max resolution: 1080p
Wired/wireless: Wireless
Viewing angle: 135 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Outdoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud, local
Subscription: Not required
Reasons to buy
+No subscription+1080p sensor+Person detection
Reasons to avoid
-Occasionally missed motion-No anti-theft protection-Only comes with an outdoor mount

Eufy is a sub-brand of Anker, so it should be no surprise that the EufyCam 2C does all those oh-so Anker things. It offers higher specs for less money, it does a decent job of wielding that tech, and it comes in with a slightly different attitude than other brands, specifically towards subscriptions: there isn't one. You won't have to pay up to access your footage, either live-streamed through the cloud or stored on the 16GB eMMC storage on the Homebase unit at the centre of the setup. 

This is a wireless security camera system with a sharp 1080p sensor, a reasonably wide 135-degree diagonal view, solid infra-red night vision (with a strong spotlight if you need a brighter view), and a claimed six-month battery life. We'd wager your period-between-ladder-scaling is likely to be a little shorter if the built-in person detection is triggered often, though much of the processing is done on the base unit which should help.

IP67 waterproofing caps the package off - even if you don't have nice dry eaves to place one of these cams in, it'll withstand the elements - and because they're wireless, you might even be able to set up a view of your home, rather than just having cams pointing towards it. 

If you're after even more when it comes to resolution and don't mind paying a higher price for it, check out the EufyCam 2C Pro.

Blink Outdoor camera on white backgroundT3 Award

(Image credit: Amazon)

Blink and (excuse the pun) you won't miss it

Specifications
Max resolution: 1080p
Wired/wireless: Wireless
Viewing angle: 110 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Outdoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud, local
Subscription: From £2.50 per month
Reasons to buy
+Gives plenty of value for money+Relatively cheap subscription+Build up your system over time
Reasons to avoid
-Strong video from other options

You don't get the highest quality video and audio with the Blink Outdoor, or the most attractive-looking hardware, or the most intuitive apps... so what's it doing here on our list of the best security cameras of 2021?

Well, this very simple to set up, and you can start off with one or two cameras and then add more as you need. With a single camera system starting at around £100 you can add an extra layer of home security without paying too much.

These cameras have plenty of features too, including night vision and motion detection alerts. Importantly, the newly upgraded Blink Outdoor devices are both waterproof and wireless, with an outstanding two-year battery life on a single set of AA batteries. You can stick them just about anywhere, and you won't need to maintain them often.

As of this latest iteration of Blink's hardware, you can store your footage locally, on a USB drive connected to the network-attached hub unit. Sadly the free storage options of the previous generation seem to have been killed off. Instead, you'll need to pay parent company Amazon (noticing a trend?) a reasonable £2.50 per month fee for two hours' rolling storage, or £8 per month if you go beyond a single cam.

Ezviz C3N on white backgroundT3 Award

(Image credit: Ezviz)

6. Ezviz C3N

A wired cam that offers some serious value

Specifications
Max resolution: 1080p
Wired/wireless: Wired
Viewing angle: 120 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Outdoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud, local
Subscription: From £2.99 per month
Reasons to buy
+Exceptionally cheap+Strong picture day or night+Little to no maintenance

As long as you're cool with drilling the holes required to get this and its power line hooked up outside your house, you're in for some solid security with the Ezviz C3N. It's a budget Full HD waterproof camera that puts up a solid fight against cameras costing much more. 

It's great for connectivity, with Wi-fi and Ethernet options, and its base functionality is brilliant: the camera sensor itself performs well in all kinds of light, there's a visible-spectrum spotlight built in, and the picture is very crisp. There's even person detection, something you'll rarely see at this kind of price. 

Do be careful not to get too excited by the claims of colour night vision, because this is more spotlight night vision than Arlo's more accomplished system, though it's still likely to be enough to spook away any lurkers outside your house.

Reolink RLC-510A on white backgroundT3 Award

(Image credit: Reolink)

A Power-over-Ethernet camera perfect for budget installations

Specifications
Max resolution: 5MP
Wired/wireless: Wired
Viewing angle: Not stated
Indoor/outdoor: Outdoor
Two-way audio: No
Storage: Local, FTP/NVR
Subscription: N/A
Reasons to buy
+One wire+Highly reliable+Great resolution

A wired camera, but a simple one to hook up if you already have the relevant equipment available, Reolink's RLC-510A draws its juice from Power over Ethernet, meaning it is networked and powered by a single cable. If you're going down the traditional route and running a central network video recorder for your cameras, that could be very convenient; if you're not, it's going to mean a bit of a heavier setup procedure, because there's no wireless on board here.

