The benefits of owning one of the best video doorbells on the market are numerous and, being honest, security isn't top of the list.
Yes, sure, having a video doorbell does improve the security of your home, with anyone approaching the front of your house recorded both day and night, but after using video doorbells for years its actually the everyday practical benefits that justify a purchase most.
Such as the ability to take calls from delivery drivers even when you're out and and about, give them verbal instructions on where to leave your package, and then come home not to a "sorry we missed you" note and painful drive to the delivery depot, but your package safely tucked behind a plant pot.
It's the ability, equally, to see who is ringing your doorbell before you open the door and not be doorstepped by pushy cold callers when you're just got in from work.
And it's the ability to check in on your property and cars live when abroad, too.
Most video doorbells will connect to other smart devices in your home as well, such as the best smart bulbs or best smart speakers, which adds an extra dimension to them as smart home gadgets. For example, you might want the lights to turn on when someone rings the doorbell, or to use your speakers to chat to whoever is there.
This also makes them widely accessible for everyone – using lighting to indicate when someone is at the door is great for those with hearing difficulties, and the fact you can speak to whoever is at the door via video, makes it easier for those with mobility issues who may not be able to get to the door.
Along with purchasing the best video doorbell, if you’re considering your entire security system at home then you may also want to look at the best security cameras to see if they could work well in conjunction with the doorbell, to provide that extra peace of mind when people approach your property.
Our list includes a variety of makes and models with different features, benefits and price points. However, if you’re on a very tight budget, you can head over to our dedicated guide on the best cheap Ring Video Doorbell deals.
What is the best video doorbell?
For most people, the best video doorbell of the moment is the All-new Ring Video Doorbell (2nd gen). The name is a little on the confusing side, but the product is straightforward: it offers sharp and clear image quality, and the option of either running it battery powered or wired. It comes with great customisability for its options (including the ability to set motion detection in specific zones, and the black out parts of the image to protect neighbours' privacy), and is a really affordable price. You can use it just as a smart doorbell and motion detector without a subscription – to record footage requires a Ring plan additional payment.
The best video doorbell cameras 2022: the list
With the second generation of its bog-standard Video Doorbell, Ring really has let the best technology trickle down. The sensor gets a kick up from the 720p of its predecessor to a full 1080p number, there's newly-upgraded motion sensing and night vision, and a host of other tweaks that make this the best video doorbell, pound-for-pound, that you can buy today.
It's almost comical how good this is when the Ring Video Doorbell 3 Plus is twice its price, given that the latter includes only small quality of life upgrades over this. Sure, there are downsides to the Ring Video Doorbell: the fact that you'll have to unscrew the thing from its wall mount to charge it being prime amongst them, but you only need to do this every couple of months, and it's worth sacrificing a little convenience for such a quality product at such a low price.
Bear in mind that the price you pay for any Ring product, like many others, is not limited to the initial hardware outlay. If you want to store your footage in the cloud, there's a fee. If you want a proper chime (and don't have an existing doorbell to wire it in to) you'll need to buy one – though the All-new Ring Chime is only around £30/$30. Even given all this, the All-new Ring Video Doorbell (2nd gen) is a superb option, even if it is difficult to recite its name ten times fast.
If you want to know about the differences between this and the pricier model, here's our Ring Video Doorbell 4 vs Ring Video Doorbell (2nd gen) (opens in new tab) comparison guide.
The Nest Doorbell (Battery) is a rebranded and redesigned Nest Hello, and there's also a wired version if you prefer. We like the battery one, though, as it's much quicker and easier to install. It's cute and much more attractive than many rivals, and we like the circular LED that illuminates the buzzer as somebody approaches.
The Nest enables you to answer the door from far away or set pre-defined responses, and if you subscribe to the video plan you get recognition of specific people as well as detection of packages, animals and vehicles. The vertical field of view means you see more of your visitor, although it does mean a narrower field of view when you have multiple people at the door, and there's HDR and night vision for clear visuals. In a nice touch, the camera can record for a full hour after Wi-Fi goes down or the power goes out, and if somebody steals it Google will give you a new one for free.
Although the doorbell is Nest branded and designed to pair with Nest hubs, you need to use the Google Home app; if you already have a Nest account you'll be asked to upgrade it. You can read more about what it's like to use through the Google Home app in the Google Nest Doorbell (Battery) review (opens in new tab).