There's no argument that this isn't a strong camera, however. Being an IP camera, its feed isn't restricted entirely to your phone, so you can set up a live feed in a web browser on your computer if that suits. Use the Reolink App (or the company's NVR) and it can not only detect people and vehicles but filter footage that features the entity you're looking for, potentially saving you hours scanning through recordings. There's also an SD card for local storage, just in case.

The RLC-510A is cheap, too, particularly considering that it's IP66 rated for weatherproofing, manages a very generous 2560x1920 resolution with strong night visions, and features a tough as nails metal casing rather than the plastic found commonly elsewhere. Definitely not a bad choice if you're thinking of treading the IP camera route. 

Neos SmartCam on white backgroundT3 Award

(Image credit: Neos)

8. Neos SmartCam

The best cheap smart security camera available today

Specifications
Max resolution: 1080p
Wired/wireless: Wired
Viewing angle: 110 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Indoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud or microSD
Subscription: N/A (14 days' free storage)
Reasons to buy
+Incredibly low price point+Good image quality+Free cloud storage
Reasons to avoid
-Lacks more advanced features

The Neos SmartCam offers 90% of what you need from a security camera to protect your home indoors, but at less than a quarter of the price of similar cameras. This is why we have placed this security camera so high in our list. If you’re on the fence about getting a costlier smart camera, at least trying this as an entry-level option is a no-brainer – for £25, why wouldn't you get one?

Here are the details: it captures 1080p HD footage, in the day or in the dark thanks to night vision, and all at a quality level that matches a lot of competitors. The field of view limit is 110 degrees, less than the best competitors out there, but that actually means sharper footage (with each pixel covering less of the view).

In terms of smarts, you have motion and noise detection, and the app will alert you when either happens (you can adjust the sensitivity as needed). It also arms and disarms automatically based on your location, so you don’t get alerts all the time when you’re home.

You can view the camera's feed live from the app at any time, and it supports multiple cameras, so wiring up the whole home for under £100 is totally possible. Footage can be saved to an optional microSD card in each camera, but is also stored for 14 days in the cloud for free, which is a great touch.

The camera is easy to place, and can be wall mounted. There's no option for battery power, and it's not designed to be out in the elements either. Overall, while the Neos SmartCam isn't as technically advanced as other cameras, for the price it's an amazingly good deal – you can read more about it in our full Neos SmartCam review.

Arlo Ultra camera and base stationT3 Award


9. Arlo Ultra 4K UHD wire-free Security Camera System

Welcome to the high end: perfect picture, and serious smarts in a brilliantly engineered package.

Specifications
Max resolution: 4K
Wired/wireless: Wireless
Viewing angle: 180 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Outdoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud or microSD
Subscription: from £1.99 a month
Reasons to buy
+4K HDR picture+Enhanced night vision+180-degree view+Noise cancelling tech
Reasons to avoid
-Overkill for most people-Can get the same key features for less

Side by side with its competitors you'd be hard pressed to outwardly tell the difference, but fire up the Arlo app and it's clear that this is the single most advanced smart security camera package available.

It starts with connectivity. Setup of the Arlo hub and its paired camera was super fast, and where the others might have you wait a while before reaching a live view, the Arlo gives up the goods quickly (and when you're silencing a siren, or chatting to a caller, that immediacy is priceless).

While it hits the resolution, we suspect there's a little interpolation on its 4K footage given that the Arlo Ultra's recordings can tend to be a little smeary when zoomed right in, but this is still far and away the sharpest security camera we've seen in action, wireless or otherwise.

You can configure it to capture anything from a sensible field of view right up to a full 180-degree fish-eye, and that HDR picture comes with tremendous colour depth as well. Testing at twilight on a clear evening, the Arlo managed twenty minutes longer than its competitors at low light before switching to its night vision mode, still pulling in a clear and colourful image.

At night, though it lacks the full IR LED array of some competitors, the Arlo captures enough light to see a good distance, and there's an adjustable spotlight available if you're placing it outdoors – which neatly brings us to the fantastic motion detection. Not only is the Arlo quick to pick out moving items, it's brainy enough to make a decent stab at working out exactly what it's looking at.

Your push notification might say 'motion', it might say 'person', or it could even say 'animal'; we certainly didn't notice it struggling to determine the difference between a human and a cat. There's even a package detection algorithm, where a doorstep-pointed Arlo can spot when your latest online purchase has landed and alert you as much. That's just cool.

If you have the Arlo plugged in via its magnetic cable, you can configure detection hot zones, outside of which it'll ignore motion – handy if you live near a busy road, for example, but the power requirement somewhat nullifies its otherwise wireless nature. The mount is super-strong, meaning you can point an Arlo Ultra wherever you need it and remove it quickly for charging.

The only real issue we have is with the cost. The package isn't at all cheap in the first place, but if you want to store 4K recordings in the cloud you'll need a higher-tier additional subscription. Nonetheless, it's hard to argue that the Arlo Ultra doesn't earn its price tag – it's just that it's very much a niche product because of that price tag, when the Arlo Pro 3 has the same smarts for less.

Swann 1080p Smart Security Cameras on white backgroundT3 Award

10. Swann 1080p Smart Security Camera

Swann manages a sharp picture and supremely flexible recording at an impressively low price

Specifications
Max resolution: 1080p
Wired/wireless: Wireless
Viewing angle: 120 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Outdoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud or microSD
Subscription: from £7.99 a month
Reasons to buy
+Very affordable+Good picture quality+Wireless cameras

Outwardly there's no difference between the 1080p model of the Swann Smart Security Camera and its 720p predecessor: both use the same compact casing, both use the same mount – and that latter feature is a shame.

In theory the rubberised magnetic dish on the back, coupled with a rough-textured metal ball mounted on the wall, would be an excellent and infinitely adjustable mount, but in practice it's slippery and the magnetic connection isn't quite strong enough to hold the weight of the camera and its internal battery in a fixed position.

There's no dedicated hub involved here – each camera connects directly to your router via Wi-Fi, and streams to your phone (or to the outside world) from there. That's a neat solution, or at least one that saves a power socket and an Ethernet port, but we can't help but feel it's also the reason for the Swann's slightly sluggish response times.

That said, we have absolutely no other qualms about the Swann's motion detection credentials – it's hits the spot in terms of sensitivity, avoiding false positives in our tests and throwing in heat detection as an added bonus. It's quick to send an alert and convenient in terms of storage given that it supports both cloud uploading and an on-board microSD card for each camera.

Picture quality is also superb, with the sensor managing impressive clarity even in difficult lighting conditions, and missing little at night. Sure, Swann's app is a little rough around the edges, but it's easy enough to navigate, and its motion detection timeline works rather well. 

If you're looking to gradually expand your security net as wide as possible, this is possibly the best choice going – there's no reliance on a hub, so theoretically no limit on the number of cameras you can place around your home, and IP65 certification means each unit can take a battering from the elements. It's cheap, too, at least in the context of wireless cameras with this level of image quality.

Ring Indoor Cam on white backgroundT3 Award

(Image credit: Ring)

11. Ring Indoor Cam

An inexpensive camera for inside the home

Specifications
Max resolution: 1080p
Wired/wireless: Wired
Viewing angle: 140 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Indoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud
Subscription: from £2.50 a month
Reasons to buy
+Affordable price point+Simple setup and operation
Reasons to avoid
-No local storage

Ring is best known for its battery-powered outdoor cameras, but the newest Ring device on our best security cameras list is just for indoors: the Ring Indoor Cam brings with it 1080p HD video and a 140-degree field of view. You just plug it in and you're up and running.

Everything is operated through the usual Ring app, which we're fans of, and if you've already got several Ring cameras dotted around your property then it makes sense to use this one for any extra rooms you want to cover. At just £50 direct from Amazon, it's also one of the most affordable security cameras out there.

Alexa support is included, as you would expect from an Amazon-owned brand, and the camera competently handles all the usual functions when it comes to motion detection and two-way audio. Night vision is included too, for when the lights go out.

Kasa Spot security camera with box on white backgroundT3 Award


(Image credit: TP-Link)

A smart security camera that does just the basics, but does them very well

Specifications
Max resolution: 1080p
Wired/wireless: Wired
Viewing angle: 130 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Indoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud
Subscription: Yet to launch in the UK
Reasons to buy
+Can be used without a subscription+Clear and reliable video footage+Base can rotate the camera around 360 degrees

TP-Link is known for its solid, no-nonsense, no-frills home security kit, and the manufacturer is always worth a look if you want some reliable hardware at a reasonable price. That's certainly true of the Kasa Spot KC100, a home security camera designed for the indoors.

You don't have to faff around connecting a hub to your router – everything just works out of the box, and through the polished and intuitive app you can check in on a live feed and review recordings made when motion was detected. You can keep these recordings for two days, for free.