If you like the idea of a video doorbell but don't like the idea of spending a lot of money or having to wire the bell into your home's mains electricity, then a wireless doorbell is a smart choice.
And, for our money, the best budget wire-free video doorbell available today is the Arlo Essential Wireless Video Doorbell.
This is because you get everything you could want from a video doorbell, including high resolution video (1536x1536 pixels), two-way audio, motion detection, night vision and a wide 180-degree field of view.
Arlo's companion app also is very slick and gives you plenty of options to use and customise the doorbell as you want, such as manually creating activity zones in its field of view so that you only get notified when someone walks onto your property, rather than every time someone walks past on the pavement.
Installation and battery removal and charging is also super simple, with the battery typically needing a recharge only once a month or two, depending on intensity of usage.
The only caveat here is that if you want an audible ring within your home, and not just on your connected devices like a mobile phone, you also need to buy an Arlo Chime ringing. This plugs into a power socket in your home and rings out when the doorbell is pushed. Luckily, with Chime bundles are on offer at many retailers.
Ring's more advanced model is visually nearly identical to the cheaper model, save for the easily removable face plate. That's there so that you can pull out the rechargeable battery and quickly switch it out with a new one. You'll find mildly upgraded hardware inside, with a slightly different sensor and lens, and dual-band 5GHz networking, which isn't actually that big a boon for this type of product, but hey – it's here.
The key video features of the Ring 4 is its constant recordings; there's a low-energy sensor continuously filming in black and white, and when triggered by a motion alert, it stitches on a few seconds of pre-roll ahead of the full-quality video recorded after the motion alert, potentially giving you much more information in the case of a security breach. All in all, a great security device, and a great video doorbell.
One neat thing, too, is that the Ring Video Doorbell 4 includes mounting wedges in the box, allowing you to get just the right angle for your camera without paying extra for a chunk of plastic. These, plus the removable battery and pre-roll are the main reasons to get this version compared to the cheaper model above – they all certainly make it more convenient, but whether they're worth spending the extra on is up to you. We will say that the wedge mounts are more useful than you might be expecting.
Arlo's small doorbell camera doesn't exactly shout that it's a doorbell. That could be an issue, given that some callers won't look for more than a second before hammering on your front door with a closed fist instead, but that's just about the only thing it doesn't do well.
The key feature here is its camera, which has a 180-degree diagonal field of view and a unique square video ratio, meaning it can pick up the full length of whatever's in front of it. That makes it great for keeping an eye on packages that have been left on your doorstep, and recording footage of porch pirates scurrying off with them, if that's a concern.
You will need existing doorbell wiring to install the Arlo Video Doorbell (no batteries here)m though it doesn't explicitly need the Arlo Hub that Arlo's other security cameras (such as the Arlo Pro 3 (opens in new tab)) rely on; it can do most things on its own. That includes not just alerting you of a motion event but video calling you as well, so you just swipe to see what's going on.
If it's value for money you're after, you should buy the Ezviz DB2 Battery Video Doorbell Kit. It's affordable yet comes with everything you need to get set up including a video doorbell, all of the necessary mounting equipment and a chime so you can hear the bell inside your house.
Video is filmed in 2K resolution which may not be the best on this list, but it's is clear and detailed. At night, the IR camera shoots footage in black and white so you will lose out on quality there but you'll still be able to see a lot from the immediate area surrounding the bell.
The best part about this doorbell is that you can store footage locally on a MicroSD card which will save you money on the monthly subscriptions you'd have to pay with a Ring or Arlo camera.
Not everyone will get on well with this doorbell though because you'll need to have the chime placed 4m or less from the doorbell, and your Wi-Fi router will need to be in the same room as the chime at the front of the house. It's worth double-checking that your home's layout will work with this kit! Read more in the Ezviz DB2 Battery Video Doorbell Kit review (opens in new tab).
As Amazon picked up Ring, so Google picked up Nest, and it now has a great wireless video doorbell of its own: the Nest Hello – which it has now renamed to Nest Doorbell (Wired). A lot of the features here (1080p video, night vision, a 160-degree field of view) match those that Ring offers, but Nest does them all just as well on the whole.
Where the Nest Hello does have a slight edge is with Google's AI-powered motion detection system: it's smarter at spotting the difference between a person and anything else, and can identify friends and family too, sending special prompts for those you know.