We like all the features the Kasa Spot offers that make it such excellent value and one of the best security cameras on the market: two-way audio, night vision, 1080p HD recording, custom activity zones and more. Here our full Kasa Spot KC100 review.

Swann Floodlight Security Camera on white backgroundT3 Award


(Image credit: Swann)

13. Swann Floodlight Security Camera

If this doesn't put thieves off, nothing will

Specifications
Max resolution: 1080p
Wired/wireless: Wired
Viewing angle: 125 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Outdoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud or microSD
Subscription: from £7.99 a month
Reasons to buy
+Plenty of spotlight power+Doesn't really need a subscription+Heat sensor plus a camera
Reasons to avoid
-Large size

The Floodlight Security Camera from Swann perches on a corner of your home and does just about everything: from detecting the movement of intruders to scaring them away with a light and a siren. It's almost like an all-in-one security system, though it is course limited in terms of how much of your property its single camera (with a 125-degree field of view) can cover.

In terms of its feature list, it's an impressive package – there's a heat sensor as well as a camera, which cuts down the number of false positives you're going to get, plus two-way audio and night vision. The video goes up to 1080p in terms of resolution and the two lamps max out at 2,500 lumens of brightness, which is rather bright.

That spotlight puts it into direct competition with something like the Ring Spotlight Cam Battery, though there's no battery here – you need to wire this up to a power socket inside (or outside) your home somehow. The connectivity is wireless, so the Swann Floodlight Security Camera should have no problem hooking up to your Wi-Fi and pinging your phone every time it spots something suspicious.

You can record video archives for free to the built-in memory card slot for eight days, or to the cloud for two days – anything above that and you'll need to pay Swann a subscription. The Alexa and Google Assistant integration is worth mentioning too, letting you quickly get footage up on a Chromecast, Echo or Fire TV device inside the home.

The Swann Floodlight Security Camera is more expensive than a lot of the competition, but it can easily be used without an ongoing subscription, and with its size and feature set it shows would-be intruders that you mean business. It's a security camera to consider if you want to go all-in on the lights, the noise and the audio in order to put burglars off.

Nest Cam IQ Outdoor on white backgroundT3 Award


14. Nest Cam IQ Outdoor

A fantastic smart security camera for outdoor use

Specifications
Max resolution: 1080p
Wired/wireless: Wired
Viewing angle: 130 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Outdoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud
Subscription: from £4 a month
Reasons to buy
+Fantastic image quality+Rock solid app+Facial recognition, motion tracking

The Nest Cam IQ is one of the most intelligent Wi-Fi cameras on the market, bringing facial recognition, a 4K image sensor, and person tracking to the party. See below for the indoor version, but this exterior version comes with IP65 weatherproofing: it'll stay recording whatever the British weather throws at it, and can operate in temperatures from -40°C to 45°C.

Picture quality is excellent both during the day and night, and the motion tracking (which zooms in and follows motion) and facial recognition (which only alerts you to unknown faces) are incredibly useful features which actually work.

It's a top-notch package but it's expensive, and to get the most out of it (like cloud storage archives or motion zones) you really need to sign up for a subscription too. You can just about get by with the live motion alerts and livestreaming (no subscription required) if you're on a budget.

The previous, cheaper version of the outdoor Nest cam is still on sale too if you want to save some money – it does have a cable attached though, rather than working wirelessly, which means it's a bit easier to sabotage for potential intruders. Definitely one of the best security cameras in 2021.

Logi Circle 2 Wired on white backgroundT3 Award


15. Logi Circle 2 Wired

A great home security camera for indoor use

Specifications
Max resolution: 1080p
Wired/wireless: Wired
Viewing angle: 180 degrees
Indoor/outdoor: Outdoor
Two-way audio: Yes
Storage: Cloud
Subscription: from £2.99 a month
Reasons to buy
+Versatile set of features+Really fun to use+Responsive to commands

The Logi Circle 2 is among the most fun of our best security cameras 2021 list: it's a bit like the home monitoring equivalent of a Fitbit. For example, it preps "day brief" videos that show a sped-up version of the day's action of the day (so you don't have to sift through reams of footage of the slightest motion).

That makes it more suitable for keeping an eye on the dog while at work, rather than scanning for burglars.

There’s two-way talking, fast responses to remote commands, speedy zooming, and an adjustable field of view. The app is nice and slick, complimenting the camera's own neat design, and you can control the Circle via Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit or one of Logitech's Pop smart home buttons. 

There are some negatives: you only get 24 hours of cloud storage for free for instance. For longer-term access, you have to pay: £2.99 a month snags you 14-day Cloud access, or £7.99 a month for 31 days. You need to subscribe to the top tier to set you custom motion zones and detect people in front of the camera.

Buy a rechargeable battery base as well and you can put the weatherproof camera anywhere in Wi-Fi range (it lasts up to three months between charges). There's also a fully wireless incarnation, but this is a different shape to the wired version and has a different range of accessories.

It might lack some security features, but as a smart home camera for watching pets or your gran, the wired version of Circle 2 is hard to beat as one of the best security cameras of 2021.

Best security camera 2021: What to look for

Remember you don't have to go all-in with the best security cameras right away – whether you're going wired or wireless for your smart security system, you can build it up piece by piece, with every new device connecting to a central server (and an app running on your smartphone).

You might even want to experiment with a few different makes and models of security camera before configuring a whole network of them. Start with a single camera at first perhaps, covering key areas that matter most to you. When the time is right and funds allow, you can do some expanding.

These cameras are about more than just home security, too – one mounted by your front door could alert you to deliveries or visitors, even when you're away from home. In some cases you can even chat with the person who has turned up at your door, or scare off intruders, with the help of two-way audio.

As you go through our list, you'll find a variety of options in terms of price and features, so everyone should be able to find something that suits. Home security is of course hugely important, so don't be tempted to take any shortcuts when it comes to choosing the right security camera for you.

Our picks for the best security cameras of 2021 cover everything: from infrared night filming, to automatic motion sensing that instantly pings an alert to your phone. The more advanced cameras can recognise faces as well, and can even tell the difference between a stranger and your kids.

For the most comprehensive coverage of your property, you want something that includes night vision and can record at a decent quality – and almost all cameras now come with at least HD (1080p) resolution. Some, like our current top security camera recommendation the Arlo Ultra, go up from that to deliver 4K resolution.

We've also tried to limit this list to cameras that can serve up alerts that are reliable and actually useful – if your camera is pinging your phone every time a leaf blows past, you're soon going to get tired of having to check it.

If you want to be able to communicate with whatever's on the other side of the camera (whether it's your pets or your parents), make sure you get a model with two-way audio. You'll also need something with an alarm if you want to scare off intruders and record them as well, though this is a less common feature.

With all those factors and considerations in mind, here are our choices for the best security camera in 2021 – you should find something here to match your needs, no matter what budget restraints you're working to.

How to choose the best security camera for you

Remember you don't have to go all-in with the best security cameras right away – whether you're going wired or wireless for your smart security system, you can build it up piece by piece, with every new device connecting to a central server (and an app running on your smartphone).

You might even want to experiment with a few different makes and models of security camera before configuring a whole network of them. Start with a single camera at first perhaps, covering key areas that matter most to you. When the time is right and funds allow, you can do some expanding.

These cameras are about more than just home security, too – one mounted by your front door could alert you to deliveries or visitors, even when you're away from home. In some cases you can even chat with the person who has turned up at your door, or scare off intruders, with the help of two-way audio.

As you go through our list, you'll find a variety of options in terms of price and features, so everyone should be able to find something that suits. Home security is of course hugely important, so don't be tempted to take any shortcuts when it comes to choosing the right security camera for you.

How to choose the best security camera for you

Remember you don't have to go all-in with the best security cameras right away – whether you're going wired or wireless for your smart security system, you can build it up piece by piece, with every new device connecting to a central server (and an app running on your smartphone).

You might even want to experiment with a few different makes and models of security camera before configuring a whole network of them. Start with a single camera at first perhaps, covering key areas that matter most to you. When the time is right and funds allow, you can do some expanding.

These cameras are about more than just home security, too – one mounted by your front door could alert you to deliveries or visitors, even when you're away from home. In some cases you can even chat with the person who has turned up at your door, or scare off intruders, with the help of two-way audio.

As you go through our list, you'll find a variety of options in terms of price and features, so everyone should be able to find something that suits. Home security is of course hugely important, so don't be tempted to take any shortcuts when it comes to choosing the right security camera for you.

David Nield
David Nield

Dave has over 20 years' experience in the tech journalism industry, covering hardware and software across mobile, computing, smart home, home entertainment, wearables, gaming and the web – you can find his writing online, in print, and even in the occasional scientific paper, across major tech titles like T3, TechRadar, Gizmodo and Wired. Outside of work, he enjoys long walks in the countryside, skiing down mountains, watching football matches (as long as his team is winning) and keeping up with the latest movies.