Like Ring, Nest also makes you pay if you want to keep your video doorbell recordings in the cloud, rather than just tuning in live whenever there's a button press or a motion alert. The price is higher though: a Nest Aware subscription plan will set you back £80 per year. The Nest is slightly bigger, too.
If you are scrolling through this list of the best video doorbells feeling deflated because none of them are in your price range, the Ring Video Doorbell Wired (opens in new tab) could be the solution.
Ring’s cheapest and smallest video doorbell delivers sharp footage, accurate motion sensing and you can speak to visitors through it as well. The catch? You won’t get a bell that chimes through the house, you’ll have to buy the Ring Chime separately which suddenly makes it much more expensive. There’s also no battery pack option so you’ll have to have it wired in. Luckily though, it’s likely to be compatible with your current doorbell’s wiring.
With features like night vision, live video and compatibility with Amazon Alexa, which are all manageable from the intuitive smartphone app, the Ring Video Doorbell Wired is a fantastic choice if you are on a budget.
The Amazon-owned Ring puts out Pro versions of its video doorbells too – so if you've got a bit more money to spend you might want to choose to upgrade to this, which is the 2nd-gen Pro model. It's slightly smaller and a little more aesthetically pleasing than the standard Ring Video Doorbell form, and the faster 5GHz Wi-Fi standard is supported, just like on the Ring 3 Plus.
If you do opt for the Pro 2 model you can draw out custom activity zones yourself as well. There's 1539p HD head-to-toe video here, which means you can see more of the scene vertically (handy for packages left on the doorstep). The motion detection technology is more advanced than the other cameras in the Ring range as well.
One feature the Pro 2 doesn't give you is a wireless installation option – it has to be hardwired, so your choice is really determined by what you need and how much you have to spend. Whichever version you pick though, you've got one of the best doorbell cameras around if you go with Ring.
The Eufy 2K Video Doorbell has plenty going for it, not least that 2560 x 1920 pixel resolution for the video feed – when someone or something turns up at your door, you're certainly going to be able to see it. The picture you see includes HDR enhancements and distortion correction too.
Another appealing aspect of this particular camera is the affordability. While a paid-for cloud subscription service is available, you can opt to go for local storage instead, which means you only pay the initial up-front price in this case.
The camera's advanced AI ensures that only human beings trigger the motion detection feature, and the doorbell comes with a free electronic chime too (offering no less than eight ringtones). There's support for activity zones here as well, plus integration with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.
Byron has been making doorbells for a long while now, so its foray into smart, wireless video doorbells comes with a guarantee of quality and heritage – even if the Byron Wi-Fi Video Doorbell itself isn't quite as sleek and stylish as some of its rivals.
All the key functionality is here ready and waiting for you to utilise, including two-way audio and companion apps that run on your smartphone and tablet. The video feed is 1080p HD and there's even motion detection as well.
There are two versions of this video doorbell: one that connects to your existing doorbell wiring; and a cheaper wireless option with 720p video. And there's no subscription to pay – you save recordings to the included memory card or link them to a service like Dropbox.
Another Ring doorbell, but this too is definitely worth a place in our best video doorbell list. The Ring Door View Cam is particularly good for anyone renting accommodation, because it fits simply in an existing peephole, with no drilling required.
Again, you've got 1080p HD video and two-way audio, as well as the very solid Ring app, so whichever Ring camera you decide to get from this list, you shouldn't be disappointed. Alexa support is included, as you would expect.
From built-in knock detection to night vision, it's another impressive option from Ring. It's also possible to set privacy zones that the doorbell simple can't see, so you could block out a door across the hall.
The Maximus Video Doorbell brings something new to the party by throwing two cameras into the mix – one to look your doorstepper in the face, and one to look at the packages being left down at foot level, just in case they get pinched.
Keeping an eye on packages seems to be one of the primary reasons people pick up video doorbell cameras in the first place, so Maximus might be on to something here. You get all the standard features included too, like motion sensor alerts and 1080p live video streaming.
You can control the doorbell with an app on your phone as well as with Alexa or Google Assistant, and you can view the live stream and the last two hours for free. The big issue, really, is availability; the product appears to be in limited supply, and readers in the UK are unlikely to find it for sale at all